Restoring Hope. John chapter 21
Sermon Notes. Restoring Hope. John chapter 21.
The Bible is populated with ‘broken world people’. There are very few in the Scriptures who progress to greatness, that didn’t have their great experience as God’s man or woman, without some kind of broken world experience.
The list is long, from Moses to David, to Solomon, and many more – broken world people who are shattered by their failure and yet, it never disqualified them from being used by God in His future plans for their lives!
Walk into the New Testament and see the failures there! It’s amazing how many men and women had their lives in one way or another broken apart, and yet, out of those broken experiences, God puts the pieces back together again, through His grace and mercy.
Peter is such a person from scripture that highlights to us, how the deep failures of his past need no longer be a hindrance to his future.
In Luke 22:31, there’s this moment where Jesus and Peter confront each other for the first of four occasions. Jesus opens up a discussion with these words: ‘Simon, Simon, Satan has asked to have all of you, to sift you like wheat. But I have pleaded in prayer for you, Simon, that your faith should not fail. So when you have repented and turned to me again, strengthen and build up your brothers.’
And Peter’s reply is, ‘Lord, Lord no matter where you go I will follow, and even if it means dying at your side, I’m ready to die.’
WHICH PERSON KNOWS REALITY THE BEST? Peter or Jesus?
Peter with some degree of frequently, making promises, talking a good line, you’ll love his words but wonder if ever, there is a possibility he could follow through?
And yet Jesus has such an amazing understanding of human behaviour, He understands that Peter is going to fail! Jesus hated failure, he didn’t will it, He would do anything to help people avoid it, but He wasn’t surprised when it happened. *‘Simon, Simon, Satan wants to destroy you, he wants to find out what you’re made of! And then those marvelous words which I think only Jesus could say: ‘but I’m already praying for you – not simply that you may avoid the failure, but if you don’t avoid the failure, I’m praying for what is going to happen on the other side of the failure.’
We know that all of Peter’s good intentions resulted in failure, in the face of those pressurized moments and events before, during and after the cross, and Peter is founded in the streets weeping bitterly! Peter is a broken person, but God is about to shower Peter with mercy and grace. He sees no future after those events of his failure that night, when he denies His Lord, and so he decides to go back to his old way of living, his old way of making a living – which is fishing.
As he and two others were out all night fishing, early the next morning they heard a voice from the shore calling, they recognized it to be the Risen Jesus. Peter jumps over the side of the boat and swims to the shore, where he meets Jesus, and his life is changed way beyond anything he could have ever dreamed imaginable!
And after repentance, forgiveness and mercy, Peter is brought back – the enemy is defeated – and a broken world man is put back together again, as the Past is put in the Past at Last!