Matthew 16: 18:
Ecclesiastical history probably doesn’t know any other verse, that has been misinterpreted so often like the above verse.
The pope reasons his supremacy mainly by the above verse.
Jesus just had asked his disciples what they would think, who he would be. There, St. Peter shoot ahead and said, “You are Christ, the Son of the living God!”
Jesus rejoiced over the insight of Peter and the other disciples; obviously God had started a work in them.
The whole content of the gospels shows us that the disciples could indeed imagine to rule together with Jesus soon; therefore, Jesus had to take Peter down a peg a little after Peter had acclaimed Jesus as Christ (the king).
Of course, it was right; Jesus from Nazareth was the Christ, the eternal Son of God, but Jesus’ time of rule had not yet come at all. God had prescribed that first Jesus had to suffer and to be rejected.
Still, when Jesus was detained Peter wanted to fight using a sword. He indeed could not understand that Jesus didn’t fight back. Should the rightful king of Israel be conducted away like a mean criminal? At that time Peter was not able to understand this. The decision of God that Jesus had to be turned in in order to suffer and to die was hidden for the disciples up to that time.
Let us return to Mattew 16: 18. What wanted Jesus to say be the words of this verse? The following, “Peter you are Peter (with all your dreams of earthly rule), but my Church I (the Father) will build on the low (self-humilated) and humble Jesus.
This Jesus lowered himself down to death on the cross where he has borne the sins of the whole mankind. God brings about faith in Christ by the Holy Spirit. God builds his Church on Jesus by causing faith in him on people.
Seemingly, Jesus has foreseen that his Church will be continuously tempted to reach out for rule. However, Jesus doesn’t allow his Church to rule. To the contrary, the Church has to share the destiny of her Lord; that means, she has to suffer and to be rejected like her Lord.
Matthew 16: 24-26:
So, the correct interpretation of Matthew 16: 18 is contrary to the Roman Catholic interpretation of this verse. Matthew 16: 18 doesn’t reason the papacy but rejects it: God doesn’t want a ruling church but a suffering and low and rejected Church.
What is the pope actually?
He is the successor of the carnal desires (longing for rule) of St. Peter. Up to the time of Jesus’ crucifixion Peter and the other disciples had not yet understood that “Christ shall suffer”. They indeed hoped to rule together with him over the earthly state of Israel.
Latest since Pentecost our Peter is a transformed Peter. At Pentecost, the disciples received the Holy Spirit, which teached them about the true character of Christ: on earth, the Church has to share Christ’s destiny to be rejected and to suffer up to Judgement Day. Of course, Christ has returned to heaven and is ruler of the universe, but despite he feels the pains of his congregation. The congregation is his body in a real sense.
The pope has a right to say: “I am the successor of St. Peter!”, but he should be aware that in fact he is the successor of Peter’s carnal desires.
Pope, we tell you, “You are Joseph Ratzinger, but on those rock God will build his Church!”
I use the power of the keys, “Mr. Ratzinger as long as you claim you would be the head of the Church, your sins are kept, and you are outcast from the Christian Church!”