27 Jesus and his disciples went on to the villages around Caesarea Philippi. On the way he asked them, "Who do people say I am?"
28 They replied, "Some say John the Baptist; others say Elijah; and still others, one of the prophets."
29 "But what about you?" he asked. "Who do you say I am?"
Peter answered, "You are the Messiah."
30 Jesus warned them not to tell anyone about him.
31 He then began to teach them that the Son of Man must suffer many things and be rejected by the elders, the chief priests and the teachers of the law, and that he must be killed and after three days rise again. 32 He spoke plainly about this, and Peter took him aside and began to rebuke him.
33 But when Jesus turned and looked at his disciples, he rebuked Peter. "Get behind me, Satan!" he said. "You do not have in mind the concerns of God, but merely human concerns."
34 Then he called the crowd to him along with his disciples and said: "Whoever wants to be my disciple must deny themselves and take up their cross and follow me. 35 For whoever wants to save their life will lose it, but whoever loses their life for me and for the gospel will save it. 36 What good is it for you to gain the whole world, yet forfeit your soul? 37 Or what can you give in exchange for your soul? 38 If any of you are ashamed of me and my words in this adulterous and sinful generation, the Son of Man will be ashamed of you when he comes in his Father's glory with the holy angels."
My thoughts -
Peter, who acknowledges here that Jesus is the Messiah, still can't get with the program when it comes to what that means. How can the Messiah be made to suffer and die? That just feels so wrong.
It seems like Jesus lived to take our assumptions about the nature of God and flip them around. Everything gets all upside down and backwards. The first will be last. Want to lead? Then you must serve. To gain life you must lose it.
He hanged out with sinners. He preached preferential for the poor and disenfranchised. He chastised the rich and powerful. His biggest criticisms were reserved for the most "religious" people of his time. Every assumption you could make Jesus flipped around on its head.
This is who we serve. This is who we worship. This is who we are called to follow. Are we ashamed of this rebel? Do we need to tame him? Do we need to tone his message down? Do we still fall prey to the worries and trappings of this life? Lord, help us overcome them.