It’s difficult to stand up for Christ when the pressure is on. When we fail, may we weep tears of repentance like Peter did.

Scripture: Matthew 26:57-75

ESV Text: Matthew 26:57-75

Matthew 26:57-75 (Listen)

Jesus Before Caiaphas and the Council

57 Then those who had seized Jesus led him to Caiaphas the high priest, where the scribes and the elders had gathered. 58 And Peter was following him at a distance, as far as the courtyard of the high priest, and going inside he sat with the guards to see the end. 59 Now the chief priests and the whole Council were seeking false testimony against Jesus that they might put him to death, 60 but they found none, though many false witnesses came forward. At last two came forward 61 and said, “This man said, ‘I am able to destroy the temple of God, and to rebuild it in three days.’” 62 And the high priest stood up and said, “Have you no answer to make? What is it that these men testify against you?” 63 But Jesus remained silent. And the high priest said to him, “I adjure you by the living God, tell us if you are the Christ, the Son of God.” 64 Jesus said to him, “You have said so. But I tell you, from now on you will see the Son of Man seated at the right hand of Power and coming on the clouds of heaven.” 65 Then the high priest tore his robes and said, “He has uttered blasphemy. What further witnesses do we need? You have now heard his blasphemy. 66 What is your judgment?” They answered, “He deserves death.” 67 Then they spit in his face and struck him. And some slapped him, 68 saying, “Prophesy to us, you Christ! Who is it that struck you?”

Peter Denies Jesus

69 Now Peter was sitting outside in the courtyard. And a servant girl came up to him and said, “You also were with Jesus the Galilean.” 70 But he denied it before them all, saying, “I do not know what you mean.” 71 And when he went out to the entrance, another servant girl saw him, and she said to the bystanders, “This man was with Jesus of Nazareth.” 72 And again he denied it with an oath: “I do not know the man.” 73 After a little while the bystanders came up and said to Peter, “Certainly you too are one of them, for your accent betrays you.” 74 Then he began to invoke a curse on himself and to swear, “I do not know the man.” And immediately the rooster crowed. 75 And Peter remembered the saying of Jesus, “Before the rooster crows, you will deny me three times.” And he went out and wept bitterly. (ESV)

KJV Text:

(Alt. audio): Chapter: 26

     57 And they that had laid hold on Jesus led him away to Caiaphas the high priest, where the scribes and the elders were assembled. 58 But Peter followed him afar off unto the high priest’s palace, and went in, and sat with the servants, to see the end. 59 Now the chief priests, and elders, and all the council, sought false witness against Jesus, to put him to death; 60 But found none: yea, though many false witnesses came, yet found they none. At the last came two false witnesses, 61 And said, This fellow said, I am able to destroy the temple of God, and to build it in three days. 62 And the high priest arose, and said unto him, Answerest thou nothing? what is it which these witness against thee? 63 But Jesus held his peace. And the high priest answered and said unto him, I adjure thee by the living God, that thou tell us whether thou be the Christ, the Son of God. 64 Jesus saith unto him, Thou hast said: nevertheless I say unto you, Hereafter shall ye see the Son of man sitting on the right hand of power, and coming in the clouds of heaven. 65 Then the high priest rent his clothes, saying, He hath spoken blasphemy; what further need have we of witnesses? behold, now ye have heard his blasphemy. 66 What think ye? They answered and said, He is guilty of death. 67 Then did they spit in his face, and buffeted him; and others smote him with the palms of their hands, 68 Saying, Prophesy unto us, thou Christ, Who is he that smote thee?

     69 Now Peter sat without in the palace: and a damsel came unto him, saying, Thou also wast with Jesus of Galilee. 70 But he denied before them all, saying, I know not what thou sayest. 71 And when he was gone out into the porch, another maid saw him, and said unto them that were there, This fellow was also with Jesus of Nazareth. 72 And again he denied with an oath, I do not know the man. 73 And after a while came unto him they that stood by, and said to Peter, Surely thou also art one of them; for thy speech bewrayeth thee. 74 Then began he to curse and to swear, saying, I know not the man. And immediately the cock crew. 75 And Peter remembered the word of Jesus, which said unto him, Before the cock crow, thou shalt deny me thrice. And he went out, and wept bitterly.(KJV)

Hymn: TLH 151:
Christ, the Life of All the Living — Organ Audio

1. Christ, the Life of all the living, 
Christ, the Death of death, our foe, 
Who, Thyself for me once giving 
To the darkest depths of woe,– 
Through thy sufferings, death, and merit 
I eternal life inherit: 
Thousand, thousand thanks shall be, 
Dearest Jesus, unto Thee. 

2. Thou, ah! Thou, hast taken on Thee 
Bonds and stripes, a cruel rod; 
Pain and scorn were heaped upon Thee, 
O Thou sinless Son of God! 
Thus didst Thou my soul deliver 
From the bonds of sin forever. 
Thousand, thousand thanks shall be, 
Dearest Jesus, unto Thee. 

3. Thou hast borne the smiting only 
That my wounds might all be whole; 
Thou hast suffered, sad and lonely, 
Rest to give my weary soul; 
Yea, the curse of God enduring, 
Blessing unto me securing. 
Thousand, thousand thanks shall be, 
Dearest Jesus, unto Thee. 

4. Heartless scoffers did surround Thee, 
Treating Thee with shameful scorn, 
And with piercing thorns they crowned Thee. 
All disgrace Thou, Lord, hast borne 
That as Thine Thou mightest own me 
And with heavenly glory crown me. 
Thousand, thousand thanks shall be, 
Dearest Jesus, unto Thee. 

5. Thou hast suffered men to bruise Thee 
That from pain I might be free; 
Falsely did Thy foes accuse Thee,– 
Thence I gain security; 
Comfortless Thy soul did languish 
Me to comfort in my anguish. 
Thousand, thousand thanks shall be, 
Dearest Jesus, unto Thee. 

6. Thou hast suffered great affliction 
And hast borne it patiently, 
Even death by crucifixion, 
Fully to atone for me; 
Thou didst choose to be tormented 
That my doom should be prevented. 
Thousand, thousand thanks shall be, 
Dearest Jesus, unto Thee. 

7. Then, for all that wrought my pardon, 
For Thy sorrows deep and sore, 
For Thine anguish in the Garden, 
I will thank Thee evermore, 
Thank Thee for Thy groaning, sighing, 
For Thy bleeding and Thy dying, 
For that last triumphant cry, 
And shall praise Thee, Lord, on high.