1 DISCUSSION OF THE KEYS OF THE KINGDOM OF GOD MATTHEW 16:13-20 Question - WHO was given this great honor? Question - WAS it given to the 12 Apostles, or was it given to the Apostle Peter only? Question - WHAT responsibility did this place upon the ones who possessed these keys? Question - HOW far reaching was the message of the key holder? Question - HOW could God place this much trust in man to proclaim the door opening message on HOW to get into the kingdom of God? Question - HOW long was this key opening message to last? Question - AFTER the first key opening message, was proclaimed, was there ever anyone else given the keys to the kingdom? Question - DID they have to use the exact same keys as were used by the Apostle Peter? Question - IF others, do not use the same key message that was first used, will it unlock the door to God s kingdom? Now, lets start our discussion, beginning at Matthew 16: When Jesus came into the coasts of Caesarea Philippi, Verse 13, He asked His disciples, saying, Whom do men say that I the Son of man am? Verse 14, And they said, Some say that Thou art John the Baptist: some Elias; and others, Jeremias ( Jeremiah ) or one of the prophets. We learn from these verses, there has not been a true identity given, who Jesus really is. God chooses that now is the time, to reveal from the God of heaven to the 12 apostles, who Jesus is. God does this, by having His son Jesus to ask His apostles in Verse 15, But, whom say ye that I am? I would like to say something before we read Verse 16. We must not read this verse in a casual way, because it is of major importance. Now, lets read Verse 16. And Simon Peter answered and said, Thou art the Christ, the Son of the living God. Question - How did Peter know this? Answer - In Verse 17, And Jesus answered and said unto him, Blessed art thou, Simon Bar-jo-na: ( Now we must pay close attention to what Jesus says ). For flesh And blood hath not revealed it unto thee, but, my Father which is in heaven. 1
2 Question - What have we learned, that is of major importance? Answer - God Himself has now made His presence known in this discussion, between Jesus and His 12 apostles. Let us be sure we get the full picture of what is now taking place. We have God the Father, God the Son, God the Holy Spirit,and we also have The 12 apostles. All of them have a part in this most important event. They are discussing The coming kingdom of God to this earth. On the earth, this kingdom of God is also called the church. It is called the church 52 times in the New Testament. The kingdom of God on this earth is the same thing as Christ s church on this earth. There is no way that I can over emphasize the importance of this meeting. Some of these things are: 1. The 12 apostles needed to know beyond any shadow of doubt that Jesus was the Son of the living God. 2. Jesus time on this earth was short. 3. Jesus days on this earth in the flesh were numbered. 4. No one on this earth knew all things about Jesus. 5. Who was going to carry on the work, that Jesus had started? 6. Who was going to receive the keys of the kingdom? So We Can Easily See This Was a Major Event That We Are Reading About. 7. The souls of all men were lost at this time. Question - Why? Answer - Romans 3:23 Because all men had sinned and come short of the glory of God. At This Time, God Had Not Made Any Provision For Man To Get Eternal Forgiveness Of His Past Sins. Hebrews 10:4 For it is not possible that the blood of bulls and goats should take away sins. God had set a law in effect from the very beginning of time, and that law was called the law of Sin and Death Genesis 2:17, which simply means Sin one time and you were separated from God. - Isaiah 59:2. That Law Was Still In Effect At The Time Of This Meeting. God s desire was, that not a single person would perish, but that all people would become obedient to His will and be saved. 2 Peter 3:9 2
3 Yet at This Time, God Had Made No Provision For Man To Receive Eternal Forgiveness Of His Sins. I hope that these things that are listed here, will show us the urgency of this meeting. There was not anything that was more urgent to mankind, than to have his sins forgiven. We Can Truly Say, This Is When Heaven And Earth Came Together To Begin Laying The Ground Work For The Coming Of The Kingdom Of God Upon This Earth. Question - Did God at this time, choose all 12 apostles to deliver this key message, first to the Jews, and then also deliver this same key message, to the Gentiles? We must not read into Matthew 16:17, more than it says. We can read in many commentaries where men say, that these keys were given to all 12 of the apostles. ( Lenski ), One of the more popular writers among religious people says in his commentary on Matthew 16: 17, that he believed that the 12 apostles had a meeting among themselves, and decided that Peter would answer for all of them. Question - Is that what Jesus said in Verse 17? Answer - If we will read Verse 17 again with our minds open to what Jesus says, we will then know there was no meeting between the 12 apostles because Jesus said, Flesh And blood has not revealed this unto you. Please notice, This is a positive statement from Jesus. Why can t we accept that? Jesus gives us the answer to that question in John 8:43, Jesus says, Why do you not understand my words? It is because you cannot hear my words. Lets get this verse into our hearts. There is not a more important verse in the entire Bible than this one, when it comes to understanding what is truth. So lets memorize these words of Jesus, and never forget them. Question - What is wrong With Lenski s statement? Answer - Lenski s statement came from his own flesh and blood. Jesus says, Peter s statement did not come from flesh And blood. Question - Who did Jesus say revealed this answer to Peter? Answer - He said, My Father in heaven revealed this answer to Peter. Question - What else could Jesus have said that could have made His answer any plainer than the words which He said in Matthew 16:19. Remember now, we are reading with an open mind. We know from Verse 18, that Jesus words are directed straight to the Apostle Peter. Listen carefully to what Jesus says, I say unto Peter, upon this rock I will build 3
4 my church; and the gates of hell shall not prevail against It. Verse 19, And I will give unto thee the keys to this kingdom. Don t miss what Jesus says in Verse 18. He uses the word church instead of using the word kingdom. Jesus is saying to Peter, I am going to build my church in the near future, and my Father and I are giving you the keys to open the door of my church. Question - Is there any way to misunderstand these words of Jesus, unless we have help from man? Answer - We must remember what Romans 3:4 says, Let God be true, but every man a liar. Question - Why? Answer - As It is written, THAT THOU MIGHTEST BE JUSTIFIED IN THY SAYINGS, AND MIGHTEST OVERCOME WHEN THOU ARE JUDGED. These are great words of comfort and encouragement to the obedient believers. Question - When will we ever learn? There is a word that Peter uses back in Matthew 16:16, that needs discussing. and I just could not find the right time in our discussion to bring it up. So, we will do that now. Now lets notice what Peter says here, and lets not forget these are not only the words of Peter, but these words are really coming straight from the mouth of God. Lets now read these words from Verse 16. Thou art the Christ the Son of the living God. The word living, that Peter uses here is a very important word to God. Question - Why is the word living so important to God? Answer - In the Old Testament time period, we can read from its words and find out that most nations had their own so called gods, such as the gods of Egypt, Babylonia, Assyria, Phoenicia, Syria, Moab, Edom, Tyre, the Philistines, the Amorites, and many others. Question - Were these living gods? Answer - No, they were not. We read in Isaiah 2:8, They worship the work of their own hands, that which their own fingers have made. Isaiah 2: 20, Man makes their own idols of silver and gold for themselves, and then bow down and worship these idols, as their own gods. Daniel 5:4, They drank wine, and praised the gods of gold and of silver, of brass, of iron, of wood, and of stone. There are many, many, verses that say these same things. These nations that are mentioned above, made their own gods and then set down and worshiped them. The point that I am trying to prove is this. All these gods 4
5 that the nations of the people worshiped, were dead gods. None of them were living gods. The Jewish people were knowledgeable about these gods. So, God wanted them to know that He is the God of Abraham, Isaac, and Jacob, and He is a living God, and not a dead god like the nations of the world worship. To help us to better understand that God gave the keys to the kingdom to Peter only, lets turn our Bibles to Acts 15:7. It says, And when there had been much disputing, ( we must notice who stood up and what they said. ) Peter rose up, and said unto them, men and brethren, you know how that a good while ago God made choice among us, that the Gentiles by my mouth, should hear the word of the gospel, and believe. Isn t It Wonderful, When We Let The Scriptures Answer Our Questions, And Not Man. Did we notice that Peter leaves no doubt in anyone s mind on what he means by using this word CHOICE. He said, that It was God, who made a choice among us. Now lets read, Matthew 16:17 again. It says, Blessed art thou, Peter: for flesh And blood has not revealed this unto you, but God the Father did. Notice, this Is exactly what was said In Acts 15:7. Now we can know also, who the Us was referring to in this verse. It was referring to the 12 apostles in Matthew 16:13. Really, this Is easy to understand, If we will read carefully what Peter is saying here in Acts 15:7 Peter says, By my mouth, the Gentiles will hear the word of the gospel, and believe. In just plain words Jesus is saying, that He was giving the keys of the kingdom of God to the apostle Peter only, because that was God s choice. Question - How long will the key message be in effect? Answer - Until the end of the world. Lets read Hebrews 13:8, Christ Jesus the same, yesterday, and to day, and forever. That means that Jesus will never change this key message, as long as this world stands. Now listen to this, man can change this key message to anything that he chooses, but, that will not change the fact, that God chose the apostle Peter, to give the keys of the kingdom to. God will never change His mind. If He did that would make God a liar, would it not, and that is not possible. Hebrews 6:18 says so. We must program our minds with the truth of God s word, and then have the boldness to proclaim it. If we will practice this, then God is glorified instead of man. So far, we have learned that the kingdom of God and the church that Jesus built are the same thing. We also learned, that, the kingdom of God had not yet come. We can also read about that in Mark 9:1, where Jesus said to His disciples, Verily I say 5
6 unto you, that there be some of you that are standing here, which will not taste of death, till they have seen the kingdom of God come with power. Note: There are millions of religious people in the world today, who believe that Jesus failed to set up His kingdom on earth, but, He will do so, just before the end of the world, and He will reign here on this earth a thousand years. Can we not see what they have done? They have done exactly what Jesus says in John 8:43. They did not hear what Jesus said in Mark 9:1, That this generation of people who are standing here, will not die till they shall see the kingdom of God come with power. We can read, Matthew, Mark, Luke and John, and the kingdom of God is always something that is going to happen In the future. Jesus had the keys, to the kingdom, but it was not God s plan for Jesus to live in the flesh till the kingdom came. So the keys of the kingdom had to be passed on to someone else, before Jesus death on the cross. God made the decision for Jesus to give the keys to the kingdom, to the apostle Peter before Jesus died. Jesus death was necessary before the kingdom of God could come. We read this in Acts 20:28, where it says, The church of God, which He ( Jesus ) purchased with His own blood. so, Jesus purchased His own church, with His own blood. Now God s plan for redeeming fallen man, is ready for Peter to reveal the key message, on how to enter into the church or kingdom that Jesus built. In Acts 2:38, we can read the key message on how to enter into the church that Jesus built. From this moment on, the church is referred to as being in existence. God knew that it was very important for Jesus to spend some time with the apostles, after He was resurrected from the dead. They already knew that Jesus had been crucified and buried in a tomb. God in His wisdom knew that the apostles must spend some fact revealing time with Jesus, so they could be filled with His actual presence among them. Now, lets read how God accomplishes this. In Acts 1:2-3, we read where Jesus showed Himself to His apostles, alive, by many infallible proofs, being seen by them 40 days, and speaking of the things pertaining to the kingdom of God. It would have been impossible for the apostles to have preached the good news of the resurrected Christ, with all the conviction that was needed, to persuade the people that Jesus had been resurrected from the dead, and had ascended back to His heavenly Father, without spending a lot of time with Him. In Acts 1: 9, After Jesus had finished speaking to His apostles, they watched Him, as He was taken up, and a cloud received Him out of their sight. Verse 12 says, Then they returned to Jerusalem. At this time there were only 11 apostles, because Judas had hung himself. So, while 6
7 they were at Jerusalem, they decided it was the right time, to fulfill the prophecy that we read about in Verse 20. So, in Verse 26, They cast forth their lots and Matthias was chosen to take the place of Judas. Now, they again have 12 apostles. They are now ready for one of the greatest events that ever happened in this world, and that was the establishing of the kingdom of God on this earth. The apostles are now ready for this great event. The apostle Peter is filled with excitement, ready to unlock the door to the church that Jesus has just purchased with His own blood. When Peter gave the key message, on how to become a member of Jesus church, there was 3,000 that obeyed Peter s key message, and we read in Acts 2:47, And the Lord added them to the church. What a wonderful beginning for the Lord s church. We read in Acts 2:14, where all 12 of the apostles stood up together. Peter will answer the question about who had the keys to the kingdom, if we will read this verse with an open mind. Lets listen to what he said. I lifted up my voice, and then He says in this same verse, Hearken unto my voice. We must notice, that He did not say, Hearken unto our voice. Doesn t God s word make it easy to understand debatable subjects, If we will just read with an open mind, instead of reading it with our minds made up on what we believe? God knew by having the other eleven apostles stand up with Peter, while he was unlocking the door to the kingdom ( church ), it gave great witness, that they were all in one accord, and they were all aware who Jesus had given the keys to, and they had no problem in honoring that. Praise The Lord For His Wisdom! We All Know What The Purpose Of A Key Is. It Is The Instrument That Is Used To Unlock The Door Of Entrance Into Something. On the subject that we are studying, The key will unlock the door of entrance into the church, or the kingdom of God, upon this earth. We can read in Acts 2:38, the man who Jesus gave the keys to was the apostle Peter. The Jews in Verse 37 had just cried out, What shall we do? Now listen closely to what the key message was. Peter said in Verse 38, Repent and be baptized, every one of you in the name of Jesus Christ, for the remission of sins, and you shall receive the gift of the Holy Spirit. Please Listen Carefully To The Following Words. This was by far the greatest and the most important day for the Jewish people in their entire lives. Question - Why? Answer - They were in bondage to a law that they were unable to keep. That law was called the law of Sin and Death - Romans 8:
8 If we really want to know, what this day meant to the Jews, we must read it from the mouth of one of the greatest Jewish men That ever lived, after the door of the kingdom of God was unlocked. The name of that man was the great apostle Paul. Lets begin reading in Romans 7:24, and read through Romans 8: 1-4. In these verses, Paul tells us about how life was under this law. He says in ( Romans 7:24, That he was a wretched man, while living under this law. He also says, My greatest desire was to be delivered from it. And in Verse 25, he thanks God for being delivered from it. This was made possible, when Jesus died on the cross, and purchased the church, with His own blood. Then the apostle Peter took the keys that Jesus gave him, and unlocked the door to the kingdom of God upon the earth, and made it possible, that man s past sins could be forgiven him, by obeying this key message that was given by Peter on the day of Pentecost, that we read about in Acts 2. Paul continues on by saying in Romans 8:1, I have obeyed the gospel and now I am a free man, and now there is no condemnation to those who are in Christ Jesus, and are walking after the Spirit, and not after the flesh. Praise God for This Great Day. Peter has now completed his first assignment from Jesus, and that was to preach the First key message to the Jewish nation. But Peter s work Is not over yet. He must also preach the First key message to the Gentiles. Now, lets turn our Bibles to Acts 10:1-6. Here we read in Verse 1, A man who is a Gentile, who s name is Cornelius. Question - How do we know he was a Gentile? Answer - In Acts 10:28, It says that he was a man of another nation. God has now made His decision, that the time is right, to open the door of the church or kingdom to the Gentiles. Lets read Acts 10:5, what God tells Cornelius to do. He says Send men to Joppa and call for one, Simon, whose surname is Peter. There is a great truth again revealed in this verse. Did we notice it? God told Cornelius to call for one man ( not 12 men ). We read in Acts 10:34-35, where Peter begins his sermon by saying, Of a truth I perceive that God is no respecter of persons, but in every nation he that feareth God and works righteousness, is accepted with Him. We then read in Acts 10:48, he then ended his sermon by commanding them to be baptized in the name of the Lord Jesus. At this time in our study, there is something very important that we need to talk about. 8
9 Question - How many doors will a single key unlock? Answer - ONE DOOR. Question - What happens when we use another key on that same door? Answer - IT WILL NOT UNLOCK IT. Question - What was the key message that was given to these believing Jews from the apostle Peter? Answer - Repent, and be baptized for the remission of sins, and then you will receive the gift of the Holy Spirit. The Key Message Unlocked The Door To God s Kingdom, And 3,000 Souls Entered In. Question - Do we really believe that God s word is true, and will last until the end of time? Answer - There are millions, and millions, of religious people today who do not practice this to be a true saying. For example - the apostle Peter said to the believing Jews, to Repent, and be baptized for the remission of sins. Question - What does the majority of religious preachers and teachers say about the truth of God s word, that Peter has revealed unto the world? Answer - Listen carefully to what they are saying today. Believe and say the sinners prayer, and at that moment you will receive the gift of the Holy Spirit. Question - Is this the key that Jesus gave to the apostle Peter? Answer - NO, IT IS NOT. Question - Will it open the door to the church? Answer - NO, IT WILL NOT. Question - Have we forgotten what Samuel said to King Saul, when he did not do, what God said for him to do? Answer - Lets read it again in 1 Samuel 15:22-23, When we fail to hearken unto the words of God. The prophet Samuel tells Saul, in Verse 23, That is rebellion, and that is as the sin of witch craft, and stubbornness is as iniquity and idolatry, because they have rejected the word of the Lord. Question - Do we have any scriptures that tells us that God has changed His mind about being disobedient to His word? Answer - No, We Do Not. We must give serious attention to Hebrews 10:30-31, Vengeance belongeth unto me, I will recompense saith the Lord. And again, the Lord 9
10 shall judge His people. Verse 31, It is a fearful thing to fall into the hands of the living God. God, does not leave us in the dark on how He feels about disobedience to His words. It is completely left up to us, whether to believe what God says, or to disbelieve what God says. There is another key word that we must give attention to in Acts 10:5. God tells Cornelius to send men to Joppa and call for one, Simon, whose surname is Peter. Note: God did not call ( for 12 men ) He said to call for one man and his name was Peter. Question - Do we need to say more on this subject about, who had the keys to God s kingdom on this earth? I Think Not, But For Me And My House, We Will Stand On The Word Of God, And Not On The Words Of Men. In the text in which we are discussing, there has been much said by man On the last part of Matthew 16:19, where Jesus says, And whatsoever thou shalt bind on earth, shall be bound in heaven, and whatsoever thou shalt loose on earth shall be loosed in heaven. Question - We must understand, who Jesus is talking to in this verse. Answer - Jesus makes it very plain who he is talking to in Matthew 16: If we will read these verses with an open mind, we will know the truth on the subject that we are studying Question - In Verse 19, is Jesus statement, addressed to the 12 apostles or to Peter only? Answer - To answer this question, lets start at Verse 15. Jesus said unto them, ( them here means, the 12 apostles ), but whom say ye that I am? We then must turn our full attention to Verse 16, and Peter answered and said, thou art the Christ the Son of the living God. Question - Who answered Jesus? Answer - Peter Did! ( not the 12 ) Now we must listen closely to what Jesus says in Verse 17. Jesus answered and said unto him. ( Note - not the 12 ). Jesus even calls him by name, So There will be no confusion to whom Jesus is talking to. Lets notice what Jesus says, Blessed art thou Simon Bar-jo-na ( Note - not The 12 ). Now we must note what Jesus says in Verse 18. Thou art Peter. Jesus leaves no doubt in our minds who He is talking To. Jesus says thou art Peter, ( Note - not the 12 ). Now in Verse 19, we should all know by now that Jesus words are directed only to the apostle Peter. ( Note - not 10
11 the 12 ). Notice how Jesus begins Verse 19. He says, I will give unto thee. This word thee is used in the singular, and not in the plural, which means that Jesus words are still addressed to Peter only. ( not the 12 ). Now lets read the rest of the verse. Jesus says, And I will give unto thee, the keys of the kingdom of heaven: and whatsoever thou shalt bind one earth, shall be bound in heaven, and whatsoever thou shalt loose on earth shall be loosed in heaven. We must notice in this Verse 19, that the same person who has the keys to the kingdom, is the same person who receives the binding and the loosening. We must notice, that Jesus does not make a separation in this verse, which means that Jesus did not give the keys of the kingdom to Peter only, and then, give the binding and the loosening to all 12 of the apostles. This is what most commentary writers say, but please notice Jesus did not say that. We must not get Matthew 18:18, confused with Matthew 16:19. These are two completely different teachings, in these two verses. In Matthew 16:15-19, the subject is Which one of the 12 apostles, will God choose to preach The First gospel sermon to the Jews, and also the First gospel sermon to the Gentiles, and Whatever this key message is, will be bound on earth, and also bound in heaven, and whatsoever is loosed on earth will be loosed in heaven. We find out what the key message was in Acts 2:38, and that the message which will be bound on earth and heaven, will honor that binding. This means that the key message that the apostle Peter gave in Acts 2:38 will be bound on earth, and no one in heaven will ever change it. Thank God For His Unchanging Nature. Now lets read Matthew 18:18, where Jesus says, Verily I say unto you, whatsoever ye shall bind on earth shall be bound in heaven: and whatsoever ye loose on earth shall be loosed in heaven. We must pay attention to who Jesus is talking to in this verse. We can find our answer in Matthew 18:1. It reads, At the same time came the disciples unto Jesus. Question - Who was Jesus talking to in Matthew 18:18? Answer - The 12 Apostles. Question - What is The purpose of this meeting between Jesus and the 12 apostles? Answer - The 12 Apostles Wants To Know Who Is The Greatest In The Kingdom. 11
12 God begins His teachings to His apostles by First answering their question, and then continues His teaching to them on how to conduct themselves in this new kingdom, and then teach others who have obeyed the key message of the apostle Peter s sermon on how to get into this new church. Jesus tells them in Matthew 18:18, Whatever you teach these new members concerning the church, will be bound on all those who have obeyed the gospel, and all those who will obey the gospel in the future, and the powers of heaven will never change what you bind. And what you do not bind on earth, will not be bound in heaven. Please Listen Carefully. We Have Religious Leaders Today, Who Bind On Their Followers Things That The Apostles Did Not Bind. This Is Wrong ( Sin ). There is something that needs to be said. Lets never try to teach others on any subject, and begin our remarks by saying, Here Is what I believe, And what some one else believes, is not what imparts truth. We should always begin our remarks by saying, This is what God has to say about it. And then be able to tell them the book, chapter, and verse or verses where it is found. If we cannot do that, then at least, be able to find It in our Bibles, and then read It to them. I feel like, there needs to be a summary written on the last two subjects that is in our discussion, because I realize, that these are very difficult verses, If we already have our minds made up on what we believe. Lets take Matthew 16:15-19 first. In these verses, we read where God chooses to pick one of the 12 apostles, to deliver the key message on how to enter into this new kingdom of God when It came to this earth, and also this key message will be bound upon all the world. And whatever the key message is, it will be honored by all the powers of heaven. And heaven will not honor any other message, but the message of entrance that Peter preached. In Matthew 18:18, Jesus message is to all 12 apostles, and the message is pertaining to a completely different subject. The subject is, when people become obedient believers, and the Lord adds them to the church, How are they to conduct themselves in the house of God, and In their daily Lives. Then Jesus tells the 12 apostles that the instructions that you give to them will be bound on this earth, and the heavenly powers will honor what you say, and the things that you do not bind on this earth, heaven will not bind them on others either. For years, every time I would read these verses that we have been discussing, I would wonder how could God, put this much trust in man, and say to him, I will give you the Keys to the kingdom of God, and 12
13 whatever you bind on earth, will be bound in heaven, and whatever you loose on earth, will be loosed in heaven. Now lets read a few verses that will show us how God was in full control of every word, that the apostles said when they were giving instructions to others on how to become a Christian, and also on how to live a Christian life. Lets begin by reading 2Timothy 3:16, All scripture is given by the inspiration of God. Question - What does that mean? Answer - In the Greek, the word INSPIRATION means - God breathed, inspired by God, referring to communication from Diety. Question - Do we have a verse of scripture that tells us when this happens to the apostles? Answer - Now open our Bibles to John 20:21-22, Then said Jesus to the apostles, Peace be unto you: as my Father hath sent me, even so I send you. Verse 22, And when Jesus had said this, He breathed on them, and said unto them, Receive ye the Holy Ghost. Now lets listen carefully to Verse 23, Whosesoever sins ye remit, they are remitted unto them; and whosesoever sins ye retain, they are retained. These verses should really help us to see what is really taking place, when the apostles are giving Instructions to people, concerning the kingdom of God. It is God speaking through the mouth of the apostles. There Is Something Else That We Could Say A Word Or Two About Before We End Our Discussion. Question - Did The 12 apostles know what the keys to the kingdom was before Acts 2:38? Answer - We must read several scriptures to answer this question. Lets start at Mark 1: Now after that John was put in prison, Jesus came into Galilee, preaching the gospel of the kingdom of God, saying the time is fulfilled, and the kingdom of God is at hand: repent ye, and believe the gospel. Now lets read Matthew 10: Jesus said, Whosoever therefore shall confess me before men, him will I confess also before my Father which is In heaven, But whosoever shall deny me, before men, him will I also deny before my Father which is in heaven. Lets turn our Bibles to Luke 13:3. Jesus said, I tell you, nay: but, except ye repent, ye shall all likewise perish. 13
14 Then in John 3:3, when Jesus is talking to Nicodemus, and Jesus tells him Verily, verily, I say unto thee, Except a man be born again he cannot see the kingdom of God. into And then In John 3:5, Jesus says, Verily, verily, I say unto thee, Except a man be born of water and of the Spirit, he cannot enter the kingdom of God. We read in John 8:24 where Jesus says, Ye shall die in your sins: for If ye believe not that I am he, ye shall die in your sins. Now, lets notice what these verses are saying unto us. That Jesus knows all about the coming kingdom of God, and has revealed what the keys to the kingdom of God are, but the apostles have not understood this. Lets pay close attention to what Jesus has revealed, concerning the keys to the kingdom of God: 1. The Gospel Must Be Preached. - Mark 1: Hearing Must Take Place. - Mark 1: Faith Comes By Hearing. - Mark 1: Repentance Must Take Place. - Luke 13: Confession Must Be MADE. - Matthew 10: Baptism Must Take Place In Water. - John 3: 5 It seems, that the apostles had not put the keys to the kingdom of God in their hearts at this time, because of what Mark 16:14, says about the apostles after Jesus resurrection from the dead. Jesus appeared unto his eleven apostles as they set at meat, and upbraided them because of their unbelief and hardness of heart. Maybe a better example of the apostles unbelief can be found in John 20:25, where Thomas said, Except I shall see in his hands the print of the nails, and put my finger Into the print of the nails, and thrust my hand into his side, I will not believe. Question - What is the time, from in Jesus life, when these things are taking place? Answer - After The Resurrection. So, this should really help us In our search for our answer to the question, DID THE APOSTLES KNOW WHAT THE KEYS OF THE KINGDOM WERE BEFORE ACTS 2:38? I don t believe they did, because they did not even believe at this time. Another verse that we can read at this time, that will really help us is found in John 14:26. Jesus is talking to his apostles and says, But the Comforter, which is the Holy Ghost, whom the Father will send in my name, 14
15 He shall teach you all things, and bring all things to your remembrance, whatsoever I have said unto you. Now, lets Go to Acts 2:1-4, And when the day of Pentecost was fully come, they were all with one accord in one place. ( The 12 apostles ). Now notice Verse 4, And they were all filled with the Holy Ghost. Here we find John 14:26 being fulfilled. Did we notice, when we go to the scriptures and study with an open mind, how easy God can make these questions. Question - Was any one else, ever given the authority to use the keys of the keys of the kingdom, after Peter preached the First gospel sermon to the Jews, and then about ten years later, he Preached the First gospel sermon to the Gentiles? Answer - Lets again go to the scriptures to find our answer. We read in Matthew 28:18-20 where Jesus said, All power is given unto me in heaven and earth. Go ye therefore, and teach all nations, baptizing them In the name of the Father, and of the Son, and of the Holy Ghost: Teaching them to observe all things whatsoever I have commanded you: And, lo, I am with you always, even unto the end of the world. Question - Who was Jesus talking to in Verse 19, when He said, Go ye? Answer - The Apostles. Question - Who was Jesus talking about in Verse 19, when He said, Baptize them? Answer - Every Obedient Believer In All Nations. ( Brethren, That s Me, And That s You ). Question - What are we to teach them? Answer - All Things That I Have Commanded You To Teach. Now, All baptized believers have the same responsibility as the apostles had. Lets read Romans 1:16. We must feel exactly like the apostle Paul felt when he said, For I am Not Ashamed Of The Gospel of Christ: For It Is The Power Of God Unto Salvation To Every One That Believeth; To The Jew First, And Also To The Greek. Lets notice in this verse, that the apostle Paul feels the same thing that God has shared with Peter, and that was to the Jews First, and then to the Gentiles. There is one more verse, that needs to be brought to our attention, before we bring this lesson to a close. And that is, after we have learned the truth, lets pray the same prayer that Peter and John prayed in Acts 4:29. Grant unto thy servants that with all boldness, we will speak God s word to others. There Is a saying, that one picture is worth a thousand words. Please look at the next page. 15
16 Jesus by his own mouth, gave the blue prints of this key message in the gospel for all of us to read. and then we read in Matthew 16:19, where Jesus promised the apostle Peter, that He would give To him only, This Key Message. The responsibility that Peter now has, is to preach the First gospel for man to the Jews, and then at a later date, God would determine when the time was right, for Peter to preach the First gospel sermon to the Gentiles. We can read in Acts the 2 nd Chapter, where Peter preached the First key message to the Jews, and then in the 10 th chapter of Acts, We can read where Peter preached the First gospel sermon to the Gentiles. Listed below is The Blue Print that Jesus gave to Peter. This is the only blue print that Jesus ever gave. It was given for all people, this earth. Acts 2:39. This key message will never change - Matthew 24: 35, and 1 Peter 1: 25. Question - How many doors will this key Open. Answer - ONE. The door to the church. Question - What if we left off notch 5 from key? Would it still unlock the door? Answer - No. Question - What if we left off notch 6 from key? Would it still unlock the door? Answer - No. 1. Mark 1:14, - THE GOSPEL - Must first be preached. 2. Mark 1:14, - HEARING - Must take place. 3. Mark 1:15, - FAITH - In the Gospel. 4. Luke 13:3-5, - REPENTANCE - Willing to turn from sin. 5. Matthew 10:32-33, - CONFESSION - confess that Jesus is Lord. 6. John 3:3-5, - BAPTISM IN WATER - For re- mission of sins. 16
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