“Blessed be the God and Father of our Lord, Jesus Christ! In his great mercy he has given us new birth into a living hope through the resurrection of Jesus Christ from the dead!” (1Peter 1:3).
“Peter, can you tell us about Jesus?” a man asked eagerly. “You were one of His closest friends. What was that like?”
“It was full of wonder and mystery; it was challenging beyond belief; it was life-transforming and timeless,” Peter answered, choosing his words very deliberately.
“I saw the eyes of the blind opened when Jesus came upon the scene. I was there when the deaf heard for the first time. I watched as cripples leapt to their feet, dancing and rejoicing; and a man with a withered hand was healed in an instant.
I saw Jesus touch the leper, and the leprosy disappeared. I was there at the tomb of Lazarus, weeping with Martha and Mary at their loss. Jesus Himself wept. But then, He raised Lazarus from the dead!
I was there when He turned water into wine, and again when He feed a multitude with two fish and five loaves of bread.
And I was there the night Judas betrayed Him. And then I denied Him.
That was the night my whole world came to an end. I never imagined they would actually put Him to death! How could they; why would they? He was good, and did no evil; He was kind, and loving. Yes, He was straightforward and could read men’s hearts. I know; He read mine on many occasions.
There were a few times I was really angry at Him; but, I was wrong. He was always right.
No one can ever know the depths to which my soul plummeted in darkness that day when I watched from a distance as He died on the cross.
I heard Him cry with a loud voice, “It is finished!” And I cried in unquenchable sorrow, “It is over.” I was talking about my life; He was talking about something else.
I know this now, because of what happened on the third day.
Gripped with inconsolable sorrow and guilt, I had returned to Gethsemane where I had last been with Jesus. It was there He had often prayed; and I thought maybe His God would somehow hear my cry, too. I didn’t notice when someone came walking into the garden, and was rather startled when I heard my name called, “Peter. Simon Peter.”
I knew that Voice.
I turned immediately and saw my Lord standing before me — alive! He had risen from the dead that very morning! And on that day I rose from the dead, as well.
I wrote about this. Perhaps you’ve read it?
“Blessed be the God and Father of our Lord, Jesus Christ!” I said. “In his great mercy he has given us new birth into a living hope through the resurrection of Jesus Christ from the dead!” (1Pe 1:3). This was my own personal experience; it happened to me!
Peter then lifted his eyes up and began singing,
When Jesus comes, the Tempter’s power is broken;
When Jesus comes, the tears are wiped away,
He takes the gloom and fills the life with glory,
For all is changed when Jesus comes to stay.
Suddenly we all began to feel the very presence of the Lord enfold us as if we were in a cloud of light.
“May I tell you what I know about His grace?” Peter asked.
“Oh, please do,” we all said enthusiastically. And then listened with rapt attention as the great Apostle spoke.