There are quite a few verses misunderstood in the Word of God (and that’s an understatement) and Matthew 16 v 18 is one of them.
Peter is indeed the Greek word for rock, and many people interpret this verse saying that Peter is the rock that the Lord would build His church upon; this is quite a prominent doctrine in one particular denomination.
However that is not what Jesus meant by this verse.
In the verses before we read that Pater has recognised that Jesus is the Christ, the Son of the Living God (Matthew 16 v 16).
This is a huge truth, a truth that should be dominant in the church, as dominant as a huge cliff rising out of the landscape would be.
Peter is of course an important person but alongside Jesus and Who He was he is really quite insignificant; maybe we could say he would be quite a small pebble in relation to the huge slab of rock that would be the truth of Jesus.
Indeed verse 18 gives us a wonderful picture that actually sets out this comparison.
The Greek Word for rock in Peter’s name means a pebble, a small rock on a pathway while the word for rock that the church would be built upon means a mass of connected rock, a huge slab of rock, a solid rock rising up through the earth.
Peter is not the rock that the church would be built upon, even though his ministry was valuable and very important.
The rock that the church would be built upon was the truth of Who Jesus was.
Jesus and the truth of Who He was and what He did is the corned stone, the foundational stone of the church (1 Corinthians 3 v 10 and 11).
The truth of Jesus and Who He was is also what we build our faith upon, in the same way as the church was built upon it. Our faith is in Jesus and not in any man.
Speak this out today…..”Thank you Lord for Jesus, thank you that He is the Christ, the Son of the Living God”.
Matthew 16 v 18…..And I say also, unto thee, That thou art Peter, and upon this rock I will build my church: and the gates of hell shall not prevail against it