Luke 9:7-9, 18-20, Jesus, More Than a Rumor by Chuck Moore
When something is repeated in Scripture it stands out. When it is repeated in the same chapter of a Gospel, it stands out even more. In the seventh verse of the ninth chapter of the Gospel of Luke, we see Herod Antipas' curiosity about who Jesus is. Herod entertains the identity of Jesus by compiling the opinions, rumors, and gossip of the people. He considers him to be John the Baptist, Elijah, or a prophet of old. He was most familiar with John, and concluded that he must seek out more of Jesus.
In the eighteenth verse, Jesus asks of the disciples what the public opinion was of Him. And the disciples inform Him that many of the people are saying the same things Herod heard. But He takes His inquiry one step farther. He doesn't ask "Do you believe them?" Rather, He asks "But who do you say that I am?"
Let's consider these two occurrences. The ruler, Herod, collects the opinions of people. The only certainty that he has is of the direct knowledge of John's death by his own command. But he stops short of making a determination for himself. He delays, he waits, he needs more evidence. Similarly, through the disciples Jesus collects the public opinion of His identity. Rather than having the disciples make their own deductions on rumors and hearsay or even to prolong a decision about Him, Jesus asks abruptly. And just as abruptly, Peter answers, "You are the Messiah sent from God!"
Perhaps there is not much application to this, but the very pointed question from Jesus: Who do you say I am? I have to ask myself, in what ways have I been sitting on my hands and waiting to decide? Or do I respond with emphatic staccato?
Let us not be confused by those who may not know Him. Draw close to Him in prayer and study to confirm for yourself with vigor:
He is Jesus the Messiah sent from God.