Why couldn't have THIS been in the bible: "Thou are Peter and on this rock I will build my Church, with future bricks as successors"?


Why couldn’t have THIS been in the bible: “Thou are Peter and on this rock I will build my Church, with future bricks as successors”?

Seriously, though. It would have made the whole concept of Apostolic Succession clearer.


It seems to have been clear enough to the Apostles and the early Christians who learned from them - the Apostles appointed (even in Acts!) successors and helpers by laying hands upon them, making them sharers in the authority and spirit that had been granted to the original 12.

Having that same authority, those successors appointed and laid hands on successors of their own, and so on and so forth. People paid attention to those successors as they had done to the Apostles, otherwise Polycarp, Ignatius and Clement wouldn’t have bothered writing letters of instruction as Peter, Paul, James and John had.

What’s not to understand? :shrug:


I think that Jesus left that as an exercise for the student. Note Peter picked up on it in Acts 1:15-26

In those days Peter stood up among the brethren (the company of persons was in all about a hundred and twenty), and said, 16* “Brethren, the scripture had to be fulfilled, which the Holy Spirit spoke beforehand by the mouth of David, concerning Judas who was guide to those who arrested Jesus. 17 For he was numbered among us, and was allotted his share in this ministry. 18 (Now this man bought a field with the reward of his wickedness; and falling headlong * he burst open in the middle and all his bowels gushed out. 19 And it became known to all the inhabitants of Jerusalem, so that the field was called in their language Akeldama, that is, Field of Blood.) 20* For it is written in the book of Psalms, ‘Let his habitation become desolate, and let there be no one to live in it’; and ‘His office let another take.’ 21 So one of the men who have accompanied us during all the time that the Lord Jesus went in and out among us, 22 beginning from the baptism of John until the day when he was taken up from us–one of these men must become with us a witness to his resurrection.” 23 And they put forward two, Joseph called Barsabbas, who was surnamed Justus, and Matthias. 24 And they prayed and said, “Lord, who knowest the hearts of all men, show which one of these two thou hast chosen 25 to take the place in this ministry and apostleship from which Judas turned aside, to go to his own place.” 26 And they cast lots for them, and the lot fell on Matthias; and he was enrolled with the eleven apostles.


Once we look at the history of the Church the teaching of apostolic succession really couldn’t be any clearer. First, God did not want all of the teachings to be confined to the Bible – that would lead people into the error of Sola Scriptura. Secondly, even if that phrase was included in the Bible, people would still reject and reinterpret the concept.

We have this from St. Irenaeus already (and many simply won’t accept it):

Now it is within the power of anyone who cares to find out the truth, to know the tradition of the Apostles, professed throughout the world in every church. We can name those too who were appointed bishops by the Apostles in the churches and their successors down to our own time… But inasmuch as it would be very tedious in a book like this to rehearse the lines of succession in every church, we will put to confusion all those who, either from waywardness or conceit or blindness or obstinacy combine together against the truth, by pointing to the tradition, derived from the Apostles, of that great and illustrious Church founded and organized at Rome by the two glorious Apostles, Peter and Paul, and to the faith declared to mankind and handed down to our own time through its bishops in their succession. For with this Church, because of its more powerful leadership, every church, that is to say, the faithful from everywhere, must needs agree, and in it the tradition that springs from the Apostles has been continuously preserved by men from everywhere…


If the Bible were written as a Catechism, then maybe this would have been a good idea.

Also, if the Church were to have been constructed according to instructions in the Bible, then again, this may have been a good idea.

But none of these is the case. Jesus built a Church and that Church gave us the Bible.


Besides, it was crystall clear to the readers of Matthew’s Gospel, the Jews.

They would have been familiar with Isaiah 22, which clearly shows a dynastic office. Peter’s primacy would have naturally been handed over to someone else, according to traditional Jewish logic.


The protestants would have just said that the “bricks” refer to different levels of faith like different courses of bricks.


The Bricks refer to different denominations


The bricks represent the different gifts of the holy spirit.

When it comes to Protestant understanding of Scripture, it wouldn’t matter how clear the writer made it, they would find a way to make it fit them.


You took the words right out of my mouth…

“This IS my body” comes to mind.


It’s pretty clear as it is.

Remember that the Bible never says “The Trinity is the concept that God is three persons, the Father, the Son, the Holy Spirit who are all one in essence” or “The books of the Bible are Genesis, Exodus etc…”


Clear to whom? Clear to the Church? It was quite clear to her. Clear to people who reject the Church and who wrongly think the bible is a faith manual? Well, John 6 is pretty clear but they reject that. The necessity of baptism is pretty clear but they reject that. The list goes on and on.

You underestimate how many clear things people will reject based upon their own traditions of men, once they have cut away from the authority of the Church.


you mean like an Ostrich who sticks his head in the ground and then every thing is OK?


Just how wide should we make that narrow gate?


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