In January of this year Julian Adams prophesied over me that I was coming into a new season of revelation from God. It was so exciting to hear God promise that as I'd been praying for a while for new levels of revelation in my life. As usual God has been true to His word. Recently as I've been reading my Bible there have been moments when He's spoken to me through very familiar scriptures in exciting new ways. I want to share one such revelation with you here.
Since my trip to Bethel in February I've felt more and more stirred about the importance of us as Christians really getting to grips with who we are in Christ. That we're to really believe who God says we are in His word. I believe as we do that we'll be much more effective at seeing His Kingdom break out on the earth. A couple of verses I read in Matthew confirmed what I have been feeling.
'...He said to them, 'But who do you say I am?' Simon Peter replied, 'You are the Christ, the Son of the living God.' And Jesus answered him, 'Blessed are you Simon Bar-Jonah! For flesh and blood has not revealed this to you, but my Father who is in heaven. And I tell you, you are Peter, and on this rock I will build my church and the gates of hell shall not prevail against it...' (Matthew 16 v15-18)
Having asked the disciples who people say He is, He then turns His attention to them and asks the same question. Peter's response gets high praise from Jesus. He has recieved revelation direct from the Father that Jesus is the Son of God and Jesus calls Him blessed because of it!
It's Jesus' next words that I'm facinated by, '...and I tell you, you are Peter, and on this rock I will build my church...' What rock? What's the rock that Jesus is going to build His church on? He surely can't mean Peter the man. Just a few verses later he's stuffing up again. Peter is no rock. Why did Jesus insist on telling Peter who he was before His statement about the rock He'd build His church on? The verses could have read:
'...Blessed are you Simon Bar-Jonah! For flesh and blood has not revealed this to you, but my Father who is in heaven. And I tell you, on this rock I will build my church and the gates of hell will not prevail against it.'
The church being built on the revelation of Jesus. That makes perfect sense doesn't it and I believe it's the first of two keys that Jesus is eluding to here. The church of Christ will be built on the rock of the revelation of Christ! This is absolutely crucial and we all need much deeper revelation of who our saviour is. But there's another key and it's why Jesus made a concious decision to tell Peter who He was after his revelation of Jesus.
The second key is us knowing who Jesus says we are in Him. At the beginning of the passage Jesus calls Peter Simon Bar-Jonah. Just before He talks about the rock He will build His church on He gives him a brand new identity. 'And I tell you, you are Peter' It's like He's saying. 'this is who you are now - the old you has gone and the new has come (sound familiar) and you getting who I say you are is just as crucial as you knowing who I am. It's these two things that I will build my church on.'
The rock on which Jesus will build His chuch? Revelation of who He is and revelation of who we are in Him. The promise when the church is built on this rock? The gates of hell will have absolutely no chance!