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Scripture Reading: Matthew 16:13-20
"I Will Build My Church"
1. Jesus spent much of his teaching time in the northern regions of Palestine (Galilee and even northward), Matt 16:13 (15:21, 29).
2. His miracles and message drew huge crowds and made many enemies, 15:30-31; 16:1.
3. Matthew 16:13-20: Period of assessment of the work, affirmation of faith (by Peter), announcement of His nature and future achievement, and a command about announcing Him to the world.
I. JESUS ASKED QUESTIONS, Matt 16:13-16.
A. “Who Do Men Say that I, the Son of Man, Am?” 16:13-14
1. John…Elijah…Jeremiah…one of the prophets.
2. All were taking something from the words and works of Jesus about who He was.
3. Men continue to give different answers about Jesus:
a. Created being less than Jehovah (a god) (Jehovah's Witnesses).
b. First Spirit-child born to God in pre-existence (LDS Church).
c. Good moral man and teacher, but not divine (liberal theologians).
d. Delusional deceiver, conflicted about who is was ("Jesus Christ, Superstar").
4. What men say about Jesus does not define truth and must not define our understanding of Christ or our faith in Him, Jno 14:8-11.
B. “But who do You Say that I Am?” Matt 16:15-16
1. The Christ: Anointed, Chosen by God; Messiah (King), Psa 2:2, 6.
2. The Son of the living God: Divine nature, cf. Psa 2:7 (2 Sam 7:14); Heb 1:5 (2-3).
3. Peter: The good confession, cf. Matt 10:32; 1 Tim 6:12-13.
4. Any confession and assessment of Jesus that is inferior to this is false and blasphemous! Jno 5:18-23
II. HOW TO KNOW WHO JESUS IS, Matt 16:17.
A. The Revelation of Who Jesus Is Comes from God, not Man, Jno 5:36-39; 8:18; Acts 2:22. The testimony of the Father:
1. Miraculous works of Jesus, Jno 5:36; 10:24-25; cf. Matt 9:1-8
2. Words of the Father Himself, Matt 3:17.
3. Scriptures, Jno 5:39, 46.
4. Words (teachings) of Jesus, 5:47; cf. Matt 12:15-21.
B. We Must Assess the Evidence, cf. Jno 20:24-31; Acts 17:2-4.
III. WHAT JESUS WOULD DO: BUILD HIS CHURCH, Matt 16:18.
A. Building the Church (the saved, the called out ones, Heb 12:22-23):
1. Foundation: The Christ, Isa 28:16; Psa 118:21-24; 1 Cor 3:11.
2. Builder: Jesus Christ, Heb 3:3, 6 (Acts 2:47).
3. The gates of Hades: The strength of sin and death would not prevent the work of Christ to build His church, Acts 2:24-29.
B. The Church: Those Called Out of the World into the Kingdom of the Son, 1 Pet 2:9-10; Col 1:13.
1. Called by the gospel into His kingdom, 1 Ths 2:12; to obtain glory, 2 Ths 2:14.
2. Added by Christ to His church, Acts 2:47.
C. The Importance and Value of the Church of Christ.
1. Christ built it by dying for it and purchasing it with His blood (Acts 20:28).
2. He loved it (Eph 5:25), it reveals God’s wisdom and eternal purpose in Christ (Eph 3:10-11).
3. He saves it (Eph 5:23) and expects us to be holy before Him (Eph 5:27).
IV. WHAT THE APOSTLES WOULD DO: PRONOUNCE THE RIGHT OF ENTRY INTO THE CHURCH, Matt 16:19.
A. Keys: Accessibility to the Kingdom (Church), cf. Isa 22:22.
1. By gospel preaching, cf. Acts 2:22, 40-41, 47; 5:20, 42.
2. By it, forgiveness or retention of sins occurs, Jno 20:21-23.
3. The apostolic words are the measure of faithfulness to the Christ, Jno 13:20; 1 Jno 4:6 (2:18-19).
V. WHAT JESUS PROHIBITED THE APOSTLES FROM DOING, Matt 16:20.
A. Apostles were not to tell others He was Jesus the Christ.
1. In God’s time they would tell the world (Mk 16:15), Matt 17:9 (His resurrection, 16:4; Rom 1:4).
2. At this time, the Father was revealing Jesus as the Christ by His works and words (16:17).
Who do you say Jesus is? Your answer will determine your eternity, Matt 10:32-33.