“Now it happened that as he was praying alone, the disciples were with him. And he asked them, ‘Who do the crowds say that I am?’ And they answered, ‘John the Baptist. But others say, Elijah, and others, that one of the prophets of old has risen.’ Then he said to them, ‘But who do you say that I am?’ And Peter answered, ‘The Christ of God.’


And he strictly charged and commanded them to tell this to no one, saying, ‘The Son of Man must suffer many things and be rejected by the elders and chief priests and scribes, and be killed, and on the third day be raised.’


And he said to all, ‘If anyone would come after me, let him deny himself and take up his cross daily and follow me. For whoever would save his life will lose it, but whoever loses his life for my sake will save it. For what does it profit a man if he gains the whole world and loses or forfeits himself? For whoever is ashamed of me and of my words, of him will the Son of Man be ashamed when he comes in his glory and the glory of the Father and of the holy angels.” Luke 9:18-26 (ESV)



Jesus had a moment with His disciples to inquire about how the disciples viewed Him in comparison to how the crowds viewed Him. The crowds of people who followed Jesus thought He was a prophet. He was a fascinating teacher and did miracles. Yet, Jesus was concerned about those who were very close to Him. He knew what everyone else was saying, but He asked the disciples about His identity. These men had walked with Jesus and were very closely associated with Him. Peter, being his typical bold, brave self, answered first. He said what no one else seemed willing to say. He identified Jesus as the Christ, whom the Israelites had been waiting for years to come. Yet, this realization was closely followed by an admonition to not tell others of the path He must take. Jesus would lay down his life so that others might live. Jesus’ attention turned to the people and He asked them a pointed question about gaining the world but losing their soul. Jesus understood that by laying down His life and asking others to follow His example would result in finding the abundant life in Christ.


Each person is confronted with the same question Jesus asked the disciples. Who do you say that Jesus is? Our answer to this question can change everything about our lives. Yet, there can become a dichotomy between who we say that Jesus is and what we do in our lives.  We may recognize that Jesus is the Son of God, but our striving after other things instead of knowing Jesus can create a conflict. What are you trying to gain in your life? We live in a society where accumulation, prestige, and accomplishments are the focus of many people’s lives. Jesus turns conventional wisdom around by saying that whoever loses their life for the sake of Christ finds it. It takes more than just acknowledging Jesus’ identity. It requires us to refocus our priorities in order to allow all other pursuits to be secondary in comparison to our love for Jesus. Otherwise, we can gain everything and miss out on the thing that really matters most.

Scripture quotations are from The Holy Bible, English Standard Version® (ESV®), copyright © 2001 by Crossway, a publishing ministry of Good News Publishers. Used by permission. All rights reserved.

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About Hona Amer

I help people live life to the fullest. Check out my book, Smart Work U. Follow me on TwitterFacebook, or Instagram. In order to receive updates, subscribe below.

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