And when they had kindled a fire in the middle of the hall, and were set down together, Peter sat down among them.…
I. THE LOOK OF JESUS. We cannot picture to ourselves the countenance he exhibited, or the point and pungency of the sentiment it conveyed; but I observe it was doubtless the look of offended dignity; it was the look of insulted friendship; it was the look of betrayed confidence; it was the look of keen and humiliating reproof, and such reproof the whole of Peter's conduct justly merited. I observe, further, that the look of Jesus was a look which conveyed conviction. And, once more, it was a look of compassion. What a conflict of feeling must have been produced by the emotions displayed on this deeply interesting occasion. Humbled by reproof, pursued by conviction, melted by love, what tongue can describe his grief, or what artist give a hue sufficiently deep to the manifestation of his contrition I These are the feelings — a knowledge of which must be acquired in the most impressive and affecting school in the world. These are feelings — a knowledge of which must be acquired on Mount Calvary. The man who has been brought to look on Him whom he has pierced has an idea more clear, a conception more strong of the feelings of Peter than the art of eloquence, or the line of the pencil can convey.
II. THE RECOLLECTIONS WHICH THE LOOK OF JESUS REVIVED.
1. The recollection of previous obligation.
2. The recollection of oft-repeated and solemn protestations of fidelity and affection.
3. The recollection of the scene at the Last Supper.
III. THE EFFECTS PRODUCED.
1. The retirement he sought. True repentance flies to solitude, and shrinks even from sympathy.
2. The depth of his sorrow.Concluding lessons:
1. Consolation to those who, like Peter, weep bitterly in secret. Special news of Christ's resurrection sent to Peter: "Seek him in his solitude, and tell him that the Lord waits with open arms to receive him."
2. But remember that the great moral of the whole is caution. Learn, therefore, by way of application in the first place, the necessity of guarding vigilantly against the approaches of temptation. Learn, secondly, from this subject, the necessity of prudence in making a profession, but of integrity in acting up to it when it is made. Learn, then, in the last place, the necessity of decision of character in matters of religion.
Parallel VersesKJV: And when they had kindled a fire in the midst of the hall, and were set down together, Peter sat down among them.