13 Jesus went to the area of Caesarea Philippi. There he asked his disciples, “Who do people say the Son of Man is?” 14 They replied, “Some say John the Baptist. Others say Elijah. Still others say Jeremiah, or one of the prophets.” 15 “But what about you?” he asked. “Who do you say I am?” 16 Simon Peter answered, “You are the Christ. You are the Son of the living God.” 17 Jesus replied, “Blessed are you, Simon, son of Jonah! No mere man showed this to you. My Father in heaven showed it to you. 18 Here is what I tell you. You are Peter. On this rock I will build my church. The gates of hell will not be strong enough to destroy it. 19 I will give you the keys to the kingdom of heaven. What you lock on earth will be locked in heaven. What you unlock on earth will be unlocked in heaven.” 20 Then Jesus warned his disciples not to tell anyone that he was the Christ. 21 From that time on Jesus began to explain to his disciples what would happen to him. He told them he must go to Jerusalem. There he must suffer many things from the elders, the chief priests and the teachers of the law. He must be killed and on the third day rise to life again. 22 Peter took Jesus to one side and began to scold him. “Never, Lord!” he said. “This will never happen to you!” 23 Jesus turned and said to Peter, “Get behind me, Satan! You are standing in my way. You do not have in mind the things of God. Instead, you are thinking about human things.”
Wow – what an amazing passage. There is so much here. I feel so inadequate to briefly share some thoughts – but here are some of my observations.
- Some identified Jesus as a prophet but this was clearly not enough! (16:14)
- The revelation of Jesus’ identity is foundational for God’s purposes in history (16:17–18).
- The church built on this foundation will prevail against all opposition (16:18).
- Jesus gives Peter and through Peter all who share this proclamation of Jesus authority in the kingdom (16:19).
I love it – Jesus is more than what some want Him to be – they limit Him to their own conceptions not God’s proclamations (This is my beloved Son in whom I am well pleased Lk 3:22). – Lord am I doing this in any area of my life?
Jesus has a plan for all of time and eternity! His plan is the church – it is a collection of people with common purpose – the Gospel – empowered by the Spirit – bringing glory to God! And we have authority to fulfil the plan and purpose God has given to us individually and collectively!
Father help me to live in the knowledge of Your Son – the Anointed One who has brought life and all things to me every day in every way!!
Written by Ps. Richard Botta