– Friday of the 25th Week in Ordinary Time –
[Jesus] asked [his disciples], “Who do the crowds say that I am?” They answered, “John the Baptist; but others, Elijah; and still others, that one of the ancient prophets has arisen.” He said to them, “But who do you say that I am?” Peter answered, “The Messiah of God.” [Luke 9:18-20]
Every person must answer the same question that Jesus asks his disciples: “Who do you say that I am?” In today’s gospel, some say he is John the Baptist, Elijah or one of the ancient prophets but Peter recognises that he is “the Messiah of God.” This profession of faith reveals to Jesus that Peter believes in him and understands who he is. And it’s at this point that Jesus tells the disciples that the Son of Man must “undergo great suffering … and be killed.”
Jesus knows that his suffering and death will test the faith of his apostles very deeply. We too are subject to tests of faith when trial and distress come about, and we are tempted to forget the truth that we have once professed. When we are on a mountaintop, we see clearly, but in a valley, we cannot see.
Jesus arms us with the truth that he is who he says he is. And because he is the Christ, everything in our lives, even suffering, looks different. If we struggle to believe, or are confused or misinformed about who he is, he wants us to bring that to him so that even our doubt becomes part of our conversation with him. Once we know the truth of Jesus the Christ, we are equipped to endure all things joyfully.
by David Kruse