Encounter @ the Chapel
Minister LaTisha McWhite
Peniel Baptist Church
Matthew 16:13-20 (CSB)
“What’s in a Name?”
What you call a person matters.
*What people call Jesus is related to how they respond to him, and how they respond to him is what matters most. If you only believe that Jesus is a man, you will never trust in him as the Savior. If you only believe that he is a prophet, you will listen to his teachings but never be converted.
How could the crowd be so wrong? You can’t trust the voice of the crowd. The voice of the crowd and the opinions of the people aren’t always right. The crowd will have you messed up. Listening to the crowd could kill you.
If anybody ought to speak up about the truth about who Jesus is, it should be his followers.
*You need to give an accurate account of who Jesus is. He provides peace that passes all understanding. He is a divine company keeper. He is the righteous judge full of love and compassion. He is a provider. He is a shelter in the time of the storm. When your body is in pain and you have stuff going on, he is a healer. He is a strength for the weary and a joy for the sorrowful. Know him intimately for yourself, so others don’t have to tell you who he is.
There are three offices in the Old Testament referred to as anointed, prophet, priest, and king, and no one held all three concurrently, but in Jesus, the duties were carried out and are still being carried out today.
**Jesus held the position of prophet. Prophets represent God to the people, appointed by God. Jesus operates in the office of prophet when he spoke what the father taught him. When he performed signs and wonders, predicted his death, resurrection, and future return. When Jesus said the coming signs of his return would be wars and rumors of wars, nations rise up against nations. When he said there would be famines and earthquakes and predicted the lawlessness in the land.
*Jesus held the position of priest. A priest represents the people to God and deals with offering and sin. They maintain fellowship between the holy God and a sinful nation. Charged with bringing the people’s gifts and sacrifices before God. The premise of the priesthood is that men in their sinful nature have broken God’s command and as a result need to atone for their sins. You need a mediator, a person more acceptable than yourself. The problem with having a mediator is that they are 100% man and flawed themselves. What do you do when the mediator needs a mediator to mediate for their sins? The answer is in the person of Jesus Christ, 100% man and 100% God wrapped up in sinful flesh but without blemish. Jesus was the only sacrifice for sin. He didn’t know sin but became sin for you so that you would be the righteousness of God in him. Jesus gave you the opportunity to be reconciled with God. Jesus is the door.
*Jesus held the office of king. A king reigns, has authority and power over another. God never wanted or intended for Israel to have a human king but allowed them to have one. There are problems with men ruling over men. There is a problem with consistency in leadership, some are faithful to God, and some disregarded him. Depending on the caliber of the king, people flourished, or they suffered consequences. Under Jesus the King of kings and Lord of lords there are no inconsistencies. He is not one way today and a different way tomorrow, he is always the same. There is no one that has the power to overthrow him because all power belongs to him. There is no one that can outsmart him because he is omniscient. There is no one that can outlast his reign because he is eternal.
*Jesus is the foundation of the church. There are a lot of voices talking about Jesus, and all of them aren’t telling the truth about who he is. But it’s your job to tell them he is the author and finisher of your faith. He is the author of your eternal salvation, and Jesus is God. He is God with you, the rock of your salvation. Jesus is not just a man or an ordinary person, don’t let anyone tell you that. He ascended and he will return. Will you be ready when Jesus Christ returns?
It matters what you call Jesus.