And he said to them, But whom say you that I am? And Peter answers and said to him, You are the Christ.
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EXPOSITORY (ENGLISH BIBLE)Matthew 16:13-28.
For the exposition, see on Mt 16:13-28.See Poole on "Matthew 16:15", and following verses to Matthew 16:20, which we have there discoursed largely upon. I shall only say here; That if so great a point as Peter’s primacy had been understood by Christ’s disciples of that age to have been settled by that answer of our Saviour, it is likely two of the evangelists would not have omitted an account of it. If they had forgotten it, there is no doubt but some or other of Christ’s disciples would have put them in mind of it. Our Saviour’s charge that they should tell no man of him, seemeth to him, that although our Saviour was willing to be taken notice of as a prophet, yet he was not willing as yet to be taken notice of as the Messiah, or Son of God, which latter Matthew reports as added to his confession; and perhaps both Mark and Luke, in their following words, give us the reason, for if we observe it, he immediately falls into a discourse of his suffering, and he might possibly think, that a weak faith of his Divine nature would be overthrown by the sight of his subsequent sufferings. So that he reserved the publication of himself to be the Son of God, until such time when (as the apostle said, Romans 1:4) he was declared so with power, according to the spirit of holiness, by his resurrection from the dead. Matthew 16:15;
and Peter answereth and saith unto him, thou art the Christ; the Messiah that was long ago promised and so often prophesied of in the books of Moses and the prophets; and whom the Jews have so much and long expected. This confession of Peter's in which all the apostles agreed with him speaks out what Jesus really was, and exceeds the most exalted sentiments which the people had of him: he was not the harbinger of the Messiah but the Messiah himself; not Elias in whose Spirit his forerunner was to come and did come; nor any one of the prophets; but he who was spoken of by all the holy prophets; which have been since the beginning of the world. Not one of the various opinions of the people being just, and answering the true character of Jesus, he demands the sense of his disciples which is here given by Peter in their name, and which was right; and on account of which he declared Peter blessed and ascribed his knowledge of him not to flesh and blood but to the revelation of his Father. The Syriac and Persic versions add, "the Son of the living God"; and so Beza found it in one ancient copy; but it may be it is only taken from Mat_16:16; See Gill on Matthew 16:16.And he saith unto them, But whom say ye that I am? And Peter answereth and saith unto him, Thou art the Christ.
EXEGETICAL (ORIGINAL LANGUAGES)Mark 8:29. ὑμεῖς δὲ, etc.: a very pointed question given by all the Synoptists in the same terms. The reply, on the other hand, is different in each. Vide on Matthew 16:16.—ἀποκριθεὶς λέγει: we have here an aorist participle of identical action with a finite verb in the present tense. It usually goes with the aorist (cf. Matthew 16:17, ἀποκριθεὶς εἶπεν).29. Thou art the Christ] To the momentous question, But whom say ye that I am? St Peter, as the ready spokesman of the rest of the Apostles, made the ever-memorable reply, Thou art the Christ, the Messiah (Matthew 16:16; Luke 9:20), the Son of the living God (Matthew 16:16), but in the Gospel written under his eye the great announcement respecting his own memorable confession and the promise of peculiar dignity in the Church the Lord was about to establish, find no place.Verse 29. - By this second putting of the question, our Lord warned his disciples that they who had been better instructed ought to think greater things of him than these. It was necessary that he should show them that these current opinions and floating notions were far below his real claims. Therefore he says with emphasis, But who say ye that I am? - ye, my disciples, who, being always with me, have seen me do far greater things than they; ye, who have listened to my teaching, confirmed as it has been by those miracles; ye, who yourselves also have been enabled to work many miracles in my name; - who say ye that I am? Peter answereth and saith unto him, Thou art the Christ. St. Peter here spoke as the mouthpiece of the rest. The suddenness and terseness of the answer is eminently characteristic of St. Peter. In St. Matthew's narrative it is given a little more in full, "Thou art the Christ, the Son of the living God." But the strength of the answer really lies in St. Mark's words, "Thou art the Christ," that is, the promised Messiah. What, however, St. Mark does omit here - a circumstance not to be passed without notice - is the great blessing pronounced by our Lord upon St. Peter (Matthew 16:17-19) as the reward of his confession. The explanation of this omission is to be found in the fact that this Gospel is really for the most part St. Peter's Gospel, recorded by St. Mark. It has already been observed, that, as far as it is possible to do so, considering Peter's prominent position amongst the other apostles, he retires into the background. It was necessary that it should be recorded that he made the good confession of our Lord as the Messiah; but beyond this the evangelist suppresses all mention of the distinction subsequently conferred upon him, although the rebuke which he afterwards received is recorded in full. It is, moreover, a significant circumstance (noticed in the 'Speaker's Commentary') that this Gospel was written at Rome, and in the first instance for Roman readers.
More correctly, he questioned or asked. So Rev. Mark omits the commendation of Peter. See Introduction.
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