010 - Thou Art the Christ

"In the Midst of Thee" - volumes 1 & 2 contain 200 favorite Glenn Rawson Stories - at: History of the Saints . org

I don’t think it would be too bold to say that more rumors, legends, and traditions have been perpetuated about the Savior of the world than any modern celebrity ever dreamed of. Every conceivable notion has been advanced to explain who He was and what He was. I – I have lost track how many times His second coming has occurred, according to supermarket tabloids. The more things change, the more things stay the same.

Sometime in the second year of the Savior’s ministry, Jesus and His apostles went off alone. As they went, Jesus asked them, “… Whom do men say that I the Son of Man am?” (Matthew 16:13)

The apostles answered according to the rumors circulating among the people at that time, “… Some say… thou art John the Baptist,” they said, “some, Elias; … others, Jeremias, or one of the prophets.” (Matthew 16:14)

You see, rumor had it among the Jews that Jesus was John the Baptist come back to life after being killed by Herod. Even Herod believed that. Still others believed that Jesus was Elijah the great prophet taken to Heaven without tasting death, whom the scriptures promised would return before the great and dreadful day of the Lord. And still others superstitiously believed that Jesus was Jeremias or another of the prophets reincarnated. It seems that rumors are always more popular than the truth.

Then Jesus asked them, “… But whom say ye that I am? And Simon Peter answered and said, Thou art the Christ, the Son of the living God.” (Matthew 16:15-16)

Peter had received revelation from God, and so must we. Until we do, until we know what Peter knew, Jesus’ identity and importance will always remain a matter of doubt to us and a source of weakness. For a doubting and cynical world, perhaps the great Christian philosopher C. S. Lewis put it best. He said:

“I am trying here to prevent anyone saying the really foolish thing that people often say about Him: [That is] ‘I’m ready to accept Jesus as a great moral teacher, but I don’t accept His claim to be God.’ That,” said Lewis, “is the one thing we must not say. A man who was merely a man and said the sort of things Jesus said would not be a great moral teacher. He would either be a lunatic – on a level with the man who says he is a poached egg – or else he would be the devil of Hell. You must make your choice. Either this man was, and is, the son of God; or else a madman or something worse. You can shut him up for a fool, you can spit at him and kill him as a demon; or you can fall at His feet and call Him Lord and God. But let us not come with any patronizing nonsense about His being a great human teacher. He has not left that open to us. He did not intend to.” (Mere Christianity [New York: Macmillan Publishing Co., 1952], pp. 40-41)

And have a great Sabbath.

Glenn Rawson – August 21, 1997, revised August 22, 1998
Music: “Jesus Was No Ordinary Man” (edited) – Marvin Goldstein
Song: More Than Just a Man – Julie de Azevedo