Matthew 16:13-17 “When Jesus came into the coasts of Caesarea Philippi, he asked his disciples, saying, Whom do men say that I the Son of man am? And they said, Some say that thou art John the Baptist: some, Elias; and others, Jeremias, or one of the prophets. He saith unto them, But whom say ye that I am? And Simon Peter answered and said, Thou art the Christ, the Son of the living God. And Jesus answered and said unto him, Blessed art thou, Simon Barjona: for flesh and blood hath not revealed it unto thee, but my Father which is in heaven.”
Matthew 22:41-42 “Jesus asked them, Saying, What think ye of Christ? whose son is he?”
The ultimate question of a lifetime revolves around the identity of Christ! “Who is Christ”; it was a question Jesus asked His disciples as well as a lawyer trying to prove that Jesus was in himself evil. It is a question that determines the eternal destiny of one’s soul; whether an individual resides in the eternal rest of heaven or the eternal anguish of hell! It is a question that determines not only one’s rest, but one’s rewards! “What think ye of Christ?
The thing that each of us must realize is that our answer will be no better than the source from which we receive our information; the source of our information determines the likelihood of our successfully answering the question correctly. When discussing the question with His disciples, Jesus revealed three basic sources from which one could gather information.
The first source from which one can gather information is society; “Whom do men say that I the Son of man am?” The word “men” is the generic distinction of man from gods and the animals. In most cases in the New Testament, it speaks of one whose conduct, way, or nature is opposed to God rather than one who has turned their gaze upward. Speaking of the natural state of society, Paul said, “But the natural man receiveth not the things of the Spirit of God: for they are foolishness unto him: neither can he know them” (I Corinthians 2:14). Any information one would obtain from society about Christ would be less than desirable. Society is marked by two extremes, rejection or religion; both are corrupt at best! When Paul used the word “foolishness” it means silliness, absurdity, and comes from a word meaning stupid or heedless. The natural response of society to truth is to reject it because in their way of thinking, it is absurd and unfit to heed. The second extreme is for society to turn religious; “thou art John the Baptist: some, Elias; and others, Jeremias, or one of the prophets.” Religion will give Christ a place among many, but it will not relinquish to Him first place; “I am the way, the truth, and the life: no man cometh unto the Father, but by me” (John 14:6).
The second source from which to gather information is self; “But whom say ye that I am?” While gathering information from society is an outward look, gathering information from self involves an inward look. If we stay true the text, it reveals that self doesn’t have an answer; while an answer was given by one of the disciple’s, it was not the response of truth possessed by self. The word “say” means to speak by linking and knitting together in connected discourse the inward thoughts and feelings of the mind. In the end, self is just a smaller form of society; “but they measuring themselves by themselves, and comparing themselves among themselves, are not wise” (II Corinthians 10:12).
The final source from which to gather information is the Sovereign; “Blessed art thou, Simon Barjona: for flesh and blood hath not revealed it unto thee, but my Father which is in heaven.” Simon’s information came neither from self, “flesh”, nor society, “blood”, but from the Sovereign, “my Father.” Peter rejected the outward look and the inward look for an upward look! The word “revealed” means to remove the veil or covering exposing to open view what was before hidden. On several occasions for those that had ears to hear, the Father said, “This is my beloved Son, in whom I am well pleased.” Speaking unto His disciples, Jesus said, “All things are delivered to me of my Father: and no man knoweth who the Son is, but the Father” (Luke 10:22).
“What think ye of Christ? whose son is he?” Your source for information will determine your answer and your answer will determine destiny; I would suggest you get this one right!