Lesson 5: Who Am I?
When Jesus asked the disciples “Who do the people say that I am?” They answered, “Some say Elijah. Some say John the Baptist.” But, when Jesus asked them, “Who do YOU say that I am?” Only Peter was brave enough to answer. Peter spoke to the Lord and said, “You are the Christ. The Son of the Living God.” Then, Jesus went on to say that if anyone considers Him their Lord, they must be willing to “deny themselves, take up their cross, and follow me.” What that means for us is that we have to be willing to do what HE wants, not what WE want. Even if it means we must go through hardship, pain, and sacrifice—we must deny ourselves and follow Him!
Rod: Ahoy there, boys and girls!
Leader: Hey Rod!
Rod: Hey there, landlubber! What’s up?
Leader: Oh, you know….the sky. (laughs at their own joke)
Rod: What’s so funny?
Leader: Well, you said “what’s up” and I said “the sky..”
Rod: I know the sky is up! Why I’ve seen the sky ever since the day I was born! I don’t have barnacles for brains, y’know!
Leader: Sorry Rod, I was just making a joke.
Rod: I love jokes! Want to hear a good one?
Rod: What do you call a sea horse with buckteeth, a cowlick, and a runny nose?
Leader: I don’t know, what do you call it?
Rod: NAMES! (laughs hard at his own joke, slapping the Leader on the back)
Leader: Very funny, Rod.
Rod: Oh, I haven’t laughed that hard since I gave away my millions!
Leader: Hold on a second, what are you talking about? Millions? What millions?
Rod: I thought I told you already that at one point my brother Reel and I were once millionaires.
Leader: Are you serious?
Rod: I’m as serious as a shark wearing braces! You ever had fish sticks?
Leader: Yeah, I LOVE fish sticks.
Rod: You’re welcome.
Rod: My brother Reel and I INVENTED fish sticks!
Leader: No way!
Rod: Aye, way! One day we were cookin’ up dinner out on our boat, and it’d been a terrible day. All the fish we were catchin’ were scrawny and pathetic, but one of them fell into our vat of French fry grease, and BOOM—THE FISH STICK WAS BORN! We brought them to shore and soon everybody wanted our recipe. We were instant millionaires!!
Leader: That’s amazing! What did you do with all your money?
Rod: We gave it all away.
Rod: Well, I remembered what our hero Peter did in the Bible. He gave up everything to follow Jesus, ABSOLUTELY EVERYTHING! He knew that he had to get rid of anything that would keep him from obeying Jesus. Well, me and Reel knew that if we had all that money we’d lose our focus on God! So…we gave it all away.
Leader: Wow, Rod that’s amazing! That’s exactly what we’re talking about today! Today in our story, Jesus tells the disciples –
Rod: Hold it right there, Landlubber! Don’t give it all away right now! Now if you’ll excuse me, I gotta skedaddle!
Leader: Where you headed, Rod?
Rod: Talkin’ about fish sticks has given me a new idea! CATFISH FLAVORED COTTON CANDY! I’ll see you later, boys and girls! THERE SHE BLOWS, AND HERE I GO!!
Jesus was talking to the disciples one day and asked them a very important question. We find the story in Mark chapter 8.
He asked, “Who do people say that I am?” Jesus was asking the disciples what the “word on the street” was about Him. Who did people say that He was?”
The disciples all had different answers.
They said, “Some say Elijah!” “Some say John the Baptist raised from the dead!” “Some say you are one of the prophets!” The disciples were telling Jesus that the people had many different opinions as to who Jesus really was.
Then, Jesus asked the really BIG question. He asked, “Who do YOU say that I am?” Our friend, Peter, spoke up and answered
“You are the Christ, the Son of the Living God.” Jesus was proud of Peter’s answer. Jesus said, “Blessed are you, Peter, because my Father in Heaven is the one who has helped you see this.”
Then, Jesus began to teach something that must have been hard for the disciples to understand. (hold up the cross and show it to the children). Jesus said, “If any of you wants to be my follower, you must deny yourself, take up your cross, and follow me.” Now, most of us look at a cross and see it as something wonderful. After all, it represents forgiveness, love, and grace for all Christians. So, we would think the disciples would be excited when Jesus began to talk about the cross.
But, for the disciples—it represented something very different. The cross was the method that the Romans used to put people to death back then. It represented pain, sadness, and death. So, when Jesus said that anyone who wanted to be His follower, had to “take up their cross”, the disciples understood that meant that following Jesus was not going to be an easy thing to do.
This story about Peter and the disciples teaches us two very important things…
Each one of us must make that choice at some point in our lives. We have to answer that same question the disciples answered: “Who do you say that I am?” Do we think Jesus is just a “good man?” A “good teacher?” Or is He my “LORD?”
Your mom can’t make that decision for you. Your pastor can’t make that decision for you. You have to choose for yourself...Is Jesus MY Lord? If He isn’t—then all you have to do is pray and ask Him to forgive you of your sins and be your Lord and Savior. Then, you must choose to follow Him the rest of your life. He has an amazing plan for your life. You must follow Him and obey Him. He will lead you into His amazing plan.
If I have decided to follow Jesus and have asked Him to be my Savior and forgive my sins, then I have chosen to make Him the Lord of my life. That means that Jesus is “The Boss.” Whatever He asks me to do—I will do. Why? Because I love Him, and He is my Lord.
I have to give up “my way” and choose “His way!” After all, He is the one who created me and knows what my life should look like. I can trust Him to lead me into His plan. But, it’s not easy to always obey, is it? It’s not easy to give up what I want to choose what He wants is it? No, it really isn’t! That is why we call it “sacrifice.” We “give up” our way for “His way.” It definitely costs us something—our life! But, in return—we get eternal life, amazing life, REAL life!! In the end, it is SO worth it, isn’t it?
(play soft music) Allow those who have not accepted Christ as their LORD and Savior to do so. Lead them in a prayer to dedicate their lives to Him and follow Him every day. For those who are already believers, lead them in a prayer to commit EVERY area of their life to Him. He is their LORD!
What was today’s Big Idea? Answer: “If I Say That Jesus Is Lord—Then I Will Give Him My Life!”
What did Rod Tacklebox claim he and his brother invented? Answer: fish sticks
What did they do with all the money they made from the fish sticks? Answer: They gave it all away
The disciples told Jesus that the people were saying that Jesus might be _______________ or ___________________. Answer: Elijah or John the Baptist
Who did Peter say that Jesus was? Answer: the Christ, the Son of the Living God
What did Jesus say all people who choose to follow him must do? Answer: deny themselves, take up their cross, and follow Him
According to our lesson today, “I Must Answer: Is Jesus My _________.” Answer: Lord
According to our lesson today, if Jesus is my Lord, then He is really my “_________.” Answer: boss
According to our lesson today, “If Jesus is my Lord, I Must Be Willing To _________________.” Answer: Sacrifice
Where was our Power Verse found? Answer: Mark 8:35