By Kelly Wise Valdes
The leader of the Twelve Apostles, Simon Peter of Bethsaida, was reported to deny his involvement with Jesus Christ of Bethlehem when questioned by authorities. Residents from Simon Peter’s hometown, near the eastern shore of the Sea of Galilee, are in disbelief that Peter would denounce his affiliation with Jesus.
Several of Simon Peter’s former fishermen co-workers confirmed that he was often impulsive and hasty as sometimes described as normal for a Galilean.
“Simon Peter was quick-tempered, emotional and easily drawn to adventure,” said Josephus, a local fisherman and friend. “But he always seemed loyal to Jesus.”
Simon Peter and his brother Andrew were the first of the disciples that followed Jesus. It was when he became a follower that Jesus added the surname Peter to Simon’s first name. Peter, which also means rock, was a testament to how much Jesus believed in Simon Peter to carry on the Great Commission. It was reported that Simon Peter was authorized by Jesus to be the main spokesperson for the group as he was being groomed to continue the movement to spread God’s Word after the crucifixion of Christ.
Witnesses have come forward to proclaim the loyalty of Simon Peter to Jesus, in spite of his denial to authorities. His brother, Andrew, also testified that Simon Peter was fiercely loyal but his fear was the cause of the denial. “To his credit, everyone else fled but Peter still followed Jesus after His arrest and kept his distance so as not to be identified with Him,” said Andrew. “There’s no question that fear gripped him. From the courtyard, he watched Jesus being falsely accused, beaten and insulted. Peter was afraid Jesus would die and he was fearful for his own life as well. The world hated Jesus, and Peter found that he was not prepared to face the ridicule and persecution that Jesus was suffering.
As Jesus now awaits trial, Simon Peter is standing by his side and remorseful for his previous denial.
Jesus inspired 12 ordinary men to leave their old lives behind and become followers of Him. Among these new followers were fishermen, a tax collector and a revolutionary.
The Gospels record the failings, struggles and doubts of these twelve men who followed Jesus. This series will document one of the disciples each month in a fun way in order to learn more about how God turned each man from ordinary to extraordinary.