The book “Songs of the Deliverer” tells the story of Christ re-cast in modern day. The book is a work of fiction but the stories and characters are based on the Gospels of the New Testament. These Reflections are written to highlight the Biblical pericopes.
Referenced in: Chapter One
Jesus began his ministry of salvation when he was about 30 years old. Beyond his birth in a manger to Mary, the only mention of Jesus prior to his ministry was when he was 12 years old and had gotten away from his parents for several days to be found later at the Temple.
For many, perhaps most, years of his life, Jesus lived as if an ordinary person. Certainly, he was ordinary to the people of his community. When he dared one day to stand and speak at the synagogue, the elders were disdainful, “is this not the carpenter’s son?…and they were offended at him.” (Mark 6.3) Jesus responded by saying that a “prophet is not welcome in his home town.”
Even for as long as the people thought of Jesus as just another man, what did Jesus think of himself during those years? As a young boy, he would not be capable of the complete comprehension of his destiny. As he grew older, he would acquire greater understanding, but when did he know he was the Son of God?
In the Gospel of Mark, Jesus has begun his ministry and gathers together with his apostles. He asks them, “Who do the people say I am?” The apostles cite the many ways in which others have characterized Jesus. Then, he asks them:
“Who do you say I am?” (Mark 8:29).
Does Jesus know or does he need his apostles to tell him the answer? At some point in his life, he came to know himself to be the Christ, the Messiah. But before that moment, he is an ordinary person searching for his identity—just like the rest of us. At times in our lives, we question, we wonder, and we ask of others just as Jesus asked:
“Who do you say I am?”
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