Who Are You?

27 Jesus and his disciples went on to the villages around Caesarea Philippi. On the way he asked them, “Who do people say I am?” 28 They replied, “Some say John the Baptist; others say Elijah; and still others, one of the prophets.” 29 “But what about you?” he asked. “Who do you say I am?” Peter answered, “You are the Messiah.” 30 Jesus warned them not to tell anyone about him. 31 He then began to teach them that the Son of Man must suffer many things and be rejected by the elders, the chief priests and the teachers of the law, and that he must be killed and after three days rise again. 32 He spoke plainly about this, and Peter took him aside and began to rebuke him. 33 But when Jesus turned and looked at his disciples, he rebuked Peter. “Get behind me, Satan!” he said. “You do not have in mind the concerns of God, but merely human concerns.” 34 Then he called the crowd to him along with his disciples and said: “Whoever wants to be my disciple must deny themselves and take up their cross and follow me. 35 For whoever wants to save their life will lose it, but whoever loses their life for me and for the gospel will save it. 36 What good is it for someone to gain the whole world, yet forfeit their soul? 37 Or what can anyone give in exchange for their soul? 38 If anyone is ashamed of me and my words in this adulterous and sinful generation, the Son of Man will be ashamed of them when he comes in his Father’s glory with the holy angels.” 9 And he said to them, “Truly I tell you, some who are standing here will not taste death before they see that the kingdom of God has come with power.” The New International Version. (2011). (Mk 8:27–9:1). Grand Rapids, MI: Zondervan.

Who do you think you are? That question is frequently asked of someone who just did something outrageous. Do you know who I am? A person of authority will state this when he or she can’t get his or her way.

So the question of identity is also extremely important for Jesus. He asks, “Who do people say that I am?” Today, people will answer that question with a good teacher or a great example or a heroic man. Then Jesus asks the question, “Who do you say that I am?” We might answer the Christ or the Son of God.

Do we really know what that means? Do we make the same mistake that Peter did and think that he came as a king? Do we think of God as someone rules with power and that he will defeat all of the nations with an overwhelming show of force?

Jesus told us that he is actually the servant of all and that he has bought all people with his life. He commands us to follow him along the same way – a way of sacrifice and service. We are servants of God and disciples of Christ. There is no higher calling and no greater destiny. Who do you say Jesus is? I say that he is my Lord and my Savior. How about you?

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