Every once in a while you get blown away by the nuances in scripture. Today has one of those. I’ll never forget (although I do forget who it was) when it was pointed out the word play that was going on in Matthew 16.
Peter, or Petros, is also the word for pebble, or small stone. The word that Jesus uses for the rock that He will build His church off of is Petra. It is bedrock. A stone can be tossed away…. A piece of bedrock was not going to be moved.
Peter barely made it out of this conversation before Jesus needed to say to him,
“Get behind me, Satan! You are a hindrance to me because you’re not thinking about God’s concerns but human concerns.”Matt. 16:23, CSB
Jesus wasn’t building the church on the foundation of Peter, but of the foundation of the confession that Jesus is the Messiah! This is no slight to Peter. Peter was a great man of God, especially after he was humbled by denying Jesus three times. But it is the confession that Jesus is the Messiah, that Jesus is Lord, that the church must be built on.