Peter answered and said unto him, Though all men shall be offended because of thee, yet will I never be offended.
Jesus said unto him, Verily I say unto thee, That this night, before the cock crow, thou shalt deny me thrice.
Peter said unto him, Though I should die with thee, yet will I not deny thee. Likewise also said all the disciples.
And after a while came unto him they that stood by, and said to Peter, Surely thou also art one of them; for thy speech bewrayeth thee.
Then began he to curse and to swear, saying, I know not the man. And immediately the cock crew.
And Peter remembered the word of Jesus, which said unto him, Before the cock crow, thou shalt deny me thrice. And he went out, and wept bitterly.
Yesterday we observed that Peter had a testimony of the Savior, yet Jesus declared that he still needed a conversion. That Jesus was correct in this appraisal is evident from the passages above. Peter claimed that he would stay by his master’s side to death, and likely he sincerely felt he had it in him at the time. But when the prospect of martyrdom drew uncomfortably near he gave in to fear and denied his discipleship.
Notice that the accusation made to him is not of what he knows, or what he does, it is of who he is: “thou art one of them.” He denies that, and by so doing confesses that by word and deed he may have been a follower of Christ, but a part of his heart has still remained unconverted. There is some becoming that he still lacks.
Fortunately his journey does not end here, as we all know he eventually does become the rock upon which Christ can build his church. Tomorrow we will study how that process of becoming occurred.