Jesus asks his disciples who do people say that he is. The answer he receives is that many do not know who he truly is. When he asks his own followers, it is Peter who answers first. This answer is critical because it will become a profession of faith. A profession through the ages, where the Church will defend and solidify the creed in response to challenges from heresies. This is what we believe through Christ who revealed his Father to us.
Jesus responds to Peter saying flesh and blood did not reveal this to him, but only God. This revelation is given to Peter through faith and through the gift of the Holy Spirit which makes it known in his heart. The Catechism of the Catholic Church states, “Faith is a gift of God, a supernatural virtue infused by him. Before this faith can be exercised, man must have the grace of God to move and assist him; he must have the interior helps of the Holy Spirit, who moves the heart and converts it to God, who open the eyes of the mind and makes it easy for all to accept and believe the truth.” (CCC 153)
We have the benefit today of knowing the Gospel of Jesus written for us in the Bible even so, our faith continues to inform us. Scripture only will not suffice. It helps us to answer, how do I profess my faith in Jesus the Christ? Jesus is reaching out to us in our present time asking us who do we say he is? Our answer will not come in only acknowledging him as the Christ when we recite the Nicene Creed at Mass, but how we profess him to others! Our words and actions will proclaim what is in our hearts showing others who Jesus is. We can discover this by examining ourselves by asking, how do we react to those in need? How about those who challenge us about our faith? Do we get upset and argue with them? How do we respond to others looking for help from persecution and for a place of safety? Do we covet what we have, because we worked harder for it or do we reveal Jesus to others by giving to others. Do we lift up the fallen within and outside of our community? How do we respond to those trying to find justice? Do we try to understand them or are we dismissive because we have already judged them for ourselves?
Who do you say I am? This is a challenge for all of us. It bares more weight today. More is expected from us because we know that Jesus lived, died, and was resurrected, unlike his disciples being questioned. Our profession of faith matters. It connects us to God and like Peter informs us of the truth. How will you profess your faith in Jesus the Christ?