What Jesus Did! 'Messiah's Cross' — Matthew 16:22-23

Monday, August 7, 2017

Peter spoke to Jesus alone. Peter began to criticize Jesus. Peter said, "God save you from those things, Lord! Those things will never happen to you!" Then Jesus said to Peter, "Go away from me, Satan! You are not helping me! You don't care about the things of God. You only care about things that people think are important."
— Matthew 16:22-23
Illustration of Matthew 16:22-23 — "God save you from those things, Lord! Those things will never happen to you!"

Key Thought

Ouch! In just a few moments, Peter goes from a blessing from Jesus and the affirmation of his inspiration from God himself to being aligned with Satan and drawing the rebuke of the Messiah himself!
The issue at stake is the nature of God's salvation and the nature of Jesus the Messiah's redemption. The way of the cross will be the way of salvation. There are no shortcuts. Satan had offered those earlier—according to Satan, just a quick bow to him and the nations could have belonged to Jesus without the cross. But there is no Messiah without the way of the cross.
For us as disciples, it is easy to quote "all things work together for good" but harder to emphasize "to them that love the Lord and are called according to his purpose," and much harder still to "be conformed to the image of his Son" who goes to the cross. In other words, ultimate good from God's perspective does not necessarily mean ease, success, riches, or glory in the short run. These are gifts purchased at a costly price and given to us even more greatly through the faithful passage of time and the lavish outpouring of God's grace.

Today's Prayer

Thank you Father, that the road home does not always follow the safe and boring path. I know deep in my soul that my character needs to be forged, molded, and matured so that I may be more like my Savior. Please, give me strength for my journey, escape when I am weak, and courage to face the challenge with joy and expectation. In Jesus' name I pray. Amen.

Today's Verses in Context

From that time Jesus began telling his followers that he must go to Jerusalem. Jesus explained that the older Jewish leaders, the leading priests, and the teachers of the law would make him suffer many things. And Jesus told his followers that he must be killed. Then, on the third day, he would be raised from death. Peter spoke to Jesus alone. Peter began to criticize Jesus. Peter said, "God save you from those things, Lord! Those things will never happen to you!" Then Jesus said to Peter, "Go away from me, Satan ! You are not helping me! You don't care about the things of God. You only care about things that people think are important." Then Jesus said to his followers, "If any person wants to follow me, he must say 'No' to the things he wants. That person must accept the cross (suffering) that is given to him, and he must follow me. The person that wants to save his life will lose it. And every person that gives his life for me will save it. It is worth nothing for a person to have the whole world, if he loses his soul. A person could never pay enough to buy back his soul. The Son of Man will come again with his Father's glory and with his angels. At that time, the Son of Man will reward each person for the things he has done. I tell you the truth. There are some people standing here that will see the Son of Man coming with his kingdom before they die."

Matthew 16:21-28

Related Scripture Readings

We know that in everything God works for the good of those people that love him. These are the people God called (chose), because that was his plan. God knew those people before he made the world. And God decided that those people would be like his Son (Jesus). Then Jesus would be the firstborn of many brothers and sisters. God planned for those people to be like his Son. And he called (chose) those people. God called those people and made them right with him. And God gave his glory to those people that he made right.

Romans 8:28-30

Then the devil led Jesus to the top of a very high mountain. The devil showed Jesus all the kingdoms of the world, and all the great things that are in those kingdoms. The devil said, "If you will bow down and worship me, I will give you all these things." Jesus said to the devil, "Go away from me, Satan! It is written {in the Scriptures }, 'You must worship the Lord your God. Serve only him!'" So the devil left Jesus. And then some angels came to Jesus and helped him.

Matthew 4:8-11

Simon Peter answered, "You are the Christ, the Son of the living God." Jesus answered, "You are blessed, Simon son of Jonah. No person taught you that. My Father in heaven showed you who I am. Then Jesus warned his followers not to tell anyone that he was the Christ.

Matthew 16:16-17, 20

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About This Devotional

What Jesus Did is a one-year devotional guide through the gospels, using one short passage each day and following the Gospel in consecutive order. Each devotional consists of a passage, reflection and a prayer which opens up the day's scripture and shows how it challenges you to live for Jesus.

What Jesus Did! is written by Phil Ware.

Easy-to-Read Version copyright © 2001 by World Bible Translation Center. All rights reserved.