Vs. 12, “Then they understood that he was not telling them to guard against the yeast used in bread, but against the teaching of the Pharisees and Sadducees.” The Pharisees and Sadducees were normally in opposition with each other, but here they united to challenge Jesus (vs. 1-12). Question: How could they demand a sign? Jesus had just recently fed 5000 and 4000 miraculously and in addition to all his other healings….yet they refused to see what was so evident. They were blind spiritually and were now trying to lead others blind. That is why Jesus would warn the disciples to not fall into their false teachings. We also see Peter’s confession about who Jesus is (I’ll expound on this in the application section) (vs 13-20). And sadly, we see Jesus letting the disciples know what the future would look like as they traveled to Jerusalem (vs. 21-28). I don’t think any of us would have responsded any differently than Peter did. Who wants to see someone we love talk about their death? But Jesus would use this response as a reminder to all of us that we too must bear our cross and die to ourselves!
Regarding application…Who is Jesus? Vs. 13, “When Jesus came to the region of Caesarea Philippi, he asked his disciples, “Who do people say the Son of Man is?” A few times prior to this…when Jesus did mind-boggling miracles, the disciples would blurt out that Jesus must be the son of man. Understandable. But, Jesus now approaches them with a very honest and introspective question. Question: Who am I? Notice the intial response…some say John the Baptist, Elijah, even Jeremiah! It’s almost like they are not sure if this is a loaded question. But good old Peter would blurt out, “You are the Christ, the son of the living God.” Question: How did Peter know this? Because the Father in heaven revealed it to his heart (vs. 17). And ever since, Jesus has fulfilled his prophecy of the church that Peter would lead from the book of Acts. When we believe in Jesus, nothing can overcome us (vs. 18). I believe there is great value in asking ourselves who Jesus is more often. If He is the Son of God…what is our appropriate response to him? Turn to Jesus today and find rest in Him!