(Guest Post by: Pete Yost) Blogmas Day Twenty
“Who Do You Say I Am?” asked Jesus.
I believe this is the greatest question of all time! How you respond to this question determines who and what you are.
The apostle Peter responded to the question, “You are the Messiah, the Son of the living God’” (Matthew 16:16).
Questions trigger a mental reflex known as “instinctive elaboration.” When a question is posed, it takes over the brain’s thought process. And when your brain is thinking about the answer to a question, it can’t contemplate anything else.
Jesus often responded to the people around him by asking questions.
Several years ago, I began meeting with a group of guys on Wednesday mornings. Each week 8 or 9 of us would meet for fellowship, prayer, and a time of sharing what God was doing in our lives. A kind of, “who do you say I am?” experience.
The great preacher, John Wesley met with folks in what he called, “Class Meetings”. In these small group meetings questions were asked of the participants to allow for accountability and support. These questions remained anchored to who Jesus is and the condition of the participants’ daily life. The purpose is to present the Christ of the Bible; to align oneself with correct thinking and action as a Christ follower.
Martin Luther, the Great Reformer.
After years and years of personal struggle Martin Luther discovered: The way of righteousness was demonstrated through Christ’s work on the cross. If a sinner places his faith in Jesus Christ, he is justified; he appears before God just as if he never sinned. Luther understood that “the just shall live by faith”, means not by their own works of righteousness.
C. S. Lewis, the great Christian author and philosopher.
Lewis, who at the time could have been described as agnostic, had the assumption that Christianity was simply another great myth like all the rest of them.
A few days later, the Spirit’s work was complete, and by the time Lewis concluded a trip to the local zoo while riding in the sidecar of his brother Warnie’s motorcycle, he finally believed “Jesus Christ is the Son of God.”
Oswald Chambers was born in 1874 in Aberdeen, Scotland, the son of a Baptist pastor. When he was 15, his family moved to London. There, he and his father went to hear Charles Spurgeon preach. Oswald was touched by the message, and, while walking home, he and his father stopped under a streetlamp and Oswald gave his heart and life to Christ.
Jesus affirmed Peter’s response by saying, “before Abraham was born, I am” (John 8:58). Through these, He alludes to His identity as divine. The important thing for the disciples to know was that Jesus was who he claimed to be, the Messiah. They did not become fully aware until after his crucifixion and resurrection.
If your perception of Jesus is askew, then you will live a life accordingly.
If you are willing to claim Jesus as Lord this Christmas season, and submit yourself to Him, you are invited to live with Him forever. This is something no prophet, teacher, or revolutionary can offer. Are we willing to accept the great power and love of Jesus as the Christ, the Son of God?
Pete, I also think this is a crucial question we ask ourself. I also love the fun fact about “instinctive elaboration.” Thanks for sharing your thoughts with us!
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