In this week’s gospel, Jesus asks what people are saying about him. Some believe he is John the Baptist; others that he is Elijah; still others that he is one of the other prophets – all religious figures who have already died. Speaking in the name of the others, Peter proclaims that he is the Christ, the Messiah, the anointed one of God. Hearing this, Jesus elaborates on the character of his Messiahship. He will be a messiah like the Son of Man, the enigmatic figure who will come on the clouds at the end of this age. To this he adds that he will suffer and die, an aspect not part of the ancient messianic traditions. Peter’s rebuke exemplifies this. Jesus persists, adding that his followers will also suffer. This is indeed a hard saying.