And He began to teach them that the Son of Man must suffer many things and be rejected by the elders and the chief priests and the scribes and be killed, and after three days rise again. And He said this plainly. And Peter took Him aside and began to rebuke Him. But turning and seeing His disciples, He rebuked Peter and said, "Get behind Me, Satan! For you are not setting your mind on the things of God, but on the things of man." (Mark 8:31-33)
I'm caught by one phrase in this story that describes what Jesus did when Peter started telling Him not to talk about the cross. It reads, "But turning and seeing His disciples, He rebuked Peter ...."
Jesus deliberately turned and looked at the rest of His disciples first. There's got to be a reason for that, or why would the Holy Spirit put it in the text?
I suppose Jesus could be checking to see if anybody else agrees with Peter—or if they are paying attention. But knowing Jesus, I think it might be a third reason.
Peter has just suggested that Jesus should avoid talking about the cross. No, more than that, should avoid going to the cross altogether—should turn away from God's plan to save us—should save Himself from all the pain ahead.
But that would have left the rest of us—where? Still on the road to hell. Still suffering the effects of our broken, rebellious hearts. Still cut off from the God who loves us and wants us to live with Him forever.
Jesus turned and saw His disciples—not just the twelve, but you and me. The people He loves—the people He is rescuing. The people He will die and rise for. Nothing will stop Him from making us safe.
THE PRAYER: Lord, thank You for loving us so much. Amen.
* Did someone ever try to stop you from doing what you needed to do?
* Why do you do the hard tasks of your life?
* How does it make you feel to know that Jesus has you always in mind?
Lenten Devotions were written by Dr. Kari Vo.
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