The Church Militant
And I say also unto thee, That thou art Peter, and upon this rock I will build my church; and the gates of hell shall not prevail against it. Matthew 16:18.
The word Peter signifies a stone—a rolling stone. Peter was not the rock upon which the church was founded. The gates of hell did prevail against him when he denied his Lord with cursing and swearing. The church was built upon One against whom the gates of hell could not prevail.... The church is built upon Christ as its foundation; it is to obey Christ as its head.109
If Jesus had delegated any special authority to one of the disciples above the others, we should not find them so often contending as to who should be the greatest. They would have submitted to the wish of their Master, and honored the one whom He had chosen.
Instead of appointing one to be their head, Christ said to the disciples, “Be not ye called Rabbi;” “neither be ye called masters: for one is your Master, even Christ.” Matthew 23:8, 10.
“The head of every man is Christ.” God, who put all things under the Saviour’s feet, “gave him to be the head over ... the church.” 1 Corinthians 11:3; Ephesians 1:22.
In the presence of God, and all the heavenly intelligences, in the presence of the unseen army of hell, Christ founded His church upon the living Rock. That Rock is Himself—His own body, for us broken and bruised. Against the church built upon this foundation, the gates of hell shall not prevail....
For six thousand years, faith has builded upon Christ. For six thousand years the floods and tempests of satanic wrath have beaten upon the Rock of our salvation; but it stands unmoved....
The Rock of faith is the living presence of Christ in the church. Upon this the weakest may depend, and those who think themselves the strongest will prove to be the weakest, unless they make Christ their efficiency.... The Lord “is the Rock, his work is perfect.” “Blessed are all they that put their trust in him.” Deuteronomy 32:4; Psalm 2:12.
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