Jesus Verse by Verse

an expanded commentary on the Gospel of Matthew

Jesus Verse by Verse...

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16:11 Again note Jesus’ frustration with His followers’ lack of understanding. We should so seek to understand Him, for clearly it’s pleasing to anyone who loves us that we understand them. See on 15:16.
16:12 Doctrine is compared to yeast; it influences a large mass of dough, out of proportion to its own volume. This is the power and importance of doctrine. We must understand correctly.
16:18 The rock was the rock of Peter’s belief that Jesus was God’s Son (:16), and Peter’s personal preaching of it. ‘Peter’ means ‘rock’; it was a nickname, something like ‘Rocky’.
16:19 This was promised to all the disciples- Mt. 18:18. The Roman Catholics misuse this verse to claim that Peter and therefore the Pope has this power. But there’s no reason to think that any authority was passed on from Peter, nor the other disciples, to any subsequent generation.
16:23 Peter is called ‘Satan’, ‘an adversary’, showing that ‘satan’ doesn’t mean a sinful Angel.  The word simply means ‘an adversary’. Jesus turned to speak to Peter- Peter had been walking behind Jesus- and tells him to really ‘get behind me’. Hence He says in v. 24 that to follow behind Him means taking up a cross. Peter didn’t want Jesus to die on the cross because this meant that those who followed Jesus should also likewise die. But Jesus tells him to really get behind Him, to be a real follower of Him, not just externally but in the spirit of carrying His cross. Peter failed badly here, so soon after his spiritual peak of 16:17,18. Our spirituality- and that of our brethren- goes up and down dramatically.
16:28 This is a reference to the transfiguration which we now read of in chapter 17.