Summary: Jesus asked his disciples 2 questions, he’s asking the same questions today.
Two Profound Questions – Matthew 16:13-19
Intro.: The ability to know God is one aspect of our eternal inheritance that God has released in the earth. It’s what we were created for. But we have to qualify before we can pursue this knowledge. Jesus asked his disciples 2 questions, he’s asking the same questions today.
I. The Questions
A. “Who do people say that the Son of Man is?” Matthew 16:13
1. Jesus asked this ? to determine the basis of their revelation
a. Did they really understand who He was or…
b. Was their understanding based on what others said…
NOTE: The greatest hindrance to our having a real revelation of Christ is living on what others have told us about Him, instead of pursuing a personal revelation of Him.
2. Where do most of our concepts of God come from?
a. Parents, siblings, friends, pastors, SS teachers, etc.
b. This gives us a false sense of “knowing” God.
NOTE: We feel satisfied about our knowledge, not recognizing that we lack the power or knowledge in our inner man.
B. The 2nd question was, “Who do you say that I am?” Matt. 16:15
1. What a question!
a. It’s not one that most of us can answer immediately
b. It requires thought and heart-searching
2. We can’t, in arrogance, just assume that we know the answer
NOTE: The answer cannot be obtained on a Sunday morning service or a home group meeting. The answer can only come through years of seeking and pursuing the revelation of the knowledge of God. Random or casual pursuit won’t cut it. List all of the verses that you have ever learned about God throughout your life and then let’s talk…
II. Beginning the process
A. The first step to knowing God is admitting that we can’t understand
Him on our own
NOTE: In Ephesians 3:8 Paul basically said that he needed supernatural help to even talk about Jesus.
QUOTE: Hans van Balthasar in his book “Prayer” - “Anyone contemplating the life of Jesus needs to be newly and more deeply aware every day that something impossible, something scandalous has occurred: that God, in His absolute Being, has resolved to manifest Himself in a human life”
B. In Matt. 16:16 Peter answered the 2nd question w/o seeming to even
pay attention when he suddenly exclaimed, “You are the Christ, the
Son of the Living God!”
1. He declared that Jesus was the very expression of the uncreated God
2. Quite a statement from this hot-header, unlearned, fisherman
C. Jesus’ response was pretty impressive too…
1. Matt. 16:17 “Blessed (or to be envied) are you, Simon Bar
Jonah, for flesh & blood has not revealed this to you, but My
Father who is in heaven”
a. This was not human understanding, but heavenly revelation
b. Jesus went on to say that this revelation was the foundation of the
c. And on this foundation, TRUE authority would rest
Concl.: This passage gives amazing clarity as to what the foundation of our
lives should be.
The foundation is our wrestling with the question, “Who do you say
that I am?” and our striving to find the answer
This is not a one-time question with a one-time answer. It has to be
fleshed out over time as we come to terms with who Jesus truly is.
The knowledge of God as revealed to us through the man Jesus Christ, opens the realm of heaven to us. Through knowing Him, we are invited, by the Father, into the realm of eternity, to taste, to touch and to experience God Himself.
We are cold in our affections, our sacrifices and our devotions when we lack revelation of the knowledge of God. As this revelation begins to unfold, we are awakened to true love – a love that causes us to forsake the fleeting pleasures of the temporal age and throw ourselves into things eternal. Here we can begin to experience and even live in the age to come.