Thursday, 18 February 2021
What Matters Most?
Pastor Mark Tan
The Season of Lent is a time where we recognize who Jesus is as Messiah, (meaning Saviour) and more importantly, as the sacrifice for us all.
The passage follows a familiar but ever sobering encounter of the Apostle Peter, and I daresay all of us, who must encounter at least once in our lives: Who do we say Jesus is? This question, though simple to answer with our lips, reveals our relationship with Jesus and, when compared to how we live with Jesus in our lives, how sincere our relationship with Jesus is:
It tells us how much we really know Him.
Before Jesus asked this question, He did a miracle of feeding 5,000 people. This caused the crowd to give many compliments to Jesus as to who he was like. “Some say John the Baptist; others say Elijah; and still others, that one of the prophets of long ago has come back to life.”
Only those who really know Jesus know who He really is: “God’s Messiah.”
Question: Have we given Jesus the mere lip service of being a “good teacher”, “great leader”, “inspirational historical character”, or even “a comforting spirit”? To those who really know Him, He is more than just that. He is the reason why we live, and live for Him.
It tells us what our lives cost Him.
After commanding the disciples not to reveal this truth yet, Jesus describes to them what it means to Him for them to call him “Messiah.”
“The Son of Man must suffer many things and be rejected by the elders, the chief priests and the teachers of the law, and he must be killed and on the third day be raised to life.” ( Luke 9:21 )
When we call Him “Messiah”, we therefore demand that He’d die the most painful way possible for us, and freely He did. But God demonstrates his own love for us in this: While we were still sinners, Christ died for us. ( Romans 5:8 ).
Question: How should we feel knowing that we are the reason that the Perfect One took our imperfections; the Bread of life to be hungry; the Living Water to be thirsty; the All-Powerful One to feel powerless; the Eternal One to be put to death? Those who really know Him, know He gave us His everything so that as He died, we might live.
It tells us if we are really living for Him.
Jesus, knowing well what He will face for us, calls us to share in His suffering that we might therefore share in His victory.
²³ Then he said to them all: “Whoever wants to be my disciple must deny themselves and take up their cross daily and follow me. ²⁴ For whoever wants to save their life will lose it, but whoever loses their life for me will save it. ²⁵ What good is it for someone to gain the whole world, and yet lose or forfeit their very self? ( Luke 9:23-25 )
Jesus’ expectations of us is clear: This eternal life He’s given us is not just for us to keep, but to share. If the Life we are told to share is Eternal, then there’s plenty for all to share. “But even if you should suffer for righteousness sake, you are blessed.” ( 1 Peter 3:14 ).
Question: How much more similar could your life be to that of Jesus’?
Imitate me, as I also imitate Christ ( 1 Corinthians 11:1 )
Direct us, O Lord, in all our doings with your most gracious favour, and further us with your continual help; that in all our works begun, continued, and ended in you, we may glorify your holy Name, and finally, by your mercy, obtain everlasting life; through Jesus Christ our Lord, who lives and reigns with you and the Holy Spirit, one God, for ever and ever. AMEN.
在耶稣问这个问题之前，他做了一个喂饱五千人的奇迹。 这导致群众对耶稣的身份赞不绝口。 “有人说是施洗约翰。 其他人说是以利亚； 还有些人说是很久以前的一位先知又活了。”
耶稣又对众人说：「若有人要跟从我，就当舍己，天天背起他的十字架来跟从我。 因为，凡要救自己生命的，必丧掉生命；凡为我丧掉生命的，必救了生命。 人若赚得全世界，却丧了自己，赔上自己，有什么益处呢？（路加福音 9:23-25 ）
最后，因着你的怜悯得永恒的生命; 借着我们的主耶稣基督，永活的主, 圣灵，独一的真神，直到永永远远。阿门