“From that time on Jesus began to explain to his disciples that He must go to Jerusalem and suffer many things at the hands of the elders, chief priests and teachers of the law, and that He must be killed and on the third day be raised to life. Peter took Him aside and began to rebuke Him. “Never, Lord!” he said. This shall never happen to you.” Jesus turned and said to Peter, “Get behind me Satan! You are a stumbling block to me, you do not have in mind the things of God, but the things of men.”
Matthew 16:21-23, NLT
3rd Sunday (5th in Lent)- “Seeing For Yourself!”
Someone has said, “There are none so blind as those who will not see.” It is possible that this phrase has affinity with the admonition of Jeremiah the prophet
to a self-destructive, doubting nation: “Hear this, you foolish and senseless people, who have eyes but do not see, who have ears but do not hear (Jeremiah 5:21, NIV).” Sometimes in our human frailty we become clueless and misguided. We often say what we feel, without understanding what we’re really saying. In three discourses recorded in the Gospel of Matthew, Jesus predicts His suffering, death and Resurrection. The timing of this prediction is important, for it comes shortly after the disciples learned that Jesus is the Messiah. The disciples had gathered with Jesus in Caesarea Philippi, some 25 miles north of Capernaum where Simon Peter spent most of his life. It was Peter who rightly proclaimed Jesus as Messiah (cf. Matthew 16:16, NIV). Jesus reminded Peter that the revelation came from God. When Jesus spoke later of His death, suffering, and Resurrection, Peter reprimanded Jesus, casting doubt on that aspect of the Messiah’s mission. However, Jesus knew that Satan had deceived Peter, creating false perceptions about the true mission of the Messiah. “Never, could this happen Lord,” was Peter’s emphatic response. Jesus saw through Peter to Satan. He rebuked the enemy, and crushed the conspiracy. He told the disciples, there is no crown without a cross!