What Jesus Did! 'The Brokenness of Sin and Shame' — Luke 22:54-62

Wednesday, December 13, 2023

So [Temple guards with the priests and elders] arrested [Jesus] and led him to the high priest's home. And Peter followed at a distance. The guards lit a fire in the middle of the courtyard and sat around it, and Peter joined them there. A servant girl noticed him in the firelight and began staring at him. Finally she said, "This man was one of Jesus' followers!"

But Peter denied it. "Woman," he said, "I don't even know him!"

After a while someone else looked at him and said, "You must be one of them!"

"No, man, I'm not!" Peter retorted.

About an hour later someone else insisted, "This must be one of them, because he is a Galilean, too."

But Peter said, "Man, I don't know what you are talking about." And immediately, while he was still speaking, the rooster crowed.

At that moment the Lord turned and looked at Peter. Suddenly, the Lord's words flashed through Peter's mind: "Before the rooster crows tomorrow morning, you will deny three times that you even know me." And Peter left the courtyard, weeping bitterly.

— Luke 22:54-62 NLT

Key Thought

Peter suffered the brokenness of sin and shame. The Lord had warned him, [1] yet he failed anyway. Despite his rash promises, [2] Peter denied the Lord ... three times. The crowing of the rooster roused Peter from his confused stupor and blatant denials. The sound of the rooster ushered him into the bitter and undeniable reality of his sinful desertion of his friend and Lord. I have had moments like that. Maybe you have, too. They're those moments when you realize that you've dishonored the Lord and let him down, even though you promised yourself, and the Savior, that you wouldn't let him down ... again. Peter is our great reminder that our failures don't determine our future with the Lord. [3] God can take those failures and make something good of them. While our messy failures are not his plan for us, he can take our messes and restore us back into his plan. So please, don't give up when you have failed the Lord. Instead, let your sin break you and then come back and openly confess that sin to the Lord and be restored. He will bless you and use you to bless others if you will come back to him.

[1] Luke 22:34.
[2] Luke 22:33.
[3] Luke 22:32

Today's Prayer

Precious and holy God, my Abba Father, forgive me for my weakness and sin. Forgive me for the arrogance of trying to battle my weakness and Satan's power on my own strength. I trust in your powerful and transforming forgiveness. Help me believe that you can take my failures and my past and use my experiences with them to encourage and bless others. In Jesus' name. Amen.

Related Scripture Readings

  • 2 Corinthians 1:3-4
  • 1 John 1:8-10, 2:1-2
  • John 21:15-17


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Illustration of Luke 22:54-62 NLT — "Before the rooster crows tomorrow morning, you will deny three times that you even know me."

About This Devotional

What Jesus Did! is a series of one-year devotional guides through each gospel, using one short scripture passage each day and following the Gospel in sequential order. Each devotional consists of a scripture passage and a reflection and a prayer which open up the day's scripture and show how it challenges you to live for Jesus.

What Jesus Did! is written by Phil Ware and is available in book form.

Scripture quotations are taken from the Holy Bible, New Living Translation, copyright ©1996, 2004, 2007, 2013, 2015 by Tyndale House Foundation. Used by permission of Tyndale House Publishers, Inc., Carol Stream, Illinois 60188. All rights reserved.