Peter replied, “You are the Messiah sent from God!”
Jesus warned his disciples not to tell anyone who he was. “The Son of Man must suffer many terrible things,” he said.“He will be rejected by the elders, the leading priests, and the teachers of religious law. He will be killed, but on the third day he will be raised from the dead.”
"But who do you say that I am?" He is still asking this question. The 'but' is there, because he wants you to say who you, from your self, say who he is. The collective is important, but God deals with us one to one.
He wants each one of us to say who we think he is. Telling what others say is one thing, but what is important is what you believe. What you believe will govern how you live. You will be judged on your life, not what someone else said or believed.
"Who do you say I am?", he asks. Is he after information, or does he want you to come out in the open and say what you think? When we say what we think or believe, and if it is distorted, we can have it corrected and learn the truth.
What we think and thereby, what we believe, is very important. You might know the right answer to Jesus' question, since you have been a Christian for a period of time; but still have some very wrong 'sayings' to his question. You might say, for example, that he is not good, because he allows suffering and does not always come to the rescue, at least not soon enough. Who do you say that he is?
Jesus is Messiah, Christ, The Anointed One; AND he suffered, then rose from the dead. The Gospel message is that he came, he suffered, and he rose.
When Jesus lived as a man, people had been developing a distorted view of what the Messiah would do and be like. Just like then, we can get the first part right, that he is Messiah, but then get it wrong on what he is supposed to do. We might have a distorted view that the life in Christ is supposed to be easy. Some call this the, "God loves a winner", message.
The truth is, that he is Lord AND he suffered even unto death, BUT God redeemed him. God overturned all the rejection of him. It will be the same with our lives. He is our Lord, Messiah, the Christ, the Son of the living God in our lives , AND we will suffer, BUT God will redeem it.
So, who do you say he is? He is Christ, Savior, and Lord: for salvation and in my suffering. Who do I say he is? He is King. He is good. He is faithful. He is caring. He is kind.
Now, if you have it settled who he is, and it is an ongoing process; what about you asking him who you are. Who am I? Who do you say that I am?
Every single one of us were created, from conception, with a unique design from God. He did make you special. Each of us are one-of-a-kind. Each of us have unique ways grace, that we were born with, and that need to be developed.
Everyone needs to know from God, who they are. "Who do you say that I am?", is a question for each of us to ask God. Have you asked? Do you know? God has a purpose, a destiny for each one. It is very exciting and encouraging, to go on the journey of discovery, with Jesus, to finding out who he created you to be.