Matthew 16:13-20: When Jesus came into the region of Caesarea Philippi, He asked His disciples, saying, “Who do men say that I, the Son of Man, am?” 14 So they said, “Some say John the Baptist, some Elijah, and others Jeremiah or one of the prophets.” 15 He said to them, “But who do you say that I am?” 16 Simon Peter answered and said, “You are the Christ, the Son of the living God.” 17 Jesus answered and said to him, “Blessed are you, Simon Bar-Jonah, for flesh and blood has not revealed this to you, but My Father who is in heaven. 18 And I also say to you that you are Peter, and on this rock I will build My church, and the gates of Hades shall not prevail against it. 19 And I will give you the keys of the kingdom of heaven, and whatever you bind on earth will be bound in heaven, and whatever you loose on earth will be loosed in heaven.” 20 Then He commanded His disciples that they should tell no one that He was Jesus the Christ.
1. Jesus had said to “Simon Peter” John 1:40, “You are Simon the son of Jonah. You shall be called Cephas (which is translated, A Stone [petros])” John 1:42
a. Why did not Jesus give Peter the name “Petra” (feminine) in this passage, to relieve any confusion later?
b. Jesus, not Peter, is referred to as petra in the New Testament: Matthew 16:18: “And I also say to you that you are Peter, and on this rock I will build My church, and the gates of Hades shall not prevail against it.” Romans 9:33: “As it is written: ‘Behold, I lay in Zion a stumbling stone and rock of offense, And whoever believes on Him will not be put to shame’” (quoting from Isaiah 8:14; 28:16). 1 Corinthians 10:4: “For they drank of that spiritual Rock that followed them, and that Rock was Christ.” 1 Peter 2:8: “’A stone of stumbling And a rock of offense.’ They stumble, being disobedient to the word, to which they also were appointed.”
c. There is NO original Aramaic manuscript of Matthew known. (1 If Matthew wrote it in Aramaic, God preserved a majority of Greek MSS; (2 Matthew, himself (guided by the Holy Spirit!), would have translated his book into Greek, for Greek was understood by most people then; (3 The only “Aramaism” preserved in this passage would be “Cephas,” but because the Greek word makes a distinction between Peter’s name and the foundation of the church, no appeal to the “Aramaic” would justify making Peter’s name equal to the foundation of the church of Christ! (4 As there are no original MSS of any other New Testament Books, either!
d. Paul condemned as a “schism” any who followed Peter, not Jesus, as the Head of the church 1 Corinthians 1:12-13.
e. When Jesus said to Peter “Follow Me” John 21:19, Roman Catholic Church says it is teaching Peter’s Primacy. But when Jesus tells Philip “Follow Me” John 1:43 NO ONE suggests the Roman Church is built upon Philip!!
2. IF this clearly taught Peter’s Superiority over all the other Apostles, then:
a. Why were they still disputing the issue later? Matthew 20:20-28
b. How were James, Cephas & John all “pillars?” Galatians 2:9
c. Then was Paul the Gentile “Pope?” Galatians 2:7-10
d. How was the church of Christ “built on the foundation of the apostles and prophets, Jesus Christ Himself being the chief cornerstone?” Ephesians 2:20
3. Peter IS IN the foundation, but IS NOT “THE Foundation!”
a. The Church of Christ is “built on the foundation of the apostles and prophets, Jesus Christ Himself being the chief cornerstone” Ephesians 2:20
b. NOTHING IN SCRIPTURE separates Peter from the other apostles in their work of establishing the church of Christ. 2 Corinthians 11:5: “For I consider that I am not at all inferior to the most eminent apostles.” 1 Corinthians 9:5: “Do we have no right to take along a believing wife, as do also the other apostles, the brothers of the Lord, and Cephas?”
c. Peter was never acknowledged as being in Rome, or its “Bishop!” (1 Paul was prisoner in Rome and wrote Ephesians, Philippians, Colossians, 2 Timothy, Philemon, but NEVER MENTIONED PETER AS BEING IN ROME! (2 Paul wrote Romans and saluted 27 Christians, but NOT Peter! (3 Peter wrote 2 letters, but never mentioned being in Rome! —–John T. Polk II