Matthew 26:58 “But Peter followed him afar off unto the high priest's palace, and went in, and sat with the servants, to see the end.”
The Scriptures say when Jesus was taken by the soldiers to be tried and crucified, “Then all the disciples forsook him, and fled.” In the lowest time of Jesus’ life, you would think that those who followed Him would be the ones there to defend Him. Sadly, nobody was at Jesus’ trial to defend Him. When the crowd turned against Jesus, those nearest Him packed their bags and ran.
However, there was one who didn’t completely flee. It says about Peter that he “followed him afar off.” This is somewhat commendable, but the reason that Peter followed afar off is not worthy of commending. The reason Peter followed afar off is because he was waiting “to see the end.” Instead of following afar hoping that somehow Jesus would perform another miracle, he followed to see the end.
You always find your true friends when the crowd turns against you. Everyone goes through battles, and battles often reset your landscape so that you can find out who you can truly trust. The trial of Jesus revealed different types of people you will deal with when going through battles.
The first type of people are those who want to destroy you. The psalmist said that his closest friends were the ones who attacked, criticized, and tried to destroy him. Likewise, it was Judas and the fringe crowd who turned on Jesus. You must always be careful about those who jump on your side when times are going good because they will be the same ones who will turn against you when times are bad. It is not that everyone who discovers you in the good times will turn on you, but many are simply following the wave of good times and have no desire to do right but to be on the side of the populace.
The second type of people are those who run and hide and will have nothing to do with you. You will find that some are like you, but they won’t risk anything to fight for you. These are the ones who won't say anything bad, but they also won't say anything good. One of the worst feelings you will experience when going through battles is the wonder of where everyone is who says they believe in you. In private, they tell you that they are behind you, but they are nowhere to be found in public. These aren’t always bad people, but they have no courage to stand with their friends when going through bad times.
The third type of people are those who watch with hopes to see the end. What a terrible way to live! To hope in someone’s demise is not godly. To watch with the anticipation that someone is done is not how God watches our lives. You should never be the type of person who is a spectator watching someone with the hope that they fail.
My friend, you ought to be the person who doesn't watch for someone to fail, but to be there to pick them up when they have fallen. You ought to be the person who stands by their side to help them get back up and get their life back on track when the battle turns against your friend. I would much rather be shot at for standing with the fallen than to be the one who kicks those who are down. It is not easy to stand with unpopular people, but you show your true Christianity by helping them in their lowest time of life.