Mark 8:29,31,32b – And He asked them, But who do you yourselves say that I am? Peter replied to Him, You are the Christ (the Messiah, the Anointed One). And He began to teach them that the Son of Man must of necessity suffer many things and be tested and disapproved and rejected by the elders and the chief priests and the scribes, and be put to death, and after three days rise again [from death]. And Peter took Him by the hand and led Him aside and then [facing Him] began to rebuke Him. (AMP)
I had invited several friends to one of my speaking engagements, and I was touched by their response. "Oh, Brenda," said one lady breathlessly, "I have never heard you speak before!"
"Oh, Brenda," said another, "I have only ever heard you give your testimony."
I'm still not sure whether they thought I did a good job or not. But I do know that they saw another side of me that they hadn't seen before. They had no idea that I could do what I did, even though they had known me for years.
In today's Scripture, Jesus' disciples saw another side of Him that they had never seen before, and Peter, in particular, didn't want to see it. Certainly, he knew Jesus as the Messiah, the Anointed One. But as the One who would suffer, be tested, disapproved, rejected, put to death, and rise again? No, Peter didn't know that Christ at all. Interestingly enough, Peter was also the one who denied Him three times.
Mark 14:71b – "I do not know the Man about Whom you are talking!" (AMP)
In a literal sense, Peter was lying. But in a figurative sense, Peter was telling the truth. He did not really know Christ — who He actually was.
The poet, Maya Angelou, says that when people show you who they are, believe them the first time.
In what ways are we blind to the multi-faceted Christ?
Prayer: Lord, like Peter, we go on our merry way, picking what we like and don't like about You, while You tell us clearly, again and again, that You are more than we'll ever know. We cower when You show Yourself to us in a new and challenging way. Our fear of all You are makes us weak. Lord, help us to believe You the first time. Amen.