March 08, 2024

Blessed to Believe

R.C. Sproul
Blessed to Believe

It is not ultimately by intelligence or ingenuity that we recognize Jesus as the Son of God. Even our faith is a gift of grace. Today, R.C. Sproul speaks on the blessing that is required for someone to become a Christian believer.


After Jesus had spent some time in public ministry and He gathered together privately with His disciples beside the sea in Caesarea Philippi. He stopped them for a moment, and He says, “Okay, it’s time to take a look at the Gallup polls. Who do men say that I am?” They began to give Him the scuttlebutt: “Well, some say You’re a radical. Some say You’re nuts. Some say You’re a prophet. Some say You’re Elijah. Some say You’re this. Some say You’re that.”

There was not a uniformed opinion developing among the masses about who Jesus was. Many were for Him. Many were against Him. They didn’t know who He was. It was confusion. “This is fine, thank you. It’s nice to get the report, but who do you say that I am? You’ve known Me now intimately. You’ve heard Me preach. You’ve seen Me work. Who do you say that I am?”

Peter spoke up for the group, saying boldly, “Thou art the Christ, the Son of the living God.” What did Jesus say? He said, “Ah, and Peter, thou art the scholar of scholars. Thou art the perceptive one. Thou hast done thy homework and thou hast noticed, cleverly, all of the different nuances that are prophesied in the Old Testament about the coming Messiah, and you finally have it straight.” Now, what did He say? He said “Blessed art thou, Simon Bar-Jonah.” Jesus pronounced a benediction upon Simon Peter because of the great confession.

Why did He say that Simon was particularly blessed? Was He saying, “You have been blessed with great intelligence, with great perceptivity?” No. “Blessed art thou, Simon Bar-Jonah, flesh and blood have not revealed this unto thee, but my heavenly Father. You have come to a discovery not as a basis of your own intelligent perception. You see this fundamental truth only because of the grace of My Father who has revealed it to you.”

This is not a result of flesh and blood. A Christian, an authentic Christian, is one who hears the same benediction—not through his flesh, not through his blood, not through his mind, not against his mind, but because the Father has been pleased to reveal to you the true identity of His Son, the Messiah.