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What did Jesus mean when He told Peter he was the rock he would build his church upon?

Discussion in 'Christian History' started by Lybrah, Aug 20, 2018.

  1. prodromos

    prodromos Senior Veteran Supporter

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    That is all the apostles, not just Peter, and every bishop who confesses Christ is Peter.
     
  2. JackRT

    JackRT Well-Known Member Supporter

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    I have heard that theory but it doesn't get much traction in the scholarly world.
     
  3. Yekcidmij

    Yekcidmij Polymath

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    Looks like more speculation to me. If we're allowed to just speculate, maybe I could speculate that the word for "pebble" in the parable I referred to was also a cognate of the Aramaic word for "stone," thus the interpretation I offered is unchanged? I'm familiar with the theory [of an Aramaic Matthew original] though, and it's weaknesses, which is why I wouldn't try to build much of a case off of it, especially nothing theologically central.

    Additionally, I would take the position of Markan priority, which would seem to further indicate the book we're calling "Matthew" was originally written in Greek.

    Well, we're talking specifically about Matthew. Mark (Luke as well) record the same episode of Peter's confession but don't have the information about Jesus identifying Peter as the Petros. So those won't be of help here. This is specific to Matthew, which is all the more reason why we should stick with what Matthew wrote and understand the picture Matthew presented.
     
  4. Kaon

    Kaon Well-Known Member

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    The Word of God didn't want more religion after He spent the time to educate the people about the dangers and snare of organized religion (in this case, the Hebrew religious institutional structure).

    He made Peter the rock because it is a masonry reference. Buildings were erected with a cornerstone of foundation, and the rest of the building was built around that stone. Peter was the first rock that builds the LIVING edifice of Christ - especially since Peter was (one of the) first who Christ took as a disciple. He was a founding member of the living Church (not institution or building).
     
  5. tz620q

    tz620q Regular Member Supporter

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    This would have been a very well understood principle to people of that time that build their own homes out of stone. I tend to think that Christ was the cornerstone, since once the cornerstone is set securely, the location of the building is established. The apostles are the foundation, since the foundation provides the boundaries of the building and the base on which to build. If the foundation is faulty, the building falls. This foundation of apostles had to follow the cornerstone's positioning and to some degree, Christ selected and placed this foundation and left them to build upon it. If you read the Gospels with this thought that Christ was creating a foundation and a church, then it becomes more meaningful when he names Simon, rock and says he will build his church upon him.
     
    Last edited: Dec 11, 2018
  6. Kaon

    Kaon Well-Known Member

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    That is precisely what He is, and why He is that - because even if we all fall the skeleton of the Church Building will stand because of Him - sort of how bombs can eradicate three walls of a well-built building except for the corner foundation.

    I should have mentioned this explicitly - that Christ is the cornerstone in the masonry metaphor (and, in general).
     
    Last edited: Dec 11, 2018
  7. John Bowen

    John Bowen Active Member Supporter

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    Peter represents any person who recognizes Christ that is the first part of the equation . The second part of the equation that Peter failed was thinking he knew how the Christ should be in this world . Thats why Jesus said " Get thee behind me Satan " Christ will never conform to this world The Christ is not of this world. Which many churches don't acknowledge . Jesus Christ never authorized the office of Pope .He told us I will send another the comforter The Holy Spirit that can speak through anyone who doesn't have to be the high and mighty thats why Jesus was born in a manger to symbolize the common person . The Holy Spirit bloweth where it listeth it can not be contained in any man made structure especially through a successions of popes.
     
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  8. Root of Jesse

    Root of Jesse Admiral of the Fleet/First Sea Lord Supporter

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    Not really. A bishop is shepherd of his local flock. The Bishop of San Francisco is shepherd to those in San Francisco. The Pope is Bishop of Rome, but head of the Church as well.
     
  9. Root of Jesse

    Root of Jesse Admiral of the Fleet/First Sea Lord Supporter

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    That Markan Priority thing-a late innovation. If Mark wrote first, he'd be first. They each wrote independently.
    Regarding Aramaic Matthew (not Hebrew as I previously stated...
    Around 180 Irenaeus of Lyons wrote that

    Matthew also issued a written Gospel among the Hebrews in their own dialect, while Peter and Paul were preaching in Rome and laying the foundation of the Church. After their departure, Mark, the disciple and interpreter of Peter, did also hand down to us in writing what had been preached by Peter. Luke also, the companion of Paul, recorded in a book the Gospel preached by him. Afterwards John, the disciple of the Lord, who also had leaned upon his breast, did himself publish a Gospel during his residence at Ephesus in Asia. (Against Heresies 3:1:1)
    Fifty years earlier Papias, bishop of Hieropolis in Asia Minor, wrote, "Matthew compiled the sayings [of the Lord] in the Aramaic language, and everyone translated them as well as he could" (Explanation of the Sayings of the Lord [cited by Eusebius in History of the Church 3:39]).

    Sometime after 244 the Scripture scholar Origen wrote, "Among the four Gospels, which are the only indisputable ones in the Church of God under heaven, I have learned by tradition that the first was written by Matthew, who was once a publican, but afterwards an apostle of Jesus Christ, and it was prepared for the converts from Judaism and published in the Hebrew language" (Commentaries on Matthew [cited by Eusebius in History of the Church 6:25]).

    Eusebius himself declared that "Matthew had begun by preaching to the Hebrews, and when he made up his mind to go to others too, he committed his own Gospel to writing in his native tongue [Aramaic], so that for those with whom he was no longer present the gap left by his departure was filled by what he wrote" (History of the Church 3:24 [inter 300-325]).

    [/quote]
    Well, we're talking specifically about Matthew. Mark (Luke as well) record the same episode of Peter's confession but don't have the information about Jesus identifying Peter as the Petros. So those won't be of help here. This is specific to Matthew, which is all the more reason why we should stick with what Matthew wrote and understand the picture Matthew presented.[/QUOTE]
    You can't do that. The Gospels are a whole.
     
  10. Yekcidmij

    Yekcidmij Polymath

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    I would say it best accounts for the data and doesn't innovate anything.

    More speculation. Why is it necessarily the case that the gospels must be presented in the canon in the order in which they were written? Why aren't Paul's letters presented in the order in which they were written? Why is John not written chronologically?

    So did they miraculously land on verbatim wording in passages for large swaths of their respective gospels? I doubt it. Regardless of the particular solution to the synoptic problem, it looks obvious to me that someone was using someone else's gospel as a source.

    I'm aware of the quotes (I think I recall saying I was aware of the theory, so I'm not sure what simply quoting the church fathers to me will accomplish). A few further notes though

    (1) I have a few problems with the Aramaic idea. First, with the exception of Papias, the traditions you cite are later. Origen clearly states, via Eusebius, that he learned it from somewhere else. Why think that their source wasn't ultimately Papias? It seems this is the logical conclusion since Eusebius cites Papias and Irenaeus regarding this (in other words, counting Eusebius and Origen themselves don't actually add anything) and it's the earliest source we have of this tradition.

    As far as the validity of Papias' statement, I think we need more evidence. We can't be sure that the gospel he was referring to was the "Matthew" in the canon or that he wasn't simply mistaken. And rather than think something along the lines of: well Papias heard John therefore...., it's worth noting that Papias doesn't state from where he obtained this information. So we shouldn't assume that he heard this specific piece of information from John himself.

    Additionally, Papias' statement itself isn't unambiguous. Does he mean to say that Matthew wrote in the Aramaic language or that he wrote with an Aramaic dialect (which could mean that he wrote in Greek)? And when he "compiled sayings" does this mean the whole gospel or just part of it or just the sayings of Jesus..? Papias' statement could be read a few different ways.

    I'm not against tradition, so I don't discount Papias as some might, but I don't think this is so clear as you try to present especially when considered with other reasons. Papias' statement requires further qualification and evidence. So, as I previously said, I wouldn't build much off of the necessity of an Aramaic gospel of Matthew, especially something that would be theologically central.

    (2) We also have no manuscript evidence of an Aramaic original Matthew, which seems to be a significant point since we have lots of manuscript evidence.

    (3) We also still have the synoptic problem which would seem to argue strongly for a Greek Matthew.

    (4) I would also be curious as to why Matthew feels the need to translate "Eli Eli lema sabachthani" into it's Greek meaning? I mean, if "Matthew" is writing in Aramaic, for an Aramaic speaking audience, then why does he need to explain to them the phrase's meaning? Wouldn't it be redundant? Wouldn't it be redundant..? ( ;)) Mark does the same, which makes sense if the audience doesn't know Aramaic.

    The same is the case for Matt 27:33. Why the need to translate an Aramaic word? Maybe the case with Matt 1:23 as well.

    We could also make a similar argument with Petros. If the Aramaic "Cephas" is so central to understanding this passage, then why don't Matthew or later redactors leave "Cephas" in the passage as was done with "Raca," "Golgatha" and "Eli Eli lema sabachthani?" Well, if word-play in Greek is what was intended to be understood, then you have your answer.

    (5) Matt 9:24 // Mark 5:41 //Luke 8:54 tell the same story, but Matthew and Luke omit the Aramaic phrase. If Matthew was writing in Aramaic and to an Aramaic audience, why omit the phrase? If your audience is Greek-speaking and reading though, then you may do what Luke did or omit it as Matthew did.

    I could probably come up with other reasons and maybe some other poster's could too, but I'm running out of time today....

    (a) I most certainly CAN do that. You aren't the boss of me :D
    (b) I think that to best understand the gospels as a whole you have to let each author speak for themselves and understand them on their own terms. I think your method doesn't best take the author's themselves into account.
     
  11. Root of Jesse

    Root of Jesse Admiral of the Fleet/First Sea Lord Supporter

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    Neither does Global Warming. There are many scholars who hold to Hebrew Matthew.
     
  12. JackRT

    JackRT Well-Known Member Supporter

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    Huh?
     
  13. Root of Jesse

    Root of Jesse Admiral of the Fleet/First Sea Lord Supporter

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    It best accounts for your conception of the data, which is innovative.
    Well, it's not speculation. It's history, which you fail to account for.

    Around 180 Irenaeus of Lyons wrote that

    Matthew also issued a written Gospel among the Hebrews in their own dialect, while Peter and Paul were preaching in Rome and laying the foundation of the Church. After their departure, Mark, the disciple and interpreter of Peter, did also hand down to us in writing what had been preached by Peter. Luke also, the companion of Paul, recorded in a book the Gospel preached by him. Afterwards John, the disciple of the Lord, who also had leaned upon his breast, did himself publish a Gospel during his residence at Ephesus in Asia. (Against Heresies 3:1:1)


    So did they miraculously land on verbatim wording in passages for large swaths of their respective gospels? I doubt it. Regardless of the particular solution to the synoptic problem, it looks obvious to me that someone was using someone else's gospel as a source.
    [/quote]You may doubt it, but Jesus said and did a lot of things, important things, and they would have been committed to memory as they were witnessed.
    Fifty years earlier than Irenaeus, Papias, bishop of Hieropolis in Asia Minor, wrote, "Matthew compiled the sayings [of the Lord] in the Aramaic language, and everyone translated them as well as he could" (Explanation of the Sayings of the Lord [cited by Eusebius in History of the Church 3:39]).

    Sometime after 244 the Scripture scholar Origen wrote, "Among the four Gospels, which are the only indisputable ones in the Church of God under heaven, I have learned by tradition that the first was written by Matthew, who was once a publican, but afterwards an apostle of Jesus Christ, and it was prepared for the converts from Judaism and published in the Hebrew language" (Commentaries on Matthew [cited by Eusebius in History of the Church 6:25]).

    Eusebius himself declared that "Matthew had begun by preaching to the Hebrews, and when he made up his mind to go to others too, he committed his own Gospel to writing in his native tongue [Aramaic], so that for those with whom he was no longer present the gap left by his departure was filled by what he wrote" (History of the Church 3:24 [inter 300-325]).

    So you're saying Papias didn't matter. I disagree. And so does Catholic scholarship.
    Matthew's audience was the Jews. Eusebius tells us he began by preaching to the Hebrews and when he made up his mind to go to others, he committed his own Gospel...
    We have no original manuscripts, period. Means nothing.
    That's your problem, not mine.
    A very good possibility that that was an editorial comment by someone else.
    And then in the same breath you say that they cribbed off each other. LOL.
     
  14. Yekcidmij

    Yekcidmij Polymath

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    Of course I accounted for it. I even discussed it in my last post.

    If I didn't think Papias mattered I wouldn't have devoted more time than you trying to understand his statement correctly. It looks to me as if I take Papias more seriously than you.

    Points for you I guess. Does Catholic scholarship acknowledge the synoptic problem and Markan priority? Just curious...

    I suppose pretending not to see the ambiguity in Papias' statement is supposed to help you?

    And what is Eusebius' source? Papias? Euseibius himself is hardly evidence - he clearly gets his information elsewhere and cites as much.

    And my argument didn't require an original, just evidence that the original was written in Aramaic. Perhaps some later manuscripts that were still in/copied in Aramaic would suffice?

    Well, the synoptic problem is there whether or not you acknowledge it. Maybe you're the one refusing to deal with scholarship now?

    Based on what? The speculation continues to mount.

    As I said, I wouldn't try to build much off of the necessity of an Aramaic Matthew. Your requirement to speculate and argue from silence will continue.
     
  15. Root of Jesse

    Root of Jesse Admiral of the Fleet/First Sea Lord Supporter

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    What, over your head? Global Warming is said to have a 97% consensus, and yet many scientists know it to be an economic initiative rather than a real one.
     
  16. Root of Jesse

    Root of Jesse Admiral of the Fleet/First Sea Lord Supporter

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    Your assumption that I don't understand what he said is erroneous, as is your theory.
    Some do, many don't.
    Right, but it is widely held from many sources, which is why Eusebius affirms it. Our Tradition is very strong, my friend.
    And what evidence would you accept? Why would you copy in Aramaic if you were broadcasting to the Latin/Greek world?
    Describe what that is, please...
    And as I said, you're the one building straw houses. The people who cared enough to write about it, who were closer to the time than any theorist you might present, say otherwise. I have no need to build any theories. I believe the order of the Gospels indicates who wrote them and probably when.
    https://biblicalstudies.org.uk/pdf/scripture/04-7_190.pdf

    You might be interested in the above. It helps both of us.
     
  17. prodromos

    prodromos Senior Veteran Supporter

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    According to the Catholic Church...
     
  18. Erik Nelson

    Erik Nelson Well-Known Member Supporter

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    Zechariah 6:12, The Branch shall rebuild the temple

    Isaiah 51:1-2, Israelites are hewn stones

    Matthew 16:16-18 = Genesis 22:17-18, Peter as Abraham shall overcome enemy gates

    Luke 3:16-18 = 2 Samuel 24:10-25, Threshing floor of Araunah the Jebusite bought by David and built on by Solomon



    in Luke 3 John the Baptist. Was saying that the Messiah was? Standing. On his threshing floor. That alludes to the story of Araunah on the Jebusite. Who's threshing floor David bought? And on which Solomon built the temple.

    Jesus built his spiritual temple, the church from stones of belief like Peter's confession of the Messiah Hood of Jesus in Matthew 16.


    Inspired by the discussion in the excellent book Windows into the Bible.

     
  19. Erik Nelson

    Erik Nelson Well-Known Member Supporter

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    [Staff edit].

    Peter means rock. In Greek. Jesus said "You are Peter the Rock and upon this rock, I will build my church."

    Jesus also told Peter 3 times "feed my sheep feed my sheep feed my sheep". What other Apostle? What other person in human history was charged with that duty?

    Not my fault. I wasn't consulted for my advice in this decision. But Peter was given the keys to the Kingdom. He was the first cornerstone of the church -- the spiritual temple, Christ began to build -- And was Tasked with shepherding THE entire flock Singular.

    Peter undertook that until he was martyred in Rome, In. approximately 64. AD At which time he presumably passed. The burden of responsibility onto a successor.
     
    Last edited by a moderator: Jan 18, 2019
  20. Just_a_Christian

    Just_a_Christian Active Member

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  21. Just_a_Christian

    Just_a_Christian Active Member

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    The mere premise that Christ was going to build His church, which He purchased with His own blood, upon Peter, is about as far removed from Biblical teaching as one can be. Christ is the only foundation!!!! 1 Corinthians 3:9-11 For we are God’s fellow workers; you are God’s field, you are God’s building.According to the grace of God which was given to me, as a wise master builder I have laid the foundation, and another builds on it. But let each one take heed how he builds on it.For no other foundation can anyone lay than that which is laid, which is Jesus Christ
    Sorry about typo
     
  22. Just_a_Christian

    Just_a_Christian Active Member

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    [Staff edit].

    The pppe is absolutely NOT the head of the church, Christ is!!!!!!!
    Colossians 1:15-18
    He is the image of the invisible God, the firstborn over all creation.For by Him all things were created that are in heaven and that are on earth, visible and invisible, whether thrones or dominions or principalities or powers. All things were created through Him and for Him.And He is before all things, and in Him all things consist.And He is the head of the body, the church, who is the beginning, the firstborn from the dead, that in all things He may have the preeminence.
    The power to bind and loose is referring to the power through the gospel of Jesus Crist to forgive sins. If we obey the gospel our sins are forgiven/loosed through baptism and ratified in heaven. If we don't obey the gospel our sins are bound and also ratified. This is in harmony with the Bible for we know ONLY DIETY has the power to forgive sins!
    Furthermore, there is NONE but CHRIST as our mediator between the church and God!!
    1 Timothy 2:5

    For there is one God and one Mediator between God and men, the human Christ Jesus, -
     
    Last edited by a moderator: Jan 18, 2019
  23. Albion

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    Isaiah doesn't support the concept of a Papacy because it deals with a different situation, and "build" does not mean "rule over." But the strongest evidence--especially for Christians who want to make traditions the equal of divine revelation--is that the idea of a Pope was not part of the church until 300 or so years after Christ. So, no tradition or scripture to support it.
     
  24. Albion

    Albion Facilitator

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    [Staff edit].

    To be more specific about the Isaiah account and its alleged foreshadowing of the Papacy, in one case keys were given and in the other a key was given.

    Catholics also typically argue that both instances deal with creating a Prime Minister, although that office was unknown until modern history and neither the position referred to in Isaiah nor the Papacy in NT times is even close to being what a Prime Minister is!
     
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  25. Just_a_Christian

    Just_a_Christian Active Member

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    Honestly, that's the first time I've heard catholics use Isa 22 in an attempt to justufy the Papacy. I had already used Isa 22 in an earlier post to refute their claim.
    I stumbled upon this website accidentally while looking for a site of like minded Christians for edification. I really dislike arguing and believe at a certain point becomes wrong but have great disdain for false doctrine. I also fear we can become complicit through silence.
     
  26. Root of Jesse

    Root of Jesse Admiral of the Fleet/First Sea Lord Supporter

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    The key phrase is where Jesus tells Peter "Whatever you bind on earth shall be bound in heaven; and whatever you loose on earth shall be loosed in heaven." The authority to bind and loose is the same as Isaiah 22. It means that the Prime Minister (in Isaiah) has the authority of the King. In Matthew 16, it means that Peter has the authority of Christ (the King).
    Also, you know that we have a line of papal succession from Peter on. I realize some of it has discrepancies, but that doesn't mean there's no line of succession.
     
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  27. Albion

    Albion Facilitator

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    There was no such position as Prime Minister. Even if there had been, that is a political post, not a religious one, so the comparison fails there as well.

    Apostolic Succession doesn't mean that there is a Pope or should be. All sorts of churches/denominations have bishops in Apostolic Succession without any Pope figure.
     
  28. Root of Jesse

    Root of Jesse Admiral of the Fleet/First Sea Lord Supporter

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    Sure there was. The King chose his Prime Minister, in fact, replaced him when he was found wanting. Jesus, our King chose Peter to be His prime minister, who had the authority to act in His name.
    Yeah, and what does that prove?
    You don't think the pope is anyone, but we believe you're wrong.
     
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