"Feed And Follow"
"Jesus said, 'Feed my sheep. I tell you the truth, when you
were younger you dressed yourself and went where you wanted; but when you are
old you will stretch out your hands, and someone will dress you and lead you
where you do not want to go.' Jesus said this to indicate the kind of
death by which Peter would glorify God. Then He said to him, 'Follow
me'" (John 21:17-19).
The daily text is the final recorded personal exchange between Christ and
Peter prior to His ascension to heaven. I ponder how this revelation of
truth might have affected Peter. Here he is, gloriously restored after
his ignominious denial. He's ready to take on the world. And
after this encounter with Christ he is experiencing the glorious liberty of
forgiveness and restoration.
But our Lord's final sobering words to Peter were in regard to the manner in
which he would one day die, though he went on to live and faithfully minister
for Christ another 30 years prior to being crucified upside down (as
Consider how the knowledge of his future death might have emotionally
crippled him. He could have become a basket case. As much as we
often wish we knew the particulars about our future Jesus warns us that we
can't handle such information. Trying to do so leads us to a state of
worrying (panic); "Do not worry about tomorrow, for tomorrow will
worry about itself. Each day has enough trouble of its own"
(Matthew 6:34). But there is no hint in Peter's apostolic preaching
recorded in Acts or in his two epistles of this information being a factor at
all in the way he lived his life.
The purpose of this revelation to Peter was that he might know the way in
which he would glorify God in his death. That takes a lot of pondering
for me. Yet I consider people who have glorified God in their
death. I'm inspired each time I read of Stephen's bold proclamation of
faith at the very time of his stoning. It seems to me the right outlook
is seeing death as merely God's appointed means of transition from this life
to the next. Surely this is a time when believers can indeed glorify
Today let us, like Peter, again hear the words Christ spoke; "Feed My
sheep" and "Follow Me". May we respond
Be encouraged today.