Read John 21
The Lord asks Peter three times if he loves Him. In the English translation, we can’t see all that is really going on in the text. However, a closer look brings a little more insight to this passage. Peter responds with the Greek word phileo for the type of love he says he has for the Lord. Phileo is more like a friendship kind of love. Peter, at one point, was this boisterous disciple and would’ve claimed without thinking of his agape love towards the Lord. After realizing how he denied the Lord when Jesus was taken to be crucified, he seems ashamed and no longer can live up to the claims he once made. Jesus asks a third time if Peter loves Him, yet this time Jesus uses the phileo word for love, asking if Peter loves Him as a friend. Peter knew deep down he really did love Jesus but was so disappointed in himself.
“The Lord’s questions had brought Peter to the point of his dilemma. He had failed the Lord, and utterly failed to show forth love for Him. Now, Peter can no longer view himself as the great disciple who will be loyal no matter what. Now, he must look at himself realistically, as just a man who can be used by the Lord. And now, the Lord has a mission for him. He wants him to feed His sheep.” – Bible Teacher Nathan Johnson
- In your life, where do you see an agape love growing in you?
- Where do you see a phileo love growing?
- How do you know?
- How can you still let the Lord use you despite having let Him down at some or many points in your life?
- Last one sentence summary!!!