Tuesday, September 27, 2011

Peter : Pain to Martyrdom (Quo vadis, Domine?)

Our Sunday School class started a new study book entitled Thriteen Apostles.We began the first with Peter.
Thoughts on this denial
Perhaps the saddest story about Peter is his Denial - when Jesus predicted he would deny him 3 times before the cock crows the night he was taken away. When I try to walk in Peter's shoes, it is painfully scary. "Here is the messiah standing in front of me, being taken away, the man I have thrown away my whole life to follow and preach his good news. I have seen him perform miracles and I know in my heart that he is God. Yet when a harmless little girl ask me twice if I know this man, I deny him both times. Instead of defending him with all of my faith, I denied the son of God." Wow! 
I cannot help but feel tremendous sadness when I read this part of the bible. Even Peter the rock, is capable of doing something like that. How weak am I? How much more human am I? No wonder the bible reminds us not to trust our deceitful heart. And then, I cannot help but think of the times I failed myself and the times I have denied others I love. I am thankful for a Loving God. For I am truly nothing without Him.

 According to New Testament accounts, he was one of Twelve Apostles, chosen by Jesus from his first disciples. He was a fisherman assigned a leadership role by Jesus.He is the remembered as the Rock by which all churches were built upon. Jesus gave him the power to heal and forgive on earth and whatever is bound by him on earth so will it be bind in heaven. His faith was known to be so strong as exhibited in his final courage to return to Rome to face Crucifixation. Hence the famous (via wikipedia) phrase "Quo vadis, Domine?" (or "Pou Hupageis, Kurie?" which means, "Whither goest Thou, Master?"). According to the story, Peter, fleeing Rome to avoid execution, asked the question of a vision of Jesus, to which Jesus allegedly responded that he was "going to Rome to be crucified again." On hearing this, Peter decided to return to the city to accept martyrdom. This story is commemorated in an Annibale Carracci painting. The Church of Quo Vadis, near the Catacombs of Saint Callistus, contains a stone in which Jesus' footprints from this event are supposedly preserved, though this was apparently an ex-voto from a pilgrim, and indeed a copy of the original, housed in the Basilica of St Sebastian.
On His death via wikipedia:
In the epilogue[30] of the Gospel of John, Jesus hints at the death by which Peter would glorify God,[Jn. 21:18–19]saying "…when you are old you will stretch out your hands, and another will dress you and take you where you do not want to go." This is interpreted by some as a reference to Peter's crucifixion.[24]
According to the 1911 Catholic Encyclopedia, St. Peter labored in Rome during the last portion of his life, and there ended his life by martyrdom.[17] The death of St. Peter is attested to by Tertullian at the end of the 2nd century, and by Origen in Eusebius, Church History III.1. Origen says: "Peter was crucified at Rome with his head downwards, as he himself had desired to suffer."[17] This is why an upside down cross is generally accepted as a symbol of Peter, who would not have considered himself worthy enough to die the same way as his Savior.[34]

No comments: