"So they went out quickly from the tomb with fear and great joy, and ran to bring His disciples word.
...Behold, Jesus met them, saying, 'Rejoice!'
So they came and...worshiped Him."
(MATTHEW 28:8-9, NKJV)
After his denial of Jesus, Peter broke down and wept bitterly. Caravaggio’s painting of Peter in the Metropolitan Museum of Art shows his hands tightly knotted, his face contorted with remorse for his terrible failure. In light of that, how remarkable are the angel’s words “go and tell the disciples and Peter”!
Peter saw Jesus with the other disciples and knew that He was risen. Yet he didn’t know that Jesus was risen for him until his encounter with Jesus at Lake Galilee. Peter, despite his sin, jumped into deep water and struggled towards Jesus.
We see the amazing grace of the Lord in that meeting with Peter. He didn’t minimize Peter’s denial; He talked with him at a charcoal fire, a reminder of the courtyard fire. He challenged him whether his earlier protestations of being the most loyal to him were realistic. All Peter could do was reiterate that he loved Him. Jesus graciously reconfirmed him as the leader of the disciples. This same gracious Lord meets us where we are in our regrets and sins.
JESUS TREATS PETER AS THE PERSON HE WILL BE RATHER THAN AS HE HAS BEEN. JESUS DOES THE SAME FOR US.