Saying, The Son of man must suffer many things, and be rejected of the elders and chief priests and scribes, and be slain, and be raised the third day.Luke 9:24
Dear Church and Friends,
I ate once at a place I’d never been before. When the waitress came around I asked what was good on the menu. She said, “Lots of people get the number 5. They say it’s the best thing we serve.” I asked her, “What do you think?” She paused for a moment, thought, and said, “When I take my break I usually get the number 12. I love the way the chef prepares it.” Guess what I had for dinner that night.
It’s easy for us to read the results of a poll or draw a conclusion about what other people believe. We can report those findings with ease because we have no investment in their opinions. The disciples gave Jesus a similar answer in Luke’s gospel.
- And it came to pass, as he was alone praying, his disciples were with him: and he asked them, saying, Whom say the people that I am? They answering said, John the Baptist; but some say, Elias; and others say, that one of the old prophets is risen again. (Luke 9:18-19)
It’s easy to report the facts and we can even speak authoritatively about their wrong-ness or right-ness. (I’ve endured plenty of family gatherings where there was an abundance of opinion shared about others.)
However, just like the waitress at my restaurant, eventually the question gets turned on us. “What do you think? What’s the best thing on the menu?” Then it goes from opinion to personal in a hurry. Peter gives his answer.
- He said unto them, But whom say ye that I am? Peter answering said, The Christ of God. (Luke 9:20)
We can applaud Peter’s bravery to speak up and to get it right, but what happened to the rest of the disciples. You know, the ones who were reporting the statistics just one sentence before. Where are they? It’s easy to hide behind the opinion of others and scary to stand up for what we believe.
Nevertheless, the same question is posed to us. Who do you say Jesus is? Who is he to you? Not what your parents or grandparents said, or you siblings or your spouse, but what you believe. What say ye?
Music: The Hallelujah Chorus by the Master’s University Choir. (Just to get you in the mood for Christmas.)
Prayer Request: Please pray for the following.
- Ben and Brittany Mangrum, Hamilton, Ohio. Ben Mangrum planted Inspiring Hope Church in Hamilton, Ohio. “Please pray God will continue to grow our core team and give us wisdom in the days ahead as we engage our community, build relationships and plan for the upcoming year.”
Poetry: Strength to Prove by C. Ellis Osterbrock
This boulder will not move Against the fiercest wind, hard rain, or me Upon it sat a little house And on the other side a sea In sand my bricks all strewn about For storms that asked my strength to prove A voice from the small house assures me that This boulder will not move
Catechism: Craig’s Catechism (1581) [The Second Part of God’s Honor.]
Is there any priest and sacrifice for sin now?
None at all, for Christ has satisfied once for all.
But there are still any spots in out nature?
Therefore Christ’s blood perpetually washes them away.
The memory and mark of our sins may make us afraid.
All punishment due for them, were taken away by the suffering of Christ..
But we find sin still working in us?
The death of Christ kills its tyranny.
All my best.
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