God, incarnate, is the head of His own spiritual house. Hebrews 3:6 Exalted, as the Lord God who purchased with His own blood the Bride, whom He loved from the beginning, IS the same yesterday, today and forever. He ALONE, holds the keys/reins of government over this institution!! He could never have a successor and needs none, and hence makes no allusion to succession in His declaration to build His church. Christ is the Rock, Deuteronomy 32:4,18,37, the rock of ages, the everlasting Rock. There are not two rocks, the primary and secondary. The apostle Paul writes: “Ye are built upon the foundation of apostles and prophets, Jesus Christ Himself, being the chief corner-stone.” Ephesians 2:20 The authority communicated to the apostles was limited by the explicit instructions in their commission, and it still exists in the church, and will continue to exist to the end of time, embodied in the inspired record of their acts and teachings!! Peter was a great Christian, but Peter is NOT a ROCK!!
The conversation Jesus had with His disciples in Caesarea Philippi has often been confused because it has not been studied. Jesus asks them, “Whom do men say that I, the son of man, am?” They give the common reports concerning Him, which are not laudatory to Him, as they would have been to most men. He then says to them, “but whom say ye that I am?” All the disciples are addressed. The question assumed that all present could answer. Simon Peter, being inspired by God, the Father and known to be strongly impulsive, is the first to speak. There are times questions asked cause hearts to stop, eons of time seemingly pass before there is an answer, though it is but a moment Sometimes eternal truths are spoken in seconds that eternity, alone, will explain. As though God, the Father, could not wait or be restrained, God the Father answers, “This is My beloved Son, hear ye Him”, or speaking through a human vessel He cries; “Thou art the Christ, the Son of the living God”!! As Jesus later said; “Father, I thank Thee that Thou hast heard Me, I knew that Thou hearest Me always; But because of the multitude that stand around, I said it, that they may believe that Thou didst send Me.” John 11:41-42 There is nothing unusual about this incidence that the Romanist should get so excited about; the same is said when Jesus was baptized by John the baptizer, Matthew 3:16-17, God, the Father shouted it from the Judean sky!! So great was the truth Peter was said to be “blessed” because through Peter’s mouth flowed the words DIRECTLY from the lips of the Ancient of Days.
A denominational pastor and a preacher of the Church of Christ were discussing the plan of salvation when the preacher of the Church of Christ said to the denominational pastor; “What is the element in baptism that washes away sin, water or blood?” To which the denominational pastor replies; “Why blood, of course.” The preacher says to him: “correct, upon this confession of truth, having repented, you can be baptized and be saved!!” Who would EVER imagine that the words, “this confession” refer to anything else than the truth confessed by the denominational pastor?? It would NEVER occur to an unbiased listener that “THAT CONFESSION” describes the PERSON of the confessor and not the confession, itself!
This “great confession” is again heard when Philip taught the Eunuch JESUS, Acts 8:35-38. Peter applies this prediction to Christ ONLY in 1 Peter 2:6. John wrote his gospel that men may believe what Peter confessed, John 20:30-31, Paul openly taught in Acts 18:5, “testifying to the Jews that Jesus was the Christ.” When writing to the Church o f Christ in Corinth, 1 Corinthians 10:4, Paul wrote; “that Rock was Christ”.