The Fearless Made Afraid


The maid therefore that kept the door saith unto Peter,
“Art thou also one of this man’s disciples?”
He saith, “I am not.”

John 18:7

Peter was one who would always be the first to speak or act. He immediately responded to a question Jesus asked, “Who say ye that I am?” (Matthew 16:15) by saying, “Thou are the Christ the Son of the living God” (v. 16). He attempted to rescue Jesus by using a sword as a defense and cutting off the ear of a servant of the high priest (Matthew 26:51). His lively spirit once again revealed itself when Jesus announced He must leave them. Peter said, “Lord, why cannot I follow thee even now? I will lay down my life for Thee?” (John 13:37)

This high-spirited apostle showed a spirit of fear and safety at any cost when approached by the maid who kept the door that led to the court where Jesus was on trial. He meant to be strong and courageous and show no fear. He meant to defend his Lord. He meant to go so far as to lay down his life for the man he loved, but he treasured his life more. He decided to keep safe what he valued most - his present life. He did what it took to keep himself alive, because he did not know where an admission of being with Jesus might lead.

Can we say what we would do under similar circumstances? Maybe you have faced a situation already. Is it not true a Christian can be the only truly courageous person? Does every disciple know whatever comes from the outside should not harm our relationship with God? It cannot separate us from God unless we let it. Peter had harder things to do after his denial of the Lord. He had to turn his back on Judaism and be prepared for mocking, sneering, and criticism. One man said the wisest fear is a fear of losing one’s union with Jesus. Will we let what others may do to us take that away (Romans 8:35-39)? If we value our union with Christ as we should, then all the laughter, threats, and ridicule will lose what makes us afraid of them.