Good intentions aren’t good enough

Matthew 26: 33 – 35 Peter replied, “Even if all fall away on account of you, I never will.”  “Truly I tell you,” Jesus answered, “this very night, before the rooster crows, you will disown me three times.” But Peter declared, “Even if I have to die with you, I will never disown you.” And all the other disciples said the same.

Matthew 26: 73 – 75 After a little while, those standing there went up to Peter and said, “Surely you are one of them; your accent gives you away.”
Then he began to call down curses, and he swore to them, “I don’t know the man!”
Immediately a rooster crowed. Then Peter remembered the word Jesus had spoken: “Before the rooster crows, you will disown me three times.” And he went outside and wept bitterly.

How many of us can identify with Peter when he said that even if all fall away on account of you, I never will. Such good intentions. If we look closely at the passage, we will notice that Peter was merely at the forefront of saying it, but all the other disciples said the same. Thomas, commonly referred to as doubting Thomas for his disbelief that Jesus had risen from the dead, said in John 11: 16: “Let us go, that we may die with him”.  Such good intentions, but Jesus saw through all of them. He knew that Peter was going to deny him three times when confronted concerning his relationship with Jesus. A time when Jesus was being tortured and interrogated. A time when Jesus needed his support the most. He knew that all the disciples would scatter and run to save their own lives when he was arrested in the garden of Gethsemane. He knew that none of them, except John – the disciple whom Jesus loved – would be at the cross when he was crucified. Where were all their good intentions of never falling away and denying him, and even going with him to die with him? Good intentions aren’t good enough. Will power and resolutions always fall by the wayside when the crunch comes. What we need is grace to sustain us, and grace only comes into operation when we recognise our frailty before God and give up all our good intentions to rest completely in his grace to be and do anything that is pleasing to him. His grace is sufficient.

2 Corinthians 12: 9 He said to me, “My grace is sufficient for you, for my power is made perfect in weakness.” Therefore I will boast all the more gladly about my weaknesses, so that Christ’s power may rest on me.

Leave a Comment

Your email address will not be published. Required fields are marked *