26One of the servants of the high priest, a relative of the man whose ear Peter had cut off asked, “Did I not see you in the garden with him?” 27Again Peter denied it, and at that moment the cock crowed. – John 18:1-19:42
How could Peter deny Jesus? Not once, but three times! Peter was chosen by Jesus; he ate meals with Jesus; he traveled with him; he saw him perform miracles. He even walked on water with him!
The real question is not why Peter denied Christ, but why we deny him. “Oh, I would never deny him,” we cry. But don’t we deny him when we see prejudice and don’t speak? When we see someone hungry or homeless and don’t act?
We cannot solve the social ills of society; however, when we turn our backs on them, we deny Jesus. So what can we do? We can bring food for the food cart; we can volunteer for Interfaith week; we can comfort those who are targets of prejudice; and many other small and necessary deeds.
Peter denied Jesus in a dark courtyard when he could have been arrested and crucified himself. We deny him when we say, “If they would only try to help themselves, they could improve their life. They are probably on drugs or alcohol – why should I care. Or they are just playing the system so I am not going to help.”
Maybe Peter’s denial was not as bad as ours.
Lord, help us see the injustice in the world and give us the courage to be of service. Amen.