Jesus went into the
district of Caesarea Philippi, he asked his disciples, "Who do
people say that the Son of Man is?" And they
said, "Some say John the Baptist, but others Elijah, and
still others Jeremiah or one of the prophets." He said
to them, "But who do you say that I am?"
Simon Peter answered, "You are the Messiah, the Son of
the living God." And Jesus answered him, "Blessed are you,
Simon son of Jonah! For flesh and blood has not
revealed this to you, but my Father in heaven. And
I tell you, you are Peter, and on this rock
I will build my Church, and the gates of Hades
will not prevail against it. I will give you the
keys of the kingdom of heaven, and whatever you bind
on earth will be bound in heaven, and whatever you
loose on earth will be loosed in heaven." Then he
sternly ordered the disciples not to tell anyone that he
was the Messiah.
Lord, I come to you again in prayer. Even though
I cannot see you, I know through faith that you
are present in my life. I hope in your promise
to be with me. I love you, and I know
you love me. Accept this prayer as a token of
Jesus, grant me an experiential knowledge of you.
1. Many People Say Many Things: When
Jesus asks his disciples, “Who do people say the Son
of Man is?” he receives many answers. Everyone has his
own opinion. Perhaps they are satisfied that their opinions are
correct and have stopped seeking; perhaps they are too lazy
to pursue the truth any deeper. It is easy to
say something, to toss out an answer, to draw a
superficial conclusion. We must be careful not to come to
a hurried conclusion or be satisfied with what might only
apparently be true. Many people say many things about Christ.
We must have the tenacity to pursue the profound truth
about who he is.
How Did Peter Know? How did Peter know that Christ
was the Messiah, the Son of the living God? Peter
did not say, “The heavenly Father told me that you
are the Messiah.” He was probably not even aware that
the Father has been working in him. Peter has been
traveling with Christ, hearing him speak and seeing him work
miracles. He reflected on all this and began to perceive
that Christ is much more than just a brilliant teacher.
Peter began to see Christ for who he truly is.
In the same way God works in our mind and
heart, helping us to see clearly the truth of supernatural
things. We may not even be aware that the heavenly
Father is present, but when we sincerely strive to know
Christ and are open to the action of God’s grace
in our soul, we, too, come to know Christ for
who he really is.
Responsibility: Peter’s openness to the action of God’s grace and
his recognition of Christ as God bring with them a
responsibility – Peter is given the keys of the Kingdom.
He is given the task of shepherding and building up
the Church. Like Peter, my recognition of Christ comes with
a responsibility. God gives me the gift of faith and
along with it the responsibility to spread his Gospel. I
must take this responsibility seriously. I need to make sure
that the good news of the kingdom is proclaimed to
Conversation with Christ:
Lord, please help me to delve deep into the truth
about who you are and not to be satisfied with
simply having some vague idea. I want to know you
intimately, the same way St. Peter and many holy saints
have known you. Grant me this grace not just for
my sake, but also for all those souls with whom
I will come into contact.
Resolution: I will make a special effort in prayer to
come to know Christ better.