CAN THEY SEE JESUS IN ME?
Matthew 26:56b-58; 69-75
Intro: One day as a woman was crossing a street at London station, an old man stopped her. He said to her, “Excuse me, ma’am, but I want to thank you.”
She looked up and exclaimed, “Thank me?”
He replied, “Yes ma’am, I used to be a ticket collector, and whenever you went by you always gave me a cheerful smile and a good morning. I knew that smile must come from inside somewhere. Then one morning I saw a little Bible in your hand. So I bought one, too, and I found out about Jesus from that Bible. Now I too am saved!”
That man saw something in that woman that touched his heart. What did he see? He saw Jesus living in and through her life. Each one of us, who is saved, should so live that the world can see Jesus in our lives.
In this passage, Jesus has been arrested and taken to the home of the High Priest. Simon Peter follows Him at a distance and winds up outside the house of the High Priest, sitting beside a Roman fire. That night, by that fire, Peter has his greatest failure. He had been put in a position where his light could have shined brightly, but it was invisible. No one was able to see Jesus in Peter that night. Peter was saved, he was born again, he was living the new life, but on that night you couldn’t tell it!
I want to use this passage as the basis for my sermon this evening. I want to ask a question, and I want each of you to ask it to yourselves right now. Here is the question: Can They See Jesus In Me? Let’s look at this text. As we do, please keep that question in your mind. Why? Because everyone of who is saved is living the new life! We have been born again and we are new creatures in Jesus. We are to be different than we were. We are to be lights for Christ in a dark world. We are to be a living, breathing, walking testimony to the life changing power of the Lord Jesus Christ. Therefore, I ask myself, and I ask you to ask yourself: Can They See Jesus In Me?
- THE WONDER OF THE NEW LIFE – IT IS A TRANSFORMATION
(Ill. Simon Peter was not the man he used to be! He had been radically transformed by the power of the Lord Jesus Christ!)
- His Past – Peter was a fisherman. They were notorious for their vulgar ways and wicked lifestyles. By Peter’s own admission, he was a sinful man, Luke 5:1-8. (Note: Friend, do you remember where you were when the Lord found you? How long has it been since you looked to “the pit from whence you were digged”, Isa. 51:1. you may not want to remember, but can you remember life before Jesus? Do you remember the day His light shined in your darkness? Do you remember what you were before He saved your soul? Let me remind you: Romans 3:10-18!)
- His Profession – When Peter bowed before Jesus on that fishing boat, he called Jesus “Lord”, Luke 5:8. But, we know the depth of Peter’s profession when we read what he said about Jesus in Matt. 16:13-18. Again, we can read his profession in John 6:64-71. Peter was a saved man. He was a believer in the Lord Jesus Christ. (Note: Friend, has there been a moment when you bowed before the Lord Jesus and received Him as your Savior? Have you believed in His name by faith and been saved? If so, praise His name! You too have a profession of faith.)
- His Proof – There were times when Peter excelled in his walk with the Lord. I have already mentioned two times when he had a vocal profession while others were silent. In Matt. 26:50-54; John 18:10, Peter had sought to defend the Lord Jesus using a sword. Even after the arrest of Jesus, when all the other disciples had fled away, v. 56, Peter “followed him afar off”, v. 58. Peter had real fruit in his life. (Note: Can you see fruit in your life? My friend, the presence of fruit is the badge of your salvation, Luke 6:44; John 15:1-8. “every” branch in Jesus bears fruit! Do you have the proof? If so, then praise the Lord! By the way, do you know what spiritual fruit is? There are three basic types of fruit that the Lord bears in the lives of His children. 1. Sanctification – That is, we become more like Him – Rom. 6:22; Phil. 1:11; Col. 1:10. 2. Spirituality – That is, we behave more like Him – Gal. 5:22-23. 3. Souls – That is, we are burdened like Him – Rom. 1:13. Do you have any proof in your life?)
- His Problem – In spite of all that Peter had in his plus column, he still fell into sin. He denied the Lord Jesus three times. At one point, he does so with cursing, Matt. 26:72. (Note: Regardless of the changes we have experienced through Jesus, it is always possible for us to fall back into sin! Why? Because we still wear this old, fallen, wicked, adamic flesh! It never gets better, but it progressively gets worse, Eph. 4:22! Friend, you are just as capable of sin this evening as you have ever been! Nothing but the good grace of God stands between you and the most terrible of sins tonight! You say, “Not me preacher! I would never do that kind of thing!” Look out friend; you are a prime candidate, 1 Cor. 10:12. Just when you think you have it under control, and put to death, it will spring to life and you will be backslidden and out of God’s will!)
(Note: We see The Wonder Of The New Life. It is a transformation! But, the seeds of sin still dwell within the heart of every believer! So be careful!)
- THE WITNESS OF THE NEW LIFE – IT IS A TESTIMONY
(Ill. Every life of every redeemed person is a living, walking sermon about he Lord Jesus Christ, 2 Cor. 3:1-3; 1 Thes. 1:8. Your life either says, “Jesus saved me and radically changed my life.” Or, your life says, “Yeah, I’m a believer, but Jesus hasn’t changed my life at all.” Peter, at the point in his life, is demonstrating a very poor testimony. Several factors contributed to this tragic display on Peter’s part.
- He Is In The Wrong Place – Peter followed Jesus, but he did not go all the way with Jesus. He stays outside warming himself around the enemy’s fire! He would have been better off hiding with the other disciples, or in custody with Jesus than where he was! (Note: There are just some places in t his life that a believer has no business being! Before you go anywhere, you ought to ask yourself, “If Jesus were to accompany me there, would He be comfortable?” If the answer is “No!”, then you have no business going either! Why? Well, if you are saved, then He does go everywhere you go! Be careful where you go, people are watching!)
- He Is With The Wrong People – That night Peter associated with the wrong crowd and it wasn’t long until he was acting just like them! (Note: You need to exercise great caution when it comes to the people you associate with! Why? The Bible tells us that the wrong kind of influence on our lives can have tragic results, 1 Cor. 15:33. Don’t think you can hang around with the wrong element and change them, you will find that your old, fleshly nature will always take the path of least resistance. Instead of you lifting them up to your level, they will drag you down to theirs. Ill. Reuben – Gen. 49:3-4! Be careful who you associate with, people are watching!)
- He Gives The Wrong Performance – The Bible tells us that Peter began to swear, v. 72; Mark 14:71! He certainly did not look like or sound like a preacher at that moment in time! (Note: What does your life have to say about Jesus? If a person followed you everywhere you went and watched all that you did for 24 hours, would they conclude that you were a pagan or a Christian? If they watched your TV shows and movies; if they listened to your music; if they met your friends; if they listened to all your conversations; if they saw how you treat other people; if they saw how you react when you are wronged; and the list could go on, what would they conclude about your life and about your Lord? You need to think about that! Many believers are having an identity crisis of sorts. They have forgotten Who’s they are and they are sending the wrong message to a lost world. We are supposed to make Jesus look good and not bad, Phil. 1:27. We are supposed to help weaker believers grow and not lead them into error, Matt. 18:6. what kind of message does the letter of your life send?)
III. THE WAY OF THE NEW LIFE – IT IS A TRIUMPH
- There Is Remembrance In The New Life – v. 75 – Peter remembered what Jesus had said to him earlier, Matt. 26:33-35. No matter how far you may wander off into sin; no matter how cold your old heart gets toward the things of God; no matter how low the embers may burn in your soul, you will never be able to get away from what Jesus did in you when He saved your soul! If you have ever been near the fire, you will always remember the warmth and you will long for it when your heart gets cold! (Ill. When the church in Ephesus got cold on the Lord, Jesus counseled them to “remember”, Rev. 2:1-7. Some of God’s people need to remember who they are and who’s they are tonight! Your life, your body, your time, your money, your youth, etc are not yours to use as you please. They are the Lord’s gracious gift to you for you to use for His glory. Remember?)
- There Is Repentance In The New Life – We are told that Peter went out and “wept bitterly”, v. 75! He, no doubt, confessed his sins and called out to the Lord in humble repentance! I believe the Lord forgave him when he did! (Note: When we have walked away from the Lord and find ourselves in sin, we are to come before Him in repentance, 1 John 1:8-10. We are to get before Him and make it right. Would to God that there were some broken hearts around the house of God over the sins of the saints! We look at the world and talk about how wretched they are. Well, what do you expect? They are dead in sin and are rotting accordingly! We, however, have been translated out of the kingdom of darkness. We have been make new creatures and we are to live like it! When we fall, and we do, we are to get before the Lord and make it right. If we don’t, He has a way of getting our attention, Rev. 3:19; Heb. 12:6-12. By the way, Jesus also counseled the church in Ephesus to repent, Rev. 2:5.)
- There Is Restoration In The New Life – Peter fell, but the Lord forgave him and restored him. When the day of Pentecost came around, Peter stood in the power of the Holy Spirit and preached the Gospel. When he did, 3,000 souls were saved! Yes, he fell, but it wasn’t permanent! The Lord restored Peter and used his for His glory. (Note: Regardless of what you may have done, or the level to which you have fallen, if you will repent, the Lord will restore you again! With Peter, it took some time, Ill. John 21:3. but, the day came when the Lord put His blessings back on the life of Peter! Friend, He can restore you too! He told the church in Ephesus to “do the first works”, Rev. 2:5. He was telling them that it was possible to reclaim lost ground! Do not let your failures be the final statement concerning your life. Get back to Him, confess and repent of your sins. He will restore you to a place of power, service and glory!
Conc: A group of prospectors set out from Bannock, Montana (then capital of the state), in search of gold. They went through many hardships and several of their little company died en route. Finally they were overtaken by the Indians who took their good horses, leaving them with only a few limping old ponies. Then they threatened them, telling them to get back to Bannock and stay there, for if they overtook them again, they would murder the lot of them. Defeated, discouraged, and downhearted, the prospectors sought to make their way back to the capital city. On one occasion as they tethered out the limping ponies on a creek side, one of the men casually picked up a little stone from the creek bed. He called to his buddy for a hammer and upon cracking the rock, he said, “It looks as though there may be gold here.” The two of them panned gold the rest of the afternoon and managed to realize twelve dollars’ worth. The entire little company panned gold the next day in the same creek and realized fifty dollars, a great sum in those days. They said to one another: “We have struck it!” They made their way back to Bannock and vowed not to breathe a word concerning this gold strike. They secretively set about re-equipping themselves with supplies for another prospecting trip. But when they got ready to go back, three hundred men followed them. Who had told on them? No one! Their beaming faces betrayed the secret!
Can they see Jesus is me? I don’t know about you, but when I git saved, I got a greater treasure than ten thousand mountains of gold. Like those old prospectors, I should be beaming because Jesus is on the inside! If He is there, He should be visible in our lives. If He isn’t and the Lord has touched a sore spot in your life tonight, then get to Him and get the help, forgiveness and restoration to need. If you are saved and everything seems all right with the Lord, then get to Him and ask for help to keep it that way. And, if you are lost, please come to Jesus right now and get saved! This altar is open for you!