I originally wrote this post last week prior to the election, but never posted it. It seems even more relevant this week.
The trigger for this particular post is that a week or so ago, a well known Christian author and speaker confirmed her views on same sex marriage in an online magazine. In response to that article there’s been multiple articles written about why her views are dangerous. Her books are no longer being sold at a well known Christian resource outlet and the social media insults and accusations are still flying.
As I read through the Facebook comments in response to her article, I felt a question arise in my own heart and the story from Matthew chapter 16 immediately came to mind:
When Jesus came to the region of Caesarea Philippi, he asked his disciples, “Who do people say that the Son of Man is?”
“Well,” they replied, “some say John the Baptist, some say Elijah, and others say Jeremiah or one of the other prophets.”
Then he asked them, “But who do you say I am?”
Simon Peter answered, “You are the Messiah, the Son of the living God.”
Jesus replied, “You are blessed, Simon son of John, because my Father in heaven has revealed this to you. You did not learn this from any human being.”
“But who do you say I am?” That truly is the question of the hour, right? It’s a question of accountability that every one of us must at answer in some form or another.
Who do YOU say that He is?
During this election season I’ve watched Christian leaders and congregation members declare why their stance on political issues makes them more Godly, more spiritual than those who would make a different choice. I am grateful that I was raised in a home where it was modeled for me how to think deeply and critically about the world we live in. I was taught that if someone’s view differs from yours, no matter how right you think you are, be willing to humble yourself and try to see it from their perspective. I’ve tried to instill this same principle in my children. Because of my upbringing, when I hear views that differ from my own, I instinctively try to understand it from the other person’s perspective. I have listened to reasonings of people who differed from me on who they would be voting for in the election. It was important to me to have a multi-sided view of what and why I was voting a particular way.
Ultimately, the question God is asking of each of us is “Who do you believe that I am?”
How we answer that question shapes our life, because we respond to life out of our perspective. We bear God’s image and likeness. Our identity, our approach to life is tied to how we view Him. Everything visible and invisible finds its purpose in God. (Col 1: 16)
Even if you are not a Bible believing Christ follower, you have a view of God. Your view might be that God is a fairytale and He doesn’t exist. This view will also guide your responses to life’s challenges and triumphs.
Jesus – the King of asking hard questions – always went straight to the heart of a matter. In Matthew 16 we are reminded that our focus shouldn’t be centered on what others believe, but on our beliefs about God’s will for our lives. “Yeah, yeah. That’s what they believe, but what do you believe. Who do you say I am?” In this time let’s take our focus off of what our social media friends believe or what Oprah or TD Jakes or Jen Hatmaker or your Pastor believes and answer that question for ourselves.
JOURNAL USING THIS DEVOTIONAL PROMPT: Who do you say that He is? What do you believe?
You can also share your thoughts in the comments.
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