" 'And you,' He said to them, 'who do you say that I am?' " —Matthew 16:15
Each person must have a first-hand commitment to and relationship with Jesus. Our relationship with Jesus takes precedence over all else (Catechism, 1618). Each of us should be able to say with Paul: I assure you, "the gospel I proclaimed to you is no mere human invention. I did not receive it from any man, nor was I schooled in it. It came by revelation from Jesus Christ" (Gal 1:11-12). Therefore, as Paul was, we are "sent not by men or by any man, but by Jesus Christ" (Gal 1:1).
When Pontius Pilate asked Jesus if He was the King of the Jews, "Jesus answered, 'Are you saying this on your own, or have others been telling you about Me?' " (Jn 18:34) Jesus asks us the same question. We have benefited from the witnessing, preaching, and teaching of other Christians, but ultimately we must stand "on our own" at Judgment Day and profess "on our own" that Jesus is Lord of our lives.
We must not only know Christians, but Christ. We must not only know about Jesus, but know Jesus. We should not only know the Bible, but the Subject of the Bible, Jesus, the Word of God (Jn 1:14). We should not only belong to the Church, but belong to the Head of the Church, Jesus (Col 1:18).
Jesus looks right into our eyes and directly asks each one of us: You, "who do you say that I am?" (Mt 16:15)
Prayer: Jesus, make me continually aware of Your presence and love.
Promise: "I will make a new covenant with the house of Israel and the house of Judah." —Jer 31:31
Praise: Pope St. Sixtus II upheld truth even when unpopular and unsafe to do so. His bold proclamation of the true faith led to his being arrested only six months after becoming pope.
Reference: (Come to one or more of our retreats and be equipped to be Jesus' disciple. For a schedule of events and to register, see www.presentationministries.com)
Rescript: †Reverend Joseph R. Binzer, Vicar General of the Archdiocese of Cincinnati, February 25, 2008
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