“And they led Jesus away to the high priest; and with him were assembled all the chief priests, the elders, and the scribes. 54 But Peter followed Him at a distance, right into the courtyard of the high priest. And he sat with the servants and warmed himself at the fire” (Mark 14:53-54).
Peter, who once had told Jesus that He would never forsake Him, watched as His Lord was taken prisoner. Because he didn’t want to suffer any harm or persecution, he followed Jesus at a distance. He wanted to be a “secret” follower of Christ when things got tough. The crowd got larger, and he became spiritually “smaller” as he didn’t want to be identified as one close to the Christ.
It is hard for us to imagine Peter doing this. He was so brash and outspoken at times. Surely, he couldn’t do this to Jesus! But, he did. He wasn’t being much different than us at times. How often are we so religious and spiritual amongst our brethren, but, while in the world with crowds of people, we become spiritually small. We begin to follow Jesus at a distance. We become “secret” followers as we don’t want to be humiliated by others or even persecuted by our godless government today. Our society is so politically correct, we might be afraid of our careers being harmed by letting others know that we follow or stand with the Lord.
Have you ever followed another car while on vacation in a strange city? They know the way and you start falling back. You start following at such a distance and lose sight of them. Before cell phones, it was a little frightening as you tried to find them again. This is kind of the way it can become if we don’t stick close to the Lord in all situations. It gets easier and easier to fall back and fool ourselves into thinking we are ok and not in spiritual danger.
Let us focus on Christ and stick like glue with Him. No matter the trouble or situation we find ourselves in, stay close! He will not let you down and we can’t allow ourselves to let Him down either.
Clarendon church of Christ