And Jesus went on with His disciples to the villages of Caesarea Philippi. And on the way He asked His disciples, "Who do people say that I am?" And they told Him, "John the Baptist; and others say, Elijah; and others, one of the prophets." And He asked them, "But who do you say that I am?" Peter answered Him, "You are the Christ." And He strictly charged them to tell no one about Him. (Mark 8:27-30)
Jesus starts out with a safe, general question—"Who do people say that I am?" And the disciples have no trouble giving Him answers. After all, it's just hearsay. It doesn't matter to them whether the answers are right or wrong, realistic or outrageous. They're not the disciples' own answers, so who cares?
But then Jesus goes for the throat. "And who do you say that I am?" He asks. Now that one's scary. Because you don't want to get it wrong—not right to Jesus' face. But it's a really big step to say what you're starting to believe—that He's the Messiah, the Savior, the Son of God! No wonder Peter was the only one to speak up!
It goes deeper. If you say, "You are the Christ," then you have just committed yourself, haven't you? From now on you are going to have to follow this Man—obey whatever He says—stick with Him through thick and thin. You have to, because He's the Christ and you've admitted it. There's no turning back.
Thank God, the commitment goes two ways. Jesus has committed Himself to you, since long before that manger in Bethlehem. He committed Himself to rescuing you, to forgiving your sin and healing your brokenness—to giving you eternal life. If you are His, He is also yours. Thanks be to God!
THE PRAYER: Lord Jesus, keep me with You always. Amen.
* When did you have to answer an awkward question?
* Are you ever afraid of commitment? Why?
* What does it mean to you, that Jesus has committed Himself to you forever?
Lenten Devotions were written by Dr. Kari Vo.
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