And as Peter was below in the courtyard, one of the servant girls of the high priest came, and seeing Peter warming himself, she looked at him and said, “You also were with the Nazarene, Jesus.” But he denied it, saying, “I neither know nor understand what you mean.” And he went out into the gateway and the rooster crowed. And the servant girl saw him and began again to say to the bystanders, “This man is one of them.” But again he denied it. And after a little while the bystanders again said to Peter, “Certainly you are one of them, for you are a Galilean.” But he began to invoke a curse on himself and to swear, “I do not know this man of whom you speak.” And immediately the rooster crowed a second time. And Peter remembered how Jesus had said to him, “Before the rooster crows twice, you will deny me three times.” And he broke down and wept.
Comment: The passage is so plain that a comment is hardly necessary. Why did Peter deny Jesus. He was in a different and scary position. With the servant girl’s first challenge, you wonder if he didn’t have a twinge of guilt. but his fear over-rode his guilt, until the crowing rooster eventually brought back into sharp focus what was going on. His cock-sure self commitment to follow wherever Jesus was taken, and the words of his loved, but now denied and deserted, Master struck him hard. Surely it is true that there are times when it is necessary for even big burly manly men to weep in true sorrow, shame and mixed sorrow and true repentance. Anything less, followed by real change, seems inadequate.
Prayer: Is there something over which I need to weep, Lord Jesus?