Another of those little details I’ve always missed. It sounds as though maybe Jesus was beginning to be persuaded by Peter. I’m picturing them walking ahead a little, heads close together, Peter talking earnestly, persuasively, and Jesus beginning, just beginning to think ‘What if…?’
But then he turns round to look at the other disciples. He sees his ‘sheep without a shepherd’, he sees their sin and their lostness, and he is filled with love for them. He knows that the only way they can be made whole is through his sacrifice, and in his love for them he finds again the strength to go through with his Father’s plan. He recognises Peter’s whisperings for what they are – another temptation from the enemy, and he rebukes him as such.
I might be reading too much into this – maybe it’s heresy to speculate that Jesus began to be deceived even for a moment, but we are told that he was tempted in every way. It does seem as though the change came when he looked at the other disciples, though. It can be very persuasive to listen to one voice, particularly when it seems to be advocating that which would be good and right for us. When we turn and focus on the task we have been given, though (or even better, on God himself), we regain God’s perspective and can recognise the temptation for what it is.