Introduction To The Call Of Peter
As we all know from the early beginning of Peter’s life, he was called from a simple fisherman to one of the disciples closest to Jesus Christ. His early call as a disciple of Jesus Christ was well-known. Today, I would like to focus my attention on his later call in his life, from merely a disciple of Jesus to his journey as one that is life transforming as an apostle of Jesus Christ.
Do you recall the conversation that Peter had with Jesus, when He confronted him with this question three times. He asked Peter: “Do you love me?” Peter got surprised at the insistent tone Jesus used in that confrontation. I have to add that it was a loving moment though. It caught Peter off guard and emotional. Let us look at the conversation closely and see what actually happen.
The Bible says in John 21:15-18
15 When they had finished eating, Jesus said to Simon Peter, “Simon son of John, do you love me more than these?”
“Yes, Lord,” he said, “you know that I love you.”
Jesus said, “Feed my lambs.”
16 Again Jesus said, “Simon son of John, do you love me?”
He answered, “Yes, Lord, you know that I love you.”
Jesus said, “Take care of my sheep.”
17 The third time he said to him, “Simon son of John, do you love me?”
Peter was hurt because Jesus asked him the third time, “Do you love me?” He said, “Lord, you know all things; you know that I love you.”
Jesus said, “Feed my sheep. 18 Very truly I tell you, when you were younger you dressed yourself and went where you wanted; but when you are old you will stretch out your hands, and someone else will dress you and lead you where you do not want to go.”
One interesting point I noticed before was Jesus called him, Simon son of Jonah. ‘Simon’ was his original name and the name ‘Peter’ was given by Jesus. So, Jesus was actually addressing him by his original name.
A Moment Of Revelation
Early this week, David, my 2-year-old and I were down with a cough and we still do. One night, I was feeling chilled and weak. So, I had to separate myself from David so he would not get it. David had to sleep in his bed and he did not like that. He fought it hard that night. In a quiet moment, I asked David: “Do you love me?” And he said: “No!”. I asked him again, he said ‘no’. In my mind, I was going to say: “If you love me, listen to me.” I had to separate myself from him because I love him. I did it for his good. Yet, he could not understand that. Many times, I had to give him my hand and he would hold on tight to it to reassure him that I love him. Long story short, he got enough assurance that he fell asleep finally. Before he fell asleep, he told me he loved me. It was in that intimate moment I had with David that I realized how intimate that moment was when Jesus asked Peter: “Do you love me?” Through the Bible, God opened a window to show that intimate moment he had with Jesus.
What I learned
Jesus was trying to reassure Peter of his love for Him. Prior to this significant event, he denied Jesus three times. He was absolutely miserable that he did what he did. In fact, he went away and hid himself. Jesus used this precious moment to reassure Peter that he did love Him. And each time, Jesus told him what he must do. This was also that significant moment where Peter’s call to become an apostle, proclaiming Jesus all the rest of his life. Later, Holy Spirit empowered him to carry out his life task at the upper room while praying. The Holy Spirit came upon him and gave him the power to fulfill his life long task mentioned in Acts 2:2-5.
Sometimes, at a quiet moment, God reveals His revelation to us and that helps us appreciate His Word and Him better. Some things we have to go through to learn and understand His revelations in our lives. And when they happen, we grow stronger and much more appreciative of who He is and what He is doing in our lives.
The call of Peter could be yours because if he who was a fisherman gave his life to answer that call, what then would you do if you are Peter? He died, hanged on the cross upside down. Would you answer that call?