The Jewish religious leaders, the Pharisees and Saducees, wanted a miraculous sign from Jesus to prove His authority. Jesus only healed hundreds, if not thousands, of people, multiplied loaves and fishes to feed thousands, He walked on water and calmed a storm. What more did they need?
Are you waiting for some sign from God? The answers to salvation are in God’s Word. Let’s dig in…
One day the Pharisees and Sadducees came to test Jesus, demanding that he show them a miraculous sign from heaven to prove his authority.
2 He replied, “You know the saying, ‘Red sky at night means fair weather tomorrow; 3 red sky in the morning means foul weather all day.’ You know how to interpret the weather signs in the sky, but you don’t know how to interpret the signs of the times! 4 Only an evil, adulterous generation would demand a miraculous sign, but the only sign I will give them is the sign of the prophet Jonah.” Then Jesus left them and went away.
Who Was Jonah?
Let me break here and tell you the story of Jonah. Jonah was a prophet in the 8th century B.C. God gave Jonah an assignment to go to Nineveh (modern-day Iraq) to warn them that they will face God’s judgment. God’s saw how wicked they were.
Jonah, instead of going east, went and found a ship going west to Tarshish. Tarshish was in modern-day Portugal, the furthest west one could go in the known world at that time.
Seeing Jonah’s disobedience, the Lord hurled a mighty wind causing a violent storm. The sailors cried to their gods for help to no avail. Then went to wake up Jonah who was sleeping in the cargo hold. Jonah told them that he worshiped the Creator God. Then he told the terrified sailors to throw him overboard and the storm will stop. They did and the storm immediately calmed down.
Before I go on, there’s a slight resemblance here to Jesus walking on water and calming the storm.
Once Jonah hit the water, he was swallowed up by a big fish. In the belly of the fish, Jonah prayed to God. After 3 days, the Lord ordered the fish to spit Jonah out onto the beach. See the resemblance of Jesus being in the grave for 3 days?
God, then, repeated His original order for him to go to Nineveh and deliver the message and Jonah obeyed.
When Jonah reached Nineveh, which was a large city, he shouted that in 40 days (note that it’s the same length of time as Noah’s flood), the city would be destroyed. The King of Nineveh told everyone to dress in burlap — mourning clothes — and turn from their wicked ways and stop their violence.
Yeast of the Pharisees and Sadducees
5 Later, after they crossed to the other side of the lake, the disciples discovered they had forgotten to bring any bread. 6 “Watch out!” Jesus warned them. “Beware of the yeast of the Pharisees and Sadducees.”
7 At this they began to argue with each other because they hadn’t brought any bread. 8 Jesus knew what they were saying, so he said, “You have so little faith! Why are you arguing with each other about having no bread? 9 Don’t you understand even yet? Don’t you remember the 5,000 I fed with five loaves, and the baskets of leftovers you picked up? 10 Or the 4,000 I fed with seven loaves, and the large baskets of leftovers you picked up? 11 Why can’t you understand that I’m not talking about bread? So again I say, ‘Beware of the yeast of the Pharisees and Sadducees.’”
12 Then at last they understood that he wasn’t speaking about the yeast in bread, but about the deceptive teaching of the Pharisees and Sadducees.
DO NOT FOLLOW Leaders who…
- Worry more about the external than the internal. Very prideful, not humble at all.
- Get offended when their viewpoints are exposed. They always think that they are right — again it’s pride.
- Tear down others to build themselves up. Watch what they post on social media. If they constantly insult others, that’s pride again.
- Draw you away from Jesus to them. It’s like they know more than the Word of God.
- Seek signs from God, but never follow through with obedience. Like the Pharisees and Saducees.
Peter’s Declaration about Jesus
13 When Jesus came to the region of Caesarea Philippi, he asked his disciples, “Who do people say that the Son of Man is?”
14 “Well,” they replied, “some say John the Baptist, some say Elijah, and others say Jeremiah or one of the other prophets.”
15 Then he asked them, “But who do you say I am?”
16 Simon Peter answered, “You are the Messiah, the Son of the living God.”
17 Jesus replied, “You are blessed, Simon son of John, because my Father in heaven has revealed this to you. You did not learn this from any human being. 18 Now I say to you that you are Peter (or Petros, which means ‘small rock’), and upon this rock (petra – large rock) I will build my church, and all the powers of hell will not conquer it. 19 And I will give you the keys of the Kingdom of Heaven. Whatever you forbid on earth will be forbidden in heaven, and whatever you permit on earth will be permitted in heaven.”
20 Then he sternly warned the disciples not to tell anyone that he was the Messiah.
Peter actually got it right! However, this does not mean that Peter was the first pope! I explain that in this post.
Jesus Predicts His Death
21 From then on Jesus began to tell his disciples plainly that it was necessary for him to go to Jerusalem, and that he would suffer many terrible things at the hands of the elders, the leading priests, and the teachers of religious law. He would be killed, but on the third day he would be raised from the dead.
22 But Peter took him aside and began to reprimand him for saying such things. “Heaven forbid, Lord,” he said. “This will never happen to you!”
23 Jesus turned to Peter and said, “Get away from me, Satan! You are a dangerous trap to me. You are seeing things merely from a human point of view, not from God’s.”
24 Then Jesus said to his disciples, “If any of you wants to be my follower, you must give up your own way, take up your cross, and follow me. 25 If you try to hang on to your life, you will lose it. But if you give up your life for my sake, you will save it. 26 And what do you benefit if you gain the whole world but lose your own soul? Is anything worth more than your soul? 27 For the Son of Man will come with his angels in the glory of his Father and will judge all people according to their deeds. 28 And I tell you the truth, some standing here right now will not die before they see the Son of Man coming in his Kingdom.”Matthew 16 NLT
Here, Jesus predicted that the Apostle John would see a vision of the coming Kingdom of God. That would become the Book of Revelation. Hint: God wins in the end!
Seek the Truth
Jesus is finally revealing how He’s going to die. Yet, His disciples, still don’t get it. It was not what they wanted to believe.
This is important to understand. We can hear the truth from God and not accept it only because it does not match what we want to believe. Or how we want to live.
Today, we’re seeing the church be infiltrated by Satan and his demonic forces. All these “woke” pastors, preachers as well as Roman Catholic leaders from the Pope down to the priests, aren’t interested in making sure you’re saved.
They preach a watered-down gospel, twisted to say what is comfortable. Jesus didn’t come to make the world comfortable. He came to turn it upside down!
Believers must take up their cross daily, that is, die to your sinful ways every day!
We must also pledge our allegiance to the King and no one else!
Who do YOU Follow?
If you’re not sure if you’re saved or not, if you truly want to be born again and have the assurance of salvation, receive the Holy Spirit, and get a 1-way, non-stop ticket to Heaven after you die, or that you won’t be left behind at the Rapture, this is what you have to do…