Rev. Terry Forke, District President of the Montana District of The Lutheran Church—Missouri Synod, joins Rev. Brady Finnern to study Matthew 16:13-28.
God the Father reveals the truth of Christ to Peter and us: He is the Christ the Son of the Living God. He is the Messiah proclaimed from the beginning (Genesis 3:15). He is the Son of the living God (Matthew 3:17 & Psalm 18:46) who will fulfill all that the LORD has promised. This confession reveals that Christ is our rock, He will build the church, and the devil will never overcome Christ’s forgiveness, life, and salvation. Christians are not in a defensive position, but we boldly confess the truth of this living Christ and the gates of heaven are wide open by His cross and empty tomb. “O Holy Spirit, lead us to repent so that we may be loosed from our sins by our rock, our living LORD, Jesus Christ. Help us to receive this forgiveness from our pastor in confidence that it is true also in heaven. O Holy Spirit enter in, Amen”
Thy Strong Word reveals the light of our salvation in Christ through study of God’s Word, breaking our darkness with His redeeming light. Each weekday, two pastors fix our eyes on Jesus by considering Holy Scripture, verse by verse, in order to be strengthened in the Word and be equipped to faithfully serve in our daily vocations.
Thy Strong Word is hosted by Rev. Brady Finnern, pastor of Messiah Lutheran Church in Sartell, MN, and graciously underwritten by the Lutheran Heritage Foundation.
Peter Confesses Jesus as the Christ
13 Now when Jesus came into the district of Caesarea Philippi, he asked his disciples, “Who do people say that the Son of Man is?” 14 And they said, “Some say John the Baptist, others say 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 replied, “You are the Christ, the Son of the living God.” 17 And Jesus answered 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 tell you, you are Peter, and on this rock[a] I will build my church, and the gates of hell[b] shall not prevail against it. 19 I will give you the keys of the kingdom of heaven, and whatever you bind on earth shall be bound in heaven, and whatever you loose on earth shall be loosed[c] in heaven.” 20 Then he strictly charged the disciples to tell no one that he was the Christ.
Jesus Foretells His Death and Resurrection
21 From that time Jesus began to show his disciples that he must go to Jerusalem and suffer many things from the elders and chief priests and scribes, and be killed, and on the third day be raised. 22 And Peter took him aside and began to rebuke him, saying, “Far be it from you, Lord![d] This shall never happen to you.” 23 But he turned and said to Peter, “Get behind me, Satan! You are a hindrance[e] to me. For you are not setting your mind on the things of God, but on the things of man.”
Take Up Your Cross and Follow Jesus
24 Then Jesus told his disciples, “If anyone would come after me, let him deny himself and take up his cross and follow me. 25 For whoever would save his life[f] will lose it, but whoever loses his life for my sake will find it. 26 For what will it profit a man if he gains the whole world and forfeits his soul? Or what shall a man give in return for his soul? 27 For the Son of Man is going to come with his angels in the glory of his Father, and then he will repay each person according to what he has done. 28 Truly, I say to you, there are some standing here who will not taste death until they see the Son of Man coming in his kingdom.”
- Matthew 16:18 The Greek words for Peter and rock sound similar
- Matthew 16:18 Greek the gates of Hades
- Matthew 16:19 Or shall have been bound… shall have been loosed
- Matthew 16:22 Or “[May God be] merciful to you, Lord!”
- Matthew 16:23 Greek stumbling block
- Matthew 16:25 The same Greek word can mean either soul or life, depending on the context; twice in this verse and twice in verse 26
English Standard Version (ESV) The Holy Bible, English Standard Version. ESV® Text Edition: 2016. Copyright © 2001 by Crossway Bibles, a publishing ministry of Good News Publishers. esv.org