“And I tell you, you are Peter, and on this rock I will build my church, and the gates of hell shall not prevail against it. I will give you the keys of the kingdom of heaven, and whatever you bind on earth shall be bound in heaven, and whatever you loose on earth shall be loosed in heaven.” Matthew 16:18-19
From that time Jesus began to show his disciples that he must go to Jerusalem and suffer many things from the elders and chief priests and scribes, and be killed, and on the third day be raised. And Peter took him aside and began to rebuke him, saying, “Far be it from you, Lord! This shall never happen to you.” But he turned and said to Peter, “Get behind me, Satan! You are a hindrance to me. For you are not setting your mind on the things of God, but on the things of man.” (Matthew 16:18-23)
Jesus’ model of discipleship of invitation and challenge repeats again here. Jesus gives Peter a new name and invites and into the same intimate relationship and covenant he had with Abraham. Peter in Greek means “Little Rock.” He is now a co-heir in the kingdom, he has the power of those in the kingdom.
One one side of this covenant relationship is invitation, where we get the cupboards of heaven. On the other side is Challenge. We need to take on ownership of these gifts and power in a more and more responsible manner.
The challenge begins in the reality of the cross that is at the center of this covenant relationship. v.21:
Peter struggles with this challenge and rebukes Jesus v.22
Jesus name for Peter changes from Peter, “Little Rock”, to Satan. v.23
Jesus tells him early you had your mind on the things of the Father, now you have your mind on you. That change in mindset changes our identity.
We were called to be fruitful and multiply, but also to rule. To take responsibility. Jesus is saying, I am inviting, entrusting you all my power and authority, but I am challenging, I need you to become the kind of person who can wield that type of power. You don’t give your child the keys to your car if they are not capable.
What feels like a harsh rebuke is a kind action. Jesus is telling him, and telling us, your place of power is not in front of me (get behind me), but walking behind me. I need you walking behind me in everything:
The way you talk to your children.
The way you talk to your spouse.
The way you manage your finances.
The way you take care of your health.
The way you___________________ (Fill in the blank).
Read: Matthew 16:13-26, Genesis 17:1-9
Take some time in prayer with the Holy Spirit. Jesus has a kingdom name for you, reflect on what it may be. In what areas of your life do you find it easy to accept the invitation of Jesus and walk behind him in the strength of that name? In what areas of your life do you struggle with his challenge and step out in front of Jesus?
Please share your reflections in the comments box below.