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Monday, August 8, 2016

Who Do You Say That I Am?

Matthew 16:13-20, Jesus asked disciples who they think He is
When we make Jesus Savior and Lord, we can't "interpret" Him by our culture and popular worldly values. We must embrace His unchanging character, principles and ethics (Hebrews 13:8).

We must regularly seek His guidance instead of making our plans and afterward asking His blessings (James 4:13-14).

We must share the full Gospel, unashamed of the "hard parts" about sin and wrath (Galatians 1:9-10).

In Matthew 16:13-20, Jesus asked His disciples who people thought He was.  They repeated the popular misunderstandings of their day. (There are always un-Scriptural views of Jesus floating around -2 Corinthians 11:4).

“But what about you?” he asked. “Who do you say I am?” 

The character of Jesus is clearly defined in Scripture, and He is all of it, not just the easy or popular parts. We cannot accept His blessings without also accepting His demands (Luke 14:27). 

And He asks each of us the same thing He asked the disciples: “What about you? Who do you say I am?” 

Our lives are a response to that question.

Bible Study 

There are many "half-truths" about Jesus floating around. Often they are created by reading pieces/parts of Scripture, not the full counsel. 

Below is one example: 
By taking a single phrase out of context, people have created a Jesus who doesn't judge sin. But what this passage actually tells us is the purpose of Christ's coming. We were already judged unworthy. Christ didn't come to simply reiterate that truth but to save us. Verse 47 defines Christ's earthly mission, not His character. 

John 12:44-50: And Jesus cried out and said, “Whoever believes in me, believes not in me but in him who sent me. 45 And whoever sees me sees him who sent me. 46 I have come into the world as light, so that whoever believes in me may not remain in darkness. 47 If anyone hears my words and does not keep them, I do not judge him; for I did not come to judge the world but to save the world. 48 The one who rejects me and does not receive my words has a judge; the word that I have spoken will judge him on the last day. 49 For I have not spoken on my own authority, but the Father who sent me has himself given me a commandment—what to say and what to speak. 50 And I know that his commandment is eternal life. What I say, therefore, I say as the Father has told me.” 

Below we see this truth more fully developed. It is critically important that we read all that Scripture says about a subject and interpret Scripture by Scripture, not by human opinions. Only then can we avoid believing "half-truths." 

John 5:21-30: For as the Father raises the dead and gives them life, so also the Son gives life to whom he will. 22 The Father judges no one, but has given all judgment to the Son, 23 that all may honor the Son, just as they honor the Father. Whoever does not honor the Son does not honor the Father who sent him. 24 Truly, truly, I say to you, whoever hears my word and believes him who sent me has eternal life. He does not come into judgment, but has passed from death to life. 25 “Truly, truly, I say to you, an hour is coming, and is now here, when the dead will hear the voice of the Son of God, and those who hear will live. 26 For as the Father has life in himself, so he has granted the Son also to have life in himself. 27 And he has given him authority to execute judgment, because he is the Son of Man. 28 Do not marvel at this, for an hour is coming when all who are in the tombs will hear his voice 29 and come out, those who have done good to the resurrection of life, and those who have done evil to the resurrection of judgment. 30 “I can do nothing on my own. As I hear, I judge, and my judgment is just, because I seek not my own will but the will of him who sent me. What other "half-truths" have you heard about Jesus?

copyright 2016, Gail Burton Purath, BiteSizeBibleStudy.com

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