After being convicted in his heart from a rooster's crow, Simon Peter recalls his first meeting and certain events which center around this man called Jesus. This story is a ficticious account based on Bilical events.
Cold rain, cold sweat, and cold bitter tears streamed down Peter’s face as he again remembered the words of the Lord Jesus, “Before the rooster crows this morning, you will have denied me three times.” Anguish was upon his face, turmoil was in his spirit, and heartache was evident as his conscience weighed upon him like a burdensome load he was carrying. Guilt was on his mind, Judas had betrayed The Lord, but Peter, the one whom Jesus had surnamed Peter, meaning “a rock”, and said “Upon this rock I will build My church”, had denied that he had known Jesus, and also denied even being one of His disciples. Like a venomous snake bite, the pain in his heart intensified as he thought back to his first meeting with this man, this healer, this miracle worker that had called him to be one of His own disciples. Just coming back from a worthless, all night, effort of net fishing ; tired, sleepy and annoyed from no progress, Simon, whom Jesus later surnamed as Peter, saw Andrew his brother, and his friend Phillip waiting on the shore to greet him. But there was another one with them, whom Simon had never seen before, and dressed almost as commonly as himself after a fishing trip. As he and his partners, James and John docked the boat, Andrew spoke to Simon concerning this newcomer. “Simon, so glad you have returned, however it looks like you had a poor night.” Andrew began. “A poor night! Yes, and it’s only going to get worse! That tax collector has been demanding his money until I am sick of it!” yelled Simon. “But Simon,” Andrew said “things will get better, you must keep your faith. I want you to meet someone; Phillip nor I have ever heard anyone teach the Holy Scriptures like this man, and he’s from Nazareth of all places.” “I have heard the teachings of the Pharisees and the Sadducees, and how they promise of a coming Messiah. I’m beginning to think it’s all talk, beautiful promises, but our children’s stomachs can’t be filled on promises, can they?” Simon yelled his question. After hearing this, Jesus stepped up to Simon and said, “Go out again into the sea, and I will come with you.” Outrage was about to explode from Simon, but Phillip and Andrew calmed him some. “Do as he says Simon, please cast out again and take him and us with you.” said Phillip. “The sea is dry, there are no fish left, I know the sea better than anyone else, what makes you think you can find fish out there?” he asked Jesus. Jesus did not answer, but as Simon tried to stare him down, there was something about this man that compelled him to obey. “James, John, get our other boat ready!” Simon yelled, “Andrew will go with you two, and Phillip will go with me and this….Jesus character they have found!” The sun was already beginning to heat the day as they cast off into the sea of Galilee, with Simon in the same frame of mind of a useless effort. The heated wind that blew, helped to carry the boats quickly out, while Jesus stood at the bow without saying anything. Then, seemingly without reason, the wind ceased to blow, the sails sagged and Simon was about to give the order to manually oar the boats, then Jesus spoke to him. No longer looking at the sea, but now looking into the eyes of Simon, Jesus said, “Let down your nets into the sea.” Simon didn’t say anything, but knew this was the area they had fished the night before. But according to Jesus’ words, he gave the order for the nets to be lowered. Then he looked back at Jesus and asked, “What now, your highness, since you seem to know the sea?” Jesus again fastened His eyes into Simon’s stare, and said, “Pull in your nets.” Something about the eyes of Jesus gave Simon an eerie feeling, and the others knew that normally he would have began to curse and swear, since they had just lowered the nets. “Pull them in!” yelled Simon, “Apparently this must not be a good spot to fish, or he’s not as smart as he thought he was!” As they began to pull the nets, they noticed that they weren’t empty as they had supposed, and were very heavy. They called to each other for help, the weight was beginning to tear at the nets. James, John and Andrew were also amazed at their own net, for the same thing was happening. Together, with Jesus helping, they filled both boats to capacity with fish, until they were almost overflowing. They all looked at each other, joy was evident on their faces, except for Simon, who had now turned to face Jesus. “I don’t know who you are, but you are in the presence of a sinful man….leave me!” cried Simon. “Have no fear,” Jesus said, “today you have caught plenty of fish, follow me and I will make you to become fishers of men. Simon, are you any more sinful than anyone else, seeing that all have sinned? But learn this, which is a greater sin, to lie or to kill? Neither, for the same God spoke both commands. Now, let’s return to shore.” With both of the boats filled with fish, Simon gave the order to return to shore. With cautious oaring, since the wind had ceased, the men eventually arrived on shore. Some of the people that were washing their boats saw them come in, and were amazed at the amount of fish each boat held. One of them ran to inform Matthew, the tax collector, that Simon had come back with a huge catch. Simon, on the other hand, had negotiated a price for his catch with the market, and had already sold to them. Happiness was in his face, but Simon was still wondering what kind of man this was that he had taken with him on his boat. There was something very different about this Jesus, more than any other man Simon had known, and there was also an authority in his voice, not of harshness, but kindness. Simon’s thoughts were shattered as his daughter ran up and began to speak to him concerning his mother-in-law. “Father, last night, shortly after you set sail, Grandmother became very sick. She has had a fever all night, and has not gotten any better, but seems to be getting worse. Please come home, and hurry!” Abigail, his daughter pleaded. “I will be there very shortly,” Simon declared, “now you go home and tell your mother to begin holding cold, wet cloths to her mother’s head.” The child was nineteen years old, and knew some of the treatments her father had used before on other people, so she ran quickly back home to tell her mother. When Jesus heard this he asked, “Simon, do you mind if I have supper with you tonight?” “I am worried about my mother-in-law, and you dare ask me to have supper at my house tonight?” Simon began to get angry. Andrew, who had also heard of the sickness, stopped Simon, and began to calm him. “Please Simon, do not turn him away from you, but invite him to your house, and we will all come too.” said Andrew. “Alright, you may dine at my house,” Simon sneered, “but first you are all coming with me to, hopefully, help my wife’s mother.” Then Jesus spoke again, “Simon, why do you worry? Doesn’t God take care of the birds? Doesn’t God clothe the grass with beauty? If God does these things for only nature, will He not also take care of that which He has made in His own image? Exercise your faith Simon, and don’t be doubtful, but believing.” Anger was now stopped by the truthfulness in Jesus’ words, as Simon and his band of men started for his house. When they entered the door, Simon’s wife was in tears as she told him how sick her mother had become, and that she was getting weaker by the minute. Simon started for his mother-in-law’s room, but was stopped briefly by Jesus who had taken hold of his arm. Simon looked at Jesus, and was about to say something, when he felt the same eerie feeling he had on the boat when Jesus stared into his eyes. “May I enter in first, and then the rest may follow?” asked Jesus. With a gesture of his hand, Simon beckoned Jesus into the room. As Jesus entered the room and looked at the woman’s face, it was evident that she was very sick. Then He looked at the men and asked, “Do you believe that God is able to do all things?” With one accord they all stated that this was true . Then Jesus took the woman by the hand, and with the same authority Simon had heard in His voice before, He commanded the fever to leave her body. Almost instantly, the woman sat up in bed, her face returned to normal, then she told them to leave so she could change her clothing. As each one left her room, and had now entered into the main body of the house, John took Phillip to the side and told him that he had also heard about Jesus; in the beginning thinking much as Simon had, that this was just another fanatical preacher or teacher. Once he had seen the remarkable amount of fish that had been netted, his thoughts of such a matter began to diminish, but after seeing the fever leave from this woman, he was convinced that Jesus was no ordinary man or preacher. “Simon,” John said, “Phillip and I are going into the market to buy things for supper, we will return soon.” “Sure, sure…,” Simon began, still dumbfounded by what he had witnessed, “go ahead but try not to be long.” Phillip and John started for the market, and as they passed by people they began to tell the things which Jesus had done. Jesus’ fame began to told throughout the city, some believing what they heard, while others passed it off as hysteria. While John and Phillip bought at the market, Matthew came to them and said, “I see that Simon has caught lots of fish today, and has made a fair trade in his price; I believe now he can pay me the back taxes owed, don’t you?” “He will pay you Matthew, but please don’t disturb him today, he has a guest at his house for supper, that is why we are here buying the things needed.” said Phillip. “Oh yes, that is right, he has found a new friend or preacher, or whatever he may be. Pontilus told me about seeing him when your ships pulled in.” said Matthew, “And if he has earned money then he owes taxes too!” With that statement, Matthew began to start for Simon’s house; Phillip and John just looked at each other, and hurried to finish their purchases, then they also started for Simon’s house. When they arrived they could hear Simon from within, as he yelled for Matthew to leave his house. As they entered, putting the supplies on the table, they ventured out to the large back area of Simon’s house. This area was open to the outside, with only a roof covering, and there was a large number of people gathered just outside the opening. Matthew was standing just inside, with Simon standing almost nose to nose with him. After Simon had ordered Mathew to leave his house, Jesus stood up from where He had been sitting, took Simon by the arm again, and asked them both to be seated. Reluctantly, and with much persuasion from Jesus, Simon and Matthew sat down across the room from each other, then looked at Jesus. Jesus began to speak to both of them, and the audience that had gathered, “Tell me, what is the greatest commandment given by God?” “You shall love the Lord your God with all your soul, all your heart, all your mind and all your strength.” said Simon as he looked at Matthew with bitterness in his eyes, “This is the greatest commandment.” “That is correct.” said Jesus, then He went over to Matthew, placed His hand on his shoulder and said to Simon, “But there is another commandment, which has the same authority; you shall love your neighbor as you do yourself, on these two commandments is the strength of the law.” Jesus had barely finished speaking when a noise was heard overhead; the roof was being torn apart, as some people which had been carrying a crippled man began to lower him down towards the ground near Jesus. Simon retorted, “What have you done to my roof, you will pay for this, I hope you know!” “We are very sorry,” one of them said, “but we couldn’t come in to this man because of so many standing at the door. Please forgive our interruption, but we will make it right with you.” Jesus, moved with compassion, knelt down beside the crippled and asked how long he had been this way. “I have been in this state for thirty five years, and there is nothing anyone has been able to do for me that has helped. I am being punished for my sinfulness in my youth.” said the man. “Then man, be of a happy mind, your sins are forgiven.” said Jesus. The Pharisees, which had also gathered, were shocked at this statement, and said, “You speak blasphemy, no one can forgive a mans sins except God only!” Hearing this, Jesus turned to face them and asked, “Which of these is the easiest to say; your sins are forgiven, or rise up and walk? But that you may know that God has given me this authority…” he looked at the crippled man and said, “Rise from where you lay, carry that you have laid on, and go home.” Watching with earnest eyes, the crowd witnessed as the man which had been crippled, rose up from where he had been, and stood on his feet, then began to walk and to praise God for his healing. Then he turned to Jesus and thanked Him, doing what Jesus had told him as he carried his covering and walked out still giving God the glory. Some of the Pharisees became angry and stormed away to the Temple to report Jesus’ statements and deeds, while a few remained to learn more about this man and the miracles he had done. Then Jesus began to teach the people, “A man had two sons which were heirs to his estate and wealth. Being elderly in age, he asked his sons how they wished for him to divide their inheritance. The elder son told his father that he would work for him until the time came that the Lord would require his spirit, but the younger son said, “Give me my inheritance now, while you are still alive.” So the father divided to each son their inheritance; the elder son stayed and worked for his father as he said he would, while the younger took his wealth and went into another land and wasted his money on pleasure and desire. Finally, out of money, reality became his frame of mind; he tried to find odd jobs to earn a living, but the only thing he could find was feeding swine. He had become so hungry, until the husks he fed them began to look good. Then he thought, and said within himself, “My father’s workers have food and even enough to spare to others; I will go home and beg my father to make me as one of his workers, and even lower, that I might have food also. I am ashamed of what I have done with my inheritance.” With that, he started for home, not really knowing what to expect, but knowing that if he stayed there he would starve. One day his father looked in the direction his younger son had gone when he left home, and seeing him coming from a distance, he ran to meet him. When he met his son, he embraced him and kissed him, then called his workers and said, “Go, make ready the finest beef and bring a ring for my sons finger for he has returned to his senses.” When the elder brother returned from the field, he heard the noise of music and singing coming from his father’s house. He asked one of the workers what was happening, only to find out that his brother had come home. This made the elder brother angry, so he told one of the workers to call his father outside. Upon seeing his father, his voice reflected his anger as he said, “I have served you for many years, and I have not so much as asked for a small goat that I might feast with my friends; but my brother returns, which wasted your money, and you make a celebration that can be heard all over!” “Please.” said the father, “I have you with me always, and everything I have is yours. But, to celebrate is in order for today, for your brother was lost, but has been found; he was dead, but is alive again.” And at this, being torn from turmoil in his spirit, the elder son embraced his father and told him how much he loved him.” Then they that were standing outside the opening, began to bring to Jesus various people that had disease, and sickness. And Jesus healed them by the authority in His voice which had been given to Him by God. After the sun began to set, and the people had been sent to their own homes, Jesus looked at Matthew and said, “May I dine at your house tomorrow?” Simon remembered what Jesus had said concerning the second greatest commandment, and called to Matthew himself, “If you would allow Matthew, may I come also?” Matthew, somewhat staggered that Simon would ask this, quickly agreed and said, “Bring all the others with you as well, we will have a feast! And yes, Jesus…Master, you are the supreme guest.” “Simon, Matthew, please understand this as I hope you have seen and heard from today; the Kingdom of God is based on love for one another. You both have laid aside your differences today, now continue in brotherly love.” said Jesus, “Now Simon, may we eat?”… Lightning streaked across the sky snapping Peter back into reality, but the pain and anguish still tore at his heart. He stood up from the place he was sitting and went towards the house where the other disciples of Jesus had gathered. As he reach for the door he remembered something that Jesus had said while they were all gathered at Gethsemane, “The Son of man must be handed over into the hands of sinners, and be mocked, spit upon, scourged and put to death; but after three days, I will rise again.” The pain and turmoil of spirit seemed to be lifted from Peter when he remembered this, and also that Jesus had said, “I am with you always, even unto the end of the world.”