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WHO DO YOU SAY THAT I AM?

February 21, 2012 1 comment

…”Who do people say that the Son of Man is?” 14 And they said, “Some say John the Baptist, others say Elijah, and others Jeremiah or one of the prophets.” 15 He said to them, “But who do you say that I am?” 16 Simon Peter replied, “You are the Christ, the Son of the living God.”     Matthew 16:13-16

In a region north of Galilee called Caesarea Philippi, Jesus asked His disciples a question; “Who do people say that the Son of Man is?” They reported the answer to Jesus, “They say you are John the Baptist…or Elijah or…one of the other prophets.” They basically told Jesus that He got lumped in with all the other prophets with no mention of His unique character and purpose. The answer to that question today from people in general could be similar, “He was a great man…a great prophet and teacher…” To many I think Jesus does not stand apart from the other central personalities of the major religions, like Moses, Buddha, and Mohamed as particularly unique. He gets lumped.

But then Jesus makes it personal, like He always does; “But who do you say that I am?” …ah, now he gets to the real crux and truth of the matter as to who He is, because regardless of popular opinion, or who the scholars, theologians, or philosophers say that Jesus is, Jesus wants to know on a personal level who we say He is. Who do we believe Jesus really is by a simple declaration of our faith? He wants to know if He’s going to stand alone as the central focus of our life and worship, or is He going to get lumped into all the other things, and people in our lives that clamor for prominence.

Peter answers the question without hesitance or contemplation, like he was reporting a simple fact that was as common and known as breathing in air… “You are the Christ, the Son of the Living God.” This was declaration that was first made with his lips, and then in time was backed by his heart and his actions.  But the declaration was made.

The question remains for all of us, “Who do we say that Jesus is?” It is not a question that can be asked and answered only once, but in everyday and in every circumstance. If I believe that Jesus is the Christ, the Son of the Living God, then that belief and power must be demonstrated in my life, and in the life of the church I serve, every moment of everyday. It must affect how I see and treat others. It must have influence over the decisions I make. It must be seen in me. If I declare it with my lips, I desire for it to be demonstrated in the fruit of my life. The last thing I want is for Jesus Christ the Son of the Living God, to be seen as something that is just lumped in with everything else that I do.

Who do you say Jesus is? As we approach this season where we prepare to remember and meditate on the life, ministry, and passion of Jesus, Who do you say Jesus is? I hope and pray that all of us can stand and declare with true conviction in one voice with Peter, “You are the Christ the Son of the Living God!”

Blessings, Pastor Joel

 

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