The Cock and Pride
Mary and I don’t hear him much at night, but in the morning our neighbor’s rooster crows loudly, joining with the bellowing of a donkey to signal the sunrise-proof that we still live in the country. Watch a cock strut around the pen to establish his territory among the hens and then raise his head to let out a loud crow, and you can’t help but laugh at his audacious pride.
Earlier in Matthew’s narrative Peter arrogantly tried to block Jesus’ path to the cross (Matthew 16:22-23). Now when Jesus states that it’s time to fulfill Zechariah’s prophecy about a shepherd who gets struck and his sheep scattered (Zechariah 13:7), Peter struts and crows, “Even if they all fall away because of you, I will never fall away.” (Matthew 26:33). Jesus rebukes his boast, “Certainly, I tell you, this very night, before the rooster crows, you will deny me three times.”
The rest of the disciples joined right in with Peter as they walked to Gethsemane, but on this Good Friday I need to learn from their failure. I need to humble myself and join Jesus. Flat on my face, I need to watch and pray lest I join Peter in denying the Lord Jesus.
LORD, thank you that even before you prayed in the Garden of Gethsemane you were able to tell your disciples that you would rise and meet them again in Galilee. You knew that the agony of the cross would lead to the joy of the resurrection. On this Good Friday help me join you in suffering as the Evil One continues to try to scatter your sheep. Help me to be a shepherd who encourages your sheep to stay united. Help me do this humbly on my knees and not stupidly strutting around and crowing.
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