At that moment the cock crowed for the second time. Then Peter remembered that Jesus had said to him, “Before the cock crows twice, you will deny me three times.” And he broke down and wept. Mark 14:72
The preceding verses in this chapter tell us that the outspoken, enthusiastic, impulsive, and passionate disciple, Peter, told the Lord Jesus that he would never, ever deny him. Then, while waiting in the courtyard to find out what would happen to Jesus, he did deny knowing Jesus three times and the cock crowed twice. I couldn’t decide how to go with this scripture, so I looked up (for the thousandth time) meanings for the word “Maundy.”
The consensus is that the word “maundy” is from the Latin word “mandatum,” which is translated “commandment.” Mandatum is the first word in Latin of the new commandment that Jesus had given, “That you love one another, as I have loved you, that you also love one another.” (Wikipedia.org & Biblegateway.com)
Have you ever cried after you have done something wrong, or said something that wasn’t so nice, to someone you love? Perhaps you didn’t stand up for them because you just didn’t want to be a “part of it” or maybe you were even ashamed of your loved one for some reason. What kind of “love” is that? So, why did Peter break down and weep when he realized that he did exactly what Jesus, whom Peter loved, told him he would do?
Jesus had told him and the others that he loved them and they should love all others as Jesus loved them. Peter knew what kind of love Jesus had for him. I think Peter wept because he was so distraught, and, maybe, ashamed because he just didn’t want to be a part of what was happening and he knew that his love for his Lord wasn’t strong enough. He needed, and all of us need, to work on this commandment, the greatest one, so constantly. Think of Romans 12:9; “Let love be genuine; hate what is evil, hold fast to what is good.” (NRSV) Another very contemporary translation I found is, “Don’t just pretend that you love others: really love them.” (TLB) Jesus doesn’t care what color we are, what we look like, where we are in life, what we wear, or how we talk; he loves us just the way we are. We are to be like Jesus. Let us love one another!
Prayer: Dear Father God, please surround us with your love and grace. We admit it is very difficult for us to do this so please send your Spirit to dwell within us and help us to love each other, no matter what, as Jesus loves us. Thank you for hearing our prayer. We pray this in the name of Jesus, Amen.