Then Jesus said to them, “All of you will be made to stumble because of Me this night, for it is written. . .”
As you follow Jesus you will face moments of great distress. At times it will seem that events conspire to cause you to stumble in your relationship with Him. You do not initiate them, but they arise from opposition or the intensity of your circumstances. Nevertheless, failure is the end result. The disciples faced such fierce opposition to their Lord that they all failed Him on the night Jesus was crucified.
Peter boasted that he was incapable of forsaking Jesus (Mark 14:29-31). Yet Jesus assured the disciples even before their failure that it was inevitable. The Scriptures had prophesied it. God always knew the disciples would fail His Son; He wasn’t caught by surprise. He had made provision for their shortcomings, knowing He would eventually develop them into apostles who would fearlessly preach the gospel, perform miracles, and teach others. Later, when the risen Christ encountered Peter on the seashore, He did not ask Peter for a confession of his sin, but a confession of his love (John 21:15-17).
You may fear that your failure has caught God by surprise. Perhaps you promised, like Peter, to stand with the Lord, but you failed. God was just as aware that you would fail Him as He was with the original disciples. He has made provision to respond every time you stumble. Don’t think that somehow your failures are bigger or more complex than any God has dealt with. If you are facing challenges that seem overwhelming, don’t be discouraged. God has already foreseen them and prepared for them (1 Cor. 10:13).