(May 13, 2015)
Poor Peter has become so synonymous with his denial of Christ that we lose track of an important truth – we all deny Christ. C. S. Lewis famously said that the Lord’s will be done either way but it makes a great deal of difference to us whether we serve Him as did Peter or as did Judas. But both Peter and Judas denied Christ.
At first I thought the difference was that Peter struggled and served to make up for his mistake, but then I recalled that Judas tried to bargain for Christ’s life as well. Both of them wanted to repent from the mistake that they had made. So that was not the difference. I think the key differences are two-fold. First, Peter’s failure was a failure of weakness while Judas failed out of anger and bitterness. Second, Judas chose to kill himself rather than work through the repentance process.
Would things have been different if Judas had not committed suicide? Christ called him friend at the moment Judas betrayed him – would Christ have come to him, as He did Peter, and invite him to serve again? I suppose we will never know. Judas, through his suicide, chose not to repent of his sin.