The Lord Jesus Gave Peter the Keys of the Kingdom of Heaven, Why Did the Lord Approve of Peter’s Faith?

In Matthew 16:18-19 the Lord Jesus said: “And I say also to you, That you are Peter, and on this rock I will build my church; and the gates of hell shall not prevail against it. And I will give to you the keys of the kingdom of heaven: and whatever you shall bind on earth shall be bound in heaven: and whatever you shall loose on earth shall be loosed in heaven.” Whenever I read these two verses, I would think: Why did the Lord Jesus give Peter the keys of the kingdom of heaven? Since the Lord Jesus bestowed upon Peter such great authority, it means that the Lord Jesus approved of Peter’s faith and that Peter was a person after God’s heart. But I couldn’t understand why the Lord commended Peter since he had denied knowing the Lord three times before His crucifixion. I was very perplexed. One day, I opened the Bible, and turned to Matthew 16, trying to find from the context the prerequisite and background for the Lord Jesus’ giving Peter the keys of the kingdom of heaven. Matthew 16:13-19 records: “When Jesus came into the coasts of Caesarea Philippi, he asked his disciples, saying, Whom do men say that I the Son of man am? And they said, Some say that you are John the Baptist: some, Elias; and others, Jeremias, or one of the prophets. He said to them, But whom say you that I am? And Simon Peter answered and said, You are the Christ, the Son of the living God. And Jesus answered and said to him, Blessed are you, Simon Barjona: for flesh and blood has not revealed it to you, but my Father which is in heaven. And I say also to you, That you are Peter, and on this rock I will build my church; and the gates of hell shall not prevail against it. And I will give to you the keys of the kingdom of heaven: and whatever you shall bind on earth shall be bound in heaven: and whatever you shall loose on earth shall be loosed in heaven.” I read these verses repeatedly and pondered them carefully: Did the Lord Jesus approve of Peter because, of His disciples, only Peter recognized He was the Christ? Why did the Lord Jesus say that Peter was blessed and give him the keys of the kingdom of heaven after he answered Him by saying, “You are the Christ, the Son of the living God”? But I still could not figure out why the Lord approved of Peter’s faith, and didn’t know how I should pursue to receive the Lord’s approval of my faith. I asked all the preachers I knew these questions, but no one could give me a satisfying answer. I was very disappointed: Why do none of them know the answer? How then can they lead the believers onto the path of being approved by God? I felt that the prospects of my faith in God were bleak, thinking: If only I could see the Lord Jesus and ask Him about that. …

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Matthew 16:26 – Money Can’t Buy Life

Thoughts on Today’s Verse…

Reading this verse, I thought of a sister’s experience I’d ever heard of. On one occasion, God’s gospel came to her. But she didn’t cherish this opportunity, and still spent her time and energy on making money. On a rainy evening in the winter, her husband urged her to fish. And they had a good catch that day. On the way home, to lighten the boat, her husband intended to swim ashore. Seeing her husband swam away, she hoped she could return home luckily. However, the boat sank, she fell into the water and she couldn’t swim. With strong fear and choking feeling, she cried to God desperately in the struggle, “Almighty God, help me!” After that, a miracle happened—the paddle split from the boat. She surfaced by the buoyancy of paddle … After she was out of danger, she truly experienced that no matter how much money one earns, it is powerless before death. Money cannot save our lives. If one only blindly seeks material enjoyments but doesn’t come before God to worship Him, he may face danger and death at any moment without God’s care and protection.

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Bible Verses About Holiness – Without Holiness No Man Shall See the Lord

Because it is written, Be you holy; for I am holy” (1 Peter 1:16). From the verse we can see that as Christians, we should pursue to cast off our corruption and be purified as so to see the Lord, because the Lord is holy. The following verses about holiness will help us get a better understanding of God’s will.

1 Peter 1:15

But as he which has called you is holy, so be you holy in all manner of conversation;

1 Peter 1:16

Because it is written, Be you holy; for I am holy.

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Why Is It Hard for a Rich Man to Enter God’s Kingdom?

When I got up early in the morning, I said a prayer, then opened up the Bible and read the following: “And, behold, one came and said to Him, Good Master, what good thing shall I do, that I may have eternal life? And He said to him, Why call you Me good? there is none good but One, that is, God: but if you will enter into life, keep the commandments. He said to Him, Which? Jesus said, You shall do no murder, You shall not commit adultery, You shall not steal, You shall not bear false witness, Honor your father and your mother: and, You shall love your neighbor as yourself. The young man said to Him, All these things have I kept from my youth up: what lack I yet? Jesus said to him, If you will be perfect, go and sell that you have, and give to the poor, and you shall have treasure in heaven: and come and follow Me. But when the young man heard that saying, he went away sorrowful: for he had great possessions. Then said Jesus to His disciples, Truly I say to you, That a rich man shall hardly enter into the kingdom of heaven. And again I say to you, It is easier for a camel to go through the eye of a needle, than for a rich man to enter into the kingdom of God” (Matthew 19:16–24). I had read these verses many times, but I didn’t know why it is hard for a rich man to enter God’s kingdom. What did the Lord mean when He told this parable to His disciples? A camel simply cannot go through the eye of a needle, which implies that the rich young man was entirely unable to enter into the kingdom of God. So, what does the Lord want us to understand through this parable?

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Knowing God’s Unoffendable Disposition From His Flooding the World. A Commentary on Genesis 6:13

Thoughts on Today’s Verse

In the past, when I read this verse, I only knew that the people of Noah’s time were too evil and corrupt so they were destroyed by God. Not until I read a passage of words in a gospel book did I understand that the destruction of the world by the flood contains God’s disposition.

It says, “There is another revelation of God’s disposition here: In God’s eyes, there is a limit to His patience toward man’s corruption, toward the filthiness, violence, and disobedience of all flesh. What is His limit? It’s as God said: ‘God looked on the earth, and, behold, it was corrupt; for all flesh had corrupted his way on the earth.’ What does the phrase ‘for all flesh had corrupted his way on the earth’ mean? It means any living thing, including those who followed God, those who called on the name of God, those who once sacrificed burnt offerings to God, those who verbally acknowledged God and even praised God—once their behavior was full of corruption and reached God’s eyes, He would have to destroy them. That was God’s limit. So to what extent did God remain patient to man and the corruption of all flesh? To the extent that all people, whether followers of God or unbelievers, were not walking the right path. To the extent that man was not just morally corrupt and full of evil, but where there was no one who believed in God’s existence, let alone anyone who believed that the world is ruled by God and that God can bring people light and the right path. To the extent that man despised God’s existence and did not permit God to exist. Once man’s corruption reached this point, God would no longer have patience. What would replace it instead? The coming of God’s wrath and God’s punishment.”

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The Canaanite Woman’s Faith in God: God Is Still God No Matter How He Treats Me

The New Testament recorded: “And, behold, a woman of Canaan came out of the same coasts, and cried to him, saying, Have mercy on me, O Lord, you son of David; my daughter is grievously vexed with a devil. But he answered her not a word. And his disciples came and sought him, saying, Send her away; for she cries after us. But he answered and said, I am not sent but to the lost sheep of the house of Israel. Then came she and worshipped him, saying, Lord, help me. But he answered and said, It is not meet to take the children’s bread, and to cast it to dogs. And she said, Truth, Lord: yet the dogs eat of the crumbs which fall from their masters’ table. Then Jesus answered and said to her, O woman, great is your faith: be it to you even as you will. And her daughter was made whole from that very hour” (Matthew 15:22–28). After reading these verses, I felt that the Canaanite woman did have great faith. When the Lord Jesus called her a dog, she could still say such words as, “yet the dogs eat of the crumbs which fall from their masters’ table.” Eventually she gained the Lord’s grace and approval on account of her true faith in Him. Afterward, through reading the words in a book I got some new understanding and knowledge of this story, and knew a little why the Lord Jesus praised the faith of the Canaanite woman.

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John 6:63 – God’s Word Is Life

Thoughts on Today’s Verse

From this verse, we can see that God’s words are the foundation of our life. Without the supply of God’s words, no matter how good the material life we enjoy is, it is of no benefit to our life. However, we are often toiling for the flesh, and think it is our proper pursuit. Some people even spend their lives pursuing fleshly enjoyment. In fact, material enjoyment only brings us spiritual emptiness and distress besides momentary pleasure, for material things cannot be man’s life. As created beings, we should listen to and obey God’s words, for God’s words are life. They are the guarantee that ensures our survival, and they are the way of life that we should seek.

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1 Peter 4:17 – Judgment of the Last Days

Thoughts on Today’s Verse…

In the last days, God will do the work of judgment. The Lord Jesus once predicted: “And if any man hear my words, and believe not, I judge him not: for I came not to judge the world, but to save the world. He that rejects me, and receives not my words, has one that judges him: the word that I have spoken, the same shall judge him in the last day” (Jhn 12:47-48). “For the Father judges no man, but has committed all judgment to the Son” (Jhn 5:22). “And has given him authority to execute judgment also, because he is the Son of man” (Jhn 5:27). From these verses, we can confirm that the Lord will do the work of judgment and purification when He comes again. Then how will He do this work? Not long ago, I read a passage of words: “The work of judgment is God’s own work, so it should naturally be done by God Himself; it cannot be done by man in His stead. Because judgment is the conquering of the human race through the truth, it is unquestionable that God still appears as the incarnate image to do this work among men. That is to say, in the last days, Christ shall use the truth to teach men around the earth and make all truths known to them. This is God’s work of judgment.” God will show all the truths to us when He returns, and teach us with truths. If we follow His footsteps and accept all of the truths He expresses, we will gain the life, that is to say, we can gain the eternal life. How exciting it is!

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Matthew 2:11 – Accept the Work of the Holy Spirit

Thoughts on Today’s Verse

This verse records that three Magi from the East followed the guidance of a star and found the newly born Lord Jesus. This story is thought-provoking. The three Magi from the East came to Jerusalem to look for the born King of the Jews according to the guidance of the star. They thought that the king should be born in a royal palace, so they went to the royal palace to inquire of King Herod at first. Dispatched to Bethlehem by the King Herod, they continued to follow the star guidance and found the newly born Lord Jesus, bowing down to worship Him and presenting gifts, finally, they received instructions from the Lord in a dream and they did not go back and tell the King Herod. It can be seen that the Magi are follower of the guidance of the Holy Spirit. No matter where Jesus was born, they all believed He is the King of the Jews. They did not refuse to accept the Lord Jesus because of the place where the Lord Jesus was born, and ultimately they did follow the instructions of the Lord to leave instead of obeying Herod’s orders, which avoided the Lord being known by King Herod. This record is a great inspiration to us Christians. At that time, the scribes and Pharisees wantonly condemned, judged and blasphemed the Lord Jesus because the Lord Jesus’ birth and His preachings didn’t conform to people’s notions, eventually they crucified the Lord Jesus, committing the heinous crime of resisting God. From this we can see that we humans are too arrogant and too rebellious! Revealed as God’s Word: “The Jews of the time all read from the Old Testament and knew of Isaiah’s prophecy that a male infant would be born in a manger. Why then, with this knowledge, did they still persecute Jesus? Is this not because of their rebellious nature and ignorance of the work of the Holy Spirit? At that time, the Pharisees believed that the work of Jesus was unlike what they knew of the prophesied male infant; … Can you be such that you accept without question all the work of the Holy Spirit? If it is the work of the Holy Spirit, then it is the right stream. You should accept it without the slightest misgivings, rather than picking and choosing what to accept. If you gain some knowledge from God and exercise some caution against Him, is this not an act truly uncalled for?” It can be seen that only those who always obey the guidance of the Holy Spirit can seek the appearance of God. It is the same when it comes to the return of the Lord Jesus. No matter what God does, only those who seek, accept , and obey God can seek the appearance of God.

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Those Who Love God Are Those Who Follow the Lord’s Way.

Thoughts on Today’s Verse…

From this scripture we can see that those who truly love God are those who are able to abide by the Lord’s way and that God loves such kind of people. This is because those who love God are able to worry about God’s worries and think about God’s thoughts, be of one mind with God, obey and revere God, and do everything in accordance with God’s will. Take the Lord Jesus’ disciple Peter for example. He pursued to love God and satisfy God all his life. He accepted God’s commission to shepherd God’s sheep without his personal plans and considerations. So the Lord Jesus gave him the keys to the kingdom of heaven. Peter achieved an ultimate love for God and obedience unto death, creating a beautiful and resounding testimony for God. It can be seen that Peter is after God’s heart and his pursuit is praised by God. Therefore, we should imitate Peter and pursue to be a person who can obey, revere, and love God. By doing so, we can have God’s presence and blessings and inherit God’s promises. Just as God says, “The reason why only those who truly love God have the most value and meaning in their lives, and only they truly believe in God, is because these people live in God’s light, they are able to live for God’s work and management; they do not live in darkness, but live in the light; they do not live meaningless lives, but lives that have been blessed by God. Only those who love God are able to testify to God, only they are God’s witnesses, only they are blessed by God, and only they are able to receive God’s promises. Those who love God are God’s intimates, they are the people beloved by God, and they can enjoy blessings together with God. Only people such as this will live to eternity, and only they will forever live under God’s care and protection” (“Those Who Love God Will Forever Live Within His Light”).

From: Grow in Christ

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