Go and Tell Peter
Go your way, tell his disciples and Peter.
~ Mark 16:7
Why “and Peter”? Why was Peter named, and none of the other disciples? Had Peter been the most loyal and faithful of all the Master’s friends, that he deserved such a mark of distinction as this? Oh no; we remember how Peter had fallen. The last word that had dropped upon the ear of Jesus from His lips was a bitter word of denial. Peter had acted worse than any other of the disciples.
Why, then, did Jesus send this special word to Peter? It was just because he had sinned. That last look of the Saviour broke his heart, and he went out into the night a penitent man, weeping bitterly. Those had been dark days for him since Jesus died. Not only was he overwhelmed with sorrow at the death of his Lord, whom he truly and most dearly loved, but his grief was made bitter beyond endurance by the remembrance of his own base denial at the very last. Deep must this sorrow have been, and all the deeper because he would never be able to ask forgiveness. How he must have longed to have Jesus back, if but for one moment, to confess his sin and crave pardon!
Jesus left this special word for Peter with the angel at the tomb, because He knew of the bitterness of His disciple’s sorrow. Peter might have been saying, when he heard Jesus had risen, “Perhaps He will not own me any more,” and so Jesus sent this message with Peter’s name in it specially, just to let him know that he was forgiven and would not be cast off. What a world of comfort there is in this “and Peter” for any who have sinned and are penitent! Those who have fallen are the very ones who receive the deepest, tenderest compassion from Jesus, because they need it most, and because He would help them to rise again. The gospel always has its special word for the penitent; Christ still comes to call the sinner.