Who do you think Jesus is?
We’ve come to the middle of the Gospel of Mark. Here there is a central point based around the question “who do YOU say I am?”
To go back a bit, Jesus has been going around and doing some pretty special things. He has been healing people, he has demonstrated that he has power over nature, and power over death itself. He’s even taken a walk out on some water. And as a bonus he has fed thousands of hungry people. So what have people been saying about him? Who do they think he is? Why is he going around and doing these things?
The crowds are a little confused. Some think that Jesus is John the Baptist come back, some say Jesus was Elijah. Others put their money on one of the other prophets. They realise that Jesus is someone special. But they haven’t quite got the whole picture.
The people had been waiting for a Messiah, a special saving king, who would set them free. Many assumed this would be a political leader, who would throw off the evil Romans and restore the kingdom of Israel to it’s former glory. But these people were thinking too small. Their vision was limited to their time and their place.
Peter turns to Jesus and says “you are the Messiah.” He has realised that all is not quite as expected. Jesus came and brings freedom. He sets us free from all our sin and brokenness. He also brings in the heavenly kingdom – God’s kingdom where all wrongs will be put right and everything made new, and the miracles that Jesus performed were just glimpses of that kingdom breaking through.
The thing is, we each have to decide for ourselves. Will we put our faith in Jesus, as God’s special saving king, the Messiah? Or do we think he is just another one of the prophets, someone connected to God but no more than that? Only you can decide. It’s a decision on which your whole life and faith revolves (no pressure then…)
Lord God, thank you that you have a plan. That you sent Jesus. Help me to step out in faith today, and see you for who you really are. Amen.
Jesus goes on to say that life is going to be tough, and he calls his followers to take up their cross and follow him. What might that mean for you today?