I am excited to be able to share this with you. It’s the key to overcoming, the key to freedom from oppression, the key to living in God’s Presence. Check it out…
“But what about you?” he asked. “Who do you say I am?”
Simon Peter answered, “You are the Messiah, the Son of the living God.”
Jesus replied, “Blessed are you, Simon son of Jonah, for this was not revealed to you by flesh and blood, but by my Father in heaven. And I tell you that you are Peter, and on this rock I will build my church, and the gates of Hades will not overcome it. – Matt 16:15-18
Jesus asks YOU (dear reader), who do YOU say that He is? If your answer is “You Lord are the Christ” then you are in a good place.
But let me ask you this. Do you know what it means for Jesus to be the Christ?
What were the Jews expecting when they welcomed Him into Jerusalem?
They took palm branches and went out to meet him, shouting,
“Blessed is he who comes in the name of the Lord!”
“Blessed is the king of Israel!” – John 12:13
They shouted Hosanna which means “Save us!” both of which is a reference to Psalm 118:22-27. They were right!
The palm branches means that they believed that Jesus was the fulfillment of the the Feast of Tabernacles – the ingathering of the harvest. They were right!
With such potent expectations, I can just imagine how they would have been shocked to see the King of Israel dying on the cross like a common criminal.
The problem was that their expectations were incorrect. They expected a King who was literally in the style of King David.
Instead they received Someone much greater, who took away their sin and the sin of the world, thus defeating the devil who trapped the world in the Garden of Eden.
What were some of their expectations?
The Christ is the same person as “the seed of the woman” (Gen 3:15), “the seed of Abraham” (Gen 22:18), the “Prophet like unto Moses” (Deu 18:15), “the priest after the order of Melchizedek” (Psa 110:4), “the rod out of the stem of Jesse” (Isa 11:1, Isa 11:10), the “Immanuel,” the virgin’s son (Isa 7:14), “the branch of Jehovah” (Isa 4:2), and “the messenger of the covenant” (Mal 3:1).
That’s just a few things… in fact the Old Testament Scripture is full of prophetic declarations regarding the Great Deliverer and the work he was to accomplish.
What they did not recognize is that He was dying for them, in their place, and IN THIS WAY He was fulfilling ALL that scripture foretold that He would do for them!
If you can grasp that… then you are grasping the most immense world-changing truth.
If you will take the time to actually work through all the promises that the OT scriptures make about the Christ, then you can understand two things:
- When Simon Peter said “You are the Messiah/Christ” he was saying he believed that Jesus was the Christ and was going to fulfill all the promises in the OT.
- When Jesus Christ said to Simon Peter “on THIS rock I will build My church and the gates of hades will not overcome it” Jesus was saying that a life, a family, a ministry and a church built on the rock of the truth that He is the Christ… will not be overcome, it will survive and prosper in the face of adversity.
I wish I could explain how key this is. This is the foundation of anything that lasts. Absolutely no other teaching is as sure a foundation.
He did it!
He didn’t die a criminal, instead, He defeated sin, defeated death, defeated poverty, defeated sickness, defeated divorce, defeated isolation, defeated separation from God, defeated every addiction… Jesus Christ on His cross defeated everything bad which came from the fall.
Where the Jewish people received their King and then saw Him dying as a common criminal and they became disillusioned. They lost their faith in Him.
We must not do that. We must choose to see that He overcame. He came into Jerusalem as a King and He died to bring freedom to His people. He died as the Lamb of God, a Sacrifice, and in this humble way He saved His people from harm.
The people in Jerusalem were absolutely right to shout “Hosanna” because it means “save us!” which He did! How? He undid the fall. Jesus Christ undid the separation between God and man. He made all things new!
But they didn’t have faith. They didn’t believe… and so they didn’t receive. What we have to do is receive what He did.
Their disappointment meant that they did not have the faith to receive their deliverance.
We must not make the same mistake. We must believe that He has overcome. We must believe that He made all things new.
What do we need to do?
- Walk by faith, not by sight.
- See with the eyes of faith.
- Believe, in order to receive!