Galatians 2:11-14 KJV (NIV link below)
11But when Peter was come to Antioch, I withstood him to the face, because he was to be blamed.
12For before that certain came from James, he did eat with the Gentiles: but when they were come, he withdrew and separated himself, fearing them which were of the circumcision.
13And the other Jews dissembled likewise with him; insomuch that Barnabas also was carried away with their dissimulation.
14But when I saw that they walked not uprightly according to the truth of the gospel, I said unto Peter before them all, If thou, being a Jew, livest after the manner of Gentiles, and not as do the Jews, why compellest thou the Gentiles to live as do the Jews?
Simply put, Peter goofed. He started out really well, accepting the Gentiles, but when peer pressure came into play he lost his way. It’s interesting that Paul, who had been mentored by Peter, now has to confront him for his mistake. I know that I have sometimes been silent, or failed to express the radical truth of the Gospel because of peer pressure. I didn’t want to make waves or upset anyone or make someone uncomfortable, so I caved to the pressure and opinion of others. Paul calls Peter out on it. When I was hiding, I needed someone to call me on it. The Gospel is too important, too radical, and too transformative for that. If that’s you right now, I’m calling you out on it. God’s grace is for everyone, and it’s free and radical and transformative. Don’t hold back. Let the love of God flow into you and out of you. Be a mirror to reflect God’s glory and let others know the power of God’s forgiving love.
Join the conversation and share your thoughts, opinions, or questions you have. Here are some things to reflect on: Even Barnabas, who had been with him since the start of this “gentile controversy,” left Paul. Have you ever felt abandoned by a friend? Have you ever failed to support a friend? Do you find it hard to “swim against the stream” of the world?