Tuesday, October 09, 2007

The Rock - I'm confessin'

A few years ago one of our famous Pop and Gospel singer penned and sang a song entitled "Could you be Messiah to me"? Well obviously that question need not be asked because indeed Jesus IS Messiah, so I will just let you have a listen to the song and see what you think.

I have been pondering on "what does it mean to confess Jesus as Messiah". I was led to this because a few Sundays back I was asked to take the pulpit of a pastor friend and practicing myself now to speak based on the lectionary reading for that day, I picked on 1 Tim 6:6-19. Verses 12-13 mentions about a "good confession" which Timothy and the Lord made. Now this has led me to think that Paul must have meant Mt 16: 16-18 (after all Scripture interprets Scripture). Similarly, in front of Pilate, Jesus did not deny that He was the Son of God, a King.

The confession, "Jesus is the Christ" according to Jesus is the rock on which his church will be built on. Yes, yes, Rome thinks of this differently and though the dogs may bark, the train still moves on, if you ask me. In short, what is the real message of the Church, is its message Peter is the Rock or Jesus is Messiah, the Christ? We know how we should answer that question and the answer is not both.

The statement that "Jesus is the Christ" is really the statement of the Gospel. It is the short hand way of saying Jesus is the appointed Lamb of God who takes away the sin of the world, taking it on him on the Cross and being raised from the dead for the forgiveness of the world. I believe this is what is meant when one makes that confession. I say this because Peter himself missed the meaning of this even though he confessed it. Right after confessing he prevents Jesus from going to the Cross and got called satan for it. So he missed the impact of what he confessed. To say that Jesus is Messiah is to say the message of the Gospel.

The Church which is being built by Christ then is a Church that confesses He is Messiah, it confesses the Gospel, for that is what Messiahship means.

I read in the Apology coincidentally these words in Article III...
To seek forgiveness of sins from Him was truly to acknowledge the Messiah. To think of Christ this way, to worship Him this way, is truly to believe.

Louis Armstrong sang a song "I'm confessin'" which is a confession of his love for his girl, but as Christians we are confessin too, we are confessing we are not the Christ, but Jesus is.


David said...

It is indeed a question that need not be asked. If one were to ask those questions he or she should be patiently taught scripture.

I could not listen to the entire song due to being a musical snob.:D At least that is what folks who know me say. If music is about God it need be Bach or a close match. The poetry must be Gerhardt, Luther or one as near to them as possible in theology and experience. As you can tell modern praise and worship services are lost on me. Insufferable and intolerant isn't it?

Now my other musical tastes run from Beethoven to Led Zeppelin to smooth jazz to some big band music.

Back to some of the other points in your post. Indeed the confession of Jesus being the Christ is the pivot point. This comes, of course, from the Holy Spirit. So good patient bible teaching and preaching is definately needed. However, each of us to some degree resist Jesus dead on a cross. One may look at his or her behaviour as possibly not being bad enough and conclude Jesus did not die for a particular activity.

Dr Luther destroys any pride like that by calling a good deed possible mortal sin.

Whoa sorry for the long rattle! Thanks for visiting my humble blog.

God's peace. †

L P Cruz said...

The "rattle" is welcomed! I am interested in people's thoughts just as I want them to be interested in mine.

The more I am convinced that confessing Jesus is the Christ must be related to confessing the Gospel, - he was crucified, dead and was buried and on the 3rd day rose again,( for the sins of the world). I believe that is the Church that Jesus is building, confesses his Messiahship. The Church has a message, does it not? And the message is that "we are not the Christ (we are not the savior of the world), but Jesus is".

PS. With those sermons in your blog, I would not be surprised when God uses you to fill some pulpit somewhere. God has the habit of using those who prepare.

Pastor Gary Held said...

I have a retired minister friend who is inclined to ask people, "What do you think about Jesus Christ is Lord?"

Now I realize the question as it stands has grammatical issues, but from a confessional and evangelistic viewpoint, it's really very good. In the end, I'm not especially interested in the answer to the more generic question, "What do you think about Jesus?," because the crux of what I want to talk to an unbeliever about is why Jesus Christ is Lord. And even the believers can be helped by the way the question is framed to give a fuller expression to their faith.

--Gary Held

Dizma said...

We have been obviously inspired by the same Rock. :)


L P Cruz said...

Pr. Gary,

You hit it in the head, the crux is absolutely why Jesus IS Lord. Thanks for that, I can use that for my witnessing too. That is another pebble on my pocket.


L P Cruz said...


I agree ;-)