Matthew 16:15 “He said to them, “But who do you say that I am?””
Jesus asked His disciples who the people of His day thought He was, and they gave answers ranging from John the Baptist to one of the prophets of olden times come back to life. But then He turned the question to them, His followers of a few years, “but who do you say I am?”
This is a question that theologians, historians, philosophers, and common people have pondered for centuries. Who was Jesus? Was he just a good man or philosopher who left us with some virtuous teachings to live by? Was he just another prophet? Or was he a madman who thought he was divine, or an impostor who claimed to be God? Did he even really exist, or was he just a fabrication of men who lived nearly two thousand years ago?
I am known by different people in different ways; to my immediate family, sister, aunty depending on who is describing who I am, to my church, Pastor Yemisi or Sister Yemisi, to my friends, Yemisi, to some who are not too close might just describe base on what they see or feel about my nature or contact with them. Yes I might want to know what people think of me, sometimes for curiosity; other times for self reflection.
Different people might know Jesus different ways too, but who do you think or say Jesus is to you? In verse 16, Peter said “You are the Christ, the Son of the living God.” Peter expressed his firm conviction that Jesus was the promised Messiah, the Son of the living God. This showed that he believed Jesus to be more than just a mere man with some good ideas, but deity in the flesh.
“For by Him all things were created, both in the heavens and on earth, visible and invisible, whether thrones or dominions or rulers or authorities all things have been created through Him and for Him” (Colossians 1:16).
Beloved, I humbly ask you the same question today, who is Jesus to you? Did He even exist? Was He just a good man? Or is He the fullness of deity in bodily form that was sent to make salvation available to us?
If Jesus is not who He claimed to be, then we have no Saviour and His authority to forgive sin would be invalid. If Jesus is not our Savior, then we have no means for our salvation and He would be a liar, and the Bible would be a lie, for it declares that Jesus Christ is the only name by which we may be saved (Acts 4:8-12). And without a means for salvation, we are all doomed and our faith would be in vain.
But if Jesus is all He claimed to be and the Bible is reliable and true, then by faith we can accept Him and have the salvation He secured for His people. We would be able to say with conviction along with Peter that Jesus is “the Christ, the Son of the living God”.