… on the way [Jesus] asked his disciples, ‘Who do people say that I am?’ And they answered him, ‘John the Baptist; and others, Elijah; and still others, one of the prophets.’ He asked them, ‘But who do you say that I am?’ (Mk. 8:27-29)
The disciples have been questioning Jesus’ identity. They have heard the crowds speculating. They have argued and debated with each other. They must have wondered if Jesus could be the Messiah.
Jesus asks the disciples what they have been hearing from others. After they give various answers, He asks them what they think, say, and believe.
“But who do you say that I am?” The question Jesus once asked them, He now asks us. He wants to know what we think, say, and believe. We must answer for ourselves. Jesus isn’t interested in what we have heard, or what our forebears have passed on. He wants to know where we stand. There’s no borrowed or derivative faith.
The question, “But who do you say that I am?” is one of the most important questions we need to answer. There is, though, a more important question. And it’s this: “Jesus, who do you say we are?”
What would Jesus say? He would say we are God’s beloved children; children who are sometimes lost; children who are more blessed and gifted than we often know; children who are drowning and need to be rescued. He would also say we are His brothers and sisters.
Even though we may sometimes struggle with who Jesus is for us, Jesus never struggles with who we are to Him and who we are to the Father.
When we feel like our relationship with God depends on us, we can get daunted and discouraged. But when we remember that our relationship with God depends more upon whom Jesus says we are than upon whom we say He is, we can be strengthened and encouraged.
- Who is Jesus for you? List all the words that come to mind.
- Who do you believe you are for Jesus? Again, list all the words that come to mind.
- If you remembered that the second question above is more important than the first one, do you think your own faith would change and be transformed? If so, how?
My Barnabas invites you to watch the video below: