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Matthew 16:16-24

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We are looking at Matthew 16:16-24.After the tremendous statement of faith made by Peter In verse 19 JESUS gives to Peter the exclusive keys of the kingdom of heaven and this is a unique authority to open the door into the Church to come ie the Body of Christ.This specifically relates the-the unique ministry in the Church of Spirit Baptism. This is what the LORD literally stated : " Whatsoever thou shalt bind on earth shall be bound, having been bound in the heavens, and whatsoever thou shalt loose on earth shall be loosed, having been loosed in heaven."

Peter is given an authority but it proceeds from heaven first.It must be borne in mind that the gospel of Matthew was written to Jewish believers and the Jews fully understood the terms binding and loosing in a spiritual context.These terms had an application both judicially and legislatively and in Matthew 18 this authority is given to all the other apostles.The one aspect applying only to Peter is not to Him were given the keys to the kingdom.Keys in the Bible are used as a symbol f opening and closing as in Isaiah 22:20-22.This authority will be discussed later.

The legislative aspects of the apostles' authority is seen in the fact that to them (and the New Testament prophets as in Ephesians 3:5) alone is given the authority to pass a new code of conduct for the Church saints ie Christians.

We see a graphic example of Peter's judicial authority in Acts 5 with the events of Ananias and Sapphira .They were believers but lied to the Holy Spirit and because they lied to God they were disciplined and put to death. The lead is taken by the Holy Spirit and He uses Peter to speak the judgment.Note the apostles only had authority over believers.Both Ananias and Sapphira are saved and will dwell with the LORD for eternity future.



That new code is found in the words of the epistles. For Christian living we go to the epistles in the New Testament. To bind in this context is to bring to an end certain things which previously applied .In the gospels the Law of Moses applied to Jews and Gentile proselytes to Judaism but all the Law was brought to an end under the Law of Christ.For example 9 of the 10 commandments of Exodus 20 have been continued in the Law of Christ but the actual sign of the Law , the compulsory Sabbath Day observance , has ceased as in Romans 14:5-6, Galatians 4:8-11 and Colossians 2:16-17 .Of course all animal sacrifice is forbidden as CHRIST is the final sacrifice for sins.

The loosing refers to things now permitted under the Law of Christ which were previously forbidden e.g. the Jews can now eat pork and believers can worship God anywhere now whereas under the Law it had to be only at the temple.

What we see in Matthew is that while something tremendous was happening to the faith of the disciples they still fail to understand. God's programme.The only see things partially and Jesus illustrated this by healing the blind man in 2 stages.The apostles still did not see clearly.From Matthew 16:21-26 Jesus began to teach them of His future rejection and betrayal of the Jewish religious leaders , His death and resurrection.This is the first of four declarations and Peter who so clearly saw Jesus as the God-Man now , representing the other disciples , shows how little he understands of the programme of CHRIST.

Having just recognised the LORD for who HE is , he then rebukes HIM!! Peter tells HIM that HIS prophecy will not be fulfilled!! Peter was still partially blind.The disciples had no concept of His two comings , the first to save sinners and the second to set up HIS kingdom and save the Jewish people at the end of the 7 year Great Tribulation.

Jesus , Who spoke so wonderfully to Peter In verses 18-19, now rebukes Peter telling him that Satan still has an influence over Peter's thinking having in mind the things of men and not GOD. Peter is rebuked and needs to repent ie change his mind about future events.It is amazing that Peter recognised the deity of Jesus and the rebukes his GOD: as being GOD He cannot lie.We can all bring glory to the LORD one minute and then deny HIM.However , just as the blindness of the blind man was removed in two stages so will that of the disciples. Of course the real emphasis here is that while Israel the nation is partially blind now , in that those Jews who believe is only a small remnant, in the future in Romans 11:25-27 and in many Old Testament passages, all the nation of Israel will see and believe at the end of the Great Tribulation.


What was this authority given to Peter In the early church? The authority was to open the door into the new aspect of God' s kingdom programme in the Church. If you go to Acts 2 it is Peter who opens the door for Jews to enter the Body of Christ. In Acts 8 he opens the door to the Samaritans and in Acts 10 He opens the door to Gentiles. Now the door has been opened to all people then once any individual now receives Jesus ad their SAVIOUR he is immediately baptised by the HOLY SPIRIT into the body.



God Bless you all

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