"But who do you say that I am?"


Friday of the Twenty-fifth Week in Ordinary Time
Lectionary: 453

Lk 9:18-22
He said, “The Son of Man must suffer greatly
and be rejected by the elders, the chief priests, and the scribes,
and be killed and on the third day be raised.”

          Why was it that Jesus repeats this quote? Why did he name these three groups of people? Why too did “the crowds” see in him John the Baptist,Elijah, and a prophet that has arisen? Both John and Elijah preached a message of repentance and the prophets were a voice of God, God’s messengers.To read this quote after knowing the historical path that Jesus takes both hides part of the meaning of this quote and also brings it into the light. Jesus message contradicted the elders, priests, and scribes and in doing so, it would be suppressed by these powerful individuals: Jesus’s message both contradicted the old school and was non-violent at its core. Like the prophet arisen, a message that is truly delivered from God can not be suppressed or ignored or discarded or killed by man. That which truly is from God endures and it simply is mans pride or vanity that tricks him into believing he is in control. Knowing how the story ends in history one can read this quote and focus on the physical  confrontation between Jesus and the elders, priests, and scribes; but the underling theological battle is where the heart of the rejection, confrontation, and resurrection was.When Peter replied that Jesus was “the Christ of God” perhaps too Jesus saw that Peter was still focused on a physical Christ  and not the spiritual Christ. Perhaps Peter was seeing that Christ of the elders, a military Christ, and not yet truly the Christ of God which is The Christ of the Word and Spirit of God. ‘Jesus the Christ’ was a journey for Peter, just as he is for us today…

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