"Who do YOU say I am?" Singular or Plural?


In Matthew 16:15, just before Peter confesses Jesus as the Christ, Jesus asks the question:

“‘But what about you?’ he asked. ‘Who do you say I am?’”

When Jesus asks this question, is he asking the whole lot of disciples, or is he asking Simon Peter alone? That is, are the two uses of “you” placed in the singular (presumably Peter) or the plural (any disciple who wishes to pipe up)? Is it clear from the Greek and/or Aramaic?


Both are plural.



I’ll try to break it down using you (singular) and y’all (plural):

Matt 16:

15 “But what about y’all?” he asked. “Who do y’all say I am?”

16 Simon Peter answered, “**You **are the Christ, the Son of the living God.”

17 Jesus replied, "Blessed are you, Simon son of Jonah, for this was not revealed to you by man, but by my Father in heaven.

18 And I tell you that you are Peter, and on this rock I will build my church, and the gates of Hades will not overcome it.

19 I will give you the keys of the kingdom of heaven; whatever you bind on earth will be bound in heaven, and whatever you loose on earth will be loosed in heaven."

If you have even a passing familiarity with Spanish, this might be instructive:

15 El les dijo: Y vosotros, ¿quién decís que soy yo?

16 Respondiendo Simón Pedro, dijo: eres el Cristo, el Hijo del Dios viviente.

17 Entonces le respondió Jesús: Bienaventurado eres, Simón, hijo de Jonás, porque no **te lo **reveló carne ni sangre, sino mi Padre que está en los cielos.

18 Y yo también te digo, que eres Pedro, y sobre esta roca edificaré mi iglesia; y las puertas del Hades no prevalecerán contra ella.

19 Y a ti te daré las llaves del reino de los cielos; y todo lo que atares en la tierra será atado en los cielos; y todo lo que desatares en la tierra será desatado en los cielos.

Does that help?

God Bless,


Thanks, answers my question.

DISCLAIMER: The views and opinions expressed in these forums do not necessarily reflect those of Catholic Answers. For official apologetics resources please visit www.catholic.com.