Jesus came back and said: But whom say ye that I am? This is when Peter answered and said, “Thou art the Christ, the Son of the living God” Jesus tells Peter that he was blessed because His (Jesus’) father in heaven had revealed this to him. Also, this is when Jesus called Peter the rock and said:
Now Jesus warns them to tell no one that he is the Messiah. Please note Peter at this time. Peter seems to be the most outgoing and aggressive of the disciples. He just now claimed Jesus the Messiah.
At this point Jesus began to teach his apostles and try to prepare them for His upcoming torture and death. In the apostles minds they may still see him as a military Messiah, whereas HE comes as a suffering and humble Messiah to save the world. They had to understand this fully before they could go out and proclaim the victory to the world. When Jesus’ mission was complete would be when they fully understood HIS mission. The trial, the punishment, the crucifixion, the burial, the resurrection; this would be the final “eye-opener” for the apostles.
Remember Peter said Jesus was the Messiah, then in verse 21 Jesus begins to tell of impending trials, death, and third day He would rise. Okay, remember Peter, he jumps in and tried to reprimand Jesus for saying such things. Jesus’ response: Get thee behind me, Satan: thou art an offence unto me: for thou savourest not the things that be of God, but those that be of men. Peter does not want to hear this but he still is not quite understanding. Peter, as a good friend did not want Jesus to face this suffering. Much as we do with our friends. How oft have you heard someone say something like, ‘surely God doesn’t want you to face this’, when in reality there is a reason. In this case Jesus’ death was to give Peter, you, me, and everyone forgiveness of our sins and eternal life.
Jesus goes on to say:
25 For whosoever will save his life shall lose it: and whosoever will lose his life for my sake shall find it.
26 For what is a man profited, if he shall gain the whole world, and lose his own soul? or what shall a man give in exchange for his soul?
As in Toby Mac’s song: I don’t want to gain the whole world and lose my soul. Verse 26 our life here is just the introduction to eternity. How we live here determines our eternal state. All the wealth and material things in the world have no bearing on your eternal state.
Jesus continues on saying: 27 For the Son of man shall come in the glory of his Father with his angels; and then he shall reward every man according to his works.
28 Verily I say unto you, There be some standing here, which shall not taste of death, till they see the Son of man coming in his kingdom.
In Chapter 17 Jesus takes Peter, James and John with him to a mountain top.
2 And was transfigured before them: and his face did shine as the sun, and his raiment was white as the light. 3 And, behold, there appeared unto them Moses and Elias talking with him.
The vision the three saw gave them a brief glimpse of the true glory of the King. Note that the three, Jesus, Moses, and Elijah were talking. This should indicate to us how important interaction among us is. What is the significance of the three. Moses represents the law or the old covenant, he wrote the Pentateuch and predicted the coming of a great prophet (Deuteronomy 18:15-19) Elijah represents the prophets who foretold the coming of the Christ, the Messiah. (Malachi 4:5,6)
Well get ready, here rushes in Peter once again, LORD, man this is great! Do you want us to build 3 altars? Huh? Huh? We can do it! This is a time of worship and adoration, not a time for action. Peter is truly gung-ho! Then suddenly a voice comes out of the clouds and says: ” This is my beloved Son, in whom I am well pleased; hear ye him.”
The three, Peter, James and John were scared. I would be also to hear a voice come out of the sky, a cloud. They fell face down to the ground, Jesus came over, touched them and told them to get up and not be afraid. Also, he told them to tell no one until? Yes, until the Son of Man has been raised from the dead. Wow! What a day to have with Jesus!
In verse 10 the three disciples asked Jesus, Why then say the scribes that Elias must first come? Jesus answered with this: 11 And Jesus answered and said unto them, Elias truly shall first come, and restore all things.
12 But I say unto you, That Elias is come already, and they knew him not, but have done unto him whatsoever they listed. Likewise shall also the Son of man suffer of them.
13 Then the disciples understood that he spake unto them of John the Baptist.
John the Baptist took on Elijah’s prophetic role, boldly confronting sin and pointing people to God. Look back at Malachi 4: 5 “See, I will send the prophet Elijah to you before that great and dreadful day of the Lord comes.
Wow, what a lesson today to just be in tune with the LORD and not rush in. We must be totally sold out as Peter, but also see more than the impulse moves us at the time. Peter is a great person to help us understand our relationship with the LORD. So often we want to rush in and do something, take action. Tis not always so.