Who Do You Say Jesus Is?

Matthew 16:15-16, [Jesus] said to them, “But who do you say that I am?” Simon Peter replied, “You are the Christ, the Son of the living God.”

Last January, I was standing in the place where Jesus asked this question: Caesarea Philippi. Jesus’ response to Peter’s answer is vital, “Flesh and blood has not revealed this to you, but My Father who is in Heaven” (v. 17). Peter did not make this confession of faith with his own knowledge, but it was the Holy Spirit who revealed it to him! An atheist can say Jesus is the Christ just because he knows that’s what the Bible says and that’s what those silly Christians say, but it’s only through the Holy Spirit who gives us the gift of faith that this is confessed and believe (cf. 1 Corinthians 12:3).

Caesarea Philippi was a strange place for Jesus to take His disciples because of its blatant paganism where pagans worshipped the half-goat, half-man god called Pan. Jews would never step foot in such a wicked place, and yet Jesus brought the disciples here. To these pagans, Pan was their god. So, Jesus asked His disciples the convicting question, “But who do you say that I am?”

This is a question we must consider every day. Who do we say Jesus is? What gods are we placing above Him? Is it an addiction? Our political and social dogma? Human reason and cultural comforts? Our sense of autonomy? Whomever we believe Jesus to be usually shows in how we live and what we say about the Word. Jesus is the Christ, and He reigns supreme. He is the head of every part of our lives, even when His Word conflicts with popular worldly beliefs and cultural customs.

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