Mike Novotny - What if I've Denied Jesus?
And when Jesus thinks about you, he says the same thing, "I know him. I know her". Wow! We are here! Jesus was here, not around here. But here. Earlier this year, I got to explore Israel. I'm sitting, literally, in the place where Jesus' feet touched. I saw some amazing places. The old city of Jerusalem. In the Garden of Gethsemane. Beautiful Nazareth. At the Mount of Beatitudes. Capernaum, on the shores of the Sea of Galilee. And I can't wait to share these video devotions with you.
I'm sitting, today, in a really powerful place. I'm at the place where many archeologists believe was the home of the Jewish High Priest in the first century. And this might actually be the courtyard where this happened. Where St. Peter, when put on the spot, said, "I don't know Jesus". That's actually what this Latin inscription means from Luke 22, "I don't know him". Peter was so scared of being connected to Jesus, what it would cost him, that in that moment, this apostle who was so brave, so powerful, he collapsed. He caved. And to a little servant girl, he said, "I don't know him".
That's so tempting for you and for me to do as well, isn't it? I mean, think about Jesus and, when we're in church, we're all in. But sometimes in that conversation with someone who's not convinced, who isn't impressed, it's so easy to deny Jesus with our words, our actions or our silence. But do you know what I'm so grateful for? That Jesus changes this sentence. If you could take off that first Latin word, it would just say, "I know him".
And when Jesus thinks about you, he says the same thing. "I know him. I know her". He doesn't deny us in front of the angels or the Holy Spirit or his Father in Heaven. He is proud to be our brother and our Savior. He accepts us through the sacrifice that he made. And the proof is in the rest of the Bible. The New Testament of the Bible has 27 books in it not 25. And do you know who two of the New Testament books were written by? That guy. God's love was so great, his acceptance of Peter was so secure, that he didn't just forgive him and send him on his way, he commissioned him and used him to write two of the books of the book that we love so much.
And it's one more proof to me of the amazing grace of Jesus. He did not just die for us, he even includes us after we do the worst things. So, confess your sins to Jesus today. And know that in response, he doesn't reject you, he doesn't push you away. Instead, in amazing mercy and grace, he says, "Oh I know him. I love him. They're my friends, my brothers my sisters, part of the family of God". And that's the amazing gospel message that we learn here in the city of Jerusalem.