Lessons Of A Lifetime

SUNDAY OCT. 25, 2020

Scripture To Consider:
“When Jesus came into the region of Caesarea Philippi, He asked His disciples, saying, ‘Who do men say that I, the Son of Man, am?’ So they said, ‘Some say John the Baptist, some Elijah, and others Jeremiah or one of the prophets.’ He said to them, ‘But who do you say that I am?’ Simon Peter answered and said, ‘You are the Christ, the Son of the living God.’”

“Jesus answered and said to him, ‘Blessed are you Simon Bar-Jonah, for flesh and blood has not revealed this to you, but My Father who is in heaven. And I also say unto you that you are Peter, and on this rock I will build My church, and the gates of Hades shall not prevail against it. And I will give you the keys of the kingdom of heaven, and whatever you bind on earth will be bound in heaven, and whatsoever you loose on earth will be loosed in heaven.’

“Then Jesus commanded His disciples that they should tell no one that He was the Christ.” Matthew 16.13-20

Something To Consider:
Jesus has just performed a very private act of healing a blind man. And yet, His fame continued to spread throughout every region where He and His disciples went. It appears that Jesus retreated to Caesarea Philippi with His disciples for a time of private and personal reflection. How often do we take or make time for private and personal reflection on the things of God? It is always time well spent!

Jesus, as if taking inventory of opinions, asked a question of those closest to Him, saying, “Who do men say that I, the Son of Man, am?” His asking them this question was not to boost His own ego, but rather He was leading up to a much more important question. Jesus was attempting to stimulate their thought process by asking, “Who do men say that I, the Son of Man, am?”

Who do those of our own generation say Jesus is? Few say He is the Son of God! And even less today claim Him to be God, though that is what the Word of God proclaims. “In the beginning was the Word, and the Word was with God, and the Word was God.”

And in verse 14 of John chapter 1, we also read; “And the Word became flesh [the Word of God became a human being in the person of Jesus] and dwelt among us, and we [His disciples] beheld His glory [Jesus’ glory] as of the only begotten of the Father, full of grace and truth.” Therefore, have we as 21st century disciples, beheld the glory of Jesus, full of grace and full of truth?

Something Else To Consider:
And according to our Scripture to consider, His disciples answered Jesus’ question concerning who He was, by stating; “Some say John the Baptist, some Elijah, and others Jeremiah or one of the prophets.” Leaders are naturally looked at in the light of those who have come and gone before them. This can be both positive and negative. But, if a spiritual leader is leading according to the biblical principles found within the Word of God, then let people have their difference of opinions.

According to the Word of God, Jesus was and is God and therefore greater than John the Baptist, Elijah, Jeremiah, or any of the great Old Testament prophets. But to some of the religious leaders of Jesus’ day, they claimed him to be demon possessed. To some of His family He was declared to be beside Himself or mentally unstable.

And in this 21st century generation, Jesus is not rightly proclaimed as God and therefore is declared not to be worthy of our allegiance or of our worship. And nothing can be further from the truth! But if Jesus is God, and He is, why then are His commandments not being taught and therefore, not being observed except by a few faithful enduring to the end true followers of Christ?

Something More To Consider:
John the Baptist was a man of conviction. Elijah was a prophet who heard from God on a regular basis. And Jeremiah was known as the weeping prophet, a man called to mourn for the backslidden nation of Israel. These men lived their lives strongly believing in God’s ability to use them no matter what opposition or opinions others mounted against them.

And Jesus was not about to be swayed from the purpose and plan of His heavenly Father. But the real question to be answered by every generation is; “But who do you say that I am?” There is only one possible correct answer, and so Peter insightfully responded, “You are the Christ, the Son of the living God.” But who do we say that Jesus is? And does our lifestyle contradict what our mouths and hearts have so quickly answered?

The apostle Paul gave good instruction to Timothy concerning being an example to others in 1 Timothy 4.12, by stating; “Let no one despise your youth, but be an example to the believers in word, in conduct, in love, in spirit, in faith, and in purity.” The importance of our living a Christ-like lifestyle cannot be over emphasized! How we live our lives is proof of who we believe Jesus to be.

A Few Final Words:
Paul followed up in verse 16 of 1 Timothy chapter 4, by stating; “Take heed to yourself and to the doctrine [the commandments of Jesus]. Continue in them [in the commandments of Jesus], for in doing this [in observing all of Christ’s commandments] you will save yourself and those who hear you.” Can we claim to be observing the commandments of Jesus? Can we truly claim to know what the commandments of Jesus are?

How often do we hear the commandments of Jesus being preached or taught in religious settings? How few are focusing their attention on teaching themselves and or others to continue in the commandments of Jesus, to wisely observe all that He taught, and to exemplify a Christ-like lifestyle? Could it be the difference of opinions as to whether this is important, to be what is at fault here?

According to Jesus and the Word of God, continuing in Christ’s doctrine is extremely important. According to Jesus and the Word of God, observing all the commandments of Jesus leads us and others to the biblical truth concerning salvation and our experiencing eternal life in and through Christ!

As leaders or leaders in training, our eternal outcome is solely dependent on who we believe and confess Jesus of Nazareth to be. Therefore, “When Jesus came into the region of Caesarea Philippi, He asked His disciples, saying, ‘Who do men say that I, the Son of Man, am?’”

Our Father in heaven, may we think long and wisely this day as to who we confess with our lives and our lips that Your Son Jesus is. In Him Always, Amen!

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