existence of God

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  1. Your opinions are yours and I respect that bit can you really be so ignorant and frightened that you can’t even believe in that fact another advance civilization is out there.I hope I didn’t seem to rude like I said before you are entitled to ur own opinion.

    1. I appreciate your sentiments. :). However I strive to be a man of logic. There is a great deal of evidence that the UFO phenomenon is extra dimensional in origin and not extraterrestrial. If you haven’t had a chance yet, please check out the article entitled simply UFO’s? It is much more in depth. Thanks for stopping by and checking out my site and for the response.

      1. Of course there inter dimensional there much more advanced than us I just felt the need to comment because it Denys the fact of alien abductions and that makes me mad because I’ve seen the ETS that come for me and there not mean but very advanced.This is all I’ll say.

  2. This is awesome and am waiting for MORE AND MORE AND MORE!!! Thank you! 😊

  3. The rights to which the Founders refer are “Life, Liberty and the Pursuit of Happiness.” They certainly did not imply an equality of outcome, merely of optRtrunipy.oegards.

  4. Clearly you have a deep faith. And there are plenty of sceptical voices you can heed on the subject of UFOs to help you sustain the ‘uniqueness of mankind’ notion. You quote them as reverently as you do the Bible. However I would direct you to books such as Leslie Kean’s ‘UFOs’ for a sober overview of the alternative argument. I cannot imagine after reading it that you will be willing to stick quite so firmly to your conclusions.

    The best evidence I have come across for alien visitation is the book by Paul R. Hill called ‘Unconventional Flying Objects’. It details the hard science of the best UFO sightings. Always readable it is nevertheless unsparing in its use of things like equations to make its point that the best sightings are scientifically consistent, despite being reported by the general public. He makes it clear that this can’t be chance. He had a career that included working with NASA and at the Jet Propulsion Laboratory. From his writing style his brilliance is self-evident and, significantly, from the outset he doesn’t ask the question ‘are we alone’; he simply states that we are not. On page 311 he indicates he has classified knowledge to that effect. Interestingly, according to UFO lore, alien technology has been partly reversed engineered and one of the companies said to be involved in this is on Hill’s CV. He is dead now and the book was published posthumously by his wife.

    Even the notion of the uniqueness of mankind on Earth has been well and truly battered by science’s recent investigations into the higher mental functions of a range of animals. For example, elephants show a clear awareness of death and even date-specific annual migration to ritualistically grieve for the dead. It may be hard for you and indeed any of us to understand but there is a possiblity that some other creatures have a sense of the divine.

    I can see no sign whatsoever that science is turning away from the theory of evolution and it is sad that religious people still see evolution has having any bearing on faith. Genesis was clearly written by people who believed the sun and stars went around the Earth. This was in keeping with the Aristotelian view of Creation then widespread. Every word of Genesis confirms this. Did you really expect them to mention Black Holes and Supernovae? Did God forget to mention this stuff to the authors? Really? Perhaps they just caught Him on a bad day! More realistically, Genesis is a work of faith based on contemporary knowledge. To take it literally is to fight against the evolution of faith that took us from pagan sacrifice to the Sermon on the Mount. Yes, religion evolves as well just as people evolve throughout their lives. This seems to me to be the way of all things and, if I were religious, I would not feel so defensive towards the notion.

    1. Friend thank you for taking the time to consider my article and share your thoughts. As you can see from the majority of sources I site, the Lee are many ufologists (non-Christian) who have come to the conclusion that the UFO phenomenon is spiritual in nature, and not extra-terrestrial. The majority of investigators I referenced based their conclusions on years of firsthand investigation, and not on a priori religious convictions. The same is true with the many experts I quoted from who are opposed to the theory of evolution, based-not on religious persuasion-but on systematic studies of various scientific disciplines over extended periods of time. In fact, many of the scientists I quote in my articles are former atheists who embraced creationism after being persuaded by their evidenced in their particular field of scientific study. I am a Christian because of the evidence, not in spite of it. 🙂 this is especially true in regard to the many evidences that the Bible-including the Book of Genesis-demonstrates scientific truths which were far advanced for Moses’ time. If you are interested, I would highly recommend the book Genesis: The Biblical Basis For Modern Science by Henry Morris. Far from believing in ancient mythological concepts of a universe revolving around the earth system, the Pentateuch (and especially Genesis) reveals incredibly advanced scientific foreknowledge. Please message any time and share your thoughts. I will also try and look into the books you referenced, and I appreciate the suggestions very much. Thanks again and have a blessed day!

      1. I will keep an eye out for Henry M Morris’s book. My only concern is that when I look him up on Wikipedia, the Criticism section in the entry doesn’t exactly inspire me. I’d like to hear your thoughts on it. An expertise in civil engineering will only get you so far in the field of palaeontology!

      2. 😃. There is much more to Henry Morris then his degree in civil engineering, I promise. Wikipedia is an interesting website. There are many reasons why students are not allowed to use Wikipedia as a reference in research papers. (I wonder if their article on Charles Darwin points out that the only degree that he had was in theology? 😉). In any case, I believe if you check him out you won’t be disappointed. Some other excellent books that I would recommend are Brad Harrub’s Convicted: Scientist Examines The Evidence For Christianity and Kyle Butt’s Behold! The Word Of God. Enjoy my friend and God bless!!

      3. Oh, it’s that Josh Peck! I see…they’re not aliens, they’re…cherubims! How could I have been so blind not to see that! It all makes sense now! The experts who contributed to Leslie Kean’s book must be kicking themselves for not having deduced this!
        Alternatively, some modern Christians are simply trying to update aspects of their mythology to make it appear more pertinent to today’s world. This process continues, as I have already indicated, as manifestation of religion continuously evolving. Some of these new myths will endure longer and lead to new forms, but most will become rapidly extinct.
        Cherubims? This is pure religion after all, dressed in the garb of science.
        Witness the extraordinary doublespeak of Peck’s closing comments:
        “As always, my hope is not only to inform you, but to provoke further study and research on your own. There is a wealth of information out there; far more than can be included in a book such as this. I hope to broaden your horizons and cause you to consider a new perspective. Most of all, I hope to lead you to the truth. At the very least, I hope to convince you to search for the truth yourself, exploring all possibilities, and not necessarily sticking with the one that benefits you the most on a personal basis, but boldly accepting the one that is most correct and genuine, even if it means you must sacrifice your current paradigm.”

  5. Do you mean by ‘researcher’ in your post Josh Peck the actor? I can’t find anyone else with that name after a quick look on Google. If you do, well, I’m sure he’s a nice man, but REALLY?
    Whether you do or not let give you this thought. Accepting for a moment, ‘hypothetically’, that evolution is actually true, there will be those who will write books, give lectures, and produce apparently credible arguments contradicting reality. This will happen. There is a huge market for this because of need of people to believe in something solid, unchanging and authoritative that assumes authority and insists people regard it as absolute truth. It makes building a mental framework on which to make sense of the world so much easier. Rather than accept that we know very little about anything and what we do know keeps changing, it is much easier to believe that one thing is absolutely and always true. Having meddled with religion in the past I have experience of this.
    Some people, like me, like to examine thoroughly the source of what they are told. Many other people, I have found are…less fussy, shall we say. I have heard some superficially compelling arguments that the Earth is flat. However, astronomers have an alternative opinion and the evidence they provide, when compared with flat Earth evidence, is of a profoundly different order. If you are serious about truth above all else, you really must examine all the evidence and cross-check everything you are told. My experience of religious people is that truth is not their main priority. Believing what they believe is true, however, is their main priority and they will try to back up their beliefs using whatever source is on the market.
    The problem with faith is that new believers are presented with what I call the full kit. They are told that what they are told is not just what they are told but is true because they have been told it is true and if anyone has told them different then they must not believe what they are told!
    This is the absurd paradox that makes atheists and agnostics out of many. In the end, it is intellectually more consistent to stick to evidence and the checking of sources.
    As for Darwin, Wikipedia – unless you believe it is all made up, of course – will prove a revelation (no pun intended) if you are comparing him to Henry Morris!

    1. Sorry it has taken a while to get back up with you.

      Josh Peck, as far as I know, isn’t an actor. He has written some fascinating books on quantum mechanics.

      I’m sorry your experiences with religion have demonstrated that many are not interested in truth. I have met some who are not interested in the truth also, but who only want to promote and re enforce previously held beliefs. Of course, this is true of people from all types of backgrounds (religious and otherwise). The Lord declared that if any man wills to do His will, he will know whether the teaching is true (John 7:17).

      The facts of science continually point to the existence of the Creator, while at the same time refuting the vain imaginings of such philosophies as Darwinism. If you would like to examine some more evidences along these lines, please consider my articles Twelve Scientific Reasons To Reject Darwinism and A Doctor Examines The Theory Of Evolution (this latter one also examines the reasons why Darwin’s theories would not even be published today).

      I have to leave, I am getting ready for a Bible study with a friend at one, but I hope you have a great day!

  6. Excellent post and very informative. Someone years ago suggested to me to break up my too-long paragraphs into smaller pieces…makes them much easier to read and separates out key points.

    Also might I humbly suggest that you break up posts like this one into two or more pieces…this feels like about 3,000 to 4,000 words…which is too long for the typical blog reader to stay with…almost long enough to be a chapter in a book.

    God bless you.

  7. I think sheol could be real and that lake of fire isnt real or lake of fire is sheol and that sheol dosent litterally have burning sulfur some just try to scare you into believing in GOD. Sheol may be in a way absence from GOD but only in a few ways for example GOD the mothers was directly present in sheol for example and maybe not even GOD the father. I think about sinners who dont show remorse for their sins or dosent repent or beg and plead for forgiveness from both GOD the mother and even GOD the father wouldnt be worthy to be in heaven ever and instead go to sheol which in no one feels pain and do not starve and are not thirsty and cannot be destroyed either and sheol is like a void kind of so much black darkness and no flowers no waterfalls
    no forests no food and maybe not even animals. Even if GOD the mother and GOD the father werent present in sheol like when two are inside same room as others in some way their divine presence is still there yet far away like their divine power keeps everyone in sheol permamenty alive but not on earth kind of alive but afterlife kind of alive spiritually alive so to speak. GOD the mothers and GOD the fathers omnipotent powers sustains everything inside existence even sustains all humans in sheol.

  8. Though I am not sure if the text was added or not, the supporting ideas you share are simply not true. Verse 7 can be omitted very easily and the scripture would read just fine, because the witness of God is in verse 6, not in verse 7. In fact, verse 7 does not mention any witness. But verses 6 and 8 do. Verse 6 is the witness of God, and verse 8 clarifies again. And he who accepts THIS witness, has the witness in himself. I testify the Spirit of God is the Spirit of the risen Christ. Jesus Christ the Son of God came by water and blood, and the Spirit bears witness.

  9. Daniel does not teach the wicked will have immortality. Shame and everlasting contempt is what is said. Only the contempt is everlasting and contempt is what will be felt for then not what they will feel.

    1. Great question! The legitimate one that was found among the Dead Sea scrolls is available. My copy is in the book The Ancient Book Of Enoch by Ken Johnson. It is on Kindle. Sorry it has taken me a while to get back to you, I just now started blogging on WordPress again. Most of my articles go on Facebook. I think I’ll start trying to do both again. God bless!!

  10. Mark,

    I am very interested in your site and content. I think that you and I are on the track. Justification (being declared right with God) is by faith alone, Rom. 4:1-5:21. Salvation (deliverance for those who have been justified) is by faith plus obedience, James 2:14-26, and others. This what Jesus said. “The work of God is to believe in Him whom He has sent.” But to those who have believed He, in effect, says, “Die with Me that you may truly live.” Salvation, in all of its forms, does not have anything to do with heaven, hell, eternity, or judgment. It simply means to be delivered. What you are being delivered from is 100% dependent on the context. So, a young widow is saved by getting re-married.

    I would like to continue a discussion with you.

  11. Thank you Mark. This is a consolidation of information on extra-Biblical sources that I have been looking for. I have put together a packet that contains the Gospel of John, a Bible Tract and now I can add this great source. Thank you again.

  12. Thank you for enlightment.
    Could you please explain how Lucifer and Jesus both are the morning star?

    1. Sorry it has taken me this long to see your comment, I’m getting back in the groove with WordPress. Thanks for your encouragement and I’ll share an article on that topic. God bless!
      Mark

  13. Russia’s Stalin studied at a seminary. Hitler was a Catholic (as was most of Germany) who put “Gott Mit Uns” – God is with us on the belt buckle of every armed forces member.
    Let us remember that even things done by Atheists, were not done in the name of Atheism.
    Somebody once said something very much like that…. Oh, yeah! It was you! 😯

    1. Thanks for reading and responding!

      Stalin was atheist and this philosophy led him to adopt his terrible practices which had no qualms about murdering people.

      Hitler was most definitely not a Christian even though he played the part. Instead he was a pagan who believed in and adhered to Darwin’s theory of evolution. I will provide ample evidence of this in some articles that I’ll post tomorrow Lord willing.

      Thanks again for reading and for your interesting thoughts!

      1. I repeat, and expand, for elucidation. Stalin may have later become an Atheist, but he was a Russian Orthodox Catholic when he attended a Christian Seminary. It was while he was there that he conceived and developed his plans for his later horrors. Either his study of God, the Bible, and Christianity caused it, or did nothing to prevent it.
        You Christian Apologists have got to stop playing the No True Scotsman game, and begin to accept responsibility for actions of those among you, that you blame on Atheists. 😯

      2. I repeat:

        Stalin’s horrible atrocities were a direct result of his atheist mindset. Unless you want to argue that Jesus’ teaching “love your enemies” lead to these attributes? (See Matthew 5:44-45).

        The problems you are reiterating are not about “Christians” and “atheists,” but about the worldview of Christians versus the worldview of atheists.

        If we want to see prime examples of what happens when atheism atheist worldview is espoused, check out Stalin (for one example).

        What happens when a people follow the Christian worldview as shown through Jesus Christ and the New Testament Scriptures?

        Let me know if you want to continue this discussion. 🙂

  14. Are you sure about Valentinus? Does not help when one understands Valentinus died in 160 AD where as Mani was born in 216, can we really say that Valentinus influenced Mani when there is a 56 year gap between death and birth. We can say for sure, it was not Valentinus himself that influenced Mani. Whether in his own writings or the writings of someone else-I do believe one would need to show that it was an adherent of Valentinus theology or some work by Valentinus that influenced Mani.

    1. Excellent question! Many of Valentius’s teachings were preserved in the church fathers. Johnson has this in his excellent study of Calvinism:

      “Valentinus said saving faith comes from your spirit, if you are one of the chosen (men are born saved),[ xvi] and some are not predestined to be saved but are predestined for hell. The rest might be saved through works.[ xvii] Only those whose spirits are an emanation from Sophia are predestined to be saved. All others are predestined to hell (double predestination),[ xviii] and those predestined for salvation do not need to practice good works.[ xix] So we can see that affirming predestination based on emanation, double predestination, denying original sin, and denying the need for holiness are all Gnostic ideas that Paul would classify as a “doctrine of demons.””

      — The Gnostic Origins of Calvinism by Ken Johnson
      https://a.co/fNMWBur

  15. This is what we need to understand. In over 5000 Greek manuscripts, are there errors whether intentional or not? Yep, lots and lots of them. What people need to really understand-when someone says there is an error in the manuscripts…it is not talking about right and wrong. What it is-maybe discrepancies would be better understood. When comparing two manuscripts-you find a hard time in one and the reason is in all CAPS and the other is not. So every time there is a difference even in just capitalization between texts…for each difference found-that is an error. If you see 100,000 or some big number of ‘Errors”, it is much ado about nothing.

  16. Interesting claims, but that is all you have. There is not one bit of evidence to support them, much less that Jesus Christ, son of god ever existed.

    Christians often fail to realize that their bible is the set of claims, which cannot be evidence for themselves.

    As for the claim that Jesus taught critical thinking, that is quite wrong. This character taught blind obedience. The stories are full of nonsense that actual critical thinking destroys. Examples are, 1. the claim one can see the entire earth from a mountain: that only works on a flat earth, which doesn’t exist. 2. the parable of the sower: the sower is at fault for being too stupid to cast the seeds where they would grow.

    These are only a couple of out many. Add to that all of the baseless and ridiculous claims, like the dead wandering around Roman-occupied Jerusalem, the religoio is no different than any other set of ignorant myths.

      1. they do not answer my questions, Mark. They are all typical excuses and false claims given by Christians.

        for example, claims that archaeology supports the claims of the bible are false. There is no evidence of Israelite slaves in ancient Egypt in the numbers claimed by the bible nor is there any evidence of the events in Exodus. Not one latrine, trashpit, grave has been discovered for the 600,000+ people that supposedly wandered around for 40 years in an area half the size of Pennsylvania. Christians and jews can’t even agree when this supposedly happened, and unsurprisingly, not one of Egypt’s enemies noticed them losing their entire army, food supply and a sizable portion of their population.

        That’s your problem, no evidence for the magic bits of the bible, so your claims are equivalent of claiming that a Spider-man comic book is true because it mentions New York City, or the myth that Athena and Poseidon participated in a contest to name the city of Athens.

      2. You say there is no evidence but I’ve provided tons of evidence. The problem isn’t lack of evidence: it is refusal to accept the evidence.

        Here is some more for you:

        https://marktabata.com/2021/11/05/archaeology-and-ezra/#more-1611

        https://marktabata.com/2021/11/04/judges-and-archaeology/#more-1590

        https://marktabata.com/2021/11/08/does-archaeology-disprove-the-bible/#more-1689

        https://marktabata.com/2021/10/05/archaeology-and-the-seven-year-famine/#more-1227

        https://marktabata.com/2021/07/21/king-nebuchadnezzars-madness-confirmed-by-archaeology/#more-1024

        https://marktabata.com/2021/11/16/archaeological-evidences-of-joseph-in-egypt/#more-1770

        https://marktabata.com/2021/11/05/how-a-lock-shows-us-that-the-book-of-judges-is-authentic/#more-1617

        https://marktabata.com/2021/11/05/the-mysterious-mounds/#more-1610

        https://marktabata.com/2021/11/04/joseph-and-imhotep/#more-1607

        https://marktabata.com/2021/11/04/giants-lets-ask-the-smithsonian/#more-1597

        https://marktabata.com/2021/10/11/the-dead-sea-scrolls-and-the-new-testament-scriptures/#more-1276

        https://marktabata.com/2021/07/21/the-qumran-fragments-and-the-new-testament/#more-1023

        https://marktabata.com/2021/11/18/genesis-and-the-enuma-elish-2/#more-1771

        https://marktabata.com/2021/10/07/the-ebla-tablets/#more-1251

        https://marktabata.com/2021/10/06/the-apiru-part-one/#more-1231

        https://marktabata.com/2021/03/12/evidences-of-a-global-flood/#more-950

        https://marktabata.com/2021/09/30/the-ipuwer-papyrus/#more-1177

        https://marktabata.com/2021/10/15/the-continuing-confirmation-of-the-exodus/#more-1394

        https://marktabata.com/2021/10/05/the-joseph-coins-2/#more-1226

        https://marktabata.com/2021/10/06/the-apiru-part-two/#more-1232

      3. and still more fail, Mark. Not one of these is evidence for your claims.

        The ipuwer papyrus mentions nothing about any of the events in the bible. That Christians and Jews try to claim it does shows just how little they have to support their nonsense. Any mere mention of a problem in Egypt, suddenly becomes 10 plagues, which no one noticed at all.

        I do love the “joseph coin” nonsense. Funny how there is not one image of these supposed coins. Gee, I wonder why.

        The same holds for the lies you have told about the Smithsonian supposedly documenting “giants”. I always love unsupported lies in self-published books. Quayle is a hilarious liar who preys on other morons to get them to buy gold. Like so many Christian liars, he never seems able to produce evidence for his claims.

      4. Vel,

        Your words just show your anger and arrogance. Every one of the facts I presented demonstrates concrete proof of the historical accuracy of the Bible, but you just want to hunt up a reason to reject them.

        1. The Ipuwer Papyrus is a document that contains several examples of confirmation of the Ten Plagues.

        2. The Joseph coins photos cannot be reproduced without violating copyright law.

        3. The Smithsonian Institute contains all of the information noted above.

        There is a reason why biblical archaeologist Titus Kennedy has noted:

        “Because the Bible contains stories from the ancient world, written in a style different than the method of modern historians and paired with theology, many have assumed that the narratives in the Bible are myth, legend, and propaganda instead of accurate history. In fact, the majority of scholars, most media and educational sources, and many in the general public regard the Bible as a fairy tale and frequently portray it as unimportant or irrelevant beyond literary and religious studies. For years, the Bible has been routinely attacked and disregarded on the basis of history or archaeology. And yet when people look into what archaeologists have unearthed, a different story comes to light, showing that instead of fiction and fairy tales, archaeology indicates that the Bible preserves an accurate recounting of the history addressed in its pages. Specifically, hundreds of artifacts from the distant past have demonstrated the events, people, and places in the Bible to be historical.” (Titus M. Kennedy, Unearthing the Bible: 101 Archaeological Discoveries That Bring the Bible to Life, 9(Kindle Edition); Eugene, Oregon; Harvest House Publishers)

        The problem here isn’t evidence: it is a hardened heart and an arrogant disposition that refuses to accept the facts.

        It may be stated categorically that no archaeological discovery has ever controverted a Biblical reference. Scores of archeological findings have been made which confirm in clear outline or exact detail historical statements in the Bible. And, by the same token, proper evaluation of Biblical descriptions has often led to amazing discoveries. (Dr. Nelson Glueck)

        Again:

        Archaeology has confirmed countless passages which have been rejected by critics as unhistorical or contradictory to known facts…Yet archaeological discoveries have shown that these critical charges…are wrong and that the Bible is trustworthy in the very statements which have been set aside as untrustworthy…We do not know of any cases where the Bible has been proved wrong. (Dr. Joseph Free)

      5. Well, here we go. The ipuwer papyrus mentions no plagues and none of the events in exodus. The text is out there so quote from it where you want to say it mentions the plagues, etc. I’ll be waiting.

        ROFL. Oh my, sorry dear, it is a lie that the coins can’t be reproduced because of “copyright law”. Copyright law has no effect on the photos of coins and gee, if they are so important and true, the owner of the coins can waive copyright if that indeed would be the case (it isn’t). You are truly incompetent, but do keep lying and demonstrating that you have no more interest in listeing to your god’s commands than I am.

        The Smithsonian Institution, not “institute”, has never claimed to have had giant humanoid remains. It is, again, a lie. Christians like you do love baseless claims from other chrisitans.

        Titus Kennedy is a fraud, who like Ron Wyatt, just can’t even seem to show evidence for his claims. Frauds like them depend on the ignorant and desperate like you.

        I always love the claim that the bible is written in different “styles”, as a way to excuse the nonsense within. There is no evidence to support the claims in the bible. There are no “hundreds of artifacts” that support the claims in the bible. As always, poor dear Titus can never show these artifacts. It’s also grand fun to see the common Christian claim that since there are mentions of real people and real places in the bible, that means that the bible claims must be true. If this is the case, then every god of every religion is as real as yours since the myths of those cultures also mention real people and places.
        Alas for Glueck, plenty of archaeological discoveries have disproven bible stories. The problem that Glueck, and you, have is that Chrisitans and Jews can’t agree on when a supposed magical event happened. So, we have both absence of evidence for the magic, and we have evidence of absence since at any time claimed by theists, other things have happened, no magic to be seen. You also have the problem that Glueck made many baseless claims like finding “king solomon’s mines” which is known to be nonsense.

        Repeating lies doesn’t make them true, Mark. Repeating long superseded nonsense is even more amusing. Unsurprisingly, you have to cite long disproven claims and claims that have no evidence to support them, as well as lie about things like “copyright law”. We indeed do know that the bible has been proven wrong, since we have no evidence of 600,000+ people leaving Egypt at any point in time, language changing in a day at Babel, a worldwide 28,000+ foot deep flood, any fabulous palaces or temples, no “wisest man in the world”, no day where the sky darkened and a major earthquake happened and the dead wandered around Roman-occupied Jerusalem on a Passover, etc.

      6. Yes, here we go.

        I have quoted evidences from numerous Christian and non-Christian sources regarding the archaeological confirmation of the Bible. I have also noted several examples of how archaeological evidences support the claims of the Bible.

        You really are having a hard time with that, aren’t you?

        Well, let’s have some more. 🙂

        Since you seem to have a particular fascination with the Ipuwer Papyrus, let’s camp there a while.

        “Though the evidence for the Exodus has been slow to be gathered, there is good reason to believe that it actually occurred as described in the Bible. This thinking is based on the biblical testimony, Egyptian extrabiblical sources, and archaeological excavation in Egypt and neighboring regions. For example, one of the most well-known known documents in Egyptology is the Ipuwer papyrus (officially known as Papyrus Leiden 344), which records an account remarkably similar to the plagues described in the book of Exodus. The papyrus was obtained b y Swedish diplomat, Giovanni Anastasi, and sold to the Leiden Museum in Holland in 1828. No one realized the exact significance of the contents of the document until the first full translation was done in 1909 by a British Egyptologist, Alan H.Gardiner, under the title The Admonitions of an Egyptian tian Sage from a Hieratic Papyrus in Leiden. In addition, there have been many later full translations made, including an Oxford edition (2009). Currently, the document is stored at the National Museum of Antiquities in the Netherlands. Its contents are widely regarded by Egyptologists as a lamentation over the catastrophic conditions in Egypt written by a high Egyptian official named Ipuwer sometime time prior to the thirteenth century BC (which is consistent with either an early or late chronology for the Exodus) .* Ipuwer was known as one of the great wise sages in Egyptian tian history. His astonishing description of the conditions, to the surprise of Egyptologists, gists, appeared remarkably similar to the biblical account of the ten plagues recorded in the book of Exodus. The date of the Ipuwer manuscript approximately fits the Exodus date. The hieratic script style was in use at that time period, the events described are remarkably similar to the plagues, the location of the events (Egypt) matches the setting of the Exodus, and the odds of all these calamities occurring at the same time make them more than coincidental. dental. There is no scientific, linguistic, or historical fact that Egyptologists can point to that would decisively preclude the content of the papyrus being a lament over the Exodus plagues. A simple comparison of the content in both the book of Exodus and the Ipuwer papyrus leaves little doubt to their similarities (see table below).” (Joseph M. Holden & Norman Geisler, The Popular Handbook Of Archaeology And The Bible: Discoveries That Confirm The Reliability of Scripture, 2555-2568 (Kindle Edition); Eugene, Oregon; Harvest House Publishers).

        Now, let’s have some specific examples of how the Ipuwer Papyrus confirms the accounts of the Bible. Please pay special attention Vel.

        “Exodus 4: 9—And it shall be, if they do not believe even these two signs, or listen to your voice, that you shall take water from the river and pour it on the dry land. The water which you take from the river will become blood on the dry land.”

        Ipuwer 7: 5—Behold, Egypt is fallen to the pouring of water. And he who poured water on the ground seizes the mighty in misery.”

        Exodus 7: 20-21-20 And Moses and Aaron did so, just as the LORD commanded. So he lifted up the rod and struck the waters that were in the river, in the sight of Pharaoh and in the sight of his servants. And all the waters that were in the river were turned to blood. 21 The fish that were in the river died, the river stank, and the Egyptians could not drink the water of the river. So there was blood throughout all the land of Egypt.

        Ipuwer 2: 10—The River is blood. If you drink of it, you lose your humanity, and thirst for water .”

        Exodus 9: 6, 23, 31—So the LORD did this thing on the next day, and all the livestock of Egypt died; but of the livestock of the children of Israel, not one died…. And Moses stretched out his rod toward heaven; and the LORD sent thunder and hail, and fire darted to the ground. And the LORD rained hail on the land of Egypt…. Now the flax and the barley were struck, for the barley was in the head and the flax was in bud.

        Ipuwer 6: 3; 3: 3; 7: 13—Gone is the barley of abundance . . . . Food supplies are running short. The nobles hunger and suffer . . . . Those who had shelter are in the dark of the storm .”

        Exodus 10: 15, 7—For they covered the face of the whole earth, so that the land was darkened; and they ate every herb of the land and all the fruit of the trees which the hail had left. So there remained nothing green on the trees or on the plants of the field throughout all the land of Egypt…. Then Pharaoh’s servants said to him, “How long shall this man be a snare to us? Let the men go, that they may serve the LORD their God. Do you not yet know that Egypt is destroyed?”

        Ipuwer 3: 13—“ What shall we do about it? All is ruin! ”

        Exodus 12: 29—And it came to pass at midnight that the LORD struck all the firstborn in the land of Egypt, from the firstborn of Pharaoh who sat on his throne to the firstborn of the captive who was in the dungeon, and all the firstborn of livestock.

        Ipuwer 2: 5, 6, 13; 4: 3—“ Behold, plague sweeps the land, blood is everywhere, with no shortage of the dead . . . . He who buries his brother in the ground is everywhere . . . . Woe is me for the grief of this time.”

        Exodus 12: 30—So Pharaoh rose in the night, he, all his servants, and all the Egyptians; and there was a great cry in Egypt, for there was not a house where there was not one dead.”

        Ipuwer 3:14—Wailing is throughout the land, mingled with lamentations.”

        Those are some examples of how the Ipuwer Papyrus records events to what took place in the Exodus Vel.

        But let’s have a little more shall we?

        You have also insinuated that there is no evidence that the Jews were in Egypt as slaves during the time of the Exodus.

        However:

        “There is no doubt that there was a significant Semitic population throughout Egypt during the New Kingdom (see chap. 3).Because of the preponderance of epigraphic evidence for a Syro-Palestinian presence in Egypt from the mid to late second millennium B.C., even the most skeptical historian cannot dismiss the fact that both the Bible and Egyptian sources agree on this situation.42 Even as far south as Thebes there was a significant number of Semitic-speaking people during the Empire period.43 The names of Semites have even turned up among the workers of Deir el-Medineh in western Thebes.44” (James K. Hoffmeier, Israel In Egypt: The Evidence For The Authenticity Of The Exodus Tradition, 3689-3697 (Kindle Edition); New York, New York; Oxford University Press)

        Again:

        “If the children of Jacob were never slaves in Egypt in the first place, then how comes it that there lies in the Brooklyn Museum a papyrus, conventionally dated to around 1700 BC, which lists a number of Hebrew slaves, slaves who possessed such familiar names as Shiphrah and Menahem? 12 Shiphrah is of considerable interest to us, for that is the name of one of the Hebrew midwives mentioned in Exodus 1:15. Is it one and the same person? Who knows? However, not only the slaves’ names, but their offices and duties are also listed – ‘chief over the house’ (the very same office, that of ‘mer- per’, which Joseph held under Potiphar), ‘house servant’ and so on. Out of 95 slaves listed for this particular household, 37 no less are Hebrew. 13” (Bill Cooper, The Authenticity Of The Book Of Genesis, 2035-2040 (Kindle Edition)).

        Oh but I forgot….Christians are just telling “lies.”

        My friend, it is time for you to fess up here and acknowledge what is painfully obvious: archaeology continuously confirms the historicity of the Bible. I have already presented plenty of evidence from archaeologists like Gleuck (whose testimony remains unblemished regarding the Bible and archaeology).

        Here is a little more for you:

        “”In extraordinary ways, modern archaeology has affirmed the historical core of the Old and New Testaments-corroborating key portions of the stories of Israel’s patriarchs, the Exodus, the Davidic monarchy, and the life and times of Jesus.” (Jeffery Sheler, US News &WorldReport (October 25, 1999), 52)

        Again:

        “In extraordinary ways, modern archeology Is affirming the historical core of the Old and New Testaments, supporting key portions of crucial biblical stories.” (Jeffery L Sheler, “Is the Bible True?” Reader’s Digest, June 2000)

        Oh, but I am “lying” about the Smithsonian Institute and giants according to you.

        “The following is a brief list of documented findings, all recorded in the Annual Report of the Board of Regents of the Smithsonian Institution Showing the Operations, Expenditures, and Condition of the Institution for the Year […] series (each book title ending with the year the discovery was made): · One skull measuring “36 inches in circumference.”[ 152] Anna, Illinois, 1873. (The average circumference measurement for the human skull is between twenty-one and twenty-three inches, depending on varying factors such as sex, ethnicity, etc.) · One full skeleton with double rows of teeth, buried alongside a gigantic axe, referred to in the report as a “gigantic savage.”[ 153] The skeleton—with a colossal skull—fell apart after exhumation, so an exact height/ head circumference was not reported, but the record states that “its height must have been quite [meaning “at least”] seven feet.” Amelia Island, Florida, 1875. · Giant axes and “skinning stones.”[ 154] One weighed over fifteen pounds, had an ornately carved handle, and was of such mass that it was documented: “Only a giant could have wielded this.” Kishwaukee Mounds, Illinois, 1877. · One jawbone that easily slipped around the entire face of a large man on the research team; one thigh bone measuring “four inches longer than that of a man six feet two inches high”; one “huge skeleton, much taller than the current race of men.”[ 155] Kishwaukee Mounds, Illinois, 1877. According to the Fifth Annual Report of the Bureau of Ethnology to the Secretary of the Smithsonian Institution 1883–1884, shortly following the discoveries in this bullet list, the Smithsonian team found ten more skeletons in mounds and burial sites in Wisconsin, Illinois, West Virginia, North Carolina, and Georgia. Not every one of them was measured for height, but each was documented as much larger than the skeletons of our current race; those that were measured ranged between seven to seven and a half feet long.[ 156] Similarly, in the Twelfth Annual Report of the Bureau of Ethnology to the Secretary of the Smithsonian Institution 1894, two enormous skulls, several baffling femur bones, and seventeen full skeletons also measuring between seven to seven and a half feet long (one in East Dubuque, Illinois, measured almost eight feet) were unearthed in Illinois, Mississippi, Georgia, North Carolina, Tennessee, Ohio, Pennsylvania, and West Virginia.[ 157] The West Virginia dig report contains an additional claim of “many large skeletons,” generically.[ 158] From these reports listed, more than forty thousand artifacts were found, including weapons, tools, jewelry, and various utensils that could not have feasibly been used by regular-sized humans.” (Stephen Quayle & Dr.Thomas R. Horn, Unearthing the Lost World of the Cloudeaters: Compelling Evidence of the Incursion of Giants, Their Extraordinary Technology, and Imminent Return, 4911-4937 (Kindle Edition); Defender Publishing)

        Did you know that these reports are available through Amazon?

        (By the way: these reports are identified as being from the Smithsonian INSTITUTION….your correction to “Institute” must not have realized this fact).

        But since this is such a sticking point with you as much as the Ipuwer Papyrus, let’s have some more.

        Since you are obviously an expert on Internet research, let me encourage you to look up the Rekhmire Tomb Paintings dating back to about 1475 B.C. You will see examples of the Egyptians drawing images of giants being taken in battle.

        Then maybe take a look at the Anastasi Papyrus, which describes Egyptian battles with the Shosu.

        “23,5 ones to look. Their eyes are good, thy hand grows weak(?)”. 25: T\’Q “^ /Q3 rn2«*’. Thou makest the name of every Maher, officers of the land of Egypt”. Thy name becomes like (that of) K-dr-d-y^ the chief of *I-s-r^*^ when the hyena” found him in the balsam-tree’*. — The(r) narrow defile’* is infested (?) with Shosu concealed beneath the bushes; some of them are of four cubits or of five cubits, from head(??) to foot(?)'”, fierce of face, their heart is not mild, and they hearken not to coaxing. Thou art alone, there is no helper(?)” with thee, no army””. (Sir Alan Henderson Gardiner, Egyptian Hieratic Texts Transcribed,1074-1086 (Kindle Edition) emphasis added, M.T.)

        Using the Egyptian royal cubit, this makes these giants roughly eight feet tall or larger.

        If you want more, just ask and I will gladly provide it.

        Now, you say this is all a lie-but here I am providing the proof.

        Regarding copyright law and the Joseph coins, I happen to know just a “little” about this. Several years ago, my wife was in the process of publishing a children’s book on Christian evidences and she had to purchase a license to reproduce a deal that she included in it. I provided documentation of the Joseph Coins, but you prefer to ignore it.

        It is not about a lack of evidence Vel, it is about the hardened condition of your heart. I hope you will decide to open it to the truth.

        Have a blessed day!! 🙂

      7. and funny how not oen of these are from a non-christain source. Sheler is a Christian, dear and an apologist. Try again.

        and again, still lies about copyright about the coins. Funny how there are no photos to be copyrighted. Oh darn!

        no evidence of giants, and the shosu weren’t giants. I do love that you haven’t a clue what a cubit is and that “giants” are no taller than a pro basketball player. Oh noes, the giants! ROFL.

        I do love the quotes from the Ipuwer papyrus, and how they don’t match Exodus. 7.5 doesn’t mention anything about “pouring water”, nor about who did it.

        The nile often turns red, and this is nothing new.

        Nothing new about famine, and surprise no magic fire falling from the sky, nor locusts, nor frogs, etc.

        No mention of all of the first born dying, just the usual death that can happen from illness. It wasn’t limited to the first born dear, don’t you think they’d hve mention such a thing?

        Yep, lots of semitic speakin people. Not all semitic people are Israelites, adn still not one latrine, trashpit or grave found from the 600,000+ plus people and animals wandering around, *despite* the bible saying where they went. Funny, hmmm?

        alas, Glueck isn’t unquestioned at all.

        Try again.

      8. So you now are claiming that US News & Word Report and Readers Digest are Christian sources? 😂

        Maybe you should consider the testimony of former skeptic William Ramsay who was firmly opposed to the historicity of the Bible. Indeed, he was so opposed to it that he set out to prove that Luke and Acts were forgeries written over a years years after the first century!! In many ways, he was like you (except he had much better arguments against Christianity, which were answered just as easily as yours).

        Then, guess what happened as he came face to face with the archaeological evidence?

        “First, let me share with you the story of Sir William M. Ramsay (1851-1939), famed as the once-skeptical New Testament scholar and archaeologist who became a staunch believer in the historical accuracy of the New Testament. He was educated in Scotland (University of Aberdeen) erdeen) and England (Oxford University), during which time he became enamored with the extremely critical scholarship of the F. C. Baur school of Tubingen, Germany. As a result of this, in 1890, he embarked on a journey through the biblical lands in order to confirm the historical errors rors of the New Testament writers. To his great surprise, he found that, at point after point, archeological data and sound historical scholarship confirmed the accuracy of the New Testament authors, and he wrote several important volumes that are still used to this day.95 Subsequent scholarship over the last century has brought further confirmation to Ramsay’s writings.” (Michael Brown, Answering Jewish Objections To Jesus: Volume Four-New Testament Objections, 41 (Kindle Edition); Grand Rapids, Michigan; Baker Books)

        There comes a point where a person’s comments are just pointless bickering. Thank you for showing the best of atheism for everyone here. I’ll stay with the evidence and continue to follow and speak words of “truth and reason” (Acts 26:25). And I’ll encourage you to open your eyes to the truth.

        I’ll conclude our discussion with this.

        “It is important to realize that archaeological excavations have produced ample evidence to prove unequivocally that the Bible is not a pious forgery. Thus far, no historical statement in the Bible has proven false on the basis of evidence retrieved through archaeologic research.” (Keith N. Schoville, Biblical Archaeology in Focus (Grand Rapids: Baker Books)), p. 156.

        And:

        “There can be no doubt that archaeology has confirmed the substantial historicity of Old Testament tradition.”[“Archaeology and the Religion of Israel,” in An Introduction to Bible Archaeology, ed. Howard F. Vos (Chicago: Moody Press, n.d.), p. 121.)

        And:

        “On the whole, however, archaeological work has unquestionably strengthened confidence in the reliability of the scriptural record. More than one archaeologist has found his respect for the Bible increased by the experience of excavation in Palestine. Archaeology has in many cases refuted the views of modern critics. It has shown, in a number of instances, that these views rest on false assumptions and unreal, artificial schemes of historical development. This is a real contribution and not to be minimized.”[Millar Burrows, “What Mean These Stones?” in An Introduction to Bible Archaeology, ed. Howard F. Vos (Chicago: Moody Press, n.d.), pp. 91-92.)

      9. Looks like you need to do some study on what “I will now bring this conclusion to a close” means.

        Been a pleasure chatting with you! 🙂

  17. Papias records that Matthew was originally written in Aramaic. The Catholic church has simply used this as an excuse to justify the papacy and Peter’s alleged ascension to leadership. Also it is likely that in conversation with His disciples, Jesus would have spoken in Aramaic. But Aramaic Matthew must of necessity been translated into Greek by the original disciple as quotes of it appear word for word in Mark and Luke. Although the original meaning can be preserved, no two translators would come up with word for word translations in all cases. This can be seen by simply comparing the New International and New American Standard versions. Both are translated by scholars from similar evangelical backgrounds (Gleason Archer and Howard Ervin worked on both) and yet the language is not identical.

    1. Thanks for the good insights!!

      I personally believe that there was an Aramaic copy of Matthew’s Gospel (even though one has never been recovered). Yet I also believe (based on the reasoning presented above) the Greek copy would logically have been the original. And the Greek makes a definite distinction between Peter (petros) and the rock (Petra).

  18. NT was written in Greek and in Matthew 16:19 the word “you” is singular second person. While the authority to bind and to loose were later also given to the rest of apostles in Mat. 18:18 (where Greek “you” is second person plural), the keys were given only to Peter. I suggest you to read Isaiah 22:20:22 where God gave key of house of David to Eliakim, who is in charge of household of Davidic king Hezekiah. Just like Peter only one person had the key.

    1. Thanks for the reply and the fascinating comments!

      The idea of “binding and loosing” is associated with “keys” in Matthew 16:19, which (as you acknowledge) was given to all of the Apostles in Matthew 18:18. As such, all of the Apostles had the same authority as Peter. Interestingly enough, the early church fathers pointed this out as well in their commentaries on the Rock (Petra) of Matthew 16:18. For example, one Catholic historian has noted:

      “All this is intelligible enough, if we look at the patristic interpretation of the words of Christ to St. Peter. Of all the Fathers who have exegetically explained these passages in the Gospels (Matt. xvi. 18, John xxi. 17), not a single one applies them to the Roman bishops as Peter’s successors. How many Fathers have busied themselves with these texts, yet not one of them…—Origen, Chrysostom, Hilary, Augustine, Cyril, Theodoret, and those whose interpretations are collected in catenas,—has dropped the faintest hint that the primacy of Rome is the consequence of the commission and promise to Peter! NOT ONE OF THEM HAS EXPLAINED THE ROCK OR FOUNDATION ON WHICH CHRIST WOULD BUILD HIS CHURCH OF THE OFFICE GIVEN TO PETER TO BE TRANSMITTED TO HIS SUCCESSORS, BUT THEY UNDERSTOOD BY IT EITHER CHRIST HIMSELF, OR PETER’S CONFESSION OF FAITH IN CHRIST; OFTEN BOTH TOGETHER. OR ELSE THEY THOUGHT PETER WAS THE FOUNDATION EQUALLY WITH ALL THE OTHER APOSTLES, THE TWELVE BEING TOGETHER THE FOUNDATIONS-STONES OF THE CHURCH. (Apoc. xxi. 14).” (Janus, Von Dollinger, Janus, The Pope And The Council, 90-91 (Kindle Edition, emphasis added M.T.); Pneuma Press)

      As an example of this statement, Origen wrote:

      “If we, too, have said like Peter, “You are the Christ, the Son of the living God”—not as if flesh and blood had revealed it to us, but by light from the Father in heaven having shone in our heart—we become a Peter. So to us there might be said by the Word, “You are Peter, etc.” For every disciple of Christ is a rock. . . . And upon every such rock is built every word of the church and the polity in accordance with it. For in each of the perfect—who have the combination of words, deeds, and thoughts that fill up the blessedness—the church is built by God.” (Origen (c. 245, E), 9.456.)

      “But if you suppose that upon only that one Peter the whole church is built by God, what would you say about John, the son of thunder, or about each one of the apostles? Shall we dare to say that the gates of Hades will not prevail against Peter in particular, but that they will prevail against the other apostles and the perfect? Does not the saying previously made, “The gates of Hades will not prevail against it,” apply in regard to all? . . . Are the keys of the kingdom of heaven given by the Lord to Peter only and will none other of the blessed receive them? (Origen (c. 245, E), 9.456.)

      “In this place [Matt. 16: 18, 19], these words seem to be addressed to only Peter—” Whatever you will bind on earth will be bound in heaven.” However, in the Gospel of John, the Savior gave the Holy Spirit to the disciples by breathing upon them and said, “Receive the Holy Spirit, etc.” Many then will say to the Savior, “You are the Christ, the Son of the living God.” . . . And if anyone says this to Him . . . through the Father in heaven, he will obtain the things that were spoken according to the language of the gospel to Peter. . . . For all who are the imitators of Christ bear the surname of “rock.” . . . Furthermore, as members of Christ, they derive their surname from Him, being called “Christians.” And from the rock, they are called “Peters.” (Origen (c. 245, E), 9.456.)

      The Catholic teaching that Peter alone was possessor of the keys of the kingdom is not Scriptural.

      Thanks for reading and sharing and God bless!

      1. Your wrote “The Catholic teaching that peter alone was possessor of the keys of the kingdom is not scriptural”. Then you deny that in Mat. 16:19 the word you is singular second person. The power to bind and to loose was given to all apostles but that keys of kingdom of heaven were given to Peter alone, just like they key of House of David was given only to Eliakim son of Hilkiah in Hezekiah’s time (Isaiah 22:22). The holder of the key before him was Shebna (Isaiah 22:15). Only one person who hold the key.

        Any can do cherry picking of Church Father’s statement that meets his belief. Your final authority is supposed to be Scripture. Because you don’t like what it says then ironically you seek support from outside Scripture, instead of relying on what Scripture says.

      2. Let’s notice what you have said. 🙂

        First, you argue that because Peter was granted the keys in Matthew 16:19, this automatically excluded the other Apostles from receiving those keys. However, I demonstrated that the keys represent the authority to “bind and loose.” This was a common Rabbinic expression, in fact, which went along with the “keys” symbolism. No one denies that Peter received this authority (I.e., these keys) in Matthew 16:19. However, you then go on to deny that the Lord Jesus granted the exact same authority to all of the Apostles in Matthew 18:18.

        You are the one denying Scripture my friend. Catholic tradition will not help you.

        Second, not only will Catholic tradition not help you-it completely refutes you on this matter. I have already quoted Origen and Von Dollinger who pointed out that the keys of Matthew 16:18-19 were given to all of the Apostles and not Peter alone, and that the church rests equally on all of the Apostles and not only on Peter. You accuse me of cherry picking which is an odd statement coming from one intent on denying the authority of the Word of God. However if more proof is requested, more can certainly be supplied.

        1 Corinthians 3:11-For no other foundation can anyone lay than that which is laid, which is Jesus Christ.

        Ephesians 2:20-having been built on the foundation of the apostles and prophets, Jesus Christ Himself being the chief cornerstone,

        Didn’t Paul know that the church was built on Peter alone as the foundation and key holder? Who should we accept: the inspired Word of God or Catholic tradition?

        2 Corinthians 11:5-For I consider that I am not at all inferior to the most eminent apostles.

        Paul certainly did not consider Peter to be the head or exclusive foundation of the church.

        However, if we want to look at Matthew 16:18-19 in more detail, I will certainly oblige. Following is a reference from a Catholic archbishop regarding how the early church fathers interpreted Matthew 16:18-19. You can include this with the information already cited from Dolinger another Catholic authority.

        “Dr. Kendrick, Catholic archbishop of St. Louis, grouped together the various interpretations of these Fathers as follows: 1. Seventeen Fathers designed Peter as the rock upon which the church is built. 2. Eight Fathers, including Origen, Cyprian, and Jerome, taught that the whole apostolic college is the rock. 3. Forty-four Fathers, including Gregory of Nyssa, Chrysostom, Hilary, and Ambrose, designated Peter’s confession of Christ’s divine Sonship as the Rock. 4. Sixteen Fathers that the Christ Himself was the rock. From this information, we conclude that even the religious leaders upon whose teaching the Roman Catholic Church extensively relies were not in agreement as to the meaning of the supposed magna charta of the papacy, Matthew 16:18, which proves false the statement of Bellarmine that the interpretation of this passage which designates Peter as the rock upon which the church is built had “the consent of the entire church, both Greek and Latin Fathers.” (James Tolle, Was The Apostle Peter A Pope? I8; Pasadena, TX; Haun Publishing Company)

        How about some more specific quotes from the church fathers?

        Hilary Of Poitiers-“Yet he speaks words which the tongue of man had never framed before:—You are the Christ, the Son of the living God. For though Christ, while dwelling in the body, had avowed Himself to be the Son of God, yet now for the first time the Apostle’s faith had recognised in Him the presence of the Divine nature. Peter is praised not merely for his tribute of adoration, but for his recognition of the mysterious truth; for confessing not Christ only, but Christ the Son of God….Next, the Father’s utterance, This is My Son, had revealed to Peter that he must confess You are the Son of God, for in the words This is, God the Revealer points Him out, and the response, You are, is the believer’s welcome to the truth. And this is the rock of confession whereon the Church is built.”

        Again from
        Hilary:

        “The very reason why he is blessed is that he confessed the Son of God. This is the Father’s revelation, this the foundation of the Church, this the assurance of her permanence. Hence has she the keys of the kingdom of heaven, hence judgment in heaven and judgment on earth.

        How about some Chrysostom?

        “Else it were superfluous to   say, “Thou art Son of Jonas;” but since he had said, “Son of God,” to   point out that He is so Son of God, as the other son of Jonas, of the   same substance with Him that begat Him, therefore He added this, “And I   say unto thee, Thou art Peter, and upon this rock will I build my   Church;” [2092] that is, on the faith of his confession.”

        Augustine?

        “See what praises follow this faith. You are Peter, and upon this rock I will build my Church. What means, Upon this rock I will build my Church? Upon this faith; upon this that has been said, You are the Christ, the Son of the Living God. Upon this rock, says He, I will build my Church.”

        Again:

        “For on this very account the Lord said, On this rock will I build my Church, because Peter had said, You are the Christ, the Son of the living God. [Matthew 16:16-19] On this rock, therefore, He said, which you have confessed, I will build my Church. For the Rock (Petra) was Christ; [1 Corinthians 10:4] and on this foundation was Peter himself also built. For other foundation can no man lay than that is laid, which is Christ Jesus. [1 Corinthians 3:11]”

        Of course, this isn’t to say that the papacy is not prophesied about in great detail in God’s Word. It certainly is. Search my website on “eschatological passages and themes” and pay special attention to articles one through ten. I believe you will find them helpful. I would also highly recommend some books for your studies. One is “The Ivory Domino” written by a former Catholic who became a member of the church of Christ and a Gospel preacher. Another is, “From Nun To Priest, written by a former nun who became a member of the church of Christ. Both are available on Kindle, and if you would be interested, send me your email address and our church will send them to you on Kindle as a gift.

        Have a blessed day, and thanks for the good discussion!

      3. If you do your homework you will find statement by church fathers that pointed out to primacy of Peter. The power to bind and to loose belongs to all apostles and their successors but the keys of the kingdom of heaven is given only to Peter, just like God passed the key of House of David to Shebna – only one person can have the key.

        Your final authority is supposed to be Scripture. You did try to cite other verses but they have nothing to do with Mat. 16:18.

      4. I have done my homework. That’s why I am a Christian and not a Catholic.

        1. The other verses show clearly that all of Christ’s Apostles received His authority to bind and loose (ie.., received the keys).

        2. Those passages (and many more could be cited) demonstrate that the Cornerstone/Foundation of the church is Christ Jesus while the Apostles (all of them and not just Peter and certainly not Peter as some kind of pope which was never even dreamed of till the five patriarchs in the third to fifth centuries were fighting it out politically) were His special delegates.

        3. The writings of the early church after the Apostolic Age support what I have been saying. Not only have I been providing evidence from the Word of God of my assertions, but I have also provided ample evidence from the church fathers and even from Catholic historians who were willing to bear out these truths as well.

        If you would be interested in those books, please send me your email address and I’ll be happy to send them to you. If you wish to continue discussing, that is well and good but please provide something of relevance and substance instead of assertion.

        Thanks and highest regards!

      5. What we are debating here is whether they keys are given to Peter alone or to other apostles as well. The verse clearly says that they were given to Peter, based in singular second person. Mat. 18:18 does not even mention keys, yet you assume they were there because it will fit well with your “predefined belief of NO primacy of Peter”. You ignore the fact that only one person can have the key of the house of David (Isiah 22:20-22). There are many ministers in a cabinet but only ONE prime minister. Your authority is supposed to be Scripture, not what the Church fathers wrote, which you cherry picked. Go and check these sites:
        https://www.churchfathers.org/authority-of-the-popehttps://www.churchfathers.org/origins-of-peter-as-popehttps://www.catholic.com/tract/peters-primacy

        Even Catholics believe that the Head of the Catholic Church is Jesus, NOT the pope.

      6. My friend,

        1. We have established that the phrase “binding and loosing” is a Hebrew expression connected with “keys.” No one denies that this was applied to Peter in Matthew 16:19-but you continue to deny that this same authority was given to all of Jesus’ Apostles later in Matthew:

        Matthew 18:18-Assuredly, I say to you, whatever you bind on earth will be bound in heaven, and whatever you loose on earth will be loosed in heaven.

        In Matthew 16:19, Jesus addresses Peter; in Matthew 18:18, He addresses all of His Apostles.

        So all of Jesus’ Apostles were given the keys of the kingdom of Heaven, I.e. the power to bind and loose.

        Not only does Scripture my assertion, but so also does the testimony of the second century Christians (and others). Here is a little more on the “keys” and the “binding and loosing” of Matthew 16:19 and 18:18.

        “The words rendered “prohibit” and “permit” (v. 18) are, literally, “bind” and “loose.” These terms were used in first century Judaism to mean “prohibit” and “permit,” as is clear from the article, “Binding and Loosing,” in the Jewish Encyclopedia, 3: 215: “BINDING AND LOOSING (Hebrew asar ve-hittir)… Rabbinical term for ‘forbidding and permitting.’… “The power of binding and loosing was always claimed by the Pharisees. Under Queen Alexandra the Pharisees, says Josephus (Wars of the Jews 1: 5: 2), ‘became the administrators of all public affairs so as to be empowered to banish and readmit whom they pleased, as well as to loose and to bind.’… The various schools had the power ‘to bind and to loose’; that is, to forbid and to permit (Talmud: Chagigah 3b); and they could bind any day by declaring it a fast-day (… Talmud: Ta’anit 12a…). This power and authority, vested in the rabbinical body of each age or in the Sanhedrin, received its ratification and final sanction from the celestial court of justice (Sifra, Emor, ix; Talmud: Makkot 23b). “In this sense Jesus, when appointing his disciples to be his successors, used the familiar formula (Matt 16: 19, 18: 18). By these words he virtually invested them with the same authority as that which he found belonging to the scribes and Pharisees who ‘bind heavy burdens and lay them on men’s shoulders, but will not move them with one of their fingers’; that is, ‘loose them,’ as they have the power to do (Matt 23: 2–4). In the same sense in the second epistle of Clement to James II ‘Clementine Homilies,’ Introduction), Peter is represented as having appointed Clement as his successor, saying: ‘I communicate to him the power of binding and loosing so that, with respect to everything which he shall ordain in the earth, it shall be decreed in the heavens; for he shall bind what ought to be bound and loose what ought to be loosed as knowing the rule of the church.’”” (David H. Stern, Jewish New Testament Commentary, 2040-2055 (Kindle Edition); Clarksville, Maryland; JEWISH NEW TESTAMENT PUBLICATIONS, INC.)

        Notice the connections in Judaism between “binding and loosing” and “keys.” Indeed, the verse you keep referencing enforces my point here:

        Isaiah 22:22-The key of the house of David I will lay on his shoulder; So he shall open, and no one shall shut; And he shall shut, and no one shall open.

        See the connections between the “key” and the “gates” in that passage with the statements in Matthew 16:19 and 18:18.

        So to recap, not only does the Bible teach emphatically that the well-known Jewish expression of “keys” has reference to “binding and loosing,” and that this authority was given to all of Jesus’ Apostles, but so also do the second century Christians make the same point.

        So why should I accept that only Peter was given the keys of the kingdom, when Jesus said all His Apostles were?

        2. More to the point, why should I believe that Peter was the chief of Apostles and the only key-owner of the church when the other Apostles clearly pointed out that Peter was on equal footing with the other Apostles? I have already referenced what Paul wrote about this (and which you have claimed is irrelevant):

        2 Corinthians 11:5-For I consider that I am not at all inferior to the most eminent apostles.

        Again:

        Galatians 2:6-11-But from those who seemed to be something—whatever they were, it makes no difference to me; God shows personal favoritism to no man—for those who seemed to be something added nothing to me. 7  But on the contrary, when they saw that the gospel for the uncircumcised had been committed to me, as the gospel for the circumcised was to Peter. 8  (for He who worked effectively in Peter for the apostleship to the circumcised also worked effectively in me toward the Gentiles), 9  and when James, Cephas, and John, who seemed to be pillars, perceived the grace that had been given to me, they gave me and Barnabas the right hand of fellowship, that we should go to the Gentiles and they to the circumcised. 10  They desired only that we should remember the poor, the very thing which I also was eager to do. 11  Now when Peter had come to Antioch, I withstood him to his face, because he was to be blamed;

        How did Paul not know that Peter was supposed to be the “vicar of Christ” on earth?

        You said that Catholics don’t consider the pope to be the head of the church. Do you know what the word “vicar” means my friend? The visible representative of someone. The pope claims to be the representative of Christ on Earth.

        And yet Catholics don’t claim that the pope is the head of the church? 🤔

        Let’s go deeper. Not only does Paul show that Peter was not the head of the church but so does James!

        Peter speaks to the church in Acts 15:7. Then we read:

        Acts 15:13-22-And after they had become silent, James answered, saying, “Men and brethren, listen to me: 14  Simon has declared how God at the first visited the Gentiles to take out of them a people for His name. 15  And with this the words of the prophets agree, just as it is written: 16  ‘AFTER THIS I WILL RETURN AND WILL REBUILD THE TABERNACLE OF DAVID, WHICH HAS FALLEN DOWN; I WILL REBUILD ITS RUINS, AND I WILL SET IT UP; 17  SO THAT THE REST OF MANKIND MAY SEEK THE LORD, EVEN ALL THE GENTILES WHO ARE CALLED BY MY NAME, SAYS THE LORD WHO DOES ALL THESE THINGS.’ 18  “Known to God from eternity are all His works. 19  Therefore I judge that we should not trouble those from among the Gentiles who are turning to God, 20  but that we write to them to abstain from things polluted by idols, from sexual immorality, from things strangled, and from blood. 21  For Moses has had throughout many generations those who preach him in every city, being read in the synagogues every Sabbath.” 22  Then it pleased the apostles and elders, with the whole church, to send chosen men of their own company to Antioch with Paul and Barnabas, namely, Judas who was also named Barsabas, and Silas, leading men among the brethren.

        Amazing that James took the lead in the Jerusalem Counsel even though Peter was there, wouldn’t you agree? Again, James passes “his” judgment (Acts 15:19), even though Peter was present. What was wrong with James? Did he not know that Peter was the only one with the “keys” of the kingdom?

        Obviously not.

        Again, look at how the letter to the Gentile Christians is introduced: the Apostles, the elders, and the brethren.

        Why didn’t they sign it as a letter being sent out by the Pope?

        To ask is to answer.

        The Apostles were all given the authority of Christ equally. The early church did not recognize Peter as some kind of pope, and nor did the second century Christians. If you desire, I will also be happy to provide evidence from Catholic writings that there was no pope of the church until king after the time of Christ and His Apostles.

        Thanks for the good discussion my friend. Let me encourage you to check out and visit the church of Christ in your community. Also my offer to provide you those books free of charge is still good. If you are interested simply message me your email address. God bless!!

      7. You tried to turn the table. I did not deny that the power to bind and to loose were given to all apostles. You do not need to cite from Jewish source. But they keys were given only to Peter – it is singular second person. In Isaiah 22 they key of house of David was passed from Shebnah to Eliakim because only ONE person can hold the key. It says “his shoulder”, NOT “their shoulders”.

        It seem you are not aware that Catholics believe that Jesus is the Head of the Church. And you claim you did your homework? Yes, Vicar means representative and the same term is used within Anglican community. Do you belong to Church of Christ, founded by Campbell?

        According to Scripture the Church is the Bride of Christ. Your wife was then your bride when you married her. She did not come in the world fully grown as on the day you married her. Shew as born as a baby and grew up. The same applies to the Church. The wedding between the Church and the Groom or Christ will take place at the end of age. Just like your bride, certainly we do not expect the first early church will be exactly the same as today’s Catholic Church. The Christian community depicted in the book of Acts neither resemble the Catholic Church nor your church, whatever your denomination you belong to.

      8. My friend,

        So good hearing from you again. I have been down with strep throat and am on the mend, but will do my best to give due consideration to your arguments. Your statements will appear in the // // brackets.

        //You tried to turn the table. I did not deny that the power to bind and to loose were given to all apostles. You do not need to cite from Jewish source. But they keys were given only to Peter – it is singular second person.//

        I have not “turned the tables” at all. Instead, I have been pointing out from the beginning of our discussion that the phrases “binding and loosing” are used synonymously with the idea of “keys” in Jewish thought. In other words, a Jewish person in the first century who heard that a person would be given the authority to “bind and loose” would have understood automatically that was the inherent idea of “keys.” Just to make it clear again:

        “The words rendered “prohibit” and “permit” (v. 18) are, literally, “bind” and “loose.” These terms were used in first century Judaism to mean “prohibit” and “permit,” as is clear from the article, “Binding and Loosing,” in the Jewish Encyclopedia, 3: 215: “BINDING AND LOOSING (Hebrew asar ve-hittir)… Rabbinical term for ‘forbidding and permitting.’… “The power of binding and loosing was always claimed by the Pharisees. Under Queen Alexandra the Pharisees, says Josephus (Wars of the Jews 1: 5: 2), ‘became the administrators of all public affairs so as to be empowered to banish and readmit whom they pleased, as well as to loose and to bind.’… The various schools had the power ‘to bind and to loose’; that is, to forbid and to permit (Talmud: Chagigah 3b); and they could bind any day by declaring it a fast-day (… Talmud: Ta’anit 12a…). This power and authority, vested in the rabbinical body of each age or in the Sanhedrin, received its ratification and final sanction from the celestial court of justice (Sifra, Emor, ix; Talmud: Makkot 23b). “In this sense Jesus, when appointing his disciples to be his successors, used the familiar formula (Matt 16: 19, 18: 18). By these words he virtually invested them with the same authority as that which he found belonging to the scribes and Pharisees who ‘bind heavy burdens and lay them on men’s shoulders, but will not move them with one of their fingers’; that is, ‘loose them,’ as they have the power to do (Matt 23: 2–4). In the same sense in the second epistle of Clement to James II ‘Clementine Homilies,’ Introduction), Peter is represented as having appointed Clement as his successor, saying: ‘I communicate to him the power of binding and loosing so that, with respect to everything which he shall ordain in the earth, it shall be decreed in the heavens; for he shall bind what ought to be bound and loose what ought to be loosed as knowing the rule of the church.’”” (David H. Stern, Jewish New Testament Commentary, 2040-2055 (Kindle Edition); Clarksville, Maryland; JEWISH NEW TESTAMENT PUBLICATIONS, INC.)

        I quote from Jewish sources to establish my point that the “keys” are intimately connected with the power to “bind and loose.” Since therefore the Apostles are granted the authority to bind and loose (Matthew 18:18-and this IS talking of the Apostles see Matthew 18:1), they were given the authority of the keys. The exact same authority that Peter was granted. We could state our argument thus:

        Major Premise: Symbolically “Keys” Was Used Interchangeably With The Authority To “Bind And Loose.”

        Minor Premise: All Of The Apostles Were Granted The Authority To “Bind And Loose.”

        Conclusion: Therefore All Of The Apostles Were Granted The “Keys” Of The Kingdom.

        Yet you continue to maintain that the “keys” were only given to Peter via Mathew 16:19. Let me share with you again why that is unattainable.

        First, Jesus promised the same authority to all the Apostles in Matthew 18:18.

        Second, even the early Christians scoffed at the idea that Peter ONLY had been given the keys of the kingdom! Shall we listen again to Origen?

        “But if you suppose that upon only that one Peter the whole church is built by God, what would you say about John, the son of thunder, or about each one of the apostles? Shall we dare to say that the gates of Hades will not prevail against Peter in particular, but that they will prevail against the other apostles and the perfect? Does not the saying previously made, “The gates of Hades will not prevail against it,” apply in regard to all? . . . Are the keys of the kingdom of heaven given by the Lord to Peter only and will none other of the blessed receive them? (Origen (c. 245, E), 9.456.)

        Not only does Scripture refute your teaching, but so also does one of the most revered among Catholic “saints!”

        But finally, even if you are correct, your argument breaks down: for the Catholic Church claims that all popes have had the power of the keys handed to them!

        You are claiming that the keys were ONLY given to Peter.

        You can’t have it both ways friend. Better to simply reject Catholic tradition and accept what the Word of God teaches.

        //In Isaiah 22 they key of house of David was passed from Shebnah to Eliakim because only ONE person can hold the key. It says “his shoulder”, NOT “their shoulders”.//

        Your argument with Eliakim seems to be that because God granted the “keys” to the “shoulder” of Eliakim, this automatically forbad the “keys” being given to anyone else.

        Are you not aware my friend that Jesus quotes this passages and applies it to Himself, saying that He has the keys?

        Revelation 3:7-And to the angel of the church in Philadelphia write, ‘These things says He who is holy, He who is true, “HE WHO HAS THE KEY OF DAVID, HE WHO OPENS AND NO ONE SHUTS, AND SHUTS AND NO ONE OPENS”:

        You claim that Eliakim was the only one to receive the “keys” of Isaiah 22:22; yet Jesus Himself says that is not the case since He has those “keys” now as well!

        Thus we see another reason why we should accept the Word of God over Roman Catholic perversion of Scripture.

        //It seem you are not aware that Catholics believe that Jesus is the Head of the Church. And you claim you did your homework? Yes, Vicar means representative and the same term is used within Anglican community.//

        Really?

        Since you keep coming back to the issue, let’s have some discussion about the alleged “vicar”of Christ.

        Let’s start with the testimony of a former Roman Catholic, himself raised very firmly and emphatically in the Roman Catholic dogma.

        The following is written by a former Roman Catholic who became a member of the church of Christ after a very intense and heart wrenching investigation. He was encouraged to read a public debate that took place well over a hundred years ago between a member of the church of Christ and a Roman Catholic priest. He writes:

        “However, his opponent was no slouch either. Described as a careful student of New Testament Greek, an outstanding educator, editor, and author, Alexander Campbell founded Bethany College in West Virginia, published two journals for a combined forty-two years, wrote several books, published a translation of the New Testament, addressed the United States Congress upon their dismissal of a session in order to hear him preach, and packed all church buildings wherever he spoke. When I read that all religious bodies in the United States had been influenced by this man because he almost single-handedly forced men to re-examine cherished traditions to see if they conformed to the truth of God, I knew this man did his homework and would press Bishop Purcell with his research. But, hey! That’s exactly what I want. No Catholic is going to question a bishop’s lecture on the origin of the pope, but how will it hold up when confronted by this Campbell fellow?… Campbell then quoted Du Pin, the Catholic historian. “St. Gregory does not only oppose this title in the patriarch of Constantinople, but maintains also, that it cannot agree to any other bishop, and that the bishop of Rome neither ought, nor can assume it.… [Peter] was not called universal apostle. That the title of universal bishop is against the rules of the gospel [the Scriptures], and the appointment of the canons [the laws formulated at the Church councils]: that there cannot be a universal bishop.” 2 Campbell then resumed his comments. But at this time [near the end of the 6th century] the patriarchs of Constantinople [John] and Rome [Gregory] were contending for the supremacy [of the church], and while it appeared to Gregory that his rival of the east was likely to process the title, he [Gregory] saw in it, everything anti-Christian and profane. When a new dynasty, however ascended the [Emperor’s] throne and offered the title to a Roman bishop, it [the title of universal patriarch] lost all its blasphemy and impiety, and we [then] find the successor of Gregory can wear the title of universal patriarch when tendered him by Phocas [the new Emperor], without the least scrupulosity. It is then a fact worthy of much consideration in this discussion, that John, bishop of Constantinople, first assumed the title of universal head of the whole Christian church, and that the bishop of Rome [Gregory] did in that case oppose it as anti-scriptural and anti-christian. Concerning the reputation of St. Gregory, I need not be profuse. Of the Gregories he is deservedly called the Great. Renowned in history as the one who stamped his own image on the Roman world for a period of five hundred years, yet he could not brook the idea of a pope, especially when about to be bestowed on his rival at Constantinople. St. Gregory, be it remembered, says Du Pin, did not only oppose the title in the case of John the Faster, as proud, heretical, blasphemous, &c., but could not agree to its being assumed by any other bishop; he affirmed that the bishops of Rome ought not, dare not, cannot assume this pompous and arrogant title. Thus stood matters as respects a supreme head up to within 14 years of the close of the 6th century. 3 Distressed, I wanted to tear out the page and burn it. But I would only be reacting dishonestly with the established and unchangeable facts of history. What had happened, happened. I dropped the book to my chest and stared at the ceiling. Wow! I thought with astonishment. No universal bishop until at least 588 A.D.! And when the first one finally arose, it was only the result of a power struggle between the two bishops of the two most important cities of the day. Unfortunately, a Catholic historian proved my earlier suspicions correct: the office of the pope was created by men, NOT God; and it was created centuries after the Church began. Even Gregory, the bishop of Rome, who would have been the pope if there was a pope, emphatically denied the Church to have a universal bishop over the universal Church. So, Gregory, one of the four most prominent patriarchs of the Church in that day, lets us know there was no universal bishop in the Church from its beginning unto at least 588 A.D.!” (Gary Henson, The Ivory Domino, 3266-3366 (Kindle Edition, emphasis added, M.T.)); Charleston, AR; Cobb Publishing)

        Henson then observes the Catholic rebuttal to this argument:

        “Then, remembering Mr. Babbitt’s advice to observe how Bishop Purcell responded, I made use of his index to read every exchange of both men on this topic. Disappointed, because he was the Catholic champion, but not surprised because even the best cannot overturn the facts of history, Bishop Purcell’s feeble attempts to reply bounced away like pebbles tossed at a brick wall. He first asserted Du Pin was not an authentic historian. 4 Of course, if what Du Pin said cannot be refuted, then try to discredit the author; after all, this is what the Pharisees tried to do with the miracles of Jesus. 5 But the bishop’s diversion went nowhere. Campbell read from the front of Du Pin’s book the endorsements of notable and scholarly Catholics, the theological Doctors of Sorbonne, which included statements as: this book “never… lays down simple conjectures in place of demonstrative proofs”; “I find nothing to hinder its being printed”; and, “we have found nothing therein contrary to the Catholic faith, or to good manners.” 6 In other words, they found nothing wrong with Du Pin’s facts. Campbell added that the book was certified by the guardians of the Catholic press. 7 Campbell also pointed out that the bishop of Bardstown admitted Du Pin to be an “authentic historian.” 8 Even Bishop Purcell conceded, “I will remark that I consider Du Pin a learned man. I would even select him as a splendid illustration of the strength imparted to the human intellect by the Catholic intellectual discipline. He was truly a prodigy of learning and of precision of style.” 9 Campbell pointed out that “other historians record the same fact” 10 as Du Pin had stated which confirmed Du Pin’s historical report even more. Bishop Purcell could do no more than toss a mere pebble at this brick wall, but this pebble left not even a dent. Everything established Du Pin to be an authoritative historian, and, thus confirming, in 606 A.D., Boniface III became the very first pope, ever! The bishop next attempted to discredit Du Pin as a bad Catholic. 11 However, Campbell pointed out that Du Pin was buried in the Catholic Church in consecrated ground, which Bishop Purcell himself, only two or three months earlier, insisted as proof of a man’s good Catholic standing. 12 Besides, as Campbell correctly mentioned, 13 even if Du Pin was a bad Catholic, that would have nothing to do with his ability as an authentic historian to report the facts of history. Another pebble fell harmlessly to the ground. Bishop Purcell was running out of pebbles. He even resorted to the unprovable make-believe: “… they may have…,” 14 “… they might have been…,” 15 “… the most natural supposition.” 16 Also, in all of what the bishop said, I noticed he never, as in never-ever, attempted to discredit Du Pin’s report of Gregory’s denouncement of the existence of a universal bishop in the Church up to his day. Campbell noticed it too, and said, “Can he [Purcell] prove, or has he proved him [Du Pin] unfaithful in stating a single historical fact? Not one.” 17 No, the Catholic champion would not discredit Du Pin’s facts of history because he could not. He could not falsify Gregory’s statement because, as Campbell pointed out, “other historians record the same fact.” 18 It would have been as foolish for the bishop to deny those statements of Gregory as to have denied all the historians’ records of Columbus sailing to the American continents. The bishop knew that; he knew he could not deny the documents of history. Plain and simple: there was no universal bishop in the Church until Gregory’s successor, Boniface III, at the very beginning of the 7th century. Historians knew it. Those who read church history knew it. And now I knew it.” (Gary Henson, The Ivory Domino, 3326-3363 (Kindle Edition, emphasis added, M.T.); Charleston, AR; Cobb Publishing)

        The papacy of the Roman Catholic Church emerged as the result of a power structure with four other cities. It did not have its origin with Christ and His Apostles. Peter was NEVER the pope, and the church was not built upon him.

        Interestingly enough, consider here what the Bible says about “antichrist.”

        1 John 2:18-Little children, it is the last hour; and as you have heard that the Antichrist is coming, even now many antichrists have come, by which we know that it is the last hour.

        The Greek preposition rendered “anti” is very interesting. It may mean both something “opposed to” and also “in place of.” So “antichrist”is both opposed to Christ and that which tries to take His place. Interestingly enough, when you translate that word into Latin, you find something very interesting. It is the word “vicarius.” Does that sound familiar? It is where we get the word “vicar.”

        Antichrist=Vicar Of Christ

        This makes perfect sense when we consider how the Bible prophesies in great detail the rise of the Roman Catholic papacy under the name “man of sin.”

        //Do you belong to Church of Christ, founded by Campbell?//

        No, I belong to the church of Christ which was founded by Jesus Christ (Matthew 16:18). He graciously adds the saved to it when they are saved (Acts 2:37-47). This is quite different from the organization known as the Roman Catholic church. Alexander Campbell was a member of the church of Christ. If you would like a discussion regarding him, I would be more than happy to oblige.

        //According to Scripture the Church is the Bride of Christ. Your wife was then your bride when you married her. She did not come in the world fully grown as on the day you married her. Shew as born as a baby and grew up. The same applies to the Church. The wedding between the Church and the Groom or Christ will take place at the end of age. Just like your bride, certainly we do not expect the first early church will be exactly the same as today’s Catholic Church. The Christian community depicted in the book of Acts neither resemble the Catholic Church nor your church, whatever your denomination you belong to.//

        The Bible certainly teaches that the church is the bride of Christ (Ephesians 5:22-33). Now with that being said, God has left His Word to guide His bride in this world. This Word was given by Jesus through HIs Apostles and then through their writings, which are just as authoritative today as they ever were (cf. 1 Corinthians 14:37; 2 Thessalonians 2:15; 3:14; 2 Timothy 3:16-17). The Christians were to abide in that teaching of the Apostles of Christ as they were guided into “all truth” by the Holy Spirit (1 Corinthians 4:6; Colossians 2:6-7; cf. John 14:26; 16:13). It was when people began to depart from the Word of God that the Great Apostasy which led to the formation of the Roman Catholic church was attained.

        Notice that the early Christians clearly understood this. Simply examine how often they quoted from the New Testament Scriptures!

        Justin Martyr: Gospels (268); Acts (10); Pauline Epistles (43); General Epistles (6 with 266 allusions); Revelation (3); Total; (330)

        Irenaeus: Gospels (1, 038); Acts (194); Pauline Epistles (499); General Epistles (23); Revelation (65); Total: (1, 819)

        Clement Of Alexandria: Gospels (1, 017); Acts (44); Pauline Epistles (1, 127); General Epistles (207); Revelation (11); Total (2, 406)

        Origen: Gospels (9, 231); Acts (349); Pauline Epistles (7, 778); General Epistles (339); Revelation 165; Total (17, 922)

        Tertullian: Gospels (3, 822); Acts (502); Pauline Epistles (2, 609); General Epistles (120); Revelation (205); Total (7, 258)

        Hippolytus: Gospels (734); Acts (4); Pauline Epistles (387); General Epistles (27); Revelation (188); Total (1, 378)

        Eusebius: Gospels (3, 258); Acts (211); Pauline Epistles (1, 592); General Epistles (88); Revelation (27); Total (5, 176).

        Grand Totals: Gospels (19, 368); Acts (1, 352); Pauline Epistles (14, 035); General Epistles (870); Revelation (664); Total (36, 286)

        So strong is the evidence of the early Christian knowledge of the New Testament canon of Scripture that Geisler notes:

        “What is more, if we compile the 36,289 quotations by the early church Fathers of the second to fourth centuries we can reconstruct the entire New Testament minus 11 verses.”. (Norman Geisler, Baker Encyclopedia Of Christian Apologetics, 532 (Kindle Edition); Grand Rapids, Michigan; Baker Books)

        We can also here get rid of the notion put forth by the Catholic church that no one in the first centuries A.D. knew which Books belonged in the New Testament canon of Scripture.

        My friend, I again invite you to visit the church of Christ in your community. My offer also remains to send you some excellent books on these matters absolutely free of charge to you. Have a blessed day.

      9. Why do you repeat the same thing? You belong to the Church of Christ. As far as I know your church does not permit musical instruments in singing in the church. It is based on the fact that the entire NT does not mention the use of such instrument. If you follow that concept why you still stick to the idea that the keys were given to all apostles when Mathew 18:18 does not say that? Again I do not deny that all apostles have the power to bind and to loose (you are wasting your time citing from Jewish source), but the keys of the kingdom of heaven were given only to Peter.

        The key in Rev 3:7 is the key (SINGULAR as in Isaiah 22:20) of David, not keys (PLURAL) of kingdom of heaven. Your argument is poor.

        I do not accept the testimony of former Catholic, just like you won’t accept the testimony of former Church of Christ who became atheist or Muslim or others.

        The first Christians were NOT unanimously accept the same number of books of Bible. You need to do your homework on formation of canon of Scripture. There is no single verse in the entire Bible that informs us which books and how many of them in the Bible.

        If the Church established by Christ Himself became apostate then it means Christ FAILED to keep his promise that the gates of hades shall not prevail against the Church. How dare you? Did Christ He will be with the Church to the end of age (the last verse in Matthew)? Why wait for 1700 years until the founder of your church was born (1770 years in Mormonism, who strangely believe exactly the same like you, i.e. the church became apostate)? You may deduct 300 years from the numbers above, if you count it from the time Roman emperor Constantine legalized Christianity.

        You can google and find the etymology of the word “vicar”. Do not create your won! When you get information that meet your agenda you should double check, not just simply accept it because you like what it says.

      10. //Why do you repeat the same thing?//

        Where I am from, we have a saying: If it ain’t broke, don’t fix it. 🙂 I repeat the same thing because it has not been answered and it capably shows the failures of Roman Catholicism. As a Christian, God commands me to reason with as many people as I can who oppose the Gospel. Peter, for example, says that as Christians we are required to give a defense to everyone who asks a reason of the hope that is within us, with meekness and fear (1 Peter 3;15). That word, “defense”is from the Greek apologeia (where we get our word apology, which in classical English meant “defense”). I am trying to reason with you in the spirit of kindness because I want your soul to be saved (1 Timothy 2:4-6).

        //You belong to the Church of Christ//

        Yes, thanks be to God, I do. The Lord adds people to His church when they as believers repent and are baptized (Acts 2:37-47). This church was prophesied about throughout the Old Testament Scriptures (cf. Daniel 2:36-45; Isaiah 2:1-4; Micah 4:1-4) as well as during the personal ministry of Jesus Christ (Matthew 16:13-19; Mark 9:1). It is the household of God (1 Timothy 3:15).

        //As far as I know your church does not permit musical instruments in singing in the church. It is based on the fact that the entire NT does not mention the use of such instrument. If you follow that concept why you still stick to the idea that the keys were given to all apostles when Mathew 18:18 does not say that? Again I do not deny that all apostles have the power to bind and to loose (you are wasting your time citing from Jewish source), but the keys of the kingdom of heaven were given only to Peter//

        The Bible principle of silence is one that is repeated not only in the New Testament Scriptures (Colossians 3:16-17), but in the Old Testament as well (Leviticus 10:1-2). I would be happy to discuss this matter with you as well in due time, but first I must do my best to help you see why Catholicism’s claims about the keys and Peter are erroneous.

        You acknowledge that all of the Apostles were given the right to bind and loose in Matthew 18:18. I am glad that you are now acknowledging that this passage was addressed to the Apostles. It is amazing how the study of context can open our eyes.

        In the same way, the contextual considerations of a passage must be considered when interpreting a passage of Scripture. As I have meticulously documented, the phrase “bind and loose” was understood in the first century world of Judaism to be synonymous with the “keys.” I could provide even more documentation of this for you, but since you ignore what I have already provided, it seems superfluous at this point. However, since my original point stands, then very simply all the Apostles were granted the keys to bind and loose in Matthew 18:18 and thus it was not Peter’s prerogative alone.

        I have, of course, also demonstrated from early church writers such as Origen that this is the case. To make it more clear, I will put the main section in all-caps.

        “But if you suppose that upon only that one Peter the whole church is built by God, what would you say about John, the son of thunder, or about each one of the apostles? Shall we dare to say that the gates of Hades will not prevail against Peter in particular, but that they will prevail against the other apostles and the perfect? Does not the saying previously made, “The gates of Hades will not prevail against it,” apply in regard to all? . . . ARE THE KYES OF THE KINGDOM OF HEAVEN GIVEN BY THE LORD TO PETER ONLY AND WILL NONE OTHER OF THE BLESSED RECEIVED THEM? (Origen (c. 245, E), 9.456.)

        Origen is acknowledging the same thing that Jesus did and that I am: the keys were given to all the Apostles, and not to Peter alone. Here we have testimony from the earliest Christians, pointing out the same facts that Jesus did in Matthew 16:19 and 18:18.

        Why should we accept the words of the Roman Catholic church over the words of Jesus?

        //The key in Rev 3:7 is the key (SINGULAR as in Isaiah 22:20) of David, not keys (PLURAL) of kingdom of heaven. Your argument is poor.//

        I don’t believe my argument is poor. You are the one who introduced Eliakim into this discussion. Let’s have a little more.

        Revelation 3:7-And to the angel of the church in Philadelphia write, ‘These things says He who is holy, He who is true, “HE WHO HAS THE KEY OF DAVID, HE WHO OPENS AND NO ONE SHUTS, AND SHUTS AND NO ONE OPENS”:

        You have argued since you messaged my website that Eliakim serves as an example that someone who is given the keys stands alone (“shoulder” not “shoulders” to quote you directly). However, when I pointed out that Jesus quotes this passage (Isaiah 22:22) and applies it to Himself as having the keys, your entire argument fell apart. Eliakim had the keys in Isaiah 22:22; but the same keys were later given to Jesus. Peter was given the keys in Matthew 16:19; but the same keys were later given to all the Apostles in Matthew 18:18.

        My friend, I encourage you to stop denying the simple truth of Scripture in order to accommodate Catholic tradition. Each of your arguments against the Word of God has been thoroughly dismantled at this point.

        //I do not accept the testimony of former Catholic, just like you won’t accept the testimony of former Church of Christ who became atheist or Muslim or others.//

        That’s very convenient!

        I listen all the time to the testimony of Christians who have left the faith, in order to try and bring them back. That is what God commands us to do (Galatians 6:1). This definitely extends to Christians who turn to the foolishness of both atheism and Islam. Your unwillingness to even consider the testimony I provided is a powerful indicator of the condition of your heart. Furthermore, you are inconsistent. I am CERTAINLY not a Catholic, but you are taking the time to try and carry out a somewhat coherent discussion with me. Why would you consider my testimony, but not the testimony of those who have left Catholicism to embrace Christianity?

        Since you don’t want to address what I have provided, I will give you the cliff notes versions of the matter. Henson quotes from the well-known Campbell-Purcell Debate during which testimony from a well-known and respected Catholic historian named Du Pin who meticulously documented that the idea of a “universal bishop” or “pope”of the entire church was not invented until the sixth century A.D. The notion that Peter was a “pope” was invented by the Roman Catholic church as a power play in a political game with four other mega churches. Again, this is not from some Protestant; it is from a respected and well-known Catholic historian.

        I can see how the facts of history would be unsettling.

        //The first Christians were NOT unanimously accept the same number of books of Bible. You need to do your homework on formation of canon of Scripture. There is no single verse in the entire Bible that informs us which books and how many of them in the Bible.//

        This is your claim, but I have pointed out that the early Christians knew which Books belonged in the New Testament. The difference between your claim and mine is that I have provided evidence. Even though you have not even considered the evidence I have provided, I will provide you with some more (especially for anyone else who is studying with us).

        Isn’t it interesting that in 1 Timothy 5:18, the Apostle Paul quotes Luke 10:7 and Matthew 10:10 and calls it “SCRIPTURE?”

        I thought that no one in the first century knew which Books belonged in the New Testament canon? How is it then that Paul knew the New Testament Books are Scripture?

        Why should I accept Catholicism over the Word of God?

        Again, the Apostle Peter refers to the writings of Paul in 2 Peter 3:16-17 as “Scripture.”

        Here is some more testimony from the early church fathers regarding this matter. I have already demonstrated that they were quite familiar with the New Testament Scriptures and that even if we did not have any Greek manuscripts or early versions of the New Testament, they quoted the New Testament so very much that we could produce the entire New Testament (minus eleven verses if I remember correctly).

        “Renouncing the error of your fathers, you should read the prophecies of the sacred writers…Learn from them what will give you everlasting life.” (Justin Martyr, 160)

        “More strength will be given you, and the knowledge of the heart will be increased more and more, as you examine more fully the Scriptures, old and new, and read through the complete volumes of the spiritual books.” (Cyprian, 250)

        “We have learned the plan of our salvation from no one else other than from those through whom the gospel has come down to us. For they did at one time proclaim the gospel in public. And, at a later period, by the will of God, they handed the gospel down to us in the Scriptures-to be ‘the ground and pillar of our faith.'” (Irenaeus, 180).

        “In order that we might acquire an ampler and more authoritative knowledge of Himself, His counsels, and His will, God has added a written revelation for the benefit of everyone whose heart is set on seeking Him.” (Tertullian, 197)

        “It will be your duty, however, to present your proofs out of the Scriptures, as plainly as we do.” (Tertullian, 213)

        “Brethren, there is one God, the knowledge of whom we gain from the Holy Scriptures and from no other source…Even as He has chosen to teach them by the Holy Scriptures, so let us discern them.” (Hippolytus, 205)

        “We have the Lord as the source of teaching— both by the Prophets, the Gospel, and the blessed apostles. . . . He, then, who of himself believes the Scripture and the voice of the Lord (which by the Lord acts to the benefit of men) is rightly [regarded] as being faithful. Certainly we use it as a criterion in the discovery of things. Clement of Alexandria (c. 195)

        “To those who thus ask questions, in the Scriptures there is given from God . . . the gift of the God- given knowledge. Clement of Alexandria (c. 195)

        Therefore another Catholic argument is seen to be a failure and the Word of God prevails.

        //If the Church established by Christ Himself became apostate then it means Christ FAILED to keep his promise that the gates of hades shall not prevail against the Church. How dare you? Did Christ He will be with the Church to the end of age (the last verse in Matthew)?//

        Just because the Great Apostasy took place does not mean that the entire church fell away. Daniel promised that the kingdom of God would never be destroyed (Daniel 2:44), Jesus promised that the gates of Hades would not prevail against His church (Matthew 16:18), and God has kept His promise.

        Does this mean that the Great Apostasy has not happened?

        1 Timothy 4:1-3- Now the Spirit expressly says that in latter times some will depart from the faith, giving heed to deceiving spirits and doctrines of demons, 2  speaking lies in hypocrisy, having their own conscience seared with a hot iron, 3  forbidding to marry, and commanding to abstain from foods which God created to be received with thanksgiving by those who believe and know the truth.

        Again:

        2 Thessalonians 2:3-Let no one deceive you by any means; for that Day will not come unless the falling away comes first, and the man of sin is revealed, the son of perdition,

        My friend, I “dare” because I am not ashamed of the Word of God. The Great Apostasy took place and the Roman Catholic church-the man of sin, the whore of Babylon-was formed just as Scripture prophesied.

        //Why wait for 1700 years until the founder of your church was born (1770 years in Mormonism, who strangely believe exactly the same like you, i.e. the church became apostate)? You may deduct 300 years from the numbers above, if you count it from the time Roman emperor Constantine legalized Christianity.//

        You make several errors here.

        First, as has been noted, Jesus is the Founder of my church (Matthew 16:18). Alexander Campbell (whom I suppose you are referencing) was a member of this church.

        Second, Mormonism has no part in New Testament Christianity. Jesus-the Founder of the church of Christ-has nothing to do with the religious system of Mormonism.

        Third, interestingly enough: the corrupt Roman Catholic church when it formed the papacy patterned it after the Roman government.

        //You can google and find the etymology of the word “vicar”. Do not create your won! When you get information that meet your agenda you should double check, not just simply accept it because you like what it says.//

        Double checking what we hear is always sound advice my friend. Now, how about you consider applying that to our discussion? I have:

        1. Documented from numerous Bible texts that all of the Apostles were granted the keys of the kingdom (and not Peter only);
        2. Demonstrated that your arguments on Matthew 16:19 and Isaiah 22:22 do not teach what you initially tried to insinuate that they teach, but instead affirm that the “keys” are indeed bestowed upon numerous individuals (including Eliakim, Jesus, Peter, and the other Apostles);
        3. Provided evidence from the early church “fathers” (so-called) that all of the Apostles were granted the keys;
        4. Shown that the early Christians knew which Books belonged in the New Testament canon, and that the early Christians knew this fact so that they even quoted the New Testament thousands of times in their writings;
        5. Detailed how the papacy of the Roman Catholic church was a result of a political power play and that the idea of a Catholic pope who was universal bishop of the church was unheard of until at least the sixth century A.D.(and I even documented this from a well-respected Roman Catholic historian);
        6. Shown the Great Apostasy took place as prophesied about in the Holy Scriptures, and how this led to the formation of the Roman Catholic church;
        7. Shown that the Bible is clear that Peter was not the first pope and that Jesus is the Head of His church. The pope is an imposter, a liar, a fraud, a deceiver, and antichrist. Oh yeah, I almost forgot. In the interest of providing documentation like you requested:

        “The Latin equivalent of the Greek “anti” is “vicarius,” from which comes “vicar.” Thus “vicar of Christ” literally means Antichrist. Although the Roman Catholic popes have called themselves vicar of Christ for centuries, they were not the first to do so, but inherited that title from Constantine (see below)…. While heading the Christian church, Constantine continued to head the pagan priesthood, to officiate at pagan celebrations, tions, and to endow pagan temples even after he began to build Christian churches. As head of the pagan priesthood he was the Pontifex Maximus and needed a similar title as head of the Christian church. The Christians honored him as “Bishop of Bishops,” while Constantine called himself Vicarius Christi, Vicar of Christ. He meant that he was “another Christ” acting in the place of Christ. When translated into Greek, however, as we have seen, Vicarius Christi literally means Antichrist.”(Dave Hunt, A Woman Rides the Beast: Roman Catholic Church and the Last Days, 417-431 (Kindle Edition); Eugene, Oregon; Harvest House Publishers)

        My friend, I encourage you once again to carefully consider New Testament Christianity. Please visit with the church of Christ in your community. My offer to send you those books free of charge to you is still good. Have a blessed night!

      11. If you read my earlier comments I NEVER denied that the power to bind and to loose was given to all apostles. What I deny is your statement that the keys of the kingdom of heaven were given to all apostles because Matthew 18:18 does not say so. Do not waste your time to write a long response because I don’t have time to read all your nonsense.

        When Jesus said those word in Rev. 3:7 Eliakim was already dead. Eliakim held the key of House of David when he was still alive.

        If you accept the principle of silence why you still insist that the keys of the kingdom of heaven were given to all apostles when Mat. 18:18 is SILENT about it?

        Regardless what you wrote, your church was established by Alexander Campbell. Your church does not exist earlier than the day he started it. Do not waste your time to convince me.

        For sure the devil always want to destroy the Church Christ established. Through out history there are a number of heresies that tried to undermine the Church. But the Church established by Christ should survive. According to your “history” the “true” Church went underground until 19th century. Nobody will stop you to create your own history and nobody is under obligation to believe it.

        Consider this statement: “A is right because B says so” and “B is right because B says A is right”. That is a circular argument. You prove A from B and B from A. That is how you manipulate 2 Peter 3:16-17 to meet your agenda.

      12. Good hearing from you again my friend.

        //If you read my earlier comments I NEVER denied that the power to bind and to loose was given to all apostles. What I deny is your statement that the keys of the kingdom of heaven were given to all apostles because Matthew 18:18 does not say so.//

        I have noted throughout our exchanges that you acknowledge that all the Apostles were given the authority to bind and loose. At first you tried claiming that the Apostles were not under view in Matthew 18:18, but fortunately you corrected that error.

        I know that you do not see that the “keys” are synonymous with “binding and loosing,” which is why I have provided ample evidence from the Hebrew culture of Matthew 16 and 19 to document that there is indeed such a connection.

        It would be like if I were to ask someone today, “What kind of car do you drive?’ And he responded by answering, “My car is part of the Heartbeat Of America.” I would know by that response that he was referencing a Chevy vehicle. In the same way, for someone in the first century to talk about “binding and loosing,” it would have immediately envisioned the idea of “keys.” Not only did I show you this and document it, but I also showed how the early Christians (like Origen for example) clearly understood that the “keys” were given to all the Apostles and not to Peter only.

        More to the point, as I pointed out: your claims are self-defeating. If you are correct that the keys were given only to Peter, then that precludes those keys going to the popes (since Catholics erroneously maintain that Peter was the first pope and that he passed his “Keys” on to the other popes allegedly after him).

        Better to simply accept the Word of God my friend.

        //Do not waste your time to write a long response because I don’t have time to read all your nonsense.//

        Mercy, apparently something has struck a nerve here.

        My friend:

        Galatians 4:16-Have I therefore become your enemy because I tell you the truth?

        Need I remind you that YOU are the one who began this exchange?

        //When Jesus said those word in Rev. 3:7 Eliakim was already dead. Eliakim held the key of House of David when he was still alive.//

        Of course!

        Now, here’s where your argument breaks down again: if you are saying that only one person can hold the keys while alive, then what are you gonna do with Matthew 16:19? Jesus HELD THE KEYS WHEN HE GAVE THEM TO PETER! That’s two people holding the keys while they are re alive. Based on that, there is every reason to see that Jesus gave all the Apostles the keys to the kingdom in Matthew 18:18.

        That’s another way that Catholicism fails in its’ argumentation.

        //If you accept the principle of silence why you still insist that the keys of the kingdom of heaven were given to all apostles when Mat. 18:18 is SILENT about it?//

        I still accept the principle of silence because the Bible authorizes it. As for why I still hold to all the Apostles having the keys to the kingdom, it is because the phrase “binding and loosing” was synonymous with the symbolic idea of “keys” in Judaism. Someone who had “keys” had the power of “binding and loosing.”

        //Regardless what you wrote, your church was established by Alexander Campbell. Your church does not exist earlier than the day he started it. Do not waste your time to convince me.//

        I hope that our conversations are not a waste of time to you. If so, why did you message my website in the first place? I am trying to reason with you like the Bible says for me to do as a Christian (1 Peter 3:15; Acts 26:25).

        I have no church: I belong to the church which Jesus purchased with HIs blood (Acts 2:37-47; 20:28).

        I have already provided commentary on Campbell, and I have demonstrated that he did not begin the church of Christ. If you want some more Bible proof of this, just look in Luke 8;11 and Matthew 13:19: the seed of the kingdom is the Word of God. If you plant an apple seed in good soil, you will get an apple tree. In the same way, if you plant the Word of God in good soil, you will just get the church of Christ: the kingdom which Jesus purchased with His own blood (cf. Acts 20:28).

        Do you want more coronation that the churches of Christ have existed since long before the time of Campbell? If so let me suggest a few books. Keith Sisman, Traces Of The Kingdom: Volume One-One Thousand Years Of The Churches Of Christ In England; F.W. Maddox, The Eternal Kingdom: A History Of The Church of Christ; and Hans Grimm and translated by Dr. H.L. Schug, Traditions And History Of The Early Churches Of Christ In Central Europe.

        Take your pick.

        //For sure the devil always want to destroy the Church Christ established.//

        Of course.

        //Through out history there are a number of heresies that tried to undermine the Church.//

        Hence the origin of Roman Catholicism.

        //But the Church established by Christ should survive. According to your “history” the “true” Church went underground until 19th century. Nobody will stop you to create your own history and nobody is under obligation to believe it.//

        Not according to :my” history, but history.

        Furthermore you have not spoken a word about the historical facts I brought to light to you from a well-known and respected Catholic historian who proved that there was no “pope” of the “Catholic church” until the sixth century A.D.

        Why are you being so silent on this issue?

        Are you afraid of my “nonsense” that you “don’t have time” for?

        I will put up the Founder of the church of Christ of which I am blessed to belong (Jesus Christ) against the power-hungry politicians who created the corrupt Catholic Church and its first pope (Boniface III) any day of the week and twice on Sunday. The man of sin will be forced one Day to bow before Jesus (2 Thessalonians 2:1-14).

        //Consider this statement: “A is right because B says so” and “B is right because B says A is right”. That is a circular argument. You prove A from B and B from A.//

        As I have demonstrated, you are quite well-versed in circular arguments.

        //That is how you manipulate 2 Peter 3:16-17 to meet your agenda.//

        No, there is no manipulation of 2 Peter 3:16-17 on my part (and certainly not a circular argument). Very simply, Peter refers to the Writings of Paul as “Scripture.” This is, of course, in fully harmony with how Paul referred to Luke (10:7) and Matthew (10:10) as “Scripture” (1 Timothy 5:18). I have also provided you with thousands of quotations from the early Christians of the New Testament, showing that they knew which belongs were Scripture. I have also provided you with many quotations from the church fathers which show that they understood the New Testament Scriptures, and understood that they are authoritative! You have ignored all of it.

        That is unfortunate.

        So, I will share some more evidence with you.

        Here is some more evidence that the Apostles understood their Writings were authoritative, and that the early Christians understood this.

        “The apostles imposed their writings. Since the apostles were aware of their authoritative office it is reasonable to think that they intended to write books that would guide the church under that authority….“Imposition can be seen in the commands that letters be circulated among the churches, even read publically in worship meetings (1 Thess. 5:27; Col. 4:16; Rev. 1:3)….“Imposition is more subtle in other letters, yet it can still be seen. It was already mentioned that Peter wrote to “the pilgrims of the Dispersion” scattered broadly throughout five different regions (1 Pet. 1:1). James also wrote “to the twelve tribes which are scattered abroad” (Jam. 1:1). These are not the words of apostles writing to individual churches. It is reasonable to think that the apostles intended their letters to be widely distributed (i.e. imposed throughout regions)….“The best and earliest example of apostolic imposition comes from the Bible itself. In Acts 15 we read that letters were written containing the decision of the apostles and elders at the close of the first Jerusalem Council (v. 23). Their decision was just not verbally imposed upon the church (v. 27) but circulated through written letters (v. 20, 23). [47] This set a clear precedence from the beginning. A written letter from an apostle (or apostles) was just as authoritative as if the commands were given in person by an apostle. To receive a written letter from an apostle was equal to a visit (cf. 3 John 13–14). Furthermore, spreading info this way was very useful. Written letters helped when making a trip in person was not possible (cf. 2 Thessalonians 2:2). It also helped reach a wider audience more quickly with an important message. Thus the apostles imposed their authority via written communication.” (Norman Geisler & Shawn Nelson, Evidence of an Early New Testament Canon, 268-294 (Kindle Edition); Matthews, NC; Bastion Books)

        Would you like some more?

        My friend, your arguments for Catholicism have been thoroughly unraveled by logic and the Word of God. I am happy to study with you as long as you wish. I know that it can be unsettling learning new truths that challenge preexisting beliefs.

        Let me also renew my invitation for you to visit the church of Christ in your community. I believe you will be thoroughly pleased. Furthermore, my offer to send you those books free of charge to you is still good. If you would prefer paperback instead of Kindle versions, send me your mailing address and I will get them to you.

      13. I did not make any error – you made a false charge. I did NOT begin the exchange – it was you who started by writing your post. Do not expect everybody who read will approve your “theory”.

        Who told you that the keys are synonym with “binding and loosing”? Which verse of your Bible says that?

        Only one person can have the keys (PLURAL) of kingdom of heaven. Once he Peter died they were passed to his successors and so on. Only one person can have the key (Singular) of the House of David. It was passed from Shebnah to Eliakim. When ELiakim died or stepped down then the key was passed to his successor. The process stopped with the end of Davidic kingdom of Judah. Christ is Davidic king in NT and He has both key of the House of David, as well keys of the kingdom of heaven as the Second Person of the Holy Trinity, the latter He passed to Peter alone.

        You are entitled to have your opinion, no matter how silly it is. But do not expect everybody will believe in you. You are entitled to disagree with what Catholics believe and anybody, not only Catholics but other Christians as well, is also entitled to disagree with what you believe.

        If somebody wrote that NT was inspired, does it imply that what he wrote is also inspired? That is your circular argument based on 2 Peter 3:16-17. You cited verses from NT and you forgot that you made a presumption that those verses are Scripture. You do not realize that you need eternal authority to define which and what books belong to the Bible. The Bible is neither self defined nor self interpreted.

        The founder of your church is not Jesus Christ but Alexander Campbell. It is historical fact. You may claim that your church was founded by Christ and nobody is under obligation to believe it.

        I was once evangelical and in the past attended a number of churches that may include Church of Christ.

      14. //I did not make any error – you made a false charge. I did NOT begin the exchange – it was you who started by writing your post.’’

        My poor friend, this discussion certainly has you all frazzled, doesn’t it?

        The definition of an “exchange” is:

        “A short conversation: an argument.”

        I wrote an article on my webpage exposing the lies of Catholicism, and you CHOSE to enter into an “exchange” (argument) with me. That is all well and good. You started this argument, and I pray that it will lead to your eyes being opened to Jesus and His Word and away from Roman Catholicism. If not, hopefully it will be an encouragement to others who may be studying these matters along with us.

        //Do not expect everybody who read will approve your “theory”//

        I do not expect everyone to agree with what I say. That is alright. My opinions are nothing to write home about.

        However, that is not what this is about. It is about: what does GOD say?

        As someone who claims to be a Catholic, I figured you would be interested in such a matter. Let me explain it more clearly.

        As a minister of God’s Word, I am “set for the defense of the Gospel.

        Philippians 1:7-just as it is right for me to think this of you all, because I have you in my heart, inasmuch as both in my chains and in the defense and confirmation of the gospel, you all are partakers with me of grace.

        Philippians 1:17-but the latter out of love, knowing that I am appointed for the defense of the gospel.

        Catholicism is a direct attack upon the Gospel of Jesus Christ, and so I will oppose it.

        At the same time, I will reach out with the Gospel of Christ to try and save those who have not obeyed the Gospel:

        Mark 16:16-He who believes and is baptized will be saved; but he who does not believe will be condemned.

        That includes those who oppose the Gospel of Christ and those who have not obeyed the Gospel of Christ which includes those in Roman Catholicism:

        Jude 22-23-And on some have compassion, making a distinction; 23  but others save with fear, pulling them out of the fire, hating even the garment defiled by the flesh.

        So I plead with you, my friend, to leave behind Roman Catholicism and to embrace the Gospel of Jesus Christ and His church (Acts 2:37-47).

        //Who told you that the keys are synonym with “binding and loosing”? Which verse of your Bible says that?//

        As I have been pointing out since you began our change, the ideas of “binding and loosing” and “keys” were synonymous in first century Judaism. Do you remember when you asked me why I kept referencing Jewish sources? If you had read what I was referencing, then you would not need to ask now “who told you that the keys are synonym (sic) with “binding and loosing?” Go back and research what I posted before on those issues. When you have, you will see that all of the Apostles of Jesus were given the keys to the kingdom when Christ gave them all the authority to bind and to loose (Matthew 18:18). More to the point, you will remember that what I am saying is nothing new: as I have pointed out, even the early Christians like Origen were discussing this. To help you in your studies, here is his quotation which I have shared numerous times and do so again because I want you to see the truth:

        “But if you suppose that upon only that one Peter the whole church is built by God, what would you say about John, the son of thunder, or about each one of the apostles? Shall we dare to say that the gates of Hades will not prevail against Peter in particular, but that they will prevail against the other apostles and the perfect? Does not the saying previously made, “The gates of Hades will not prevail against it,” apply in regard to all? . . . ARE THE KYES OF THE KINGDOM OF HEAVEN GIVEN BY THE LORD TO PETER ONLY AND WILL NONE OTHER OF THE BLESSED RECEIVED THEM? (Origen (c. 245, E), 9.456.)

        //Only one person can have the keys (PLURAL) of kingdom of heaven.//

        That’s what you have said numerous times, yet you have provided no legitimate proof of this claim. Furthermore, I have demonstrated this is not true from Eliakim (Isaiah 22:22), Peter (Matthew 16:19), all the Apostles (Matthew 18:18), and Jesus Himself (Revelation 3:7).

        //Once he Peter died they were passed to his successors and so on. Only one person can have the key (Singular) of the House of David. It was passed from Shebnah to Eliakim. When ELiakim died or stepped down then the key was passed to his successor. The process stopped with the end of Davidic kingdom of Judah. Christ is Davidic king in NT and He has both key of the House of David, as well keys of the kingdom of heaven as the Second Person of the Holy Trinity, the latter He passed to Peter alone.//

        All easily and already answered.

        Furthermore, you cannot make up your mind about Peter can you? If Peter ALONE was given the keys, then Peter ALONE had the keys. Yet Jesus possessed the keys and gave them to Peter while alive (Matthew 16:19), and to all the Apostles (Matthew 18:18).

        More to the point, it has been demonstrated historically from a Roman Catholic historian (among others) that there was no “pope” of the early church and that such an idea was not even conceived of until nearly five hundred years after the death of Jesus! Since you continue to ignore this point from a revered Roman Catholic source, I will share some more historical testimony for you of it.

        “The first point of note in examining the early Church and the origins of the Papacy should be that of the equality of the bishops. If the Roman claims regarding the Papacy are true, that is, if Peter acted as a Pope, chose a successor to follow him as a Pope, and established the foundations of the Papacy at Rome, teaching all other bishops that he, and he alone, was the “Vicar of Christ on earth,” then we should find evidence of this important teaching in the writings of the early Christians. But we do not. Rather, we find that for hundreds of years after Christ each bishop was considered equal to each other bishop. Indeed, during the first two centuries, the Biblical teaching, clearly drawn from an unbiased interpretation of the New Testament itself, had been maintained: that being that the office of bishop, elder or presbyter, was all one office. A presbyter was a bishop, a bishop a presbyter. Only as the the “clergy/ laity” split took place and deepened did this primitive, Biblical situation change. Cyprian (200-258), bishop of Carthage, was an impressive thinker and theologian, who died a martyr under Valerian. In a preface, written by him to the seventh council of Carthage, we read, “For neither does any of us set himself up as a bishop of bishops, nor by tyrannical terror does any compel his colleague to the necessity of obedience; since every bishop, according to the allowance of his liberty and power, has his own proper right of judgment, and can no more be judged by another than he himself can judge another.” 3 Note that Cyprian surely does not believe that there is a hierarchy of bishops in the church, or that one has the “primacy” over the others. Each is the bishop of his own territory, and has authority within that territory, and not elsewhere. No bishop can then sit as “judge” over other bishops, as all are equal to one another. Not only this, but Cyprian in a letter to “the clergy and people abiding in Spain” rebuked the Roman bishop Stephen who had meddled in the affairs of the African church. Basilides, a bishop who had been deposed for idolatry, had gone to Rome and enlisted the help of Stephen, seeking to be reestablished. Cyprian writes, “Neither can it rescind an ordination rightly perfected, that Basilides, after the detection of his crimes, and the baring of his conscience even by his own confession, went to Rome and deceived Stephen our colleague, placed at a distance, and ignorant of what had been done, and of the truth, to canvass that he might be replaced unjustly in the episcopate from which he had been righteously deposed.” 4 It is difficult to imagine such an attitude or belief in one of the bishops attending the Council of Trent, or any modem Roman Catholic conclave for that matter. Cyprian did not see the Roman bishop as being superior to, but rather equal with, all other bishops. This is even more important in the light of the fact that Cyprian was one of a minority of early Christian writers who did see Peter as the “rock” of Matthew 16: 18! 5 Therefore, while Cyprian did see Peter as the rock, he did not see that this made the bishop of Rome superior to anyone else! The bishop of Rome was an equal among equals—important, for he lead the large and influential church which was located at the very seat of the Roman empire, but not superior for any reason. During the early centuries, the term “pope” was used simply to mean “father.” It was not used of the bishop of Rome primarily, or even very often. 6 Cyprian was called “pope” more than once in letters sent to him, two of them, interestingly enough, from the “presbyters and deacons abiding at Rome”! 7 Surely if the “papacy” was an institution founded from the earliest times of the church, we would not find the clergy of Rome writing to an African bishop, calling him “Pope Cyprian.” Oh, but we are told, “the particular titles and honors of the papacy developed over time, led, of course, by the Holy Spirit, so that just because we do not see a fully-formed and developed concept of the papacy at this time does not mean it did not exist.” To which we reply that it is one thing to speak of development, another of absolute change. Not only does Cyprian not see the bishop of Rome as a “Pope” in the modem sense of the term, but he denies that the Church is structured in such a way as to allow for one man to be the “head of the Church.” Yes there was evolution, change, development—in fact, a nearly total rejection of the Biblical form of the Church and nearly every one of her doctrines! Another source of information in this regards comes from the “Apostolic Canons.” These canons are appended to the “Constitutions of the Holy Apostles.” Dating of the canons ranges from the early third to the fifth century. Canon 35 reads, “The bishops of every country ought to know who is the chief among them, and to esteem him as their head, and not to do any great thing without his consent; but every one to manage only the affairs that belong to his own parish, and the places subject to it. But let him not do anything without the consent of all; for it is by this means there will be unanimity, and God will be glorified by Christ, in the Holy Spirit.” 8 There is no mention of the Roman Papacy here; the unity of the Church is not maintained, according to this canon, by adherence to the Roman See. But, if the Papacy was in existence at this time, and it was the “universal” faith of all Christians that the Roman See perpetuated the primacy of Peter, why is this not taught here? We must remember that it is the Roman Church that is claiming the positive existence of a particular belief. The evidence, then, must not only substantiate the existence of such a belief, but must also explain why, when the “faith of the Church” was under discussion, this particular belief would not be taught or even mentioned. When the Council of Nicea met, one would think that the “Vicar of Christ on earth,” the Roman Pope, would figure prominently in the proceedings. Instead, the bishop of Rome attended none of the proceedings, and was represented by but two presbyters. These representatives had little important part in the proceedings. 9 The Council formed a very interesting canon, Canon 6. It is very important in that it gives us a clear understanding of the position of Rome at this time: “Let the ancient customs in Egypt, Libya and Pentapolis prevail, that the Bishop of Alexandria have jurisdiction in all these, since the like is customary for the Bishop of Rome also. Likewise in Antioch and the other provinces, let the Churches retain their privileges. And this is to be universally understood, that if any one be made bishop without the consent of the Metropolitan, the great Synod has declared that such a man ought not to be a bishop. 10 Here the early Church Fathers indicate that the Roman bishop is on an even plane and of equal status with Eastern bishops. There is no hint of any “papal supremacy” and just the opposite is indicated: Rome was seen as an equal, not the sole leader. Over a century later, the Council of Chalcedon, where some of the specifics of the relationship of the divine and the human in Christ were defined, also expressed in words that Rome found to be unacceptable the reason why anyone looked to Rome as having any kind of special position or authority. In “Canon 28” we read, “Following in all things the decisions of the holy Fathers, and acknowledging the canon, which has been just read, of the One Hundred and Fifty Bishops beloved-of-God (who assembled in the imperial city of Constantinople, which is New Rome, in the time of the Emperor Theodosius of happy memory), we also do enact and decree the same things concerning the privileges of the most holy Church of Constantinople, which is New Rome. For the Fathers rightly granted privileges to the throne of old Rome, because it was the royal city, (emphasis ours) And the One Hundred and Fifty most religious Bishops, actuated by the same consideration, gave equal privileges to the most holy throne of New Rome, justly judging that the city which is honoured with the Sovereignty and the Senate, and enjoys equal privileges with the old imperial Rome, should in ecclesiastical matters also be magnified as she is, and rank next after her; so that, in the Pontic, the Asian, and the Thracian dioceses, the metropolitans only and such bishops also of the Dioceses aforesaid as are among the barbarians, should be ordained by the aforesaid most holy throne of the most holy Church of Constantinople; every metropolitan of the aforesaid dioceses, together with the bishops of his province, ordaining his own provincial bishops, as has been declared by the divine canons; but that, as has been above said, the metropolitans of the aforesaid Dioceses should be ordained by the archbishop of Constantinople, after the proper elections have been held according to custom and have been reported to him.” 11 Rome, then, was given “privileges” because it was the royal city. This is only logical. Rome’s priority (as seen above, possibly, in the citation from Irenaeus) was due to the fact that Rome was the center of the Empire, not due to some concept of “Petrine authority” in the Roman See. It might be likened to the modem situation where a church in Washington D.C. would, simply by its geographical location, demand the respect of those in its denomination, while another church, say in Ajo, Arizona (no offense intended to the citizens, few as they are, of Ajo) would probably not demand the same kind or amount of respect or privilege. But even this does not fully express the situation of Rome, for the city of Rome was the very center of the Empire itself; and, therefore, the bishop of the church in that city would have great privileges. Canon 28 of Chalcedon shows us, then, that the rank and privilege of Rome was not based upon theological reasoning, but on political reality. But note, that this canon also does not indicate that the bishop of Rome was superior to any other bishop, but simply enjoyed greater privileges. In fact, about fifty years before Chalcedon, the great scholar Jerome had written, “Wherever a bishop may be, whether at Rome or at Eugubium, at Constantinople or at Rhegtum, at Alexandria or at Thanis, he is of the same worth, and of the same priesthood; the force of wealth and lowness of poverty do not render a bishop higher or lower; for all of them are the successors of the apostles.” 12 Jerome uses a similar comparison as ours above between Washington and Ajo; he compares the three great patriarchates (Rome, Alexandria, and Antioch) with much lesser-known cities, and, on this basis, asserts that the bishop of Rome is of the same worth as the bishop of any smaller city or province. All the bishops, Jerome claims, are the successors of the apostles. No mention is made of Peter, no mention is made of the unity of the church depending upon Rome. Surely Jerome recognized the importance of the Roman See—so did just about everyone else. But they did so for reasons that are other than those claimed by modem Romanism. One of the bishops of Rome itself, Gregory I (540-604), wrote, “Now I confidently say that whosoever calls himself, or desires to be called, Universal Priest, is in his elation the precursor of Antichrist, because he proudly puts himself above all others.” 13 Such words would describe many of the medieval popes with great precision. But Gregory said more: “If then he shunned the subjecting of the members of Christ partially to certain heads, as if beside Christ, though this were to the apostles themselves, what wilt thou say to Christ, who is the Head of the universal Church, in the scrutiny of the last judgment, having attempted to put all his members under thyself by the appellation of Universal? Who, I ask, is proposed for imitation in this wrongful title but he who, despising the legions of angels constituted sodaily with himself, attempted to start up to an eminence of singularity, that he might seem to be under none and to be alone above all? 14 Gregory likens anyone who would claim to be “universal bishop” to Lucifer himself who attempted to raise his throne above the throne of God Himself (Isaiah 14). Would the modem claims of the papacy qualify for Gregory’s ridicule? This author believes that they would.” (James R. White, Answers to Catholic Claims: A Discussion of Biblical Authority, 1700-1807 (Kindle Edition))

        Now you have testimony from three historical sources (one Catholic, one Protestant, and one New Testament Christian) all affirming the same thing: THE EARLY CHURCH DID NOT RECOGNIZE PETER AS THE POPE!

        There was no universal bishop of the church in the catholic idea of a pope until the sixth century A.D. Then, it was created as the result of a power-play between Rome and four other mega churches. The corrupt bishops of Rome began at that time to make the claim that the church had been built on Peter, and because the common people were kept from the Word of God, a lot of people believed it. Hence the “man of sin” that had been working since the first century came to full power and the pope of the Roman Catholic church was created.

        //You are entitled to have your opinion, no matter how silly it is.//

        Thank you for that freedom. It is certainly a far cry from historical Catholicism. Have you ever read Fox’s Book of Martyrs and seen how the Catholic Church has historically treated dissenters? Have you ever read Timmerman’s Lecture’s On Catholicism and learned the same? If not, I would strongly recommend them to you for your consideration.

        However, this is not about my opinion: it is what the truth of God. Very simply, by endorsing the pope, you are giving allegiance to what the Word of God identifies as the “man of sin.” Please read 2 Thessalonians 2:1-14 and give serious consideration to your soul my friend.

        //But do not expect everybody will believe in you. You are entitled to disagree with what Catholics believe and anybody, not only Catholics but other Christians as well, is also entitled to disagree with what you believe.//

        Everyone has freedom to disagree with me.

        Everyone has freedom to disagree with God.

        Yet disagreeing with God does not yield good results.

        Matthew 7:21-23-21  “Not everyone who says to Me, ‘Lord, Lord,’ shall enter the kingdom of heaven, but he who does the will of My Father in heaven. 22  Many will say to Me in that day, ‘Lord, Lord, have we not prophesied in Your name, cast out demons in Your name, and done many wonders in Your name?’ 23  And then I will declare to them, ‘I never knew you; depart from Me, you who practice lawlessness!’

        John 12:48-He who rejects Me, and does not receive My words, has that which judges him—the word that I have spoken will judge him in the last day.

        2 Thessalonians 1:8-in flaming fire taking vengeance on those who do not know God, and on those who do not obey the gospel of our Lord Jesus Christ.

        //If somebody wrote that NT was inspired, does it imply that what he wrote is also inspired? That is your circular argument based on 2 Peter 3:16-17. You cited verses from NT and you forgot that you made a presumption that those verses are Scripture.//

        I did not realize when studying with a Catholic that I would need to use the same type of arguments that I use when studying with agnostics, atheists, and pagans that I work with. Furthermore, you have been maintaining that Peter is the sole holder of the keys of the kingdom.

        Why would you claim that Peter was the sole key holder of the kingdom, but then dispute what Peter says about Paul’s Epistles being recognized as inspired Scripture?

        It does give one pause for consideration.

        However, to answer your question, let’s notice.

        1. If the Apostle Peter was inspired by God, and if Peter teaches that Paul’s Epistles are inspired Scripture, then Paul’s Epistles are inspired Scripture.
        2. The Apostle Peter was inspired by God, and Peter taught that Paul’s Epistles are inspired Scripture.
        3. Therefore, Paul’s Epistles are inspired Scripture.

        The word “inspiration” is from the Greek phrase “theopneustos.” Let’s see how this word is defined.

        “This term is given to the mysterious power exercised by the Divine Spirit on the authors of the writings of the Old and New Testament, to enable them to compose that which the church of God has received from their hands….The historian Josephus, 1 who was the contemporary of Paul, makes use of a term exactly similar, in his first book against Appion, in which, speaking of all the prophets, “who,” he remarks, ” have composed the twenty-two sacred books of the Old Testament,” he declares, that they wrote according to [or inspiration] which comes from God…These assertions, which are themselves the testimony of the word of God, include already our last definition of , and lead us finally to characterise it as—” that inexplicable power which the Divine Spirit, afore time, exercised upon the authors of Holy Scripture, to guide them even to the words which they have employed, and to preserve them from all error, as well as from any omission.”” (François Samuel R. Louis Gaussen, Theopneustia: The Plenary Inspiration Of The Holy Scriptures, 260-425 (Kindle Edition, emphasis added); Miami, FL; Hard Press)

        Now, was the Apostle Peter inspired by God? Jesus promised all of His Apostles (including Peter) that they would be inspired by the Holy Spirit when they received His baptism:

        John 14:26-But the Helper, the Holy Spirit, whom the Father will send in My name, He will teach you all things, and bring to your remembrance all things that I said to you.

        John 16:13-However, when He, the Spirit of truth, has come, He will guide you into all truth; for He will not speak on His own authority, but whatever He hears He will speak; and He will tell you things to come.

        This all came to pass on the Day of Pentecost (Acts 2:1-3). Then the Apostles preached the Word of God to the people and God confirmed it (as He always does with new truth) in Acts 2:4-13. Thankfully, God has also given amazing evidences to document that the Bible is His Word (such as prophecy and fulfillment, archaeological confirmation, scientific foreknowledge of the Bible writers, the supernatural unity of the Bible writers, equidistant letter sequencing, etc.).

        Now, with that being said, Peter classified Paul’s Writings as Scripture.

        2 Peter 3:15-16-and consider that the longsuffering of our Lord is salvation—as also our beloved brother Paul, according to the wisdom given to him, has written to you, 16  as also in all his epistles, speaking in them of these things, in which are some things hard to understand, which untaught and unstable people twist to their own destruction, as they do also the rest of the Scriptures.

        Thus we have more evidence and confirmation that the New Testament Scriptures were recognized as canonical and authoritative Scripture even when the Apostles wrote them. Furthermore, I have provided ample evidence that these Scriptures were known and recognized by many in the early church. In some places where the historical background of a particular Book may not have been known, it may have taken time for a Book to be accepted by believers in that area. However, there was a general consensus of the New Testament Scriptures from the earliest times.

        As one scholar has noted:

        “The Muratorian Fragment tells us why The Shepherd came to be cut out of the sacred collection that Christians read during times of worship: The Shepherd couldn’t be placed among the Hebrew prophets because the era of Old Testament prophecies had ended (“their number has been completed”). Yet the book didn’t fit among the authoritative Christian writings, either, because with the deaths of the apostolic eyewitnesses, that era had ended too (“it is after their time”)….So what truths can we pick up from our first stop? At least as early as the mid-second century, the standard for determining which writings were authoritative in the church was whether the book represented eyewitness testimony about Jesus. Writings that came after the deaths of these witnesses could not be regarded as universally authoritative in the churches, regardless of how popular these texts might become. Here’s what’s also clear from the Muratorian Fragment: even though Christians disagreed for several hundred years about seven or so writings, the core of the New Testament—including the four Gospels, Acts, Paul’s letters, and at least John’s first letter—was accepted as authoritative no later than the mid-second century, probably earlier…What can we pick up from Serapion’s experiences? Even at the end of the second century, Christians remained open to using previously unknown texts, but only if they could clearly trace these texts to apostolic eyewitnesses of Jesus. 42 What did church leaders do when they weren’t certain whether a text represented eyewitness testimony? They compared the writing to the writings that they had already “received”—to the texts that were universally known to represent apostolic testimony about Jesus.” (Timothy Paul Jones, Conspiracies And The Cross, 1270-1324 (Kindle Edition); Lake Mary, Florida; FrontLine)

        //You do not realize that you need eternal authority to define which and what books belong to the Bible. The Bible is neither self defined nor self interpreted.//

        My friend, this is another area where you misunderstand because of Catholic tradition and dogma. An inspired Book is not inspired because a council gets together and says that it is: it is inspired because God inspired it!

        Hear the words of another former Roman Catholic who is now a member of the church of Christ:

        “By the close of the first century, the 27 books that compose the New Testament had been accepted by the early church as canonical. The evidence for this is verified by early church history. (In case you desire to read a more thorough treatment of this subject, I’ve listed several books for further reference at the end of this chapter.) The Roman Catholic Church maintains that the collection of books that compose the New Testament canon was determined by them. This is incorrect. The purpose of this council was not to sort through dusty old scrolls that had been stored in some monastic attic and then announce to the Christian world which books were canonical and which were not. The council simply affirmed what the early church had long since affirmed-that the 27 books we know as the New Testament were canonical. We must not make the mistake of thinking that the Scriptures received their authority because some council made a public statement of their acceptance. The truth of the matter is that the early church accepted the Scriptures tures in much the same way as Israel accepted the Old Testament Scriptures-they believed the Scriptures to be inspired of God. The church rightly saw herself as subject to the authority of Scripture and not the other way around. Though the church existed before the New Testament was written, this did not give the church authority over Scripture or even authority equal to Scripture. The church must always be subject to the authority of God’s written Word. What enabled the early church to accept the canon of the New Testament so readily was the unique position of the apostles. They were the Lord’s companions for most of his ministry, and he trained them for a special mission: world evangelism. Not only were they eyewitnesses to the resurrection of Jesus, but they were endowed with the necessary credentials to establish themselves as God’s spokespersons. The miracles they performed testified to this role.” (Tony Coffey, Answers to Questions Catholics Are Asking, 335-338 (Kindle Edition); Eugene, Oregon; Harvest House Publishers)

        There is also a great of evidence of the canonicity of the New Testament Scriptures from the Gnostics. The Gnostics were early enemies of the church who tried to combine paganism and Christianity (which interestingly enough paved the way for Roman Catholicism). Anyway, the Gnostics had a huge library amassed at a place Nag Hammadi, Egypt that was eventually buried and then unearthed about a half century ago. The Gnostic writings were written about a hundred years or more after the death of Christ (which occurred in A.D. 33). What is interesting is that the Gnostic writings make continual references to the New Testament Scriptures and show that they were not only known, but regarded as quite authoritative!

        For example:

        “This impressive composition, which adroitly chains together and inventively elaborates a series of striking images in a discourse interwoven with subtle allusions to New Testament texts, is no doubt the work of an important figure.” (Einar Thomassen & Marvin Meyer, Introduction To Gospel Of Truth, Marvin W. Meyer & James M. Robinson, The Nag Hammadi Scriptures: The Revised and Updated Translation of Sacred Gnostic Texts Complete in One Volume, 33 (Kindle Edition); HarperCollins E-Books)

        “As Michel Tardieu suggests, the author of the tractate has utilized his source, Eugnostos, within an artificial framework borrowed from the New Testament and apocryphal literature emphasizing the revelation of Christ to his disciples after the resurrection.” (Madeleine Scpello, Introduction To The Wisdom Of Jesus Christ, inMarvin Meyer & James M. Robinson, The Nag Hammadi Scriptures: The Revised and Updated Translation of Sacred Gnostic Texts Complete in One Volume, 285 (Kindle Edition); HarperCollins E-Books)

        “The vocabulary of the Gospel of Philip includes expressions drawn from both the New Testament and the Jewish scriptures.” (Madeline Scopello & Marvin Meyer, Introduction To Gospel Of Philip, Marvin Meyer & James M. Robinson, The Nag Hammadi Scriptures: The Revised and Updated Translation of Sacred Gnostic Texts Complete in One Volume, 159 (Kindle Edition); HarperCollins E-Books)

        “As Michel Tardieu suggests, the author of the tractate has utilized his source, Eugnostos, within an artificial framework borrowed from the New Testament and apocryphal literature emphasizing the revelation of Christ to his disciples after the resurrection.” (Madeline Scopello & Marvin Meyer, Introduction To The Wisdom Of Jesus Christ, Marvin Meyer & James M. Robinson, The Nag Hammadi Scriptures: The Revised and Updated Translation of Sacred Gnostic Texts Complete in One Volume, 285 (Kindle Edition); HarperCollins E-Books)

        “It is interesting that most of these reinterpretations of the Christology of the apostolic church in Three Forms of First Thought seem to depend on key passages from the Gospel of John to score their point in any acute fashion.” (John D. Turner, Introduction To Three Forms Of First Thought, in Marvin W. Meyer & James M. Robinson,The Nag Hammadi Scriptures: The Revised and Updated Translation of Sacred Gnostic Texts Complete in One Volume by Marvin W. Meyer, James M. Robinson, 713 (Kindle Edition); HarperOne)

        Now you have testimony from the inspired Apostles and the New Testament Scriptures, the writings of the early Christians, and the testimony of the early enemies of Christianity that the New Testament Books were written, known, and received as authoritative from the earliest histories of the church…and we see another example of how Roman Catholicism is just plain wrong.

        //The founder of your church is not Jesus Christ but Alexander Campbell. It is historical fact. You may claim that your church was founded by Christ and nobody is under obligation to believe it.//

        I have already provided more than sufficient proof that Jesus Christ built and established His church (Matthew 16:18), and that He adds the saved to it (Acts 2:37-47). Alexander Campbell was a great preacher and a great man, a true scholar of his day. Indeed, to investigate that, maybe consider reading the debate that he had with bishop Purcell, a respected Catholic authoritarian of his day, regarding Roman Catholicism. You remember this debate, don’t you? I have referenced it several times to you and yet you have not acknowledged it except to refer to it as part of my “nonsense” that you “don’t have the time” for.

        Furthermore, I provided plenty of other evidences for you that showed churches of Christ in existence LONG before Alexander Campbell. Did you overlook these proofs?

        //I was once evangelical and in the past attended a number of churches that may include Church of Christ//

        I am pleased that you “may” have visited churches of Christ at some point in your life. Now, I encourage you to do so again. Hopefully, our discussions have given you enough pause to consider these matters in a fresh light. I also remind you that if you would like a copy of those books (which will be purchased by our church and sent to you free of charge either on Kindle or paperback form), you need only ask and give me an appropriate address (email or mailing address).

        Thanks again for the good discussion!

        For anyone else who is studying along with me and my friend (I am not even sure what his name is), please take the time to visit the church of Christ in your community. If I can help yo with any resources at my disposal, please message me and let me know and I will do anything that I can to help. God bless each and every one who is searching for the truth of Jesus!

      15. You claim to be a Minister of God’s Word. But ironically your rely on cherry picked sources from outside Scripture to support your theory that (1) keys of kingdom of heaven equal to power to bind and to to loose; (2) NT has 27 books, not more and not less. Why don’t you try to defence what you believe using Scripture alone?

        You must pretend to be blind when you cannot notice that Scripture talks about keys (PLURAl) of the kingdom of heaven and key (SINGULAR) of House of David. You equate those two and keep on asking why Jesus and Peter can keep the same keys?

        You entitled to believe that your church was established in 33 AD. Nobody is under any obligation to believe that. Even Protestants do not accept your claim.

      16. U must ask urself that very question. Cuz ur church wasnt founded them either. Also to my understanding the Catholic church removed books of the bible to keep the entire truth from public view. How bout u do ur research on ur Catholic belief cuz jesus wasnt Catholic. Try questioning ur own beliefs instead of others. Determine if ur belief is true or not. Basically pluck out the beam in ur own eye first so u can clearly see to pluck out the mote in tabatas eye. The Catholic church changed parts of scripture. There are vs that doesn’t even exist in original text. U better do ur research friend. Determine if ur words are helpful or hurtful. Cuz if u r trying to place a stumbling block before tabata its better for u to hang a stone bout ur neck and be cast into the sea. Instead of insulting someone how bout showing proof of what u say. Where is ur proof for what u say? Unless u can back up what u say with scripture then all I can say is put up or shut up. Ur lips are full of lies and deceit n poison is in ur words. U speak as tho u have authority but yet u lack knowledge. According to God….he that thinks he has knowledge knows nothing as of yet. I suggest u do ur research on ur belief and see if it lines up with Christ friend. This back n forth will get u nowhere.

      17. Thank you for your advice. I did study my belief. You can go to my weblog to read some of the outcome. I suggest you you do the same, instead of blindly accusing the Catholic Church.

      18. Vivator its not blindly accusing the Catholic church when its backed by millions. Do ur research. I stand firm by what the word of God says n not what the so called Catholic church says. U Dont confess sins to a priest. U confess ur sins to God cuz he is able to forgive. A priest is a man. He bleeds red just as the next. He isnt without sin. Therefore the bishop or pope or king or queen or president or whatever the person may call themselves is not without sin or excuse. He that thinks he is….is nothing more than making himself a liar. He that says he has no sin makes himself a liar and does not the truth.

      19. Popes, bishops and priest are men. The Catholic Church never declares them to be super-men and sinless. Where did you get that hoax? Jesus gave the authority to forgive sin to the Church in John 20:21-23.

      20. Lol. U do realize that john 20:21-23 is only intended for the specific audience n not us in today’s world. The holy spirit was given to the apostles to forgive others as they seemed fit. A priest or bishop or anyone in todays world does not have that power. We forgive others so that God can forgive us when we ask. This is noted in matthew 6:14-15. John 20 is specific to the apostles. Basically do that they could spread the gospel and do as they were called. Just as paul spoke in 1 corinthians 13:8 all things will cease but love is greatest of all. Tongues and being able to forgive sins all resides in Christ and him alone. No person has that authority. Sure we can forgive what others do to us from the heart and mind but to erase the sin thats Gods doing not a priest or a monk or a pope or bishop etc. When we confess our sins we are to speak directly to God. Why would I waste my time confessing my wrongs to another man that is just as a sinner as i am? That makes no sense and is vain. God is able. Man is not. Get ur facts straight dude. For one u will never Change my mind or my belief. So ur wasting ur time with back and forth. Seek out ur own salvation with fear and trembling.

      21. How do you know that those verses are intended to specific audience if they do not say so? Only God and/or Christ are Saviours but they can use us, sinners, to bring salvation to others. Only God and.or Christ can forgive sins but they can use the ministry of priests (who are sinners) to do it. What is the problem?

      22. So the reason I say the apostles as the audience is because they had the holy spirit. Does any one in today’s world have that spirit or authority? No they do not. They can spread the gospel n lead others but they cannot pray away others sins. It was the audience, which was the apostles, at that time that received the ghost and had authority. Ppl today do not have that power the apostles had then. Nowhere in the bible does it say they still do. However it does say those powers will cease..

        If I speak with the tongues of men and of angels, but do not have love, I have become a noisy gong or a clanging cymbal. If I have the gift of prophecy, and know all mysteries and all knowledge; and if I have all faith, so as to remove mountains, but do not have love, I am nothing.
        — 1 Corinthians 13:1-2

        Love never fails; but if there are gifts of prophecy, they will be done away; if there are tongues, they will cease; if there is knowledge, it will be done away. For we know in part and we prophesy in part; but when the perfect comes, the partial will be done away. When I was a child, I used to speak like a child, think like a child, reason like a child; when I became a man, I did away with childish things. For now we see in a mirror dimly, but then face to face; now I know in part, but then I will know fully just as I also have been fully known. But now faith, hope, love, abide these three; but the greatest of these is love.
        — 1 Corinthians 13:8-13

        Sure ppl can prophecy n spread the gospel but if they have not love they have nothing. Also they may lead others but they have no power like the apostles did in today’s world. Thats y i said a specific audience meaning the apostles.

      23. Are you saying the Holy Spirit is no longer with us because they were only with the apostles? Does Scripture say we are the Temple of the Holy Spirit?

      24. Apparently u have to see it written to believe it. Basically seeing is believing. Lol. If a person was to read the parables of Christ but yet does not understand them how can he discern the truth? He is a blind man who is leading others astray n they all fall into a ditch. If u understand what im saying to u then ur eyes are open if not then when ur eyes become open u may see the truth in a new light. Ill tell u some words of wisdom…..

        Tomorrow the sun will rise…if it doesnt u have died.

      25. So you are saying only you can understand the truth and therefore the only one who is not blind? You may make any claim you like about yourself. Who care?

      26. Im just simply asking u a question. So therefore u r just picking ur battles. I suggest u understand first where Catholic began.

        200 CE: Under the leadership of Irenaeus, bishop of Lyon, the basic structure of the Catholic church was in place. A system of governance of regional branches under absolute direction from Rome was established. The basic tenants of Catholicism were formalized, involving the absolute rule of faith.

        313 CE: Roman emperor Constantine legalized Christianity, and in 330 moved the Roman capital to Constantinople, leaving the Christian church to be the central authority in Rome.

        325 CE: The First Council of Nicaea converged by Roman Emperor Constantine I. The Council attempted to structure church leadership around a model similar to that of the Roman system, and also formalized key articles of faith.

        551 CE: At the Council of Chalcedon, the head of the church in Constantinople was declared to be the head of the Eastern branch of the church, equal in authority to the Pope. This effectively was the start of the division of the church into the Eastern Orthodox and Roman Catholic branches.

        590 CE: Pope Gregory I initiates his papacy, during which the Catholic Church engages in widespread efforts to convert pagan peoples to Catholicism. This begins a time of enormous political and military power controlled by Catholic popes. This date is marked by some as the beginning of the Catholic Church as we know it today.

        Also the holy spirit dwells in the believers. To those who do not believe is the spirit of antichrist. U like picking arguments and twisting words. All im saying is that the apostles had better grip on things than u and i. I told u my belief. I will not set and argue with another sinner. As the word of God says…..let God be true and all men liars.

      27. I do not pick arguments – it is you who made your statement and I have the right to question it. You wrote “the apostles had better grip on things than u and i”. You wrote it and my question is: how do you know? Why does the Holy Spirit give us less guidance compared when the apostles were still alive?

      28. Vivator if u agree with what I wrote then ur agreeing to the gospel. Also if u agree with what I said n u obey all things that is written then ur already part of Christ church. Christ isnt Catholic. Christ doesnt have a denomination. Man makes all these different denominations assuming that they follow Christ. But what they fail is if that Christ does have a particular denomination then which church of the billions worldwide does he choose? Does not the word of God say that he will return for his bride. Which of the churches is his bride? None are except those ppl who have obeyed the gospel n commandments of Christ. Christ church is believers. Believers and does of the gospel and commandments.

      29. let be clear here. Christ Church is not Church of Christ. All churches claim to obey the gospel and commandment of Jesus and yet they disagree with each other. For example I know Church of Christ considers Baptism as necessary for salvation while the others do not accept that teaching. What made think you belong to the “right” church?

      30. Does not jesus say in luke 24:47 that repentance and remission of sins be preached into all nations beginning at Jerusalem?. What is repentance? Turning from ur wrongs and doing away with them and doing whats right. What is remission of sins? Baptism. Y. Acts 2:38 says plainly as peter said…..repent and let every one of u be baptized in the name of Jesus Christ for the remission of sins and u shall receive the gift of the holy ghost. Remission = forgiveness, which is only done by baptism. If ive been baptized into christ then im obeying jesus words. If ive repented then im obeying jesus words. If ive confessed and believed then im obeying jesus words. If I love all just as he loves me im obeying jesus words. If I forgive then when I confess to him then i will be forgiven. If I show mercy to others then he shows mercy to me. If u would like me to show u original text ill be happy to do so. If u would like me to show u scripture ill be happy to do so. This is a argument that will get u nowhere. Believe me ive done my research many times and nowhere does the original text teach catholic. Also i agree many teach that baptism is needed and some teach that it doesnt. To the ones that says its not needed doesnt heed to the words of Christ. Scripture tells us plainly that its required. How else can u have ur sins washed away? U cant. James 2 tells us that plain. Faith without works is dead. Jesus taught baptism. He even spoke it when he was in spirit before he ascended from mt olivet. Or the mount of the east so to speak. This is noted in Matthew 28:19. But then again in original text this vs is omitted. The only thing original states is….go ye therefore into all nations teaching them to observe all things that I have commanded u and lo I am with u always even to the ends of the earth. Nowhere does the original mention baptize into father son spirit. But in luke 24:47 we see that jesus spoke of baptism when he was alive before going to the cross. Notice how peter stated exactly what Christ said to do. Even jesus spoke in mark 16:16 when he said….he that believes (faith, confess) and is baptized(remission, works) will be saved. But he that does not believe ( faith + works) will be condemned. If im added to christ church then im already his. Now I can lose that salvation if I turn back into sin without confession. But confession is between me and God. Not another man. Nor priest. He gave authority to the disciples to continue the gospel to the ends of the world. He didnt give them authority to pass it down thru the ages. What ur saying is that since peter and them had power to forgive sins on earth then they passed it on to the bishops and priest and etc. If thats so then ur saying that ur priest or pope can forgive sins therefore they become God. Which is a big no no. Only God forgives sins. Not u me or any other person on the face of this earth. They only had the authority while they taught. My church is the true church. Y. Cuz its christ church. His church. Y. Cuz im a believer. I am a christian. I believe and testify that Jesus is the christ the son of God. I confess Jesus as LORD and believe that God raised him from the dead. I have turned from my old ways and have been baptized thus having my sins washed by his blood. Now I am to obey all commandments as he has given unto death. Enduring all things unto death. So yes my church is the true church. Which is Jesus Christ himself. If u havent obeyed the gospel I suggest u do it. Be added into his church. Its a spiritual church bro. Not a physical church just want to make that known. God isnt found inside temples made with hands. Thats scripture bro. Again christ church is the true church. Now as in a church being called church of Christ doesnt mean a physical building. Church of Christ refers to all who have been added into christ. Christ is the final finisher of our faith. Hebrews 12:2

      31. Catholics and follower of Church of Christ agree on necessity of Baptism and repentance. I don’t need to write a long “essay”. Apostolic succession is obviously Catholic belief. It is not stated in NT and is based on Tradition. Let me correct you, the priests, bishops and popes do not have the power to forgive sins. It is Christ who forgive our sins through their ministry. For comparison the title Saviour is applied only to God and Christ. But God and/or Christ can save any through us, when without making us saviours.

        You are entitled to claim that your church is the true church. I am not under any obligation to believe it.

      32. Vivator,

        I have tried sharing our discussion to your webpage but it appears my invitation isn’t showing up.

        Surely you want your friends to see your defense of Roman Catholicism?

      33. I did my friend. On three different places I shared a link to our discussion and invited others to read and consider. Unfortunately my comments have not been approved.

      34. I have no post on papacy. You left the same link at posts of which topics have nothing to do with papacy. If you want to return the favour, why don’t you comment on the topic of any of my posts?

      35. For once u and i agree. The only true church is the PEOPLE who have believed and baptized. Church isnt a building. Ppl who believe and is baptized is the church. Thats my belief. All backed by the bible. I dont have a denomination friend.

      36. Roman catholicism was formed when emporer Constantine tried to suppressed Christianity and failed. so Christianity grew instead, so he dicided to merge its believe systems with it like the Rocicrucians. Roman Catholicism is based on ancient mystic religion founded in Egypt, Sumeria and Babylon.

        According to acts 11:26 the disciples were called christians in antioch not Catholics in antioch. Get ur facts straight vivator. Also y do u Catholics refer to peter as a pope? According to scripture peter was a disciple. An apostle. Therefore u twist what the word of God says.

        The prophet Isaiah said that God gave Eliakim the key to the House of David. Then in the gospel reading today, Jesus (who descended from the house of David) gave Peter the keys to the kingdom of heaven.

        They were both given positions of authority because they were trustworthy, very faithful, and used good judgement. God didn’t trust Shebna, the first master of the palace in today’s first reading though, so he fired him. That seems to happen a lot with God. People who once pleased Him, later become a big disappointment to Him, and so God had to relieve them of their position of honor and give it to someone else.

        King Saul and King David are two rulers in the old testament that the same thing happened to them. King Saul completely fell from God’s grace and so God replaced him with David. King David in turn, dramatically fell from God’s grace too. It was only because of his deep repentance that God forgave him, and gave him another chance.

        Notice how peter denied christ and failed but with his guilt he was very sorry for what he had done and Christ forgave him. God is very merciful with people who are truly sorry for the things they have done that are wrong, and so is Jesus Christ. Why do so many of us beat ourselves up for such a long time after we have committed a sin? Turning away from ur wrongs is called repentance.

        Guilt can eat people alive inside, when something triggers the memory. They can’t let it go, and feel like they are not holy, or do not deserve to be treated as a good person, because, inside of themselves, they think they are not worthy. Even if God forgives them, they can’t seem to forgive themselves.

        This is where belief comes into the picture. The reason Jesus gave Peter the keys to the kingdom, was because he truly believed that Jesus was the Messiah, the son of God. All of Christ’s disciples loved him (except Judas), but it was because of Peter’s belief, that Jesus gave him the keys.

        Do we really believe that our priests have been given the authority to bind or loose sin, both on earth and in heaven, through the sacrament of confession?

        Faith is the antidote to doubt and a lack of trust. If you remember, Peter had faith in Jesus, that faltered when he actually walked on the water. Peter had faith in Jesus again, until Christ was arrested, and his faith faltered then too. For each time Peter denied Jesus after he was arrested though, Jesus asked him if he loved them? Then he asked him to serve him in a specific way. The same could be said of us as well. Jesus knows our failings, but still, he loves us. If we have tried to show him by our lives, that we love him too, then we need to let go of the past, just like Saint Peter did. He believed in Jesus and trusted him enough to let his failings go, after Christ forgave him.

        The hope we can have for our own lives, is that Jesus does not expect us to be perfect either. But, he does expect us to believe in him, and love him. If we can honestly say that we do, then today is a new day. The story of our lives is not over yet, any more than it was for Saint Peter in today’s gospel. Our lives are a clean slate. Jesus said the gates of the hell shall not prevail against his church. We are the church, and the devil has no hold over us, that Jesus can not free us from.

        People who are obedient to the gospel….who have repented…who have confessed Jesus as Lord and believed that God had raised him from the dead….who have been baptized in the name of Jesus Christ for the remission(forgiveness) of sins…who loves one another…who forgives to be forgiven….who shows mercy to have mercy shown to them…who obey all commandments cuz they love Christ…are the CHURCH. Christs’ Church. Notice in the word of God it says that ALL who called on LORD and were baptized were added to HIS church. This wasnt refering to Catholic church. This speaks of Christs’ Church. Again do ur research friend. Love ya and God bless

      37. Scripture nowhere says the Catholic Church was started by the emperor Constantine. You are free to create your own theory.

        You wrote “People who are obedient to the gospel….who have repented…who have confessed Jesus as Lord and believed that God had raised him from the dead….who have been baptized in the name of Jesus Christ for the remission(forgiveness) of sins…who loves one another…who forgives to be forgiven….who shows mercy to have mercy shown to them…who obey all commandments cuz they love Christ…are the CHURCH”. I agree 100% with what you wrote, without becoming member of your church

      38. Vivator my church is CHRIST. Y? cuz ive repented confessed baptized and obey commandments. Ive been added to his church. Not a denomination. I Dont belong to a denomination if I belong to Christ.

      39. Neither do I belong to denomination. The fact is Church of Christ is just one of the so many out there.

      40. //You claim to be a Minister of God’s Word.//

        By the grace of God, I am privileged to be a minister of God’s Word. That God can live and save a dinner like me and give me a work in His kingdom is a blessing beyond words.

        //But ironically your rely on cherry picked sources from outside Scripture to support your theory that (1) keys of kingdom of heaven equal to power to bind and to to loose; (2) NT has 27 books, not more and not less. Why don’t you try to defence what you believe using Scripture alone?//

        This goes to show that you do not understand the Scriptures nor what the study of Scripture involves. The inspired Scriptures are able to make us complete unto every good work (2 Timothy 3:16-17). They are able to equip us unto all things that pertain to life and godliness (2 Peter 1:3). Yet the study of Scripture often involves careful study of things outside the Scripture. To put it simply, we often need to study things OUTSIDE the Bible in order to better understand what is INSIDE the Bible. This is due to the nature of language and culture.

        As such, it is interesting to remember that the Word of God often appeals to non-inspired and non-canonical works and encourages us to study them. Here are some examples:

        Matthew 5:21-You have heard that it was said to those of old, ‘YOU SHALL NOT MURDER, and whoever murders will be in danger of the judgment.’ (Cf. Matthew 5:31, 33, 38, 43)

        Jesus here references the uninspired rabbinic traditions of His day. He was familiar with them.

        “Jesus used the phrase ‘You have heard that the ancients were told,’ or a similar one, to introduce each of the six corrective illustrations He gives in this part of His sermon (see vv. 21, 27, 31, 33, 38, 43). The phrase has reference to rabbinical, traditional teaching, and in each illustration Jesus contrasts that human teaching with the divine Word of God. The examples show ways in which God’s righteousness surpasses that of the scribes and Pharisees (see v. 20)…Jesus is not modifying the law of Moses, the teaching of the Psalms, the standards of the prophets, or any other part of Scripture. The essence of what He has just said in verses 17-20 is (1) that His teaching stands firmly in agreement with every truth, even every word, of the Old Testament, and (2) that the Jewish religious traditions did not…The rabbis of past generations were often called the ‘fathers of antiquity,’ or ‘the men of long ago,’ and it is to them that ‘the ancients’ (vv. 21, 33) refers. Jesus was contrasting His teaching0and the true teaching of the Old Testament Scriptures themselves-with the Jewish written and oral traditions that had accumulated over the previous several hundred years and that had so terribly perverted God’s revelation.” (John MacArthur, The MacArthur New Testament Commentary: Matthew 1-7, 7025-7066 (Kindle Edition); Chicago, Illinois; Moody Press)

        In 1 Corinthians, Paul writes:

        1 Corinthians 15:33-Do not be deceived: “Evil company corrupts good habits.”

        Many are unaware that the Apostle is here quoting from a well-known ancient orator:

        “Paul now moves from a biblical text with an anti-Epicurean thrust (vs. 32 b) to a quotation from the third-to-fourth century Athenian dramatist Meander: ‘Do no be misled; bad company corrupts good character.’ …The epigram from Meander’s Thais was a popular one in Paul’s day and would probably have been known to any educated Corinthian.” (Roy E. Ciampa & Brian S. Rosner, The First Letter To The Corinthians: The Pillar New Testament Commentary, 791-792 (Kindle Edition); Grand Rapids, Michigan; William B. Eerdmans Publishing Company)

        In the Book of Acts, we read of Paul’s sermon on Mars Hill:

        Acts 17:26-28-And He has made from one blood every nation of men to dwell on all the face of the earth, and has determined their preappointed times and the boundaries of their dwellings, 27  so that they should seek the Lord, in the hope that they might grope for Him and find Him, though He is not far from each one of us; 28  for in Him we live and move and have our being, as also some of your own poets have said, ‘For we are also His offspring.’

        Here, he again references pagan writers:

        “The precise expression is found in the writings of Aratus (270 B.C.); and though not the exact words still the idea is found in the writings of Cleanthes (300-220 B.C.). Cleanthes was a Stoic philosopher, and the sentiment here quoted was directly at variance with the Epicureans’ beliefs. Aratus was a native of Cilcia, the same country Paul was from. This quotation of the heathen poets would at once quicken the attention of the hearers. This was not an illiterate Jew, but a man of culture, acquainted with the thoughts of their own great poets.” (Gareth Reese, Acts: New Testament History, 632; Joplin, Missouri; College Press)

        When Paul wrote to Titus, he warned them of false teachers that were present in that day and age:

        Titus 1:12-13-One of them, a prophet of their own, said, “Cretans are always liars, evil beasts, lazy gluttons.” 13  This testimony is true. Therefore rebuke them sharply, that they may be sound in the faith,

        Whom does Paul refer to when he writes “this testimony is true?”

        “This phrase is found in the Minos of the Cretan poet Epimenides, a sixth-century B.C. poet of Knossos, Crete, quoted by Callimachus (ca. 300-240 B.C.). Epimenides joked of his own people that the absence of wild beasts on the island was supplied by its’ human inhabitants…Paul occasionally quoted Ancient Greek poets (Acts 17:28).” (Thomas C. Oden, First And Second Timothy And Titus: INTERPRETATION: A Bible Commentary For Teaching And Preaching, 65-66 (Kindle Edition); Louisville, KY; Westminster John Knox Press)

        Being a diligent student of God’s Word will include being willing to carefully examine not only the inspired Word of God, but things that logically apply to those study.

        God Himself sets the Example for us in this. Whenever He spoke to mankind, He did it in the languages of the people and even recognized and utilized their cultural and linguistic characterizations. Every word matters!

        “Having decried the potential overemphasis of philology or etymology, we must, however, recognize that the choice of individual words was indeed significant to the writers of Scripture. The interpreter is thoroughly justified in asking, “Why did the writer choose this term as opposed to one of its synonyms?” The choice of word made a difference to the writer, who was superintended by the Holy Spirit (2 Pet. 1:21), so it ought to make a difference to us. So, we ask again: Why pursue word studies? Because the Spirit-superintended writer of the Scriptures chose his words with care and purpose. It made a difference to him and to the Spirit of God. It is the reader’s obligation to discover the reason for one word’s choice over another. Sometimes the reason is due to a different meaning. Sometimes it is due to a need for variety to expand the scope of the concept being described. Sometimes it is due to the need for poetic assonance or the constraints of an acrostic. Whatever the word, there is at least one good reason for its choice—a reason that is key to a fuller understanding of the biblical text itself.” (Dr. J.D. Watson, A Hebrew Word For The Day: Key Words From The Old Testament, 207-213 (Kindle Edition); Chattanooga, Tennessee; AMG Reference)

        God’s Word deserves our highest attention.

        //You must pretend to be blind when you cannot notice that Scripture talks about keys (PLURAl) of the kingdom of heaven and key (SINGULAR) of House of David. You equate those two and keep on asking why Jesus and Peter can keep the same keys?//

        I do not pretend to be blind especially in matters to the Word of God. God’s Word is what opens our eyes:

        Psalm 19:8-The statutes of the LORD are right, rejoicing the heart; The commandment of the LORD is pure, enlightening the eyes;

        Psalm 43:3-Oh, send out Your light and Your truth! Let them lead me; Let them bring me to Your holy hill And to Your tabernacle.

        Psalm 119:105-Your word is a lamp to my feet And a light to my path.

        Proverbs 6:23-For the commandment is a lamp, And the law a light; Reproofs of instruction are the way of life,

        Regarding Isaiah 22, you were the one who introduced this text into our discussion to try and justify the Catholic church’s teaching about the keys in Matthew 16:19. I have fully refuted your interpretation of that passage, but you keep going back to it. Remember: you were the one who claimed that this passage was even remotely applied to Matthew 16:19! I have said enough about that text unless you want to add something of relevance to the discussion.

        //You entitled to believe that your church was established in 33 AD. Nobody is under any obligation to believe that. Even Protestants do not accept your claim.//

        Truth is not determined by majority count my friend. I have provided you ample evidence from both the Bible and from secular history regarding the historicity of the church of Christ. You, on the other hand, have continually ignored every Scripture and every argument that I have raised. I want to thank you for presenting such a powerful display for all of the Roman Catholics and others who may be reading this. You have shown in every way why a person should reject Roman Catholicism and should instead choose New Testament Christianity.

        As this is a public discussion, I will be sharing our conversation with others (via Facebook and other social media avenues as well), and I encourage you to do so as well. I also encourage you to seek out the church of Christ near you. If I can help you in any way, please don’t hesitate to call on me.

        To all of my Roman Catholic friends, please know that the comments here from Vivator do not represent the weaknesses of a man. My friend has tried and made what I believe to be one of the best cases for Catholicism that can be made. What you have witnessed is not the failure of the man; but of the system itself. I implore you to seek out the church of Christ in your community. If I can be of any assistance to you, please don’t hesitate to contact me.

      41. Who has more authority? Scripture or what is written outside Scripture? Who decided which one of the “outside Scripture” can be used to explain what Scripture says? There are many sources outside Scripture, which do not agree with each other. How do you know that picked the right one?

  19. If I may add a little info to help u out bros……first JESUS himself said……thou art PETER, and upon this rock ill build my church and the gates of hades wont prevail against it. We need to first look at the word, “THIS.” in this passage the word, ” this,” to which Jesus is referring is to himself. Jesus said he is the way truth and live no man come to the father but by me. Notice closely that Jesus didnt say thou art Peter and upon u ill build my church. He said thou art peter and upon THIS ROCK ill build my church…..notice how throughout the Bible Jesus is referred to as, “THE ROCK.” not peter not the apostles but Jesus Christ alone. The bible refers to Jesus as the cornerstone to which we must build. This is noted in the gospel of matthew. Kindly notice the words of Jesus Christ….

    “Therefore everyone who hears these words of “MINE” and acts on them, may be compared to a wise man who built his house on the rock. And the rain fell, and the floods came, and the winds blew and slammed against that house; and yet it did not fall, for it had been founded on the rock. Everyone who hears these words of “MINE” and does not act on them, will be like a foolish man who built his house on the sand. The rain fell, and the floods came, and the winds blew and slammed against that house; and it fell⁠—and great was its fall.”
    — Matthew 7:24-27

    notice Jesus used the word, “mine,” not peter not apostles but his own. Also if u would kindly take to the words of Paul the apostle in 1 Corinthians 10:1……

    For I do not want you to be unaware, brethren, that our fathers were all under the cloud and all passed through the sea; and all were baptized into Moses in the cloud and in the sea; and all ate the same spiritual food; and all drank the same spiritual drink, for they were drinking from a spiritual rock which followed them; and the rock was Christ.
    — 1 Corinthians 10:1-4

    Notice the words, “spiritual rock,” which was Christ. If this is false translation or added then the entire bible cant be trusted. Ive done my research and there is alot of things that were added by the Roman Catholic church to control the masses. Mark tabata ur words are true. The rock isnt peter. Notice what Christ also says bout the apostles in judgment……

    And Jesus said to them, “Truly I say to you, that you who have followed Me, in the regeneration when the Son of Man will sit on His glorious throne, you also shall sit upon twelve thrones, judging the twelve tribes of Israel.
    — Matthew 19:28

    Notice he said to all those who followed him in the regeneration……he told the apostles, “THEY” would sit on 12 thrones…

    Also take note of this one particular vs that shows Christ as the Rock to which we must build upon…..

    The Lord is my rock and my fortress and my deliverer,
    My God, my rock, in whom I take refuge;
    My shield and the horn of my salvation, my stronghold.
    I call upon the Lord, who is worthy to be praised,
    And I am saved from my enemies.
    — Psalm 18:2-3

    Also look at this other vs…which is one of many….

    According to the grace of God which was given to me, like a wise master builder I laid a foundation, and another is building on it. But each man must be careful how he builds on it. For no man can lay a foundation other than the one which is laid, which is Jesus Christ.
    — 1 Corinthians 3:10-11

    Notice vs 11…..no man can lay a foundation other than the one which is “LAID”(meaning death on Cross or Tree)…..which is JESUS CHRIST.

    So u see friends Jesus laid himself down for his friends. He laid that cornerstone and all who believes in him will never fall cuz he became a wise man and built upon a solid foundation….which is Jesus Christ. The Catholic church states that peter is the rock or whatever…..it is false tradition….i am one who isnt afraid to offend others….including religious beliefs and the like. If u dont build upon Jesus Christ then ur foundation wont stand.

    I hope this helps if I can be of any assistance let me know on here. Thanks and love u both. God bless. Great discussion. If I have misunderstood the reason for the topic please correct me for I love being corrected by the word of God. For I am blessed and the spirit of the LORD lands upon my shoulder and im filled with joy.

    1. If I may add a little info to help u out bros……first JESUS himself said……thou art PETER, and upon this rock ill build my church and the gates of hades wont prevail against it. We need to first look at the word, “THIS.” in this passage the word, ” this,” to which Jesus is referring is to himself. Jesus said he is the way truth and live no man come to the father but by me. Notice closely that Jesus didnt say thou art Peter and upon u ill build my church. He said thou art peter and upon THIS ROCK ill build my church…..notice how throughout the Bible Jesus is referred to as, “THE ROCK.” not peter not the apostles but Jesus Christ alone. The bible refers to Jesus as the cornerstone to which we must build. This is noted in the gospel of matthew. Kindly notice the words of Jesus Christ….

      “Therefore everyone who hears these words of “MINE” and acts on them, may be compared to a wise man who built his house on the rock. And the rain fell, and the floods came, and the winds blew and slammed against that house; and yet it did not fall, for it had been founded on the rock. Everyone who hears these words of “MINE” and does not act on them, will be like a foolish man who built his house on the sand. The rain fell, and the floods came, and the winds blew and slammed against that house; and it fell⁠—and great was its fall.”
      — Matthew 7:24-27

      notice Jesus used the word, “mine,” not peter not apostles but his own. Also if u would kindly take to the words of Paul the apostle in 1 Corinthians 10:1……

      For I do not want you to be unaware, brethren, that our fathers were all under the cloud and all passed through the sea; and all were baptized into Moses in the cloud and in the sea; and all ate the same spiritual food; and all drank the same spiritual drink, for they were drinking from a spiritual rock which followed them; and the rock was Christ.
      — 1 Corinthians 10:1-4
      Notice the words, “spiritual rock,” which was Christ. If this is false translation or added then the entire bible cant be trusted. Ive done my research and there is alot of things that were added by the Roman Catholic church to control the masses. Mark tabata ur words are true. The rock isnt peter. Notice what Christ also says bout the apostles in judgment……

      And Jesus said to them, “Truly I say to you, that you who have followed Me, in the regeneration when the Son of Man will sit on His glorious throne, you also shall sit upon twelve thrones, judging the twelve tribes of Israel.
      — Matthew 19:28

      Notice he said to all those who followed him in the regeneration……he told the apostles, “THEY” would sit on 12 thrones…

      Also take note of this one particular vs that shows Christ as the Rock to which we must build upon…..

      The Lord is my rock and my fortress and my deliverer,
      My God, my rock, in whom I take refuge;
      My shield and the horn of my salvation, my stronghold.
      I call upon the Lord, who is worthy to be praised,
      And I am saved from my enemies.
      — Psalm 18:2-3

      Also look at this other vs…which is one of many….

      According to the grace of God which was given to me, like a wise master builder I laid a foundation, and another is building on it. But each man must be careful how he builds on it. For no man can lay a foundation other than the one which is laid, which is Jesus Christ.
      — 1 Corinthians 3:10-11

      Notice vs 11…..no man can lay a foundation other than the one which is “LAID”(meaning death on Cross or Tree)…..which is JESUS CHRIST.

      So u see friends Jesus laid himself down for his friends. He laid that cornerstone and all who believes in him will never fall cuz he became a wise man and built upon a solid foundation….which is Jesus Christ. The Catholic church states that peter is the rock or whatever…..it is false tradition….i am one who isnt afraid to offend others….including religious beliefs and the like. If u dont build upon Jesus Christ then ur foundation wont stand.

      I hope this helps if I can be of any assistance let me know on here. Thanks and love u both. God bless. Great discussion. If I have misunderstood the reason for the topic please correct me for I love being corrected by the word of God. For I am blessed and the spirit of the LORD lands upon my shoulder and im filled with joy.

  20. Jesus had declared that He would build His church on the truth of Peter’s noble confession, He went on to say, “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” ( Matthew 16:19 ). Later, addressing all the disciples, our Lord repeated the words, “Whatever you bind on earth will be bound in heaven, and whatever you loose on earth will be loosed in heaven” ( Matthew 18:18 ).

    Jesus gave Peter “the keys of the kingdom of heaven,” not the keys to heaven.1 A key was a badge of authority ( Luke 11:52 ), and then as now was used to open doors. Peter used the keys Christ gave him to open the door to the Jews on the Day of Pentecost ( Acts 2 ), to the Samaritans after the preaching of Philip ( Acts 8:14-17 ), and to the Gentiles after the Lord had sent him a vision and an appeal from Cornelius ( Acts 10 ).

    So u see jesus gave the keys to all apostles not just peter. Plus keys refer to authority or to which truth has been revealed. A truth that jesus trusted all apostles to handle. And whatever was loosed or gained on earth would also be in heaven. Notice he gave the keys of the kingdom of heaven not the keys to the kingdom. No man will ever get the keys to heaven. If so, then that puts man having ownership of heaven therefore its no longer Gods kingdom but its peters. And thats a big no no. No man is above his master. We r servants not pastors not priest not masters not popes not preachers etc…..we r servants. This is noted in Ezekiel 3:18-21.

    Jesus gave Peter and the apostles authority over both the doctrine and practices of the first-century church. Through the leading of the Holy Spirit, they would be given wisdom to know what to forbid and what to permit.

    This authority, not on exactly the same level as during the apostolic era, still resides in the leaders of the local church. They may not receive the same kind of supernatural guidance as the apostles did,but they possess the entire New Testament along with the direction of the Holy Spirit. Thus when church leaders discipline a church member who promotes incorrect doctrine or is involved in evil behavior, they act with divine approval. They are carrying out God’s will, and what they do is ratified in heaven. Since their authority is not ultimately derived from their personal qualities or their office but from Scripture and the instruction of the Holy Spirit, they should exercise it humbly and prayerfully.

    The two expressions “kingdom of God” and “kingdom of heaven” actually have the same basic meaning. They should be understood within the context of the passages in which they are found. They can be used in a number of ways. They can refer to the universal sense of the entire creation, which is ultimately under the control of God. They can refer the mediatorial kingdom of Jesus Christ, which will come into being when Jesus returns triumphantly to reign directly over the earth. And, finally, they can refer to the kingdom of God, which is already present in the hearts of believers who have yielded themselves to Jesus Christ as Lord. Hebrews 12:22-24 expresses the reality of God’s present kingdom:
    “You have come to Mount Zion, to the heavenly Jerusalem, the city of the living God. You have come to thousands upon thousands of angels in joyful assembly, to the church of the firstborn, whose names are written in heaven. You have come to God, the judge of all men, to the spirits of righteous men made perfect, to Jesus the mediator of a new covenant, and to the sprinkled blood that speaks a better word than the blood of Abel.”

    The authority of the apostles and their chosen successors was basic to the survival of the early church. However, after centuries passed and the canon of Scripture along with the doctrinal foundation of the church had become firmly established, it was necessary to return to the Scriptures themselves as the primary source of authority.

    The keys were given to all apostles to approve or disapprove doctrines and acts within the church. The church being referred to as, “ppl who are born again,” not a building.

    So in Matthew 16:19 we read….

    And I will give unto thee (Peter) the keys of the kingdom of heaven: and whatsoever thou shalt bind on earth shall be bound in heaven: and whatsoever thou shalt loose on earth shall be loosed in heaven.” Matthew 16:19

    Some misunderstand the passage to mean that Christ had granted Peter exclusive right to open Heaven or to close Heaven to individuals. This is not the intent or teaching of Matthew 16:19. Some assume that christ only gave peter the keys of heaven. In some sense it appears to be the case. So why did Jesus only give the keys to peter? Well if u look into scripture u will notice one vs that stands out. It is the vs where Jesus asked peter who he was. And peter said….u r the christ, the son of the living God. Also to add is the vs where the guards came to arrest Jesus and peter cut off a guards ear and that wasnt part of Gods will but with love from peter to Jesus. Jesus knew peter loved him with all his heart. This showed that peter was simply obeying jesus commands in john where jesus said…..if Any man love me he will keep my words. Also it showed that peter obeyed the first greatest commandment. This is why peter was given the keys of heaven. So lets look deeper…..

    Keys” were the symbols of knowledge or wisdom or the fruits of the scribal or teaching office ( Luke 11:52 where “keys” refer to knowledge). The “keys of the kingdom” refer to the Gospel of Christ. The use of those keys will build the church. Peter used the “keys” at Pentecost (Acts 2:14), at Samaria (Acts 8:14), and at the house of Cornelius the Gentile (Acts 10).

    The expressions “shall be bound in Heaven” and “shall be loosed in Heaven” are examples in Greek (original language of the New Testament) of the periphrastic future perfect passive construction and should, therefore, be translated “shall have been bound already” and “shall have been loosed already” in Heaven. In other words, Peter’s pronouncement of “binding” or “loosing” is dependent upon what Heaven has already willed rather than upon earth’s giving direction to Heaven.

    A further explanation for Matthew 16:19, specifically referring to the meaning of “bind” and “loose,” is…..

    The expressions “bind” and “loose” were common in Jewish legal phraseology meaning “to declare forbidden or to declare allowed.” Peter and the other disciples were to continue on earth the work of Christ in preaching the gospel and declaring God’s will to men. The apostles were armed with the same authority as Christ possessed. Christ in Heaven ratifies what is done in His name and in obedience to His Word on earth. Which is obedience to the gospel to which began with Christ.

    So as u can see peter was given the keys to start the preaching of the gospel. Not alone but with the other disciples. A statement that comes to mind is when peter was hung upside down. This goes along with peter and how he loved Christ by basically taking everything christ taught in. He followed christ even to death. But the other apostles had the same authority to preach or given the keys. If not then how could the gospel continue?

    Lets let truth speak for itself. The bible is made for men. Not men for it. To God be glory praise and honor. God bless. Hope this helps. Love u both.

  21. Vivitar…..iVivitar…..i noticed in an earlier comment to tabata that citing other vs doesnt go with matthew. Im here to tell u that u r wrong. Each vs in the bible reference others.

    This is ur response earlier…..

    Your final authority is supposed to be Scripture. You did try to cite other verses but they have nothing to do with Mat. 16:18.

    All vs that are within scripture reference the others. How else can one learn unless he uses those reference?

    Also to add matthew 16:18 is where Christ says u r peter and upon this rock ill build my church and the gates of hell shall not prevail against it. Also the vs after 18 goes to tell peter whatever he binds and looses in earth also in heaven then that vs references matthew 18:18. But to see who Jesus is talking to in 18:18 we must go to 18:1. Where the DISCIPLES came to Jesus and said who is the greatest in the kingdom? He is speaking to all disciples. Then in vs 18:19 he says the same thing again to all of them….bind n loose…..so u see it does reference others. If not then the bible isnt the word of God. Who is right…u or God or ur church fathers? God is the final say. Period.

  22. Vivator…..matthew 18:18…..to whom is christ speaking in that passage? If u say peter alone then u my friend are wrong. If u kindly notice in the beginning of the chapter of matthew 18….Jesus is talking to the disciples. Not one but all. In vs one this is clearly seen. Unless u r calling scripture and Jesus Christ a liar. In vs one it reads…..

    At that time the disciples came to Jesus and said, “Who then is greatest in the kingdom of heaven?”
    — Matthew 18:1

    Kindly note that the entire chapter Jesus is talking to disciples and others. As in ur question to who determines if its bind and loose. …well jesus does. He says so within the chapter. Whatever u bind and loose in earth also in heaven. Its plain black and white. Ur picking at other christians because they dont believe in ur ways or religion isnt going to get u ahead. Does not the bible say work out ur own salvation with fear and trembling? Also if the Catholic is the correct church then y so many diff denominations. In my opinion christ doesnt belong to any church denomination within this earth. Y? Cuz his church is those who repent confess baptize obey all commands unto death. Christ has no denomination. U said u didnt have a denomination but yet u believe in Catholic. So which is it? U belong in Catholic denomination or u belong to Christ church? U cant have both. U either belong to Christ church or earthly Catholic church. For me ill stick with Christ church. Y? Cuz i believe the gospel. I believe jesus as LORD n that God raised him from the dead. Ive repented ive been baptized and now ive been added to his church. Not the Catholic not the baptist not the pentecostal or etc…but Christs’ church and his alone. Now I repent daily. I pray always. I forgive all. I obey all commandments he has given cuz i love him. I love all. Instead of arguing over someones post try just being at peace and let God take care of it. Back and forth proves nothing. Was not Christ silent until the time to speak was near? Only a foolish person will argue but a wise man will hold his tongue. I love u both. God bless u both.

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