But Peter Got Up

It was morning when on the first day of weeks, that refers to Leviticus 23 when God instructed Israel concerning the Sabbaths to be counted to arrive at the Pentecost day. He said, And you shall count from the day after the Sabbath, from the day that you brought the sheaf of the wave offering, seven Sabbaths shall they be. Count fifty days to the day after the seventh Sabbath; then you shall present a cereal offering of new grain to the Lord (verses 15-16). The first Sabbath of that last Passover after YAHSHUA’S resurrection (the sheaf of the wave offering) was then determined to be the first Sabbath of the seven Sabbaths that constituted the fifty days or Pentecost after the Passover. This is not referred to the first day of the week as it is translated. So, on that first Sabbath of the Sabbaths some women came early dawn to the tomb, bringing their ready spices; they were possibly those women who supported YAHSHUA’S ministry. When they arrived at the tomb they were faced with three surprises:  (1) they found the tomb stone rolled away. When they got into the tomb (2) they did not find the body of YAHSHUA, (3) they saw “two men in dazzling raiment suddenly standing beside them.” Those were heavenly and unexpected surprises those women experienced- They who were looking for the living among the dead. They, just like the disciples, did not understand YAHSHUA’S prophetic words for being spiritually aloof in their unbelief.  It took the two men they had seen to remind them. Some believe that these two men were the same men who were seen at the Mount of Transfiguration conversing with YAHSHUA. These were Moses and Elijah who appeared in splendor and majesty and brightness and were speaking of His exit [from life], which He was about to bring to realization at Jerusalem (Luke 9:30-31) They told them: Remember how He told you while He was still in Galilee that the Son of Man must be given over into the hands of sinful men and be crucified and on the third day rise (Luke 24:1-7).  This reminder served them well to believe the words of YAHSHUA. Without delay, they went to the apostles, including Peter, to report to them the good news. The apostles, however, were drenched in the hopelessness of their unbelief. The women gave them the news but they seemed to them “an idle tale” and they did not believe the women, although these women were known of them.

When Isaiah prophesized about the death of the Messiah in Isaiah 53, he started with these two questions: Who has believed our message? And to whom has the arm of the Lord been revealed? Unknown to these women and to the disciples, Isaiah’s prophecy had been fulfilled those few last days and they were the recipients of that prophecy, for if the apostles, who walked with Him for three years, would not believe YAHSHUA’S words, who then would do?  But there was one among them who became curious enough to check the news out because he had not made things right with the Lord before His death. He had to see for himself if that was true or not. He then got up and went to the tomb to see for himself. I wonder what was he really thinking and how was he feeling at that moment. Peter had no idea that he was going to carry the consequence of denying the Lord for a while. That it was going to be attached to him for the rest of his life. Peter too found himself surprised with the news because he thought that all was going to be over after YAHSHUA’S death, since he did not believe the rest of the story. But it wasn’t so and the women confirmed it. How was he going to face his Lord? He had detached himself from YAHSHUA even before YAHSHUA’S death for not accepting the message of YAHSHUA’S death, leading him to the denial of Him. Remember when he even tried to kill one of the soldiers who had come to arrest YAHSHUA?  That was not a good thing.

The cock crowed after he had denied the Lord three times according to the words of YAHSHUA; now it was the third day and YAHSHUA was alive, just like he had told him and the others it was going to happen. His unbelief did not change things; it did not annul the prophecies about YAHSHUA, but it left him with a dark and confused mind. The women’s report had a negative effect on the apostle’s mind instead of a positive one. Strange, so strange how doubt submerged them in unbelief, robbing them of the joy the women brought through the good news of the resurrection of their Lord YAHSHUA. They were numb and shocked after witnessing YAHSHUA’S arrest and ultimately His death. They were hopeless and faithless for lack of understanding the Scriptures and its prophecies.  However, while the apostles were reasoning the news defining as madness, Peter got up and ran to the tomb. “Stooping down and looking in, he saw the linen cloths alone by themselves, and he went away, wondering about and marveling at what had happened.” At least he did that, while the others disregarded the news.  YAHSHUA left the evidence behind Him for all to see that He is who He said He was- the Son of God, the Creator of life and death has no power over Him. Peter saw and was surprised at the evidences he had seen in that tomb where three days earlier YAHSHUA laid lifeless.  

Peter’s eyes had met YAHSHUA’S when the cock crowed at the moment Peter denied Him three times. No words were spoken to each other, but Peter remembered the prophetic words of YAHSHUA:  “Before the cock crows today, you will deny Me thrice.” His conscience took over his mind and Peter repented by weeping bitterly. That resurrection morning brought Peter a new day when he finally could see the risen Lord. Much was ahead for Peter’s life he did not know until the Lord revealed to him at his last encounter with YAHSHUA when He challenged Peter’s love for Him. Saddened for YAHSHUA having asked him three times the same question, he finally said, You know everything; You know that I love You [that I have a deep, instinctive, personal affection for You as for a close friend] (John 21:17). From coward to courageous, Peter died a martyr for the Lord. No more denying the Lord, only denial of self to the point of giving up his life for YAHSHUA. That’s how he demonstrated his genuine love for the One Who loved him and gave Himself for him. YAHSHUA gave His life for each of us also. It fits us well to deny self to live only for Him and ultimately die for Him just as Peter did.

Author: Jacinta da Cruz Rodgers

I have been committed to teaching the truth of the Word of God beginning with Trans World Radio on Bonaire, N.A and Swaziland, Africa (1969-1980), then through churches in the United States in both English and Portuguese and then through ministry in Israel (2005-2006). This ministry continues through local Bible studies and outreach to the world via the internet. I have written a book about my life from that of an orphan in Brazil to missionary in 5 countries. You can find out more on the "Book" page of our blog site.

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