I think that it is too easy for us here to judge Peter. He is not reborn yet. He is still trying to approach his relationship to the Savior Christ in intellectual rather than spiritual terms much like us. The fact is that none of us truly know how we would have reacted ourselves faced with this hostile and surreal situation. Rationally, if denial meant being able to continue observing the nights events without having been set out and/or beaten it may have been well worth it in a more practical way. None of the other twelve after all were risking the effort to witness the events unfolding; only the two Marys and doubting half brother James were also watching on.
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