“Saying, What think ye of Christ? whose son is he?
They say unto him, The Son of David.”
~ Matthew 22:42
The Pharisees were always contriving questions to ask the Lord. They would word them very carefully to trick Him. They were trying to find anything that they might be able to accuse Him of wrong. Many times Jesus would have questions of His own to ask the Pharisees. He had just been asked about which was the greatest commandment and He answered the question very ably. He now turns the tables and asks a monumental question. “What think ye of Christ?”
We cannot overemphasize the importance of Christ and this question. All of history turns on this one, Jesus Christ. All of the future turns on Him. Your life will also turn on Him and this question. There is no more important question for an individual in life. Not, “What career are you going to pursue? Whom are you going to marry? When are you going to have children? What places would you like to visit? Or, How successful are you going to be?” etc.
The other questions we are faced with in life cannot be compared to the question the Lord asked, “What think ye of Christ?” He is that important. Simeon prophesied to Mary and said, “Behold, this child is set for the fall and rising again of many in Israel.” Christ testified to the Pharisees, “And whosoever shall fall on this stone shall be broken: but on whomsoever it shall fall, it will grind him to powder” (Ma 21:44). The whole course of your life is determined in this question. “What think ye of Christ?”
A sore trial had sent the Baptist into despondency. From his prison cell, he sent his disciples to ask Jesus if He was the “Coming One” or if they should look for another. The answer that Christ gave them is important for our consideration. He said, “And blessed is he, whosoever shall not be offended in me” (Ma 11:6).
The Baptist in his distressed state had found an occasion of stumbling in Jesus. John began to consider what he knew of Christ. He had preached to the people about Christ saying, “Whose fan is in his hand, and he will throughly purge his floor, and gather his wheat into the garner; but he will burn up the chaff with unquenchable fire” (Ma 3:12). He had heralded the coming of a King. However, for some reason or other, Jesus had not played the part of King that John had supposed. Jesus just did not meet the expectations that John had. Fortunately, this was a passing moment of doubt with the Baptist. However, for others the doubt remains.
The Pharisees believed in the Messiah, but this Jesus of Nazareth was certainly not He. Jesus observed, “And ye will not come to ME, that ye might have life” (Jo 5:40). (Emphasis mine). Jesus just did not fit with the Pharisaic ideal. It almost seems that some of these questions were posed to help convince some of their own ranks that this was not the Christ. The Pharisees wanted the King to come. They were looking for the kingdom. Nevertheless, they “will not have this man to reign over” them.
How many have stumbled at Christ and His word? They reject Him, His word, and even His church because they just do not find them to be what they want them to be. The Pharisees were always comparing Christ with their own depraved ideas and finding that He did not measure up; they rejected Him and not their own system. Those that stumble at Christ will be ground to powder when the Rock falls on them.
So, “What think ye of Christ?” There is a great blessing for those that receive Him as He is. Can you just not believe in one you have not seen? Christ told Thomas, “Blessed are they that have not seen, and yet have believed” (Jo 20:29). Realize that you reject Him to doom your own soul. “He that believeth on him is not condemned: but he that believeth not is condemned already, because he hath not believed in the name of the only begotten Son of God” (Jo 3:18).
What about you Christian? “What think ye of Christ?” Have you found an occasion of stumbling in Him? Are you in any way rejecting Him or His word because they just do not fit with what you want? If your ideas do not agree with Christ, then leave them at once. Your life of service will turn on this question. Having put our hand to the plow, let us not look back. “What think ye of Christ?” He is the Son of God!