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Could you please explain what Jesus meant when he said to Peter, “Thou art Peter, and upon this rock I will build my Church, and the gates of Hell shall not prevail against it; And I will give thee the Keys of the Kingdom of Heaven, and whatever thou shalt loose on Earth shall be bound in Heaven.” (Matthew 16: 18-20).
The Guide: The meaning is this: Jesus entrusted Peter with his teachings, that he might organize the spreading of his teachings. It is a well-known fact that the Catholic Church builds on the belief that from that time on everything is so settled that nothing this Church says could be wrong – based on the saying you quoted.
Here, I do want to explain this: what Jesus meant was that Peter should spread the teachings exactly as he has brought them. But that definitely included a communication with the Spirit World of God. This communication existed very actively at that time, the time of the first Christians. Jesus was much too wise to suggest that any truth could be kept undiluted by spreading from one human being to another, from one generation to another.
He knew that human failings are still much too great not to let errors and false interpretations slip in – not to speak of the danger of the twisting of truth the world of darkness has always aimed for, and which will succeed as long as there are unpurified beings on this earth. Therefore, direct communication with the World of God is the only way possible.
Unfortunately, human beings have – sometimes ignorantly, sometimes deliberately – misinterpreted these words, as they have many others, for that matter. If these words had been taken in their true sense, exactly as Jesus had taught and as Peter had meant then, which included such a communication with the world of God, many things would have been very different in your human history. I know this will shock some friends, but I cannot help it. This is the truth.
If you read the Bible with true understanding and openness, you will find many, many instances where the sayings of Jesus cannot be interpreted in any other way. As a matter of fact, you will see particularly from the lectures my friend will start now that this is so. You have one demonstration there that Jesus always meant you to contact his spirits of truth. It was part of Jesus’ teachings that Peter was supposed to spread.
Also – which was not published, or later taken out – how to go about it, what the laws are to have communication with the spirits of light and truth. When it was said that Jesus appeared to his disciples after his death, it was also a form of communication. There are many different forms.
Later on Jesus would not appear himself anymore, but send his emissaries. And when he said before his death, “There are many things I cannot tell you as yet, but will tell you later,” how do you imagine he could tell that, unless through such a communication for which certain laws have to be obeyed and certain conditions prepared?
This was an integral part of his teachings that was, unfortunately, for various reasons, not maintained or even distorted. Furthermore, this quotation means that anyone – then or now – who binds himself to God through adhering to the teachings of Jesus that Peter was to maintain, spread and organize, would also be bound to the Father in the Kingdom of Heaven and could never be lost anymore. But anyone who refuses these teachings and loosens himself thus further from God, will also be lost after death – not forever, but for as long as this attitude prevails.
This inner declaration to put God above everything else and follow his will in every respect marks a decisive step in the development of a soul; sometimes this is called an “initiation.” This is the meaning of it in its essence, and certainly not that God and Christ would only manifest through one human church organization which alone should be immune to human failings and thus to the influence of the powers of darkness. This would make no sense.
Whoever follows the real teachings of Christ and seeks the development and purification through which it is possible to hold the laws of God is indeed immune to all evil – “Hell will not prevail” – and will thus gain the Kingdom of Heaven. That is the only way that this can happen – the only way, my friends! And I believe that this must make sense to you.