A Bible Exposition of Mark 14:27-31
“It is a night that Peter will never forget… All week the feeling of danger, the sense of threat, has been growing. Now, while those strange words at the Passover table are still ringing in their ears, Jesus leads them out of the city to camp under the trees. Outside the city gates, they splash their way through the Kidron stream and make their way towards the Mount of Olives. Numbers of others are doing the same—there just isn’t room for all the festival crowds to stay within the city. Finally, at the foot of the hill, perhaps twenty minutes’ walk out of the city, they arrive at [the Mount of Olives]… an unforgettable night is about to take another dramatic turn.”
Surely this night is unforgettable. That word hardly does justice as we know what events are going to unfold. But at this point in the evening we find ourselves in the middle of yet another argument.
This time it isn’t the twelve disciples arguing with one another—it is Jesus on one side and Peter on the other.
Each one is making a prediction.
Jesus predicts failure, and Peter predicts success. Like two announcers debating over who will win the big game, Jesus and Peter are at odds in their conflicting predictions about the future. I called our outline a duel because that’s what happens here—a back and forth.
4 Declarations from a Duel of Conflicting Predictions (27-31)
Jesus predicts the men’s defection and reinstatement (27-28)
He tells them all they are on the brink of a moral failure.
2. Peter pledges his devotion despite the others defecting (29)
Peter responds by elevating himself above the others. So, Jesus has to go over-the-top.
3. Jesus portrays Peter’s downfall in painfully specific detail (30)
Rather than humbling him into silence or teachability, Peter digs in deeper.
4. Peter promises utter dependability along with the others (31)