Who is this Man

Jesus’ disciples were always asking among themselves who Jesus really was. When Jesus calmed the violent wind his disciples asked amongst themselves who he was: “They were terrified and asked each other, ‘Who is this? Even the wind and the waves obey him’” (Mark 4:41). We see that, although his disciples were ‘Christians’, they still lacked faith because; Jesus asked them, “He said to his disciples, ‘Why are you so afraid? Do you still have no faith?” (Mark 4:40).

Why would Jesus ask such a question of his followers? Let us look at the following passages to get the answer: “Once when Jesus was praying in private and his disciples were with him, he asked them ‘Who do the crowds say that I am?’ They replied, ‘Some say John the Baptist, others say Elijah, and still others that one of the prophets of long ago has come back to life’. ‘But what about you?’ he asked. ‘What do you say that I am?’ Peter answered, ‘The Christ of God’” (Luke 9:18-20). From Peter’s answer, we see that he was one of the disciples who loved Jesus to the end and was very close to Him.

We see that in verses 28-36, Jesus took three of his disciples, but it was mainly Peter who was speaking: “As the men were leaving Jesus, Peter said to him, ‘Master, it is good for us to be here: let us put up three shelters, one for you, one for Moses and one for Elijah’” (verse 33). Here we see that Peter understood Jesus more than some of the disciples, he was even the last to turn away from him when he was arrested (Luke 22:59-60).

We also see that those who were prosecuting Jesus did not know who he was: “The high priest said to him, ‘I charge you under oath by the living God: Tell us if you are the Christ, the Son of God’ (Matt 26:63). Although he was high priest, he could not recognize Jesus, and this was to fulfil prophecy. Even the Pharisees had no idea who Jesus really was: “Then they brought him a demon-possessed man who was blind and mute and Jesus healed him, so that he could both talk and see. All the people were astonished and said, ‘Could this be the Son of David?’ But when the Pharisees heard this they said, ‘It is only by Beelzebub, the prince of demons, that this fellow drives out demons” (Matt 12:22-24). Even in his home town Jesus was not known to be the Christ: “Coming to his home town, he began teaching the people in their synagogue and they were amazed. ‘Where did this man get his wisdom and these miraculous powers?’ they asked. ‘Isn’t this the carpenter’s son? Isn’t his mother’s name Mary and aren’t his brothers James, Joseph, Simon and Judas? Aren’t all his sisters with us? Where then did this man get all these things?” (Matt 13:54-56).

When Jesus went into Jerusalem, the authorities did not recognize him and they went on to ask the people who he was: “The crowds that went ahead of him and those that followed shouted ‘Hosanna to the Son of David. Blessed is he who comes in the name of the Lord. Hosanna in the highest’. When Jesus entered Jerusalem, the whole city was stirred and asked, ‘Who is this?’ The crowds answered, ‘This is Jesus the prophet from Nazareth in Galilee’” (Matt 21:9-11).

It was upon his death that some of the authorities testified that he was the Son of God: “When the centurion and those who were guarding Jesus saw the earthquake and all that had happened, they were terrified and exclaimed, ‘Surely, he was the Son of God’” (Matt 27:54).

So we see that by his death eyes were opened to see who Jesus really was.

Bro Richard and Sis Hlezipi Phiri (Chegutu, Zimbabwe)

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