“Jesus replied, ‘Blessed are you, Simon (Peter) son of Jonah, for this (recognizing Jesus as the Messiah) was not revealed to you by men, but by my Father in heaven.” (Matthew 16:17)
Here is the secret, and rather the power, for faith in Jesus Christ. Nothing this world offers can bring us to trust Jesus as our Savior and Lord. To this world such faith is foolishness because it cannot comprehend such a God. Trusting in gods has never been a problem for humanity. It has always come up with some imaginary concept of god or gods, whether they be of wood, stone or spirit. Belief in Jesus is backed by the authority of the true God and comes only from Him as a gift.
The mystery of believing in Jesus is that it can come only from contact with Him. His first disciples had to come to know Him. We too have to come to know Him through the witness and Word He has given to His Church. Through these means to faith we too recognize who Jesus is and are brought to our confession of faith. We don’t make a decision to follow Jesus. We confess the Jesus who has become our Savior and Lord by revelation from God our Father. Our confession is of God’s making as much as was Peter’s confession. It is real and powerful to extend the work of God in His creation.
Heavenly Father, here indeed is the greatest work You do for us. You enable us to know and confess Jesus as our Savior and Lord. You do this through the marvelous work of Your Word and Holy Spirit. How can we praise You for such love? May our lives be lives lived to Your glory and praise. May our lives be lives lived to the witness of Your greatest gift to humankind, Your Son, our Savior and Lord, Jesus. In His name. Amen.
Pastor Robert Forsberg is retired from Light of Christ Lutheran Church in Fairborn.