Life After Sin
By Janet Morris Grimes –
I grew up as a Christian, surrounded by people who were sincere, walked out their faith, and lived by example. To this day, I am truly thankful for the way they demonstrated how I should live my life.
But none of that mattered once I crossed the threshold into sin.
I’m not referring to the little mistakes one might make as I grew up. I am talking about big, life-changing stuff. The kind of stuff I promised myself I would never do. The kind of stuff I thought I was strong enough to handle. The kind of stuff that stays hidden for a while. But eventually, the truth comes out. And the whole world knows it.
It’s the kind of sin that suddenly made me aware of how much I needed a Savior. The kind that proved that on my own, I was not nearly as strong nor as great as my adoring public thought I was.
And that journey led me straight to Peter.
He, like me, thought he could handle it. Jesus, on the other hand, already knew he could not. That he would fall. And it would hurt.
Sometimes, this story is overshadowed by that of Judas. The King of the Betrayers. But in a scene that may be more important, Peter shows us, by example, what happens after the sin.
In the upper room, during what became known as The Last Supper, Jesus predicts Peter’s denial of Him. But He does more than this. He blankets the situation with prayer, in advance. And not only does He predict the fall. He predicts the healing. The overcoming. The triumphant life, after the sin.
It all happens in Luke. Once Jesus confronts Judas about his pending betrayal, a discussion breaks out among the twelve. But, Jesus quickly turns the conversation to Peter.
“Simon, Simon, Satan has asked to sift each of you like wheat. But I have pleaded in prayer for you, Simon, that your faith should not fail. So when you have repented and turned to me again, strengthen your brothers” (Luke 22:31 – 32 NLT).
Before Peter is even aware of his weaknesses, Jesus prayed over it. And this happens before Jesus predicts that Peter will deny Him three times on that very day.
And then Peter falls.
It is important to note how Peter responds. Everyone is in turmoil over the death of Jesus. Peter, perhaps more than others because of his own failures. He is not sure how to handle his own guilt.
Thankfully, he doesn’t have to.
Because, once Jesus had risen on the following Sunday, the angel who told Mary and the others about it had a special message for Peter.
“Now, go and tell the others, including Peter, that Jesus is going ahead of you to Galilee. You will see him there, just as he told you before he died” (Mark 16:7 NLT).
Jesus wanted to make sure Peter knew He was alive, and that He would see him soon.
And Peter was thrilled with that news. What happens next, once he hears that the tomb was found empty?
He ran to the tomb to see for himself. He ran back to Jesus with open arms. He accepted forgiveness without looking back. He ran to the future, without fear.
And when he had repented and returned to Jesus, he strengthened his brothers.
Just as Jesus had prayed.
Peter proved that the triumph comes by running to the Savior, after the sin.