Mattityahu 16

1 6 And the Perushim and Tzedukim approached, to test Rebbe, Melech HaMoshiach, asking him to present them with an ot (sign) from Shomayim.
2 But in reply, Rebbe, Melech HaMoshiach said to them, When it is erev, you say, It will be fair weather, for the sky is fiery red.
3 And in the boker (morning) you say, There will be stormy weather today, for the sky is overcast fiery red and threatening. You have daas to distinguish the signs of the appearance of the sky, but you can’t discern the signs of the times? [T.N. See Ro 1:18]
4 A dor rah umnaef (an evil and adulterous generation) demands an ot (sign), and no ot will be given it except the ot of Yonah HaNavi. And having left them, Rebbe, Melech HaMoshiach went away.
5 When the Moshiach’s talmidim arrived at the other side, they had forgotten to take lechem.
6 But Rebbe, Melech HaMoshiach said to them, Take special precaution against the chametz (swelling leaven) of the Perushim and Tzedukim.
7 But they began reasoning among themselves, saying, We took no lechem.
8 But Rebbe, Melech HaMoshiach, aware of their machshavot (thoughts), said, You men of little emunah, why do you reason among yourselves that you have no lechem?
9 Do you not yet have binah or remember the five loaves of the chamesh elafim (five thousand), and how many baskets full you took up?
10 Or the shevah loaves of the arbaat elafim (four thousand), and how many large baskets full you took up?
11 How is it that you do not chap (grasp mentally) that I did not speak to you concerning lechem? But beware of the chametz (swelling [like evil, like gaavah, pride], all-permeating leaven) of the Perushim and Tzedukim.
12 Then Moshiach’s talmidim understood that Rebbe, Melech HaMoshiach did not say to beware of the chametz of the lechem, but of the chametz of the teaching of the Perushim and the Tzedukim.
13 Now, having arrived in the district of Caesarea Philippi, Rebbe, Melech HaMoshiach began asking his talmidim, saying, Who do men say that [I] the Ben HaAdam am?
14 And Moshiach’s talmidim said, Some say Yochanan of the tevilah of teshuva, and others say, Eliyahu HaNavi, but still others say, Yirmeyah or one of the Neviim.
15 He says to them, But you, who do you consider me to be?
16 And, Shimon Kefa said in reply, You are the Rebbe, Melech HaMoshiach, the Ben Elohim Chayyim!
17 And Rebbe, Melech HaMoshiach said in reply to him, Ashrey atah (happy are you), Shimon Bar Yonah, because basar vadahm (flesh and blood) did not give you this hisgalus (revelation), but Avi shbaShomayim.
18 And I also say to you that you are Shimon Kefa [Petros] and upon this TSUR I will build my Kehillah, my Chavurah (the Community of Moshiach) and the shaarei Sheol (gates of Sheol) shall not overpower it.
19 I will give you the maftechot Malchut HaShomayim (keys of the Kingdom of Heaven); and whatever you shall bind as asur (prohibited) on haaretz shall be bound as asur (prohibited) in Shomayim, and whatever you shall loose as mutar (permitted) on haaretz shall be loosed as mutar (permitted) in Shomayim.
20 Then Rebbe, Melech HaMoshiach gave the directive to his talmidim that they should tell no one that he was the Rebbe, Melech HaMoshiach.
21 From that point he began to explain to his talmidim that it was necessary that Rebbe, Melech HaMoshiach go to Yerushalayim, and suffer many things from the Zekenim (Elders), and the Rashei Hakohanim (the Chief Priests) and the Sofrim (Scribes) and it was necessary for Moshiach to be killed and have his histalkus (passing), that he would undergo the Techiyas HaMoshiach (Resurrection of Moshiach) on Yom HaShlishi.
22 And Kefa took him aside and began to rebuke him, saying, Chas vshalom (G-d forbid)! Adoni, this shall never happen to you!
23 But Rebbe, Melech HaMoshiach turned and said to Kefa, Get behind me, Hasatan! You are a michshol (stumbling block) to me; for you are not setting your mind on the things of Hashem, but the things of Bnei Adam!
24 Then Rebbe, Melech HaMoshiach said to his talmidim, If anyone wishes to come after me, let him turn in hinnazrut (self-denial), and take up his etz shel hakarav atzmo (tree of self-sacrifice), and follow me.
25 For whoever wishes to save his nefesh shall lose it; but whoever loses his nefesh on account of me [Moshiach] shall find it.
26 For what will a man be benefited if he acquires the whole world and forfeits his neshamah, or what will a man give in exchange for his neshamah?
27 For the Ben HaAdam [Moshiach] is about to come in the kavod of his Av with his malachim and will then recompense every man according to his maasim.
28 Omein, I say to you, there are some of those who are standing here who shall not taste death until they see the Bias of the Ben HaAdam [Moshiach] coming in his Malchut.

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Mattityahu 16 Commentary

Chapter 16

The Pharisees and Sadducees ask a sign. (1-4) Jesus cautions against the doctrine of the Pharisees. (5-12) Peter's testimony that Jesus was the Christ. (13-20) Christ foretells his sufferings, and rebukes Peter. (21-23) The necessity of self-denial. (24-28)

Verses 1-4 The Pharisees and Sadducees were opposed to each other in principles and in conduct; yet they joined against Christ. But they desired a sign of their own choosing: they despised those signs which relieved the necessity of the sick and sorrowful, and called for something else which would gratify the curiosity of the proud. It is great hypocrisy, when we slight the signs of God's ordaining, to seek for signs of our own devising.

Verses 5-12 Christ speaks of spiritual things under a similitude, and the disciples misunderstand him of carnal things. He took it ill that they should think him as thoughtful about bread as they were; that they should be so little acquainted with his way of preaching. Then understood they what he meant. Christ teaches by the Spirit of wisdom in the heart, opening the understanding to the Spirit of revelation in the word.

Verses 13-20 Peter, for himself and his brethren, said that they were assured of our Lord's being the promised Messiah, the Son of the living God. This showed that they believed Jesus to be more than man. Our Lord declared Peter to be blessed, as the teaching of God made him differ from his unbelieving countrymen. Christ added that he had named him Peter, in allusion to his stability or firmness in professing the truth. The word translated "rock," is not the same word as Peter, but is of a similar meaning. Nothing can be more wrong than to suppose that Christ meant the person of Peter was the rock. Without doubt Christ himself is the Rock, the tried foundation of the church; and woe to him that attempts to lay any other! Peter's confession is this rock as to doctrine. If Jesus be not the Christ, those that own him are not of the church, but deceivers and deceived. Our Lord next declared the authority with which Peter would be invested. He spoke in the name of his brethren, and this related to them as well as to him. They had no certain knowledge of the characters of men, and were liable to mistakes and sins in their own conduct; but they were kept from error in stating the way of acceptance and salvation, the rule of obedience, the believer's character and experience, and the final doom of unbelievers and hypocrites. In such matters their decision was right, and it was confirmed in heaven. But all pretensions of any man, either to absolve or retain men's sins, are blasphemous and absurd. None can forgive sins but God only. And this binding and loosing, in the common language of the Jews, signified to forbid and to allow, or to teach what is lawful or unlawful.

Verses 21-23 Christ reveals his mind to his people gradually. From that time, when the apostles had made the full confession of Christ, that he was the Son of God, he began to show them of his sufferings. He spake this to set right the mistakes of his disciples about the outward pomp and power of his kingdom. Those that follow Christ, must not expect great or high things in this world. Peter would have Christ to dread suffering as much as he did; but we mistake, if we measure Christ's love and patience by our own. We do not read of any thing said or done by any of his disciples, at any time, that Christ resented so much as this. Whoever takes us from that which is good, and would make us fear to do too much for God, speaks Satan's language. Whatever appears to be a temptation to sin, must be resisted with abhorrence, and not be parleyed with. Those that decline suffering for Christ, savour more of the things of man than of the things of God.

Verses 24-28 A true disciple of Christ is one that does follow him in duty, and shall follow him to glory. He is one that walks in the same way Christ walked in, is led by his Spirit, and treads in his steps, whithersoever he goes. "Let him deny himself." If self-denial be a hard lesson, it is no more than what our Master learned and practised, to redeem us, and to teach us. "Let him take up his cross." The cross is here put for every trouble that befalls us. We are apt to think we could bear another's cross better than our own; but that is best which is appointed us, and we ought to make the best of it. We must not by our rashness and folly pull crosses down upon our own heads, but must take them up when they are in our way. If any man will have the name and credit of a disciple, let him follow Christ in the work and duty of a disciple. If all worldly things are worthless when compared with the life of the body, how forcible the same argument with respect to the soul and its state of never-ending happiness or misery! Thousands lose their souls for the most trifling gain, or the most worthless indulgence, nay, often from mere sloth and negligence. Whatever is the object for which men forsake Christ, that is the price at which Satan buys their souls. Yet one soul is worth more than all the world. This is Christ's judgment upon the matter; he knew the price of souls, for he redeemed them; nor would he underrate the world, for he made it. The dying transgressor cannot purchase one hour's respite to seek mercy for his perishing soul. Let us then learn rightly to value our souls, and Christ as the only Saviour of them.

Mattityahu 16 Commentaries