Simon Peter answered and said, “You are the Christ, the Son of the living God.” Jesus answered and said to him, “Blessed are you, Simon Bar-Jonah, for flesh and blood has not revealed this to you, but My Father who is in heaven. And I also say to you that you are Peter, and on this rock I will build My church, and the gates of Hades shall not prevail against it.”
The truth embodied in Peter’s great confession, “You are the Christ, the Son of the living God,” is the rock of our salvation. Upon this the church is built. Apart from a divine Savior there would be no church of God in the world. It is noticeable that Jesus Himself elicited this confession by direct questioning. He knew well both the attitude of men in general regarding His true character and also that which His disciples knew Him to be. But He would have them put themselves on record, and so Peter was led to speak for them all. It meant much to the Lord Jesus to discern the working of grace in their souls, and their growth in spiritual intelligence. On the other hand, it grieved Him deeply when they failed to enter into the truth concerning the work of redemption as readily as they had grasped something of the glory of His person. Hence His severe rebuke when Peter would have turned Him aside, had it been possible, from the death of the cross. Peter’s blunder might well have us pause, as we realize how untrustworthy are the views of even the best of men unless they are the recipients of divine revelation. How good that God has given us His Word, thus revealing wondrous mysteries kept secret from the world’s foundation!
If asked what of Jesus I think,
Though still my best thoughts are but poor,
I say, He’s my meat and my drink,
My life and my strength and my store;
My Shepherd, my trust and my friend,
My Saviour from sin and from thrall;
My Hope from beginning to end,
My Portion, my Lord and my All.
H. A. Ironside, The Continual Burnt Offering: Daily Meditations on the Word of God (Neptune, NJ: Loizeaux Brothers, 1994), 164.