Jesus, and nothing else—really
When Jesus came to the region of Caesarea Philippi, he asked his disciples, “Who do people say that the Son of Man is?”
“Well,” they replied, “some say John the Baptist, some say Elijah, and others say Jeremiah…”
Then he asked them, “But who do you say I am?”
Simon Peter answered, “You are the Messiah, the Son of the Living God.” —Matthew 16:13-16 NLT
Jesus brings His class to a Caesarea Philippi, this remote place packed with temples dedicated to the worship of Syrian, Greek, and Roman gods. In this hub of the world’s pagan religions bedazzled in their history and splendor, Jesus asks, “But you—who do you say I am?”
This question comes immediately after He asks the twelve who others say He is. Jesus uses this location and sequence of questioning so the disciples realize Jesus is the one true God among them, the long-awaited Messiah.
Look around your world which may or may not be bedazzled. What “pagan” pieces in your life do you value? As you consider your material things, ask yourself what Jesus asks His disciples: who do you say He is?
It is not wrong to love your things. What Jesus is asking is that we love Him far more. We love Him far more only when we realize who He really is. The way we realize who
He truly is comes when we ask ourselves not once but each day: Who is Jesus to me?
Our stuff is just stuff and, as a backdrop, helps see who Jesus really is. Peter’s answer is the best (and the only) answer to give. Jesus is the Messiah, the Son of the Living God.
PRAYER: Lord, around the stuff that I treasure, may I treasure You most. Amen.