Now go and tell his disciples, including Peter, that Jesus is going ahead of you to Galilee. You will see him there, just as he told you before he died.”
It’s easy to miss something important if your mind is closed or asleep. The angel tells two amazed and frightened women to go tell the disciples where to meet Jesus, including Peter. That last phrase is important for virtually every human being.
Peter had been an integral part of Jesus’ entire ministry for three years. He was there when Christ healed, preached and raised Lazarus from the dead. He was part of the inner circle on the Mount of Transfiguration. He had the answer when Jesus asked them all about his deity; you’re the Christ, the Son of God.
So, why did the angel say “including Peter” – as if there were some doubt that he was part of the band of disciples? Well, perhaps there was some doubt, at least in the minds of the women and the other disciples. Peter had denied Christ rather emphatically; he had abandoned his Master. Some might say he had forfeited his right to be called an apostle. Peter certainly thought so.
But Jesus made sure the angel included Peter.
And that’s why that little phrase is so important for you and me. We’ve blown it too!
I’ve never known someone who could say (with a straight face) that they’d never done what Peter did – denied Christ with a word or action, or failed to speak-up for Christ at a critical moment. We are all Peter.
Yet Jesus made sure Peter was still on the invitation list to the rendezvous at the lake.
And this is the most poignant, even central part of the resurrection message – it was to sinners like Peter….and me…..and you….that Jesus came to bring forgiveness.