Message Series // Do Over Pt. 2 (Life of Peter)
Message Date // April 18, 2021 (Wade Smith)
Throughout the course of life, we will make mistakes. It’s not IF we will mess up, but WHEN we will mess up. And when those unglamorous moments occur in our life, we could sure use a “do-over”. If this is you, the encouraging news is that you are not alone. All of us will do something dumb, and all of us will graciously need a “do-over”. We find this situation a lot in Bible through the life of Peter, one of Jesus’ disciples. He can have a tendency to not think things through and react too quickly…sometimes over-reacting. In this series, we will take a look at different times Peter messed things up and Jesus gave him a do-over…and may we find comfort in knowing that Jesus will give us a fresh start after mistakes we make.
“Whoever wants to be my disciple must deny themselves and take up their cross and follow me. For whoever wants to save their life will lose it, but whoever loses their life for me will find it. ” – Matthew 16:24-25
Read Matthew 16:13-23. In this text we read that Jesus begins telling his disciples he has to go to Jerusalem, suffer, and eventually die at the hands of the religious leaders…but on the third day be raised from the dead. In the midst of everything that is going on, Peter finds himself in a very unique situation and, to be honest, it’s one we can relate to. One moment Peter is being praised for having the right answer and the right perspective…and then the next moment Peter finds himself messing it up. We’ve all been in situations where we were doing so good in our relationship with Christ, and then we find ourselves messing it up. Share a time or two when you’ve found yourself in a situation like this.
I think we all can agree this wasn’t one of Peter’s finest moments and, to some degree, needs a DO OVER. Let’s think about it for a second…Peter takes Jesus (God in flesh) aside and basically tries to tell him how things are going to go. In this context and in their Jewish culture, it would have been very disrespectful for a disciple to correct his master or rabbi, let alone rebuke him. It can be easy for us to criticize Peter for telling Jesus how things should happen, but let’s be honest, we do this as well. When have you found yourself telling God how things should go? Why can it be easy for us to do this without even realizing we are doing it?
Read Matthew 16:24-28. What Peter needed most was for his PERSPECTIVE to be changed and become aligned with God’s perspective…and what we need most days is for our perspective to be changed too. Just like Peter, we can struggle with accepting God’s plan for our life, and it’s because we set our minds and our hearts on what we want, not what God wants. Where are you struggling to accept God’s plan for you life? What are some key areas that you know needs a change in perspective?
Read Psalm 139:23-24. This is such a great prayer by King David, and it can also be one we pray as a way for God to search us and change our perspective. Are we focusing on what we want or what God wants? Are we trying to build our kingdom or God’s Kingdom? Bottom line, as Jesus tells Peter, it’s about denying ourselves, taking up our cross, and following him. If you were to answer the question…”Are you willing to follow Jesus if it means ________?”…how would you fill in the blank? What’s one next step you can take to make it happen?