If You Oppose the Cross
Jul 4, 2016 813
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, N.I.V.)
The Jewish idea of what the Messiah would be like was all about a victorious conqueror who would not be killed; because getting yourself killed meant that you had lost.
Society in the time of the Jesus rejected the cross because it challenged all of their beliefs. Society does the same today, but not just society does it: throughout history, many versions of Christianity have emerged that have attempted to ignore, substitute, or under-emphasise the cross of Jesus.
The words of Jesus continue to challenge the beliefs we have inherited from our spiritual leaders. We unknowingly disbelieve, and even contradict, Jesus’ teaching because we, like Peter, are confident that we know better.
It was no small thing for Jesus to call Peter ‘Satan’. He did so, however, because Peter, like Satan, was opposed to the cross.
There can be no good news without the cross.
– Ritchie Way and Eliezer Gonzalez