Did Jesus really mean that?
Okay, this isn’t a theological crisis… but I’ve got an interesting question to throw out to my theological circle.
In Mark 8:38, Jesus (in the context of explaining his pending suffering and death and rebuking Peter’s rejection of these facts) says:
“If anyone is ashamed of me and my words in this adulterous and sinful generation, the Son of Man will be ashamed of them when he comes in his Father’s glory with the holy angels.”
I don’t think you can get more clear than that. Jesus says other “not so fluffy” things (the phrase “weeping and gnashing of teeth” comes to mind) but this one seems to connect the dots as unavoidably clearly as possible.
So, a couple clarifying questions:
- What did Peter do when Jesus was arrested?
- What was Jesus’ reaction to him?
- What was Peter’s future in ministry?
And once you answer those for yourself, tell me this:
If Jesus said he would be ashamed of someone like Peter yet accepted and forgave him for doing exactly what he warned against, what do we make of all the other Biblical admonitions that warn of hell, caution against particular sins, etc.? Do any of them remain in force today?