Matthew 26:57-68 (Part 2) – Like A Teenager Not Wanting to be Seen With Their Parent…

Posted: April 14, 2016 in Gospel of Matthew

Matthew 26:57-68 (Part 2)

Caiaphas Questions Jesus

Back when my youngest daughter was in middle school (which was already some years after her mother and I had divorced), and I would have her for my weekend visitation, I used to be the cool dad who took her and her middle school posse to the movies. All those girls just thought I was the neatest thing including my daughter. They would ask me to go to the movies with them not just drop them off. With my extreme wit and charm, they all just thought I was the cat’s meow. Taylor liked it because it was her dad that the other girls thought was so cool so it gave her a sense of pride. They would just laugh at all my jokes and such, but then high school happened. Suddenly, I was old news. Teenage boys became more important. Who said what and who’s seeing who became more important. The drama of being teenage girls in high school became more important. I know that Taylor loved me still but hanging out with your dad, even if he was the cool dad, was no longer part of the plan. It was not cool. But that happens. Kids grow up. They spend less time with their parents. Children develop their own lives and chart different paths. The less time that they spend with you the less of a carbon copy of us they are. Yes, for all those formative years, we still have left imprints on their lives that even they do not realize. They subconsciously will react to life in ways similar to us because of just all that time together. However, the less time that you spend with someone, even though there are latent effects, the less exactly like you they become. With children, I guess that’s good thing. They develop independence from us and live their own lives as a result. However, that distance is never good when it comes to Jesus. We need to be in close proximity to Him always. Distance causes us to be less and less like him. With that thought let’s concentrate on Peter in this passage as we re-read Matthew 26:57-68:

 

57 Those who had arrested Jesus took him to Caiaphas the high priest, where the teachers of the law and the elders had assembled. 58 But Peter followed him at a distance, right up to the courtyard of the high priest. He entered and sat down with the guards to see the outcome.

 

59 The chief priests and the whole Sanhedrin were looking for false evidence against Jesus so that they could put him to death. 60 But they did not find any, though many false witnesses came forward.

 

Finally two came forward 61 and declared, “This fellow said, ‘I am able to destroy the temple of God and rebuild it in three days.’”

 

62 Then the high priest stood up and said to Jesus, “Are you not going to answer? What is this testimony that these men are bringing against you?” 63 But Jesus remained silent.

 

The high priest said to him, “I charge you under oath by the living God: Tell us if you are the Messiah, the Son of God.”

 

64 “You have said so,” Jesus replied. “But I say to all of you: From now on you will see the Son of Man sitting at the right hand of the Mighty One and coming on the clouds of heaven.”[a]

 

65 Then the high priest tore his clothes and said, “He has spoken blasphemy! Why do we need any more witnesses? Look, now you have heard the blasphemy. 66 What do you think?”

 

“He is worthy of death,” they answered.

 

67 Then they spit in his face and struck him with their fists. Others slapped him 68 and said, “Prophesy to us, Messiah. Who hit you?”

 

Here, we see that it is specifically mentioned that Peter follows Jesus at a distance. He is not right there with Jesus anymore. For three years, prior to this night, Peter is right there with Jesus. He is by Jesus’ side. However, on this night, there is this distance between Jesus and Peter, both physically and spiritually. Things deteriorate because of this distance – Peter distancing himself from Jesus. He ends up denying that he even knows Jesus. Just like a high school student who has not yet gotten to driving age wanting their parent to drop them off away from the school so as not to be seen with their parent(s), Peter is at a distance from Jesus. The close proximity of following Jesus is a constant theme in the gospels. Each gospel mentions that the disciples are following closely behind, beside, along with Jesus. They were always in close proximity to Jesus. They grew exponentially in their walk with God by their close proximity to Jesus. But on this night, all the disciples were at a distance from Jesus.

 

What causes you and me to be at a distance from Jesus? What causes us to be like a teenager not wanting to be seen with their parent(s) when it comes to Jesus? First, it is fear of being associated with Him. Some of us distance ourselves from Jesus because we would rather have approval of man than of Jesus. Just look at Peter who denies Him. Jesus had become a liability to Peter. The tide of public opinion had turned against Jesus at this point and Peter and the other disciples bailed on Him. Approval of others and walking with Jesus was fine when Jesus was popular. However, when the tide turned and He was a liability in the court of public opinion they all deserted. Are we not like that sometimes? We stand up for Jesus when we are among our Jesus friends but when it might cost us approval from others outside the church, we hide the fact that we know Jesus. We are Peter through and through when we do this. We should be living for an audience of One, Jesus Christ. His approval, which is eternal, is what we should be living for not that of others here on earth. Will you stand up for Jesus if it might cost you something, when it might cost you approval of others, when it might cost you your job, when it might cost you your freedom, when it might cost you your life? Second, sin can cause separation between us and Jesus. Just think of how unconfessed and unrepented sin gets in the way of your relationship with Jesus. Your and my unconfessed and unrepented sins occupy our minds and souls. We spend so much time covering up our unrepented sins that it becomes our god rather than God. Maintaining a sin that you do not want to give up gets in the way. It puts distance between us and Jesus.

 

So, let’s think about today, how we are being like Peter, how we are being like a teenager not wanting to be seen with their parent(s), when it comes to Jesus. What is putting distance between you and Jesus? What is putting distance between me and Jesus? Let’s examine it. Confess it. Repent of it. And get back to that closeness that we once had with Christ our Savior! Amen and amen!

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