27Jesus and his disciples left Galilee and went up to the villages of Caesarea Philippi. As they were walking along, he asked them, “Who do people say I am?”
28“Well,” they replied, “some say John the Baptist, some say Elijah, and others say you are one of the other prophets.”
29Then Jesus asked, “Who do you say I am?”
Peter replied, “You are the Messiah.” 30But Jesus warned them not to tell anyone about him. (Mark 8:27-30, NLT)
For the first half of the book of Mark, Jesus is revealing to His disciples WHO he is. He’s exposed his disciples to his teachings and many miracles, in which he demonstrates his power over nature, the physical realm and the spiritual realm. In Mark 8:27, Jesus asks the important question, “Who do people say I am?”
He follows up with an even more crucially important question: “Who do YOU say I am?”
When we’re engaging with others who don’t consider themselves followers of Jesus, it’s critically important that we help them come to a Biblical understanding of WHO Jesus is.
In Mark 8:28, Peter says that the main responses people often have about Jesus are “John the Baptist or Elijah, or one of the other prophets.”
People today have a lot of similar ideas about who Jesus is. Some say he’s a good teacher. Some say he’s a prophet. Still others say he’s a great moral example to follow.
These do not hit the mark. Peter gives the proper response regarding who Jesus is….He is the Messiah (or “the Christ”).
The most important question you can ask yourself (or others)?
Who is Jesus?
As we engage with others regarding the Christian faith, we have to help people come to this understanding of Jesus’s identity. He is not merely a prophet. He is not just a good person or some moral example to follow.
He is God. He is the promised Messiah (the promised deliverer)!
For more information on the Biblical evidence for Jesus’ deity, see my short article “Is Jesus God?”