Above all, love each other deeply, because love covers a multitude of sins.-1 Peter 4:8/KJV
Peter, the apostle denied Christ three times when his friend needed a friend, a witness, a stand-up man.
Three days later, Peter’s life changed forever.
When the women came to the tomb and found it empty, they were told by an angel (Matthew 28:5/NIV)…
“Don’t be alarmed,” he said. “You are looking for Jesus the Nazarene, who was crucified. He has risen! He is not here. See the place where they laid him. But go, tell his disciples and Peter, ‘He is going ahead of you into Galilee. There you will see him, just as he told you.’ ”–Mark 16:6/NIV
Luke’s account has Peter running to the tomb first. John’s account has both Peter and “the other disciple,” whom it is thought to be the beloved John himself. God’s Word is true and sober, but it also allows for the humor found in our human foibles. The writer of John is clear to state the other disciple outran Peter. But I digress.
The 1980s fiction movie Eddie and the Cruisers is about a rock and roll singer and his band who were on their way to top the charts with a second experimental album when misfortune hits. Their manager, Doc, made a bad choice nearly costing the Cruisers a place in music history.
The most gripping scene in the movie is when Doc is asking for another chance. Eddie has the demo tape of their unreleased album in his hand. If you have not seen the movie, it is so well done you do not know which way things will end.
Eddie then hands the demo tape to Doc.
There is a dramatic pause.
Then Doc smiles, and points to Eddie and the band and says, “You won’t regret this.”
As I ponder that movie, I envision Peter saying to Christ, “I am so sorry, you will not regret having me on your team.” We know Peter still stumbled, as we all do in this life, but he also repented when realizing his error. He is an example for all who wonder if God will not only forgive once, but what if they stumble again?
When Peter asks Christ if he should forgive his brother seven times, Christ states, “Seventy times seven,” indicating forgiveness is infinite for those who continue to fall on Christ.
In the end, this tough fisherman becomes a stalwart for Christ in his elder years, yet, with a gracefilled touch. He reminds the church four times in his first letter to love each other (1 Peter 1:22; 3:8; 4:8; 5:14). In 2 Peter 1:7 he admonishes to add love to the seven prior virtues.
He does not speak of forgiveness in any letter, but in my thinking, would be in the running with John as an equal apostle of God’s wonderful Love. Both love and forgiveness go hand in hand, or one could be said to be the right hand while the other is the left hand.
Aren’t we glad God gives us innumerable chances on our path to growing in Him?