“But go, tell his disciples and Peter that he is going before you to Galilee. There you will see him, just as he told you.” (Mark 16:7)
Sometimes the most life-giving and encouraging words in scripture are almost hidden. You have to read and listen carefully to notice them.
In Mark 16, we see several women approaching the tomb of Jesus. They had witnessed his death. They knew where he was buried and expected Him to be there. Where else would a dead man be? (I mean, other than the fact that he had promised not to be there.) So they are prepared to anoint his body for proper burial since he was buried hastily after his crucifixion.
When they arrive, they encounter an angel who tells them that Jesus isn’t there but is alive. Then he says to them, “go, tell his disciples and Peter that he is going before you to Galilee. There you will see him, just as he told you.”
Did you catch it? That one little phrase: and Peter. This is the same Peter who denied Jesus three times when Jesus was on trial. Despite his bold pronouncements and loud protestations at the last supper, he had played the coward and abandoned his friend and savior. Now, upon rising from the dead, Jesus immediately thinks of Peter and singles him out for good news and hope. One more time, in case it didn’t land: when the savior of the world arose in victory, he thought first about his denier, and he gave mercy and assurance.
In that one little phrase, we hear the heart of Jesus for those who have blown it, for those who feel unforgivable. We know Peter was a wreck; he had wept bitterly over his sin. And that is the one Jesus singles out with the hope of His resurrection life and with his love.
I originally wrote this post for my church, Immanuel Nashville, in our Daily Pulse email. If you want encouragement from God’s word delivered Monday thru Friday to your inbox, I encourage you to subscribe!