Jesus asks each of us, “Who do you say that I Am?”
The answer we give marks us for eternity. If we say with our mouths, “You are the Christ,” then we know the truth, and this truth sets us free — free from sin and death.
If we say, “You are a great teacher,” then we do not know the truth, and the lie we believe does not serve us well. Believing Jesus is only a great teacher may comfort us, but this lie does not save.
The Pharisees in an attempt to test Jesus demand a sign from heaven. “But sighing deeply in His Spirit, [Jesus] says, ‘Why does this generation demand a sign? I assure you: No sign is given to this generation!’ ” (Mark 8: 12)
Jesus asks His disciples who the people say He is. Some people say, “John the Baptist; others, Elijah; still others, one of the prophets.” (Mark 8: 28) In other words, the people recognize Jesus is an extraordinary man, but miss the obvious truth that He is more than just a man.
When Jesus asks Peter, Peter responds rightly, “You are the Messiah!” (Mark 8: 29)
Jesus does not deny Peter’s statement. Instead He warns His disciples to keep this truth to themselves for now.