Keys to church life

Bible study notes

Peter Confesses Jesus as the Christ

Matt. 16:13   When Jesus came into the region of Caesarea Philippi, He asked His disciples, saying, “Who do men say that I, the Son of Man, am?”  14   So they said, “Some say John the Baptist, some Elijah, and others Jeremiah or one of the prophets.” 15   He said to them, “But who do you say that I am?” 16   Simon Peter answered and said, “You are the Christ, the Son of the living God.” 17   Jesus answered and said to him, “Blessed are you, Simon Bar-Jonah, for flesh and blood has not revealed this to you, but My Father who is in heaven. 18 And I also say to you that you are Peter, and on this rock I will build My church, and the gates of Hades shall not prevail against it. 19 And I will give you the keys of the kingdom of heaven, and whatever you bind on earth will be bound in heaven, and whatever you loose on earth will be loosed in heaven.” 20   Then He commanded His disciples that they should tell no one that He was Jesus the Christ.

What we learnt

Church is founded on: 

  1. Questions – broad to personal
  2. A revelation of Christ
  3. A new name – identity
  4. Christ builds on us
  5. Church is an invading force – bursts gates
  6. Posses keys
  7. Governing authority.

Jesus Predicts His Death and Resurrection

 Matt. 16:21   From that time Jesus began to show to His disciples that He must go to Jerusalem, and suffer many things from the elders and chief priests and scribes, and be killed, and be raised the third day. 22   Then Peter took Him aside and began to rebuke Him, saying, “Far be it from You, Lord; this shall not happen to You!” 23   But He turned and said to Peter, “Get behind Me, Satan! You are an offense to Me, for you are not mindful of the things of God, but the things of men.”


  1. Church just said he was going to build his church? Now he is going to die? What does that tell us about the way church is built?  
  2. What opposes Church?
  3. How does Jesus handle Peter?
  4. What reaction does this trigger in the disciples? See

Take Up the Cross and Follow Him

Matt. 16:24   Then Jesus said to His disciples, “If anyone desires to come after Me, let him deny himself, and take up his cross, and follow Me. 25 For whoever desires to save his life will lose it, but whoever loses his life for My sake will find it. 26 For what profit is it to a man if he gains the whole world, and loses his own soul? Or what will a man give in exchange for his soul? 27 For the Son of Man will come in the glory of His Father with His angels, and then He will reward each according to his works. 28Assuredly, I say to you, there are some standing here who shall not taste death till they see the Son of Man coming in His kingdom.”

We know this passage well. We think about it with regard to individuals and worldly careers. But have you ever thought about this passage with regard to church life?

  • Have you ever considered it in its context.
  • What comes before and after?
  • If the Son will reward us according to our works …. what happened to solo fidelia, solo scritura?

Jesus Transfigured on the Mount

Matt. 17:1 Now after six days Jesus took Peter, James, and John his brother, led them up on a high mountain by themselves; 2 and He was transfigured before them. His face shone like the sun, and His clothes became as white as the light. 3 And behold, Moses and Elijah appeared to them, talking with Him. 4 Then Peter answered and said to Jesus, “Lord, it is good for us to be here; if You wish, let us make here three tabernacles: one for You, one for Moses, and one for Elijah.” While he was still speaking, behold, a bright cloud overshadowed them; and suddenly a voice came out of the cloud, saying, “This is My beloved Son, in whom I am well pleased. Hear Him!” 6 And when the disciples heard it, they fell on their faces and were greatly afraid. 7 But Jesus came and touched them and said, “Arise, and do not be afraid.” 8 When they had lifted up their eyes, they saw no one but Jesus only. 9   Now as they came down from the mountain, Jesus commanded them, saying, “Tell the vision to no one until the Son of Man s risen from the dead.”

We know this passage well too.

What does the transfiguration teach us about church?

  1. What does Moses represent?
  2. What does Elijah represent?
  3. What do three tabernacles represent?
  4. Why does God’s voice come from the cloud?
  5. Is this the first time God speaks like this. What’s different now?


All scripture quotations are taken from the ESV.

Scripture quotations are from the ESV® Bible (Holy Bible, English Standard Version®), Copyright © 2001 by Crossway, a publishing ministry of Good News Publishers. Used by permission. All rights reserved.

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