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2 Peter 1:10
What do you think makes Jesus happy?
Under his breath, with a fingertip still in his mouth, Jesus mumbled. “Who do people say that I am?” The question had been quiet and directed to no-one in particular.
Peter was surprised at the number of answers that came rushing back. Evidently he wasn’t to only person staying as close as possible.
“John the Baptist,” one walker said.
“Elijah,” said two disciples behind Jesus, at the exact same time.
“Or at least one of the prophets,” one of them added.
“Yeah,” said a few others. “People say you’re a prophet. One of the good ones!”
“But you,” Jesus said placing his hands on his hips in the way a tired walker does, “Who do you say that I am?”
Peter couldn’t help himself, “You are the Messiah!” He knew this to be true. And he knew it was the answer Jesus wanted.
Jesus nodded and kept walking, “Keep that to yourselves.” And then under his breath again, “The Son of Man will suffer many things.”
*** Flash forward a decade or so ***
Peter sits with his scribe, fine-tuning a letter to a number of refugee communities. Having spent so much time with Jesus - and got things both right and wrong, so many times - Peter knows there will be all kinds in these troubled churches.
Young disciples, with all the answers.
Old disciples, with suffering to show for it.
Happy disciples, remembering salvation like it was yesterday.
Sad disciples, feeling useless and unfruitful.
Faithful disciples, pouring love on all they meet.
Forgetful disciples, judging those who fail to measure up.
Peter scratches his chin and says, “Write, hold on to your faith in Jesus - remember the way you were when He saved You! Stay close to Him on the road! Grow from there! On that faith, build goodness. Upon that goodness, build knowledge. On that knowledge, build self-control. Then endurance. Keep walking! That builds Godliness! And Godliness builds brotherly affection. Then comes Love.”
Peter puts his hand up, and pauses. “Do you think they will see it? Love is the goal - and it’s all built on Jesus. So many Christians are looking at themselves instead of Jesus. Like wagons caught in the wrong ruts, they follow along but don’t realise they have circled the wagons and aren’t going anywhere!”
“Tell them to remember,” Peter finished, “remember they were called by Jesus - to serve Him. There’s no way to fail if they remember their calling, their election! They will never stumble. The eternal Kingdom will be theirs if our Lord and Saviour Jesus Christ is their only focus!”
Christian Education, 117, 118