Peter in Rome?

Hi,
Just so people know, I am not trying to argue here, I just want to read a good answer to my question.

How would Catholics respond to the claim that Peter was not the first bishop of Rome nor did he preach to the gentile Romans in Rome because he only preached to the Jews (using Galatians 2:7-8 as evidence of this)?

“But on the contrary, when they saw that the gospel for the uncircumcised had been committed to me, as the gospel for the circumcised was to Peter (for He who worked effectively in Peter for the apostleship to the circumcised also worked effectively in me toward the Gentiles)” (Galatians 2:7-8)

catholic.com/library/Peter_Roman_Residency.asp

I would first answer that in Holy Scripture it states very clearly that we are not to only go by what is written down…in fact, 2 Thess 2:15 says to shun those acting not according to tradition. John 21:25 said that not everything Jesus said is recorded in Scripture, and it seems to Catholic Christians that if not everything that Our Lord, The WORD, said is recorded in Holy Scripture then surely that applies also to the Apostles.

You must remember that Catholic Christians are not children of the Book, we are Children of the Word Incarnate. We believe in Holy Scripture and Sacred Tradition. Perhaps the link I provided for you will help you better understand our Sacred Tradition as to why we KNOW that St. Peter was the martyred first Bishop of Rome.

Thank you so much for asking this question - you are on the road, my brother!

Also, this has been previously discussed here:

forums.catholic.com/showthread.php?p=969596

[quote=anonymousguy]How would Catholics respond to the claim that Peter was not the first bishop of Rome nor did he preach to the gentile Romans in Rome
[/quote]

There is no longer any doubt that Peter was there. No one who has seriously studied the issue doubts it at all. It is an entirely specious argument.

Check out 2 Peter 5:12-14 where Peter writes:

12 Through Silvanus, whom I consider a faithful brother, I have written briefly, encouraging you and testifying that this is the true grace of God. Take your stand in it! 13 She who is in Babylon, also chosen, sends you greetings, as does Mark, my son. 14 Greet one another with a kiss of love. Peace to all of you who are in Christ.

Catholic Tradition interprets verse 13 as evidence that Peter was writing the letter from Rome, since Babylon was regarded by the early church as the code word for Rome (also used as code for Rome in Rev 17:5), given that Nero persecuted Christians from the capital and compelled Romans to idolatrous worship. Protestant bible commentaries assign a literal meaning to verse 13, but other proestant commentaries agree with the Catholic interpretation as seen from the quote I took from one called Robertson’s Word Pictures of the New Testament below:

[font=Arial, Geneva, Helvetica][size=4]Robertson’s Word Pictures of the New Testament[/size] 2 Pet 5:13[/font]
[font=Arial, Geneva, Helvetica][size=2]She that is in Babylon, elect together with you ([font=BSTGreek][size=3]h en Babulwni suneklekth[/size][/size]). Either actual Babylon or, as most likely, mystical Babylon (Rome) as in the Apocalypse. If Peter is in Rome about A.D. 65, there is every reason why he should not make that fact plain to the world at large and least of all to Nero. It is also uncertain whether h suneklekth (found here alone), “the co-elect woman,” means Peter’s wife (1 Corinthians 9:5) or the church in “Babylon.” The natural way to take it is for Peter’s wife. Cf.eklekth kuriai in 2 John 1:1 (also verse 2 John 1:13).[/font]
**** In short, if the verses were written metaphorically to conceal his then-current location from Nero in case the letter is intercepted in transit, then Peter is writing from the church (co-elect woman) in Babylon (Rome). Given his dangerous position as the leader of the early church which would make him a target for capture no matter where he is located, it is less likely that he is writing the letter in literal terms and that he is with his wife at the church in Babylon, Asseria.

Mike

[/font]

Peter’s secrecy is also justified when you consider how Rome went about squelching new religions that it didn’t like.

Usually, all Rome had to do was to publicly execute a church leader or two. Without leaders, the pagan religions being targeted would wither and die. In the case of the Christians, Peter would be an ideal target. Since Peter’s work wasn’t done here on earth, it behooved him to remain in secrecy until God called him up, in martyrdom, to heaven.

NotWorthy

[quote=anonymousguy]Hi,
Just so people know, I am not trying to argue here, I just want to read a good answer to my question.

How would Catholics respond to the claim that Peter was not the first bishop of Rome nor did he preach to the gentile Romans in Rome because he only preached to the Jews (using Galatians 2:7-8 as evidence of this)?

“But on the contrary, when they saw that the gospel for the uncircumcised had been committed to me, as the gospel for the circumcised was to Peter (for He who worked effectively in Peter for the apostleship to the circumcised also worked effectively in me toward the Gentiles)” (Galatians 2:7-8)
[/quote]

Since you are a Coptic Orthodox I assume you are not sola scriptura. I would show you Irenaeus of Lyons against Heresies book 3 chapter 3 and show that Irenaeus puts Peter in Rome. Ignatius puts him in Rome in his letter to the Romans.

I would also show that Peter writes from Babylon, which is often a code name for Rome.

HA!!! Sorry I’m quite excited :smiley: that when I looked up 1 Peter 5:13 in my (quite Protestant) Ryrie Study Bible (NASB) that the footnote actually does say:

5:13 She who is in Babylon. The church in Rome where Peter evidently was writing this letter.

I’ve trusted everything that I’ve read about Catholicism so far (otherwise I wouldn’t have decided to convert!), but I decided to check and see what my own Bible happens to say to see if it tried to write it off, LOL!!! I’m actually quite surprised they didn’t to some extent…

[quote=anonymousguy]How would Catholics respond to the claim that Peter was not the first bishop of Rome nor did he preach to the gentile Romans in Rome because he only preached to the Jews (using Galatians 2:7-8 as evidence of this)?

“But on the contrary, when they saw that the gospel for the uncircumcised had been committed to me, as the gospel for the circumcised was to Peter (for He who worked effectively in Peter for the apostleship to the circumcised also worked effectively in me toward the Gentiles)” (Galatians 2:7-8)
[/quote]

Galatians 2:7-8 is far from proving that Peter did not preach the gospel to Gentiles. Scripture says Peter in fact did preach to Gentiles (Acts 10:1-48, 15:7). Galatians 2:7-8 seems to refer to the meeting in Jerusalem described in Acts 15. If that is the case and at that time the task of bringing the gospel to Gentiles was entrusted to Paul exclusively and bringing the gospel to the Jews was entrusted to Peter exclusively, then after that time one would expect that Paul did not preach to Jews. But this is not what happened. After the meeting in Jerusalem, Scripture says that Paul continued to preach the gospel to both Jews and Gentiles. For example, Paul preached to the Jews at Thessalonica (Acts 17:1), at Beroea (Acts 17:10), at Athens (Acts 17:17), at Corinth (Acts 18:4), and at Ephesus (Acts 18:19). Acts does not mention Peter’s missionary activity after Acts 15 but, since Paul, the ‘Apostle to the Gentiles’, preached to both Jews and Gentles, there is no reason to believe that Peter, the ‘Apostle to the Jews,’ did not likewise preach to both Jews and Gentiles.

Also, if Peter did not preach to Gentiles, what business did Peter have in writing his first epistle, an exhortation to Gentile Christians to stand firm in the faith?
1Since therefore Christ suffered in the flesh, arm yourselves with the same thought, for whoever has suffered in the flesh has ceased from sin, 2so as to live for the rest of the time in the flesh no longer by human passions but by the will of God. 3Let the time that is past suffice for doing what the Gentiles like to do, living in licentiousness, passions, drunkenness, revels, carousing, and lawless idolatry. 4They are surprised that you do not now join them in the same wild profligacy, and they abuse you; 5but they will give account to him who is ready to judge the living and the dead. (1 Peter 4:1-5)

[quote=AmISearching?]HA!!! Sorry I’m quite excited :smiley: that when I looked up 1 Peter 5:13 in my (quite Protestant) Ryrie Study Bible (NASB) that the footnote actually does say:

I’ve trusted everything that I’ve read about Catholicism so far (otherwise I wouldn’t have decided to convert!), but I decided to check and see what my own Bible happens to say to see if it tried to write it off, LOL!!! I’m actually quite surprised they didn’t to some extent…
[/quote]

Cool. It’s surprising how many think discrediting the Catholic Church, Mary, Peter, Tradition, etc. elevates their own status.

Thank you all for answering me. Thanks Todd Easton, your answer was especially helpful

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