Matthew 16:18-19 And I tell you that you are Peter, and on this rock I will build my church, and the gates of Hades will not overcome it. I will give you the keys of the kingdom of heaven; whatever you bind on earth will be bound in heaven, and whatever you loose on earth will be loosed in heaven.”
Catch phrases are great, for they have sticking power. For example, “You have the keys to my heart.” Or, how about this one, “Stuck between a rock and a hard place.” Catch phrases tend to sum up emotions with a series of words that are easily imprinted upon one’s subconscious.
However, the words Jesus spoke to Peter in Matthew 16:18-19 were more than catch phrases. They were life and redemption for a man who turned his back on Jesus when he said he would die for Jesus (Matthew 26:35).
The words Jesus spoke to Peter were the epitome of second changes and the overwhelming power of God’s forgiveness and grace. This had nothing to do with how could Jesus forgive Peter after denying Him, but everything to do with Jesus demonstrating the many layers of His love and forgiveness for His children. Yet another powerful example of how we are to love and forgive as Jesus did. In our own strength this is impossible, but Philippians 4:13 says, “I can do all things through him who strengthens me.” Father, we ask that you strengthen us today.
You see at just the right time while we were still sinners, Christ died for us (Romans 5:6). His display of love was unselfish, forward thinking, eternal, and unconditional.
Jesus saw beyond the fear and weakness of Peter for He knew in Peter’s weakness there would be an opportunity for God’s grace to make him strong. I’m going to write that again because it is worth repeating. Jesus saw beyond the fear and weakness of Peter for He knew in Peter’s weakness there would be an opportunity for God’s grace to make him strong.
I can imagine Jesus saying to Peter, “Them keys and that rock you threw away, I saved them for you because I believe in you.” The church that Jesus said He would establish through Peter and the Key that would unlock Heaven on Earth, were kept on deposit for Peter to withdraw.
So, I say to whomever is reading this blog today, that “them mistakes” you’ve made repeatedly, Jesus remembers them NO MORE (Hebrews 8:12). That key that unlocks feelings of guilt and condemnation are declared null and void (Romans 8:1).
Them failed relationships, addictions, destructive behaviors and low self-esteem issues are covered by the blood of Jesus (Ephesians 1:7). That key which unleashed the hands of fury filled with stones labeled “Guilty as charged” have been rendered useless by the greatest lawyer and intercessor of all time (Romans 8:34).
So, I say be encouraged today by reflecting on the love our Lord and savior lavished upon Peter, for the gates of Hades shall not overcome God’s amazing grace. To God be the honor and glory forever and ever, amen!
To God be the glory, amen!