Who do you say that I am?
One is reminded of the four blind men who went to the circus. The question arose, “What does an elephant look like?” One blind man felt the elephant’s leg and said he looked like a tree trunk. Another felt his tail and said he looked like a rope. The third felt his tusk and said he looked like a sword. The last blind man felt his side and said he looked like a wall. Which of the blind men was right? Each on his own did not have an accurate picture of what an elephant is like. However, upon dialoguing with each other and sharing their insights a more complete picture of the elephant would appear. The shared ideas of the four blind men would bring them to a closer understanding of what an elephant is.
In Matthew 16:13-20, Jesus put Peter on the spot with that question “Who do you say that I am? Peter’s response is swift, with no hesitation as he replied “You are the Christ, Son of the living God”. It would have been interesting to hear the individual response of each Apostle. What would Thomas say? What would John say? What would Judas say?
When you think about it, every person on this planet believes something about God. But it can vary a great deal. Even we Christians can believe different things about the one God whom we all worship. Not only that, but our understanding of God – our theology – can change over our lifetime. In fact, it should change, as we grow in our faith. But the reason why this question is so very important, I think, is because how we answer this question directly affects how we live out our faith, and how we live out our lives. It will not only influence our life but also our eternity.
My response to the question “Who do you say that I am?“ requires a daily reminder of who Jesus is in my life. This answer is based on a relationship with Jesus. It depends on how much time is spent together in daily prayer, meditation, Gospel readings, and writings by other authors on Jesus. This develops faith and trust in Jesus and our lives will reflect that faith. This answer also directs us to action and community.
What is your response to the question , “Who do you say that I am?”
How does your response shape your life?