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Peter was sharp.
…He kept his distance from Jesus.
…“I’ll stay close enough to see him,” Peter reasoned.
…“But not too close, or I may get caught.”

Good thinking, Peter.
…Don’t get too involved—it might hurt.
…Don’t be too loyal—you might get branded.
…Don’t show too much concern—they’ll crucify you too.

We need more men like you, Peter.
…Men who keep religion in its place.
…Men who don’t stir the water.
…Men who reek with mediocrity.

That’s the kind of man God needs, yessir.
…One who knows how to keep his distance:
…“Now, I’ll pay my dues and I’ll come once a week,
…but… well… you can get carried away, you know.”

Yes, you can get carried away…
…up a hill
…to a cross
—and killed.

Peter learned a lesson that day—a hard lesson.
It is better to never have followed Jesus, than
to have followed and him and denied him.

Mark these words—
…Follow at a distance and you will deny the Master. Period.
…You won’t die for a man you can’t touch. Period.
…But stay near to him, in his shadow…
…You’ll die with him, gladly.

Author: Max Lucado, On the Anvil, p21-22

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