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Matthew 18:18He said to them, “But who do you say that I am?”
16 Simon Peter answered and said, “You are the Christ, the Son of the living God.”
17 Jesus answered and said to him, “Blessed are you, Simon Bar-Jonah, for flesh and blood has not revealed this to you, but My Father who is in heaven. 18 And I also say to you that you are Peter, and on this rock I will build My church, and the gates of Hades shall not prevail against it. 19 And I will give you the keys of the kingdom of heaven, and whatever you bind on earth will be bound in heaven, and whatever you loose on earth will be loosed in heaven.”
John 20:21-23Assuredly, I say to you, whatever you bind on earth will be bound in heaven, and whatever you loose on earth will be loosed in heaven.
1) My understanding is that the power to confer or to withhold forgiveness is the keys of the kingdom of heaven. Is this correct?So Jesus said to them again, “Peace to you! As the Father has sent Me, I also send you.” 22 And when He had said this, He breathed on them, and said to them, “Receive the Holy Spirit. 23 If you forgive the sins of any, they are forgiven them; if you retain the sins of any, they are retained.”
Yes. Since sin is the barrier to heaven and forgiveness is through confession and getting absolution, then the apostles and those who came after them from bishops are the ones who hold the keys to heaven.
Since Jesus told the disciples "whatever you bind on earth will be bound in heaven, and whatever you loose on earth will be loosed in heaven", is it correct to say that the disciples also received the keys of the kingdom of heaven, even though Jesus used these words "I will give you the keys of the kingdom of heaven" in Matthew 16 to Peter but not in Matthew 18 to the disciples?
Jesus was asking all his disciples as to what the people think of Him. Peter, being enthusiastic, answered faithfully that He was the Christ. In return, Jesus told Him that upon this faith He would establish His Kingdom. Obviously, those who would carry the message were the disciples and were the ones to baptize and to give absolutions.
The notion that it was only Peter who received the keys at this moment is incorrect. First, in verse 20, He told His disciples not to reveal Him as being the Messiah meaning that all of them were believers. It just happened that Peter to be the first one to pronounce the faith. Second, faith was a prerequisite to getting the keys as explained and all disciples had that faith. So, it would be unfair to give one disciple the keys and not the other. Second, moments after telling Peter that He would give him the keys, Jesus addressed him as Satan. Why? Because he lost the faith he just professed.
Were they given to Peter when Jesus said "And I will give you the keys of the kingdom of heaven, and whatever you bind on earth will be bound in heaven, and whatever you loose on earth will be loosed in heaven” in Matthew 16:19?
Or did Peter receive the keys later with the other disciples in Matthew 18:18?
Or after the Resurrection of Jesus in John 20:21-23
The future sense in the phrase “I will give you” is not a correct translation according to the Coptic one which equates to “I give you” with an assurance.
Again the notion that only Peter received the keys is an incorrect interpretation as explained in the previous post.
Let me further explain, Jesus was addressing his disciples, in 18:18, including Peter for he was present during the events of verse 18. If we assume that Peter was the only one to receive the keys in verse 16:19, did Jesus give him the keys again in verse 18:18? Of course not, Jesus had no special treatment of Peter in both incidents.
Now did Jesus give the authority to the disciples to bind before or after His resurrection? Both, during His ministry and after his resurrection as they were to carry on His ministry after His ascension.