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Inspirational Message

Inspirational Message: Jesus Is the Christ, the Son of the Living God

By Gladys McElmore

Early in His ministry, Jesus came to the region of Caesarea Philippi and asked His disciples, “Who do people say the Son of Man is?” Some people had already said John the Baptist, Elijah, Jeremiah or others. Jesus finally asked Simon Peter “Who do you say I am?” He answered, “You are the Messiah, the Son of the Living God.” It was not difficult for the disciples to report what people were saying about Jesus. Of course it was more challenging when Jesus questioned Simon Peter. Now it became a personal issue. Jesus did not ask their opinions about His outward appearance or about His character traits. His question required the disciples to express their convictions and faith.

Sooner or later we all must answer the same question. Each of us must decide, individually, who Jesus is. Does it help to repeat what others say or believe? No, because the answer must be genuinely our own personal belief because our destiny depends on it! According to what Jesus said and did, we aim to arrive, by faith, at the same response Peter gave: “You are the Christ, the Son of the Living God” (Matthew 16:16).

The title, “the Son of Man”, was Jesus’ favorite because He referred to Himself by this name more times than we care to count. This idiomatic expression was common as Jesus used it to express His humanity. Scriptures present Jesus as a true human being who was born as a baby, grew up as a child who increased in wisdom and statute. He ate, slept, was tried and suffered hunger and thirst. He also experienced sorrow and distress.

To many readers, Jesus seemed to have walked among the people as one of the multitude. People often treated Him as any other local resident (John 7:46). They laughed at Him (Luke 8:53), criticized Him (Matthew 11:19), even mocked and beat Him (Luke 22:63). To them He was just another human being. Did everyone think the same way about Jesus? Thanks be to God for better opinions. According to Daniel 7:13-14, “One like the Son of Man” came with the clouds of heaven and received eternal dominion, glory, and a kingdom. The prophet Daniel identified this Son of Man as the Messiah, the promised Christ. God’s loving nature is revealed through Christ’s ministry. We as believers can surrender our lives to our heavenly Father who loves us without limits. Nothing we have ever done could negate God’s everlasting love for a lost human race. Much value is placed upon man when 1 John 3:1 tells us, “Behold what manner of love the Father hath bestowed upon us that we should be called the sons of God.”

The title, Son of God, was used by the angel Gabriel (Luke 1:35) and also by others when addressing Jesus (Matthew 14:33, Mark 15:39, John 1:49, 11:27). He accepted that title, but used it carefully because of the possibility to have been stoned to death! God acknowledged Jesus as His Son at His baptism (Matthew 3:17). In what ways does Jesus reveal the Father to us today? He presents God, the Father as being in heaven. Jesus came to represent God’s nature and character. Jesus was sure that He had fulfilled His mission of revealing the Father in a full way. Jesus said, “If you had known Me, you would have known my Father also; —-He who has seen Me has seen the Father” (John 14:7, 9). In what ways can we help others see the reality of God’s love? With the verses in this article, how can we learn to trust God more?

God’s love is revealed to us in so many ways, but regardless to that fact, we still have to live with evil and its consequences! It is therefore crucial that we keep the suffering of the cross ever before us. Jesus does not have to persuade the Father to love us for Christ Himself said the Father loves us (John 16:27). Jesus taught that our heavenly Father cares for us in every possible way. His mercy and love are steadfast and unchanging regardless of any circumstances. Even with all these encouraging words, tragedy and suffering do strike us. Think of a personal crisis wherein we have been able to see the reality of God’s love. Try to share this with others.

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When others tell us about experiences and difficulties in loving God and trusting Him as a heavenly Father, brainstorm ways to help them to remain faithful to God and to hold on to His steadfast and unchanging ways! As believers, it is good for us to rejoice moment by moment in the amazing revelation of God’s power and love!

Mrs. Gladys R. McElmore, a resident of Norfolk’s Middle Town Arch Community, is a New Journal and Guide Freelance Contributor on religion. She is a native of Essex County, Va.

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