Once when Jesus was praying in solitude, and the disciples were with him, he asked them, “Who do the crowds say that I am?” They said in reply, “John the Baptist; others, Elijah; still others, ‘One of the ancient prophets has arisen.’” Then he said to them, “But who do you say that I am?” Peter said in reply, “The Messiah of God.” He rebuked them and directed them not to tell this to anyone.Luke 9:18-22
He said, “The Son of Man must suffer greatly and be rejected by the elders, the chief priests, and the scribes, and be killed and on the third day be raised.”
“But who do you say that I am?”
“The Christ of God” (Ton Christon tou Theou).
Christos means “Anointed One” or “Messiah,” from the Hebrew mashiach—the long-awaited priest-king and Son of David foretold by the prophets. Ancient priests, kings, and prophets were anointed with sacred oil to consecrate them for their divinely-appointed role.
While the crowds were puzzling over the mystery of Jesus’ identity, Peter received a flash of insight from “my heavenly Father” (Matthew 16:17).
Related Scripture: Matthew 16:13-17, Mark 8:27-30