- The traditional market place is the place of human hubbub and human interaction.
- It is the sound of familiar voices all calling out for attention.
- Buy this!, These are the cheapest you will find! Come here, let me talk with you!!!
- In the end most inexperienced shoppers leave exhausted and heavy laden.
- The market of competing voices is like the world in which we live.
- They call for attention, success, money, power.
- Others call for compassion, justice, some urge self-preservation, others self-destruction.
- Which ones are right?
- We make decisions time and time again based very often on what we hear from these voices.
- There is one voice which can be heard is one is prepared to listen.
- Proverbs call her Wisdom and she says ‘LISTEN TO ME’
- God cares enough about our choices that he sends the voice of wisdom for us to hear.
- In other scriptures she waits at the entrance of the city by the gate.
- It takes a conscious effort to hear her but when we do –
- We find peace and security.
- An old story – Lady enters a jewelry show wanting to purchase a crucifix. The retailer asks if she wants one empty or with a little man on it.
- Our society has generally lost the knowledge of what the cross symbolises.
- It is widely used and seen but not in the light of the passion of Christ.
- The Romans when they invaded crucified thousands as they went forward.
- The crosses lined the roads as a sign of their power and dominance.
- They soldiers danced in the blood of the children to show their complete disregard.
- The cross for the Jews was sign of complete defeat, utter weakness, suffering and humiliation.
- It is crucial we understand this if we are to understand the gospel itself and Peters response.
- Jesus is at Caesarea Philippi and asks the question ‘Who do people say I am?’
- Some say… others say… ‘You are…’
- These are answers from the past.. John the Baptist, Elijah….
- Their message can be put off till tomorrow.
- Peter understands this is not the case. By stating Jesus is the messiah he is stating the truth of the moment. The end is here.
- That can not be put off till tomorrow.
- Peter the hears what will happen to Jesus.
- His response is one of unbelief that anything could change from crucifixion. Look at the thousands hanging.. nothing happens or will happen from it.
- The response from Jesus is to rebuke Peter’s belief that God could not himself change such a thing. This is where the devil works. In hopelessness and what is thought to be impossible for God.
- If then we want Jesus in our lives three things are needed.
- We deny ourselves, we take up OUR cross and follow him.
- If we deny ourselves we must be listening to the voice of wisdom.
- If we take up our cross we have faith that God will do what is impossible through us.
- If we follow him we are a called to act and serve others.
- All faith leads to God including a dead faith.
- A living faith is one full of joy and it is shared with those who need it. Like Peter.
Questions to reflect on:
In the market place of the world do we actively seek to hear the voice of wisdom?
If we do then what is our response to the words we hear?