“When Jesus came to the region of Caesarea Philippi, he asked his disciples, “Who do people say the Son of Man is?” They replied, “Some say John the Baptist; others say Elijah; and still others, Jeremiah or one of the prophets.” “But what about you?” he asked. “Who do you say I am?” Simon Peter answered, “You are the Christ, the Son of the living God.” Jesus replied, “Blessed are you, Simon son of Jonah, for this was not revealed to you by man, but by my Father in heaven.”
Many world religions (Muslims, Mormons, Etc.) acknowledge that Jesus was a great teacher, prophet, and all around powerful and important man of God. However…they do not acknowledge all that Jesus said about Himself, and therefore, their understanding of Jesus Christ is inaccurate and carries no eternal significance.
We can argue about other religions all day long. We can discuss what happens to the pygmy in the rain forest who never hears the Gospel. We can talk about people that are raised in cultures where Christianity is a foreign concept. Yes, we can debate those important questions until the cows come home, but ultimately, Jesus looks at you and asks, “Who do YOU say I am?”
What say you, then?
I spent most of my first 28 years of life “knowing” about Jesus, but I wasn’t a Christian. “You believe that there is one God. Good! Even the demons believe that – and shudder.” (James 2:19) I had yet to differentiate myself from your average demon because although I KNEW about Jesus Christ, I refused to put myself completely into His hands and elevate His standing to Lord of my life. Like Peter, if we say, “You are the Christ, the Son of the Living God” we had better strive to live like it. That’s where the issue of “Lordship” comes into play. When you pledge allegiance to the Creator of All Things, your life should necessarily change.
Are you living a changed life?
Peter went on to mess up in more than a few ways, including his infamous denial of Christ in the final hours. Yet, Christ restored him and he went on to do amazing things for the Kingdom under the power of the Holy Spirit. We’ve all messed up “big time”, of course, and yet there Jesus stands…ready to forgive, forget, and fill us once again with the power of the Holy Spirit to accomplish His will.
Jesus’ question from today’s passage should ring in our ears regularly: “But what about you?” he asked. “Who do you say I am?”
What is your answer, friend?