Well, in preparation for my next semester at NSBI in hopes of earning my "PHT" (more on that later!), I am reading through the book of Acts in my KJV Bible. Written presumed by the Apostle Luke, it documents the beginnings of the New Testament Church. Great stuff for me!!
Now on to why the title of this particular post.
As a Fundamental Bible Believer subjected to so much good New Testament preaching,I have heard more times than I can count about how we are "all like Peter in so many ways".We can relate to him in a way we can't to Always-Right John, or Most Amazing Missionary Ever-On-The-Planet Paul. He is like us. A little too hasty to return to fishing, falling asleep when we should be praying, denying (well, at least not testifying of) Christ to our neighbors and co-workers; a general feeling of not quite up to par. BUT!! These were all things Peter did as an UNSAVED MAN!! While he did walk with Jesus, and lived more than three years of his life shoulder to shoulder with Him, he doesn't get saved until Acts 2:4!! He had faith unto salvation, but until the indwelling of the Holy Spirit, he struggled with the baggage of his flesh. After his quickening, he delivers one of the most amazing and evangelistic messages. Three thousand souls saved in one afternoon in Acts 2! Then he and John preach again and the Bible records another 5,000 conversions to Christ in Acts 4:4! Acts 4:12 spoken by Peter is one of the most effective and powerful Salvation Scriptures- rivaling John 3:16! (Can verses of scripture rival?...hmmmm)
Why have I always compared myself with pre-salvation Peter?!? Am I content to settle for failure and mediocrity? "Well, you know how Peter was...", and "At least I'm not hasty in my decisions...", or "I can at least hold my tongue and not slash off cutting words to others ears..." (A little 21st century rendition of the event with Malchus.) I have got to remember that I am Saved-Gloriously Saved!!! Indwelling within me is the Holy Spirit, an actual possession of part of the Godhead! Through Christ's victory over the grave, I have the power to resist the devil, to flee temptation, to crucify this flesh daily and live in the Spirit free from the weight of sin!
I dare say after Salvation, Peter is a pretty put-together, well spoken man! He has power in his words, and feet that are no longer swift to go back in the boat, but to instead bring the Gospel! I now understand a little better why he wrote II Peter 1:18-19 "And this voice which came from heaven we heard, when we were with him in the holy mount. We have also a more sure word of prophecy; whereunto ye do well that ye take heed, as unto a light that shineth in a dark place, until the day dawn, and the day star arise in your hearts:". He knew his human weakness even in the very presence of Jesus. It wasn't until after Christ left, and gave the Holy Spirit that Peter was truly free and victorious! Whew!!
In summary, I am a lot like Peter. Before Salvation I was full of good and lofty ideas, and even more of clumsy executions. But after, Christ-in and with and through me-I can live victorious!
"Oh Victory in Jesus!"