Jesus is in a Roman City with the pantheon of the Roman gods displayed all around him and his disciples. It is in this back drop he asked them, “Who do others say I am?” The disciples were ready with answers to Jesus question, “Some say John the Baptist; others say Elijah; and still others, Jeremiah or one of the prophets.” It is when Jesus asked them, “Who do you say I am it got very quiet. Peter finally blurted out, “You are the Messiah, the Son of the living God.” Jesus then shares that Peter’s answer was not from flesh and blood or his ego. It was the Spirit that revealed this to Peter.
Peter’s answer has become the prescriptive answer to gaining salvation in protestant christian religion. However, as I looked more deeply at this passage it seems that the rock, foundation and the keys to the realm of God was not as much in Peter’s answer but, in the way he received his answer. I believe it is when we listen to God’s spirit within us that we discover more clearly who we are in relation to the Divine.
Jesus Loves Me This I Know For the Bible Tells Me So.Little Ones to him Belong, they are weak but he is strongYes Jesus Loves me, yes Jesus loves me.
Yes Jesus love me, the bible tells me so,
•Children’s songs were my first encounter with who others say Jesus was.
•Who do others say Jesus is?
•He is my rock my foundation!
•He is my co-pilot
•He bled and died for my sins! Oh it is my fault Jesus suffered.
•God can only love you through Jesus.
•For God so love the world that he gave his only son….John 3:16
•Jesus isn my ticket to salvation. Prescribe prayer, and baptism in the correct faith then you are in. If not….Well, it gets ugly.
•What do these phrases really mean? Are they ours or did we just accept what others told us to believe?
•Who do you say I am?
•However, what is the foundation Jesus speaks? Was it Peter’s answer or they way he received his answer?
•My answer to that question has changed a lot over the years.
•The little song I just sang was the beginning of my understanding.
•The lyrics still ring true. The only part I disagree with at this stage is, “We are weak and he is strong”
•The more I study Jesus the more I see how his mission was to empower his followers.
•His purpose was not to show how strong he was and how weak we are!
•High and Low Christology.
•Our deeper Spirit informed understanding is what his church has been built upon.
•Jesus is my salvation has evolved from, He was my ticket to heaven to understanding the Greek word Salvation. Sozo-To be whole, complete to be liberated.
•To become conscious of the Divine in me and in others and to see and experience the Divine in all of creation!
•Jesus helped me to see that fulfilling my Divine purpose in this was is based upon how I live consciously with God everyday!
•Jesus Loves me This I know (ginosko) Experiential knowing
•For the Bible Tells me so has become For the Spirit teaches me so.
Jesus loves me this I know, for the Spirit tells me so.
Little ones to him belong, I grow strong as he was strong
Yes Jesus loves me, yes Jesus loves me,
Yes Jesus loves me the Spirit tells me so.
Call to Celebration
God of All, we enter into this sacred time with curiosity.
We seek to experience you anew.
You have an open platform.
You welcome our questions.
We find clarity in our inquiries.
Our experiences with you are undeniable.
You are the Christ!
We are your beloved. Amen
God, you see us in and beyond our imperfections. Love cradles us in all stages of our lives. Love commands that we offer that same compassion that we experienced through your grace. As we continue to open ourselves to experiencing you, grant us wisdom to do the same for others. Amen
Bringing in the Light
Celebrations and Concerns
Scripture & Sermon
Extinguishing the Light
Matthew 16: 13-20
A Prayer for Peace and Restoration
God, as we encounter life in all of its fragility, remind us that nothing can swallow us whole. Fragmented pieces, when put together, creates a completed puzzle. Each piece is relevant. We are relevant. Thank you for the wholeness we experience in beloved community. Amen
Rev. LaTrell Harrison