It is fairly remarkable that it is not until a third of the way through the Gospel of Luke before Jesus’ disciples recognize Him as the Son of God and make a verbal declaration that He is indeed the Jewish Messiah that they had been waiting for their whole lives. Finally, in the ninth chapter of Luke, Peter confesses Jesus is “The Messiah of God” (Luke 9:20, NRSV). One chapter earlier, even after Jesus had calmed a storm, the disciples wondered to one another, “Who then is this, that he commands even the winds and the water, and they obey him?” (Luke 8:25, NRSV). These disciples had seen Jesus perform amazing miracles, heal people of their diseases, feed crowds of thousands, and cast out demons, yet it was only when directly asked by Jesus that they confessed Him as the Messiah.
At its core, the word “Messiah” means “one who saves.” Like the disciples, we too have trouble confessing Jesus as Messiah in our own lives. It’s not that we don’t believe Jesus has the power to save us from our troubles or the ability to rescue us when we need help, it’s that we much prefer to be the heroes and saviors of our stories. We try to do things on our own, and we usually only ask for help from God when we end up falling short, wondering why we couldn’t save ourselves.
Instead of trying to save ourselves, may we more quickly confess Jesus as the Messiah of our lives. Jesus our Savior is ready and willing to reach out and rescue us.