Short Thought continued.....
Kingdom Life Purpose
‘Come, follow me,’ Jesus said, ‘and I will send you out to fish for people.’
(Matthew 4:19 NIV)
When Peter was called out of obscurity as a Galilean fisherman,
Jesus hinted at his future purpose.
Over the three years of His ministry, Peter followed Jesus closely.
He was a man of faith and a man of fear.
He was wise and foolish.
He got things right and he got things wrong.
He witnessed many miracles; walked on water;
saw the transfiguration of Jesus and was one of Jesus’ closest friends.
In Caesarea Philippi, the Holy Spirit revealed to Peter the true identity of Jesus,
and Jesus spoke these words over him:
“...And I tell you that you are Peter, and on this rock I will build my church,
and the gates of Hades will not overcome it. I will give you the keys of the
kingdom of heaven; whatever you bind on earth will be bound in heaven,
and whatever you loose on earth will be loosed in heaven.’
(Matthew 16:18-19 NIV)
Yet in the hours following Jesus’ arrest in Jerusalem, Peter denied knowing Him three times (Mark 14:66-72 NIV), as predicted (Mark 14:27-31 NIV).
I love how graciously and mercifully the resurrected Jesus affirmed the
constancy of Peter’s Kingdom purpose as He restored their relationship:
‘ ...Jesus said, ‘Feed my lambs.’... Jesus said, ‘Take care of my sheep.’...
Jesus said, ‘Feed my sheep. ... Then he said to him, ‘Follow me!’
(John 21: 15-19 NIV)
With the benefit of hindsight, we know the Holy Spirit empowered Peter
as a key leader in establishing Jesus’ church - the Kingdom life purpose
that Jesus spoke about at the time of his initial calling.
Peter’s mistakes did not change his Kingdom life purpose.
It was Christ who invited Peter to leave the familiar fishing nets to follow Him;
Christ who revealed his Kingdom purpose and
Christ who lovingly reminded him of the unchanging nature of that purpose.
Christ’s grace towards Peter is outrageous.
His grace towards us is no less outrageous.
Like Peter, my mistakes do not change my Kingdom-life purpose:
‘For we are God’s handiwork, created in Christ Jesus to do good works,
which God prepared in advance for us to do.’
(Ephesians 2:10 NIV)