Often we take sin lightly. "I know I did this, but I’ll do better next time, right? Besides, it’s just a little sin. It won’t hurt anybody."
The truth is: even the tiniest sins are a huge deal. And the more you sin, the easier it will be to sin even "bigger" next time (same with lying) and do something you’ll really regret later.
When Jesus was up on the cross with all of the world’s sins on his shoulders (that’s the sins of the Roman soldiers, the Jews, King Henry VIII, Mother Theresa, Hitler, Zac Effron, and YOUR sins), God turned His face away. God just couldn’t look at that much sin in one person, even if that person was His Son, Himself. God hates sin, so that makes it a really big deal.
Luke 22:34 – "But Jesus said, ‘Peter, before the rooster crows this day, you will say three times that you don’t know me.’"
Now read out loud with me Luke 54-62. (Go ahead, read it. We can sit here all day.) Can we summarize that story?
Random Woman: "Hey, aren’t you the one who hangs out with Jesus?"
Peter: "Jesus who?"
Weird Guy: "Yeah, you’re like his groupie or stalker or somethin’!"
"Groupie? I don’t even know the guy. And stalker? That’s kinda creepy…"
Superstitious Man: "You’re one of them."
Peter: "MAN, I am NOT!" (To get the full effect, say it with a surfer accent, stressing the "man"-ness.) Ooh, self-denial.
"AT ONCE, while Peter was still speaking, a rooster crowed." (Luke 22:60b)
Peter didn’t say, "Stupid rooster! What is he yapping about?" Oh no, Peter got the message immediately. It’s like if you did a really bad sin (3 times!) and right in the middle of it, a siren goes off. "SINNER ALERT! SINNER ALERT!" He couldn’t deny that.
Here’s the biggie: the heart-wrenching, oh no what have I done moment. I’m so incredibly sorry! I wish I could take it all back! I’d give anything!
"Then the Lord turned and looked straight at Peter." (v61)
Can you imagine…you’ve just denied your relationship with Jesus – with God! – and he turns to look your in the eye? He’s being whipped and is in tormenting pain…but he picks you out of all the faces and focuses on just you…looks at your directly with the most sorrowful eyes ever…. Can you image? Your Savior, your KING, has just died for you…and you deny it all? And He cares so much about you that all the pain is forgotten in that one still moment where it’s just you and Jesus.
I’m sorry, Lord. I am so, so sorry.
"Then Peter went outside and cried painfully." (v62)
Peter didn’t take his sin lightly. He knew exactly how terrible it was, and we was sorry. Not just the half-hearted, grumpy "sorry" that your little brother gives you, but a real, true, genuine apology.
Right now, as you’re sitting here imagining Jesus’ perfect face, imagine Jesus looking into YOUR eyes like he looked at Peter. Give Him an honest apology and be completely broken by Him. Ask God to show you any sin in your life that is breaking His heart. God will forgive you and give you the strength to change.
The happy ending? Peter and Jesus made up. They both were so close to each other and loved each other so much that not even sin could separate them anymore. Jesus forgave Peter, and Peter continued to be His faithful servant.
You have a happy ending with Jesus, too. In fact, your happy ending is just beginning.