The Good Confession; Prediction of His death; The Cost of Discipleship
This section is quite rich and could be meditated upon for a long time. But the first thing I noticed was that of Peter’s exaltation and humiliation. In a defining moment, Jesus asks “Who do you say I am?” Simon Peter was the one who answered: “You are the Christ, the Son of the Living God.” Out of this Jesus gives Peter an extraordinary compliment and heritage in the faith: “…I tell you that you are Peter and on this rock I will build my church and the gates of Hades will not overcome it.” Wow! What a compliment! I’m sure Peter was riding high…for a few moments.
And then comes his humiliation. “From that time on Jesus began to explain that he must suffer many things…and must be killed and on the third day be raised to life.” Peter’s reply came out of his love, passion and devotion for his Lord. “Never, Lord!” he said, “This shall never happen to you!”
And now for Peter’s humiliation. “Get behind me, Satan! You are a stumbling block to me; you do not have in mind the things of God but the things of men.” Ouch! Peter has come from being a foundational element of the church to being told that “you are a stumbling block to me.” This is not what you want to hear from anyone, especially Jesus!
But as we know Jesus did go on to die, and Peter did go on to even deny him (a worse sin). And yet Jesus completely restored him. This Scripture was fulfilled and as we read in the book of Acts, he did indeed become a foundation element of establishing the church.
Following after Jesus is filled with highs and lows, and it’s not about how high we soar or how hard we fall, but that we press on after Jesus until our dying breath.
“For whoever wants to save his life will lose it, but whoever loses his life for me will find it.”
Memorized: Matthew 16:13-38 (Feb 14)