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JAMES 2:1-9

PSALM 34:2-7

MARK 8:27-33

Why is it that Jesus did not want his disciples to tell anyone about his identity after Peter correctly answered him that he is the Christ? Who wouldn't want to be known especially in an environment whereby your identity is in question? Being known has it's own advantages because it makes your work easily understood.

People with a strong identity often stand out more and are more memorable. Many people seem to spend a lot of time trying to figure out who they are, what they want, and what they believe. A clear sense of who you are makes it easier to connect with other similar people and groups. Identity also helps us to make decisions and to know how to behave wisely and confidently.

Strong identities can also be dangerous. The drive to protect your identity can be overpowering and if people can let as few things as possible into their identity the better. Another problem with identity is that once it is established, it can be very hard to change. With all these ideas in mind, why didn't Jesus want to be known to be the Christ. The title Christ means the anointed one and the Jewish people misunderstood the meaning of this title. They believed that the Christ would come to set up a kingdom on earth and deliver them from their Roman masters. However, Jesus as the Christ came to deliver them from a bondage worst than their bondage to Rome and it was the bondage of sin and that is why Jesus told them to be silent about his identity otherwise people would have the wrong impression about him.

Why is it that Peter got the title of Jesus right but misunderstood the meaning of that title and even went ahead to deny and desert Jesus during his arrest and trial yet he had correctly identified him? Peter got the title correctly but misunderstood it because based on our expectations, our lives of faith seems sometimes to move in fits and starts when understanding becomes slow and suddenly everything comes clear and we find not just the excitement of insight but the boldness of confession; and this bold confession of faith can entail some serious ups and downs especially when our expectations are not in tandem with the reality on the ground.

Peter had the expectation of the Christ coming to rule and to conquer but the reality was that the Christ would suffer and die , and the realities that we encounter in life give us the opportunity to be more curious about them thus understanding them.

We are so inclined to project what we want God to do and to be and therefore miss out on what God intends to do or has already done and is actually doing. Sometimes God comes in ways we do not expect.

How will our faith and our relationships be if we take time to understand? Today Jesus teaches us that we may not get the God we want but we can discover and meet the God we understand and that is why he wanted the disciples not to be in a hurry of revealing him but should take time to understand him.


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