John 18.25. ‘And Simon Peter stood and warmed himself. They said therefore unto him, are you not also one of his disciples? He denied it, saying ‘I am not’.
The Lord was on trial for his life. He was standing before the Jewish authorities, and then later the Roman governor who asked him about truth, with a sneer. Impudent soldiers were mocking him, ruffians were smiting him. But where was Peter who only a short time ago had sworn such undying allegiance and had shown such bravery in protecting Jesus from the mob with his sword?
The night was cold, and Peter’s blood was freezing because his heart was colder still. He was afraid of the consequences of being identified with Jesus. The soldiers and servants jostled each other to get near the blazing fire. So Peter crowded in too. And all the while his Lord was on trial for his life. One can scarcely credit the fact that Simon Peter, of all people, was the one who should have shown such heartlessness, indifference, and infidelity. To think that Peter could have turned his back upon the sad scene at such a moment and stretched his shivering limbs before a soothing fire. Just what kind of man was he? Where was his loyalty? Where was his manhood?
In such a case, where would we stand? What would we do? Do we have the bravery or loyalty to put ourselves in jeopardy, or would we do as Peter did and deny that we knew Him? But let’s not be too hard on Peter, until we are sure we would have acted differently had we been in his place. Then we should not be too easy on ourselves, for it is not too much to expect of us for whom Christ died that we should forget our own discomforts, and think of the Saviour and his suffering, and mold our lives as one who owes all that he has to the Lamb who died on Calvary, for his love was so great for us all.