"THE GOSPEL OF MARK" Jesus Predicts Peter's Denial (14:27-31) INTRODUCTION 1. How well do we know ourselves...? a. Confident that our faith is strong? b. Certain that we would never deny our Lord? 2. In our text (Mk 14:27-31) we find examples of over-confidence... a. Not just in Peter who denied the Lord b. But in all the apostles who stumbled and fled [Let’s begin with a reading of our text, with the Lord and His disciples having just completed the Last Supper and on their way to the Mount of Olives...] I. NARRATIVE A. DESERTION AND REUNION FORETOLD... 1. Jesus speaks of desertion by His disciples - Mk 14:27 2. As foretold by Zechariah - cf. Zec 13:7 3. But also of His resurrection and reunion in Galilee - Mk 14:28; cf. Mk 16:7 B. PETER’S DENIAL FORETOLD... 1. Peter asserts that even if all others stumble, not him! - Mk 14:29 2. Jesus tells Peter that he will deny Him three times that night - Mk 14:30 3. Peter angrily disagrees, even if it means death - Mk 14:31 4. The rest of the disciples all say the same thing - Mk 14:31 [Jesus’ prediction soon came true (Mk 14:50,66-72). What would we have done if we were one of Jesus’ disciples at that time? Before answering too quickly, consider a few lessons from the text...] II. APPLICATION A. THE LIMITS OF SELF-KNOWLEDGE... 1. How well do we really know ourselves? a. The disciples seem so certain in their faithfulness b. Yet they all stumbled and Peter denied the Lord, just as He said c. Like Hazael, they really did not know their true selves - cf. 2Ki 8:12-13 d. Indeed, can any of us know our true selves? - cf. Jer 17:9 2. Then what can we do? a. Acknowledge that only God truly knows us
- cf. Jer 17:10; Ps 139:1-16; He 4:13 b. Look to the Word of God to see ourselves as we really are - He 4:12 c. Look to God in prayer for help - Ps 19:12; 139:23-24; e.g., 2Th 3:5 B. BEWARE OF COMFORT MISSED BY SELFISHNESS... 1. Notice how the disciples ignored Jesus’ words of comfort a. He spoke plainly of His resurrection - Mk 14:28 b. Yet they focused on defending themselves - Mk 14:29-31 2. Might we be guilty of the same? a. We have been given many comforting words - e.g., Ro 8:31-39 b. We can enjoy comfort from both God and one another - cf. 2Co 1:3-4 c. But we can overlook such comfort when focused on selfish concerns! C. BE CAREFUL OF PROUD ASSERTIONS... 1. Notice the self-confidence of the disciples a. Peter angrily stating that he would die before denying the Lord - Mk 14:29-31 b. The rest of the disciples said likewise - Mk 14:31 2. Might we be guilty of the same? a. Quick to boast of our faithfulness to the Lord or His church? b. Remember the wisdom of Solomon about pride and a haughty spirit - Pr 16:18 CONCLUSION 1. As disciples of Jesus Christ, let us learn... a. From His first disciples b. From those who were even His apostles 2. What can we learn...? a. The limits of self-knowledge b. The danger of missing comfort due to selfishness c. The need to be careful of proud assertions We can also learn of our Lord’s grace and mercy, for He was quick to forgive those who denied Him and fled away. So He will do for us when we stumble, if we are willing to repent and return to Him...!