TURNING POINT! There are turning points in every life. In fact there may be many times in life when things are said or done that cause turning points in someone’s life. Sometimes those events produce good results and at other times not so good. It is true when one comes to salvation in Christ and it is true when one decides to totally surrender all aspects of life to Christ as they grow in knowledge of Him. Such a time occurred with Jesus and the Apostles that is very revealing to us and is recorded in the Gospel of Matthew. “From that time on Jesus began to explain to his disciples that he must go to Jerusalem and suffer many things at the hands of the elders, the chief priests and the teachers of the law, and that he must be killed and on the third day be raised to life,” (Matthew 16:21 NIV). This startling fact followed on the heels of Peter’s revelation that was given to him by God (v.16, 17) and declared to all present that Jesus was “the Messiah, the Son of the living God.” In one instant hope in the arrival of the Messiah rose to great heights and in the next instant hope was seemingly smashed. But this marked a dramatic turning point in the lives of Jesus and His Apostles. The end of the road on the ultimate trip to Jerusalem was leading to a cross not a royal crown as the Apostles expected.
The Apostles may not have understood the turning point at this time in the ministry of Jesus but Jesus understood and in fact repeated His understanding of His future death and resurrection, “When they came together in Galilee, he said to them, ‘The Son of Man is going to be delivered into the hands of men. They will kill him, and on the third day he will be raised to life.’ And the disciples were filled with grief,” (Matthew 17:22-23 NIV). Turning points in our life can be silent and inward or they may be emotional and outward. They may be sudden or they may be the culmination of many ongoing things in our life. The turning point of salvation and discipleship is like that. Turning points often happen in times of failure in our life when we see the fallacy of the past and the hope of the future found in following Jesus to the cross and the resurrection. It is certain that when we understand and accept that Jesus is the Messiah, the Son of the living God and that He was crucified, buried, and rose again to pay for our sins that we have reached a turning point in our lives and our message in life will forever be changed.