Matthew 26:72
And again he denied with an oath, I do not know the man.
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(72) With an oath.—The downward step once taken, the disciple’s fall was fatally rapid. Forgetful of his Lord’s command forbidding any use of oaths in common speech (Matthew 5:34), he did not shrink from invoking the divine name, directly or indirectly, to attest his falsehood.

26:69-75 Peter's sin is truly related, for the Scriptures deal faithfully. Bad company leads to sin: those who needlessly thrust themselves into it, may expect to be tempted and insnared, as Peter. They scarcely can come out of such company without guilt or grief, or both. It is a great fault to be shy of Christ; and to dissemble our knowledge of him, when we are called to own him, is, in effect, to deny him. Peter's sin was aggravated; but he fell into the sin by surprise, not as Judas, with design. But conscience should be to us as the crowing of the cock, to put us in mind of the sins we had forgotten. Peter was thus left to fall, to abate his self-confidence, and render him more modest, humble, compassionate, and useful to others. The event has taught believers many things ever since, and if infidels, Pharisees, and hypocrites stumble at it or abuse it, it is at their peril. Little do we know how we should act in very difficult situations, if we were left to ourselves. Let him, therefore, that thinketh he standeth, take heed lest he fall; let us all distrust our own hearts, and rely wholly on the Lord. Peter wept bitterly. Sorrow for sin must not be slight, but great and deep. Peter, who wept so bitterly for denying Christ, never denied him again, but confessed him often in the face of danger. True repentance for any sin will be shown by the contrary grace and duty; that is a sign of our sorrowing not only bitterly, but sincerely.When he was gone out into the porch - The "entrance," or the small apartment between the outer door and the large hall in the center of the building. See plan of a house, Notes, Matthew 9:1-8. Peter was embarrassed and confused by the question, and to save his confusion from attracting notice, he went away from the fire into the porch, where he expected to be unobserved - yet in vain. By the very movement to avoid detection, he came into contact with another who knew him and repeated the charge. How clearly does it prove that our Lord was omniscient, that all these things were foreseen!

Another maid saw him - Mark simply says that "a maid" saw him. From Luke it would appear that "a man" spoke to him, Luke 22:58. The truth probably is that both were done. When he first went out, "a maid" charged him with being a follower of Jesus. He was probably there a considerable time. To this charge he might have been silent, thinking, perhaps, that he was concealed, and there was no need of denying Jesus then. Yet it is very likely that the charge would be repeated. A "man," also, might have repeated it; and Peter, irritated, provoked, perhaps thinking that he was in danger, "then" denied his Master the second time. This denial was in a stronger manner and with an oath. While in the porch, Mark says, the cock crew - that is, the first crowing, or not far from midnight.

Mt 26:57-75. Jesus Arraigned before the Sanhedrim Condemned to Die, and Shamefully Entreated—The Denial of Peter. ( = Mr 14:53-72; Lu 22:54-71; Joh 18:13-18, 24-27).

For the exposition, see on [1366]Mr 14:53-72.

Ver. 71,72. Mark hath the same, Mark 14:70, more shortly. So Luke, Luke 22:58. It is like Peter, upon the first alarm, began to shift away, and was got into the porch, but there another meets him with the same charge. Here, to the former lie which he had told, and here repeateth, he adds an oath for the confirmation of what he had said. What are the best of men, when God leaves them to their own strength! But the temptation yet riseth higher. And again he denied with an oath,.... He denied a second time, that he had ever been with Jesus, or was a disciple of his; and to put it out of all doubt, and an end to all dispute about it, and further charge of this kind, as he hoped, he annexed an oath to it: he swore by the God of truth; made a solemn appeal to the omniscient God, the searcher of hearts, that he was so far from being ever with Jesus of Nazareth, or a disciple of his, that, says he,

I do not know the man: meaning not only that he had no personal knowledge of him, or acquaintance with him; but that he had never seen the man in his life, nor did he know what manner of man he was. This, as it was a downright falsehood, it was what he had no need to have said; for there were multitudes that knew Christ in this sense, who never joined with him, or became his disciples. This was so much overdoing it, that it was much it had not given them a suspicion of him. Those that would excuse Peter's sin, by supposing that he meant, that he knew Christ to be God, and did not know him as a mere man, have no foundation for such a supposition; and indeed, such an ambiguous expression, and mental reservation, is no other than dealing fallaciously. Peter knew Christ in every sense; he knew him spiritually, whom to know is life eternal: and he valued the knowledge of him above all things else: he knew him to be God, and the Son of God; he knew him as mediator, and the Saviour of lost sinners; he knew him as man, and had had personal intimacy and conversation with him of a long time, and yet now denies he knew him; and that with an oath, adding perjury to lying; and so it is, that one sin leads on to another. This instance of Peter's shows the wickedness and deceitfulness of man's heart; and what the best of men are, or would be, when left to themselves, and of God: they become like other men, even like the men of the world, whose mouths are full of cursing and bitterness.

And again he denied with an oath, I do not know the man.
Matthew 26:72. Observe the climax in the terms of the threefold denial.

μεθʼ ὅρκου] is peculiar to Matthew, and is here used in the sense of an oath.

τὸν ἄμθρωπον] the man (in question). Alas, such is the language, cold and distant, which Peter uses with reference to his Master! What a contrast to Matthew 16:16! “Ecce, columna firmissima ad unius aurae impulsum tota contremuit,” Augustine.Matthew 26:72. μεθʼ ὅρκου: second denial, more emphatic, with an oath, and more direct: I know not the man (τὸν ἄν.).Matthew 26:72. Μεθʼ ὅρκου, with an oath) Oaths do not seem to have been inconsistent with Peter’s former habits.—τὸν ἄνθρωπον, the man) as if Peter did not even know the name of Jesus.Verse 72. - With an oath. Assailed on all sides, and fearing that his simple word would not be taken, Peter now to one and all makes a curt denial, accompanying it with an oath. He was thoroughly determined not to compromise himself, and to silence all suspicion. This was the second stage of his fall. I do not know the man. I have no knowledge of this Jesus of whom you are speaking. He calls his beloved Master "the man"! The man

As if he did not know Jesus' name.

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