Seeds For Thinking
Archives Index
Illustrated Index
Please Share

: Then Peter remembered the word of the Lord, how he had said to him, “Before the cock crows today, you will deny me three times.” Luke 22:61b, NIV.  
                (See also Mt. 26:69-75;  Mk.  66, 72;  Luke 22:54-62; John 18:15-18, 25-27)

Jesus turned     Shhhh!  I’m hunting for chickens - you know, that staple of Sunday dinner, and sustainer of preachers. You  come, too! Grab your Bible, and here we go.
    As with any hunt, we need to equip ourselves with a description of what we are looking for. Chickens are of the family of birds, so we will look for that word in the Biblical references. Another possibility is ‘fowl.’ The male is called a rooster, or cock, the female is called a hen, and the young are chicks. We might also look for eggs.
    According to Genesis 1:20-23, God created the winged birds on the fifth day of creation, each according to their kind, which would include chickens.
    Humankind has been given dominion over the birds of the air, one of the conditions of creation (Gen. 1:26; Psalm 8) and birds were carried on the Ark (Genesis 9:1-5)  Birds were included in the list of “every moving thing that lives” given to Noah as acceptable food, with the prohibition concerning blood. (See also Daniel 2:37, 38; Deuteronomy 2:11-20)
    Chickens surely would be on the list of domesticated animals, as noted by James (3:7-10) capable of being tamed, unlike the untamable tongue!
    Ahah!    The “strutting rooster” is noted in Proverbs with the lion, the he-goat, and the king as examples that are “stately in their stride,” and “does not turn back before any.” (3:29-31) While the reference to rising up “to the sound of a bird” in Ecclesiastes 12:4 does not specifically mention a rooster, what other bird would have the audacity to waken people in such a scene as described there?
    The rooster’s counterpart, the hen, is used as an example of protection and comfort by Jesus. Both Matthew (23:37) and Luke (13:34)  record His lament over Jerusalem, desiring to gather them “ as a hen gathers her brood (chicks) under her wing.”
    The rooster is noted for his role as the announcer of the dawn, the ‘Awakener.” It is in this role that we find the rooster as a participant in one of the most chilling passages in the Bible. While Jesus was on “trial” in the house of the High Priest, Peter shivered in the cold courtyard. Once, twice, three times Peter is asked if he was with Jesus.
Once, twice, three times Peter denies that he knows Him. And the cock (rooster) crowed, just as Jesus had predicted. (Mt. 26:34; Mk. 14:30)
     While all four gospels tell of Peter’s denials, Luke also records that when the cock crowed, Jesus turned and looked at Peter.
And Peter “went out and wept bitterly.

Return to Index

Go to Welcome Menu

Seeds For Thinking
Title and Logo  © Copyright 1996 by Leland Hubbell
Seeds Logo