Comment to 'What does Jesus mean when He says, "upon this rock I will build my assembly"?'
  • Todd, thanks for starting this topic.  As you have shown from other scriptures, Peter could not be the one person upon whom the entire church was built. It has to be Jesus, not only His person, but also the faith which connects us to Him. I would add that Peter's confession was based upon a revelation from God the Father.

    Others have pointed out that there are different Greek words that were translated into rock. You are Peter (a lesser rock). Not that I agree with Rome, but Peter was important in the early church and was used of God to open the door into the Kingdom of God to first the Jews at Pentecost and later the gentiles with Cornelius. It was he who wrote that we are all "living stones" built together into a spiritual house of worship.

    Another point I would like to make is that there is a handing down of the essentials of the faith from one generation to the other. In the early church there were trusted leaders who were discipled by others who could trace back to the first generation of apostles. None of them were powerful popes in the eyes of the world. The idea of apostolic succession was I believe a perversion of this principle.

    In my studies it looks as though the "Gnostic" teachers were misleading many. It seemed safer to find those who knew Christ or one of the apostles, and later those who were discipled by them to get answers. (2 Timothy 2:2). The Gnostics and false teachers also prompted the canonization of the New Testament writings. Many strange teachings were being circulated, and the church needed to establish a standard by which these could be tested.

    Sorry for the length. Once I got started I found more things to share!

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