Jesus is arguably the most influential man in history. His name is known around the world. He is exalted and hated, revered and reviled, desired and despised. He was hailed as the Messiah and condemned as a criminal. He is cherished as a Savior and rejected as an imposter.
Who is this man named Jesus?
Everyone has an opinion about Jesus. Muslims believe him to be a mighty prophet; intellectuals, a wise teacher; activists, a radical revolutionary. In Jesus’ own day, people thought he was a prophet or a teacher or perhaps an insurgent. The religious leaders said his work was from Satan, the crowds said his teachings were too hard to accept, and members of his own family thought he was out of his mind.
In today’s reading, the disciples discuss with Jesus the prevailing opinions about who he was. But Jesus wasn’t consumed with public opinion or the latest polls. He was concerned with what his disciples believed. He pointedly asked them, “But who do you say that I am?” Everything hinged on getting this answer right. In one of his finest hours Peter replied, “You are the Christ, the Son of the living God.”
Jesus confronts you with the same question.
Who do you say that Jesus is? Do you believe he is the Christ (“the Anointed One”) chosen and sent by God as the Savior and Deliverer of mankind? Your entire life hinges on how you answer that question. A prophet can reveal truth, a teacher can give ethics, an activist can bring change, but only the Son of God who came as the Savior of the world can offer you the hope of eternal life.
This series will present foundational truths about the identity of Jesus and invite you to consider how his identity transforms yours. If you do not yet know what you believe about this man named Jesus, take a small step of faith and ask God to make the truth about him plain to you:
I am hungry for the Truth. I want to know who Jesus really is. If he is the Christ, the Son of the living God, please reveal it to me. Use your Word to convict and convince me of the Truth that I seek.