Sometimes I am caught by one word in a Bible verse that we might otherwise not pay attention to. For instance, imagine for a moment that you were wrongfully imprisoned and awaiting a trial the next day that most likely would not be remotely fair. And I’m not talking about an American prison with 3 squares a day, a mattress, personal latrine and sometimes cable tv or special privileges. I’m talking about a 1st century prison in Jerusalem under the rule of a pagan king named Herod just days after the apostle James was killed with a sword for the same crime you were arrested. With that in mind, do you think you’d be asleep the night before?
This is the exact situation that the apostle Peter found himself in in Acts chapter 12. James had just been killed by King Herod and the Bible says that when Herod saw how much this pleased the people He also arrested Peter. His plan was to bring Peter out for a public trial after the passover but look at what it says in Acts 12:6 The night before Peter was to be placed on trial, he was asleep, fastened with two chains between two soldiers. Others stood guard at the prison gate.
Isn’t that awesome! With guards at the gate AND guards fastened to him, Peter was fast asleep. How is that possible? Either he was extremely exhausted or he had an extreme faith in his God. I’m going with the latter, but I’m going with that one for a reason. Peter eventually wrote a letter that we call 1 Peter in the Bible. 1 Peter 3:13-15 says Now, who will want to harm you if you are eager to do good? But even if you suffer for doing what is right, God will reward you for it. So don’t worry or be afraid of their threats. Instead, you must worship Christ as Lord of your life.
I think Peter was asleep because he had chosen to worship Christ as Lord of his life. He didn’t worship Herod. He didn’t worship the church. He didn’t worship money. He didn’t worship his own life. he worshiped Jesus as Lord of his life and the result was SLEEP in the midst of the storm.