I wonder if the disciples were surprised, perplexed, or even a little annoyed that Jesus asked them this question. Remember – they were the ones who Jesus already knew believed in Him and were committed to Him to the point of giving up everything to follow Him. Yet He still asked them, “Who do you say that I am?” (Matthew 16:15).
When Peter spoke up and answered, “You are the Christ, the Son of the living God,” Jesus responded with “Blessed are you, Simon Barjona, because flesh and blood did not reveal this to you, but My Father who is in heaven” (v.16-17).
It is so important that we answer that question often. No, daily! Because our honest answer absolutely affects everything else in our lives. It reflects not only who we believe God is intellectually, but who we believe He is to us personally, as well as what we believe He can do. And who we really believe God is can either blow the lid off of our worship (in a great way) or utterly disintegrate it.
David understood his need to proclaim who God was to him. And the impact it had on his life and worship is obvious.
“O Lord, how my adversaries have increased!. . . Many are saying of my soul, ‘There is no deliverance for him in God.’ But You, O Lord, are a shield about me, My glory, and the One who lifts my head” (Psalm 3:1-3).
“I said to the Lord, ‘You are my Lord; I have no good besides You’” (Psalm 16:2).
“‘I love You, O Lord, my strength.’ The Lord is my rock and my fortress and my deliverer, My God, my rock, in whom I take refuge; My shield and the horn of my salvation, my stronghold. I call upon the Lord, who is worthy to be praised, and I am saved from my enemies” (Psalm 18:1-3).
“The Lord is my shepherd, I shall not want” (Psalm 23:1).
“The Lord is my light and my salvation; Whom shall I fear? The Lord is the defense of my life: Whom shall I dread?” (Psalm 27:1).
“Because Your lovingkindness is better than life, My lips will praise You. . . For You have been my help, And in the shadow of Your wings I sing for joy” (Psalm 63:1, 3, 7).
“Every day I will bless You, And I will praise Your name forever and ever. Great is the Lord, and highly to be praised, And His greatness is unsearchable. . . The Lord is gracious and merciful; Slow to anger and great in lovingkindness” (Psalm 145:2-3, 8).
We could go on and on with just David, right? He knew there was power in knowing and declaring who God is! And remember, Jesus told Peter that His Father in heaven revealed the truth of who He was to Peter – that it wasn’t something he could just pick up from “flesh and blood.” So we need to make sure that we spend enough time seeking and listening to our heavenly Father so He can reveal more of Himself to us. We can’t rely just on the Sunday morning message or the latest podcast. Get with the source! We can only grow in the true, experiential knowledge of God from His living word and in His incredible presence.
And His presence? It’s where we discover that He really is indescribable, uncontainable, all-powerful, and untamable – and those aren’t just words to a song. (Oh, that all of those songs we sing would never be just words!) It’s where the power behind the worship is birthed as the Holy Spirit is given the opportunity to speak, reveal, and guide us as we diligently search to know our unsearchable God. And then it’s where He longs to hear us pour out all we know Him to be in exaltation and adoration as we bow in worship. What an amazing privilege He’s given us!
So I want to make sure that I know who He is. Really know. And let it – the experiential knowledge of God – change my life and empower my worship. I want to know, and I want to tell Him often.
Even now – no, especially now – where I admit that my flesh is fighting for me to be anxious and worried over something really important to me. Especially here, I need to resolutely remember and verbalize who my God is in worship. Like David. And allow those truths to transform my heart and mind as I glorify my God.
“Who do you say that I am? Today. In that place you’re in. Who do you believe I am for you right there – right now?”
“O God, You are my God; I shall seek You earnestly” (Psalm 63:1).
Question: Who do you say that He is – right now today, right where you are?
*Photograph by Laitham Haddad of Two Eyes One Image Photography
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