Peter the Rock

Every list of the disciples names Peter first. He has a big heart and unlimited enthusiasm. He was eager, impulsive, self-confident, and daring. Yet, he had his rough edges and swung wildly like a pendulum, bold and courageous one moment, and the next cowardly, fickle and weak.

Peter’s 1st and 2nd letters in the Bible are starkly contrasted from his gospels earlier in his life. Peter has changed, mellowed out, and is now feeding Jesus’s sheep. This letter is written in the 50s or early 60s to Christians in Asia Minor who were undergoing persecution. Peter hoped to encourage holy conduct in the face of suffering by assuring the Christians of their coming reward in heaven.

Peter disappears from the New Testament after Acts 15:6-11. Paul records a rebuke from Peter in Galatians 2:11-21 and John mentions him in John 21:18-19. There are his two letters, but that’s it.

Peter is the apostle of hope, showing us how God does not give up on people. Peter was thought to have died by being crucified upside down — a request he made, deeming himself unworthy to die like Jesus. Now that’s hope.

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