In chapel this fall, Dr. John MacArthur preached out of one of his favorite chapters in all of Scripture.
MacArthur, who serves as chancellor at The Master’s University, introduced John 21 this way:
“In the many years of ministry that I have had at Grace Church, as I’ve been preaching through the New Testament, there is one particular chapter that has become a favorite of mine — and it’s the last chapter in the Gospel of John.”
The chapter highlights the way Jesus entrusts the ministry of the gospel to fallible people like Peter (and like all of us), on the basis of our love for Him.
After the exalted view of Christ we receive in John 20, MacArthur pointed out that John 21 comes as a “disappointing” epilogue. It marks the handing off of Christ’s mission from His perfect hands to those of “very imperfect people.”
John 21 opens with Peter leading several other disciples on a fishing trip out on the Sea of Galilee. This was in disobedience, MacArthur said, to Jesus’ command that they wait for Him to appear to them.
“This is Peter abandoning his calling,” MacArthur said. In the wake of Peter’s denial of Jesus on the night of the crucifixion, “I think he was just a basket case of weakness, inadequacy, failure, disappointment, guilt, and certainly self-doubt. What he’s really saying is, ‘I can’t do that. I can’t be a preacher of the gospel. I’m too weak. But there’s one thing I can do: I can catch fish.’”
But in John 21, MacArthur highlighted the irony that Peter couldn’t catch anything that night — not until Jesus appeared and miraculously filled the net. This appearance becomes the “second call to ministry” for those gathered.
“Can Jesus use a weak and frail follower?” MacArthur asked. “Yes.”
If that is the case, how does Jesus restore a follower after disobedience? He does it with one question.
“The only people He can use are weak, frail, guilty, self-doubting human beings,” MacArthur said. “And he only asks one thing: Do you love me?”
And why does the issue boil down to that? Because, MacArthur said, “The power in the Christian life comes from being completely committed to a full, rich vision of Jesus Christ. The issue is loving Christ.”
And the good news, MacArthur said, is that Jesus does not demand perfect love from Peter or from us.
“Peter is restored to the ministry,” MacArthur said. “It’s not a perfect love, but it’s enough, because it’s a divinely-granted love.”
Past messages and future chapel livestreams are available through TMU’s YouTube channel.
The Master’s University and Seminary admit students of any race, color, national and ethnic origin to all the rights, privileges, programs, and activities generally accorded or made available to students at the school. It does not discriminate on the basis of race, color, national and ethnic origin in the administration of its educational policies, admissions policies, scholarship and loan programs, and athletic and other school-administered programs.
21726 Placerita Canyon Road
Santa Clarita, CA 91321
|cookielawinfo-checkbox-analytics||11 months||This cookie is set by GDPR Cookie Consent plugin. The cookie is used to store the user consent for the cookies in the category "Analytics".|
|cookielawinfo-checkbox-functional||11 months||The cookie is set by GDPR cookie consent to record the user consent for the cookies in the category "Functional".|
|cookielawinfo-checkbox-necessary||11 months||This cookie is set by GDPR Cookie Consent plugin. The cookies is used to store the user consent for the cookies in the category "Necessary".|
|cookielawinfo-checkbox-others||11 months||This cookie is set by GDPR Cookie Consent plugin. The cookie is used to store the user consent for the cookies in the category "Other.|
|cookielawinfo-checkbox-performance||11 months||This cookie is set by GDPR Cookie Consent plugin. The cookie is used to store the user consent for the cookies in the category "Performance".|