Certainly they use these verses as their strongest argument. If we can demonstrate and prove that these verses are not discussing the establishment of Peter as the Pope, but discussing the foundation of the Church, their foundation probably comes crashing down.
Part 1: The Context Of Matthew 16:18-19 Jesus Said "Who Do Men Say That I Am"?
The context of these verses lies in the question Jesus asked the apostles. He asked "who do men say that I am". The Church cannot be built upon wrong doctrine about Jesus. Jesus cannot be just a good man or a prophet or anything other than "the Christ, the Son of the Living God". He is the rock of our salvation and those who confess Him are built upon that rock. This is exactly what Peter confessed regarding the question of who Jesus is.
Rom 10:9 says "if you shall confess with your mouth the Lord Jesus, and shall believe in your heart that God has raised him from the dead, you shall be saved".
All believers (including the apostles) first need to make confession and believe in their hearts. It is not just an intellectual acceptance of Jesus, but a revelation to the heart which produces an oratory response like Peter's.
Regarding the loosing and binding in verse 19. If we compare Matthew 16:19 with Matthew 18:15-19 Jesus says the same thing about loosing and binding. In Matthew 19 Jesus is talking to all the Apostles and in relation to discipline in the church. He states
that if 2 people agree (not just Peter) ie 2 or more of the Apostles agree regarding discipline.
Apparently, the original manuscripts indicate the "you" in verse 19 is plural. So verse 19 cannot have Jesus just speaking to Peter, but speaking to the twelve, whilst in verse 18 He was talking to Peter.
In summary, the church was built upon the rock of Jesus. The members of the church are those who confess that Jesus is the Christ, The Son of the Living God (and ALL that that means). The apostles were the first to be built upon that rock - they were the smaller stones. We are then built upon their teachings, just as they were built upon the teachings of Jesus DIRECT. The church has authority to overcome as it works together in unity. Now onto the second part which is the historical evidence.
Part 2 Historical Evidence To Prove that Peter was not the first Pope
This section was taken (by permission) from the following link:
Peter is the most important figure in Roman Catholicism because the Vatican claims unbroken succession in Popes, with Peter as the first Pope. Research proves this cannot be true, plus we demonstrate that Catholicism simply teaches ancient Paganism with Christian names.
The keys in the above picture are supposed to represent the "keys of the kingdom" that was given to Peter in Matthew 16:19. According to Roman Catholicism, these keys represent all authority in heaven and in Earth, and she (Catholicism), as the "rightful possessor" through the passing of those keys, has all authority. Pope Gregory VII (the "only pope to canonize himself") drew up a Dictatus (list) of twenty- seven theses outlining his powers as "Peter’s vicar, Prince of the Apostles and Chief Shepherd".
Pope Gregory VII claimed the Pope had the following eight (8) powers:
1). The Pope can be judged by no one on earth.
2). The Roman church has never erred, nor can it err until the end of time.
3). The Pope alone can depose bishops.
4). He alone is entitled to imperial insignia.
5). He can dethrone emperors and kings and absolve their subjects from allegiance.
6). All princes are obliged to kiss his feet.
7). His legates, even when not priests, have precedence over all bishops.8). A rightly elected Pope is, without question, a saint, made so by the merits of Peter" (Vicars of Christ: the Dark Side of the Papacy, DeRosa, 58).
Nowhere does scripture reveal that these "keys of the kingdom" are "passed on" to anyone, or that the Apostle Peter had any such power over "emperors and kings". Nonetheless, according to Catholic tradition, Apostle Peter reigned as pope in Rome for 25 years (42 to 67 A.D.); from that point on, the keys were "passed" from one pope to another in what they claim is an unbroken line of "apostolic succession". What is this apostolic succession? Is it an unbroken line from Peter to John Paul II? The truth is that the Roman church knows the list of popes is not genuine. It has been changed many times.
On Jan.18, 1947, a dispatch came from Vatican City which said:
"...the Vatican's new official directory has dropped six popes from its old list. It placed two others in doubt, as possible anti-popes and listed as a true pope one who had not been included until now... Information was changed on 74 popes. The changes ranged from corrections in the dates of their pontificate to the assertion that one of them, Pope Dono II, who was listed as pontiff for three months in the year 973, never really existed..."
"In one book that was presented to Pope Pius XII, the third and fifth popes, Cleto a Roman, and Anacleto, an Athenian, were combined as one and the same person. Felix II, who was listed as a saint and as a pope from 363 to 365 is removed from the list as an anti-pope...Christoforo, 903 to 904; Alexander V, who claimed to be pope from 409 to 410, and John XXIII, from 1410 to 1415, were also dropped from the list of popes, while the legitimacy of Gregory VI, 1044 to 1047, was placed in doubt...Boniface VI, who was not in the old list, is put down as the legitimate pontiff for a few days in April 896. Possibility was admitted that Dioscoro was pope for 22 days in September and October 530, and that Leo VIII was pontiff from 963 to 965. Both were omitted from the list until now." (Secrets of Romanism, Zachello, 48-49)
It is obvious with just a short study of papal history that there are serious gaps in the so-called "unbroken line". In 1409, a Council was convoked in Pisa, where they elected Alexander V to usurp the two popes, Gregory XII and Benedict XIII, (who were already reigning), on the grounds they were "heretics and schismatics".
Can you imagine how the people must have felt when they woke up to the news that there was now a third pope! Can you imagine their further consternation when they were told that the Roman Catholic Church needed this third pope because the two currently reigning were frauds? This little bit of history alone should be enough to debunk the lie that the Roman Catholic Church is infallible and cannot err until the End of Time!
A new version of the Apostles Creed was popular at that time [15th Century] "I believe in three holy Catholic churches". The Catholic people had endured absentee popes, no popes for two and three years (the cardinals could not agree), and popes who bought their way into the papacy. Now, they had three "infallible" popes, all claiming supreme authority over the church, and all disagreeing with each other!
After only ten months in office, Alexander V died and John XXIII took his place. Peter DeRosa, in his book Vicars of Christ, page 94 says of Pope John XXIII:
"He was noted as a former pirate, pope-poisoner (poor Filargi), mass-murderer, mass-fornicator with a partiality for nuns, adulterer on a scale unknown outside fables, simoniac [one who sells ecclesiastical pardons and even his office] par excellence, blackmailer, pimp, master of dirty tricks. On his election to the papacy in Bologna, Cossa [John XXIII] was a deacon. Ordained priest one day, he was crowned pope the next. This charlatan was recognized by most Catholics as their sovereign lord who held the church together by his rock-like faith. When another Pope John XXIII was elected in 1958, several Catholic cathedrals had hastily to remove the fifteenth-century John XXIII from their list of pontiffs.
"Without any scriptural proof, Roman Catholicism has blatantly lied about the Apostle Peter’s whereabouts from 42 A.D. to 67 A.D., so as to lend some credence to their "apostolic succession". They have placed Peter in Rome reigning as a pope when the Bible paints us a totally different picture. Lorraine Boettner, in his bookRoman Catholicism, pages 121-122, dates Peter’s journey using the Bible as his only source.
"Most Bible students agree that Paul's conversion occurred in the year 37 A.D. After that he went to Arabia (Gal.1:17), and after that he went up to Jerusalem where he remained with Peter for 15 days (Gal.1:18). That brings us to the year 40 A.D. Fourteen years later he again went to Jerusalem (Gal.2:1), where he attended the Jerusalem council described in Acts 15, in which Peter also participated (vs.6).
This conference dealt primarily with the problems which arose in connection with the presentation of the Gospel in Jewish and Gentile communities. Paul and Barnabas presented their case, and were authorized by the council to continue their ministry to the Gentiles (Acts 15:22-29); and this quite clearly was the occasion on which Paul was assigned to work primarily among the Gentiles while Peter was assigned to work primarily among the Jews (Gal.2:7- 8), since this same Jerusalem council is spoken of in the immediate context (Gal.2:1-10). So this brings us to the year 54 A. D., and Peter still is in Syria, 12 years after the time that the Roman tradition says that he began his reign in Rome.
Sometime after the Jerusalem council Peter also came to Antioch, on which occasion it was necessary for Paul to reprimand him because of his conformity to Judaistic rituals (Gal.2:11- 21). And the same Roman tradition which says that Peter reigned in Rome also says that he governed the church in Antioch for 7 years before going to Rome. Hence we reach the year 61 A.D., with Peter still in Syria."
What about the other apostles? Did they acknowledge the supremacy of Peter? Did they think of Peter as "infallible concerning church doctrine"? Let us keep in mind the scripture that says we are "not to think of men above that which is written." (1Cor.4:6) Therefore, if the title of pope is not found in the scriptures, we are giving titles to men above that which is written. In Acts 15, Barnabas, Peter and Paul gave reports at the council in Jerusalem but it was James who rendered the decision - NOT PETER! If Peter were the leader, he most definitely have rendered the final decision!
In Acts 8:14 Peter was sent by others to Samaria. Why didn't Peter do the sending if he was the pope? In Gal.2:8-10 Paul says "And when they had known the grace that was given to me, James [shouldn’t have Paul named Peter first since he is the supposed pope?] and Cephas [Peter] and John, who SEEMED TO BE PILLARS...." In 2:6 Paul said, "...those who seemed to be somewhat, (whatsoever they were, it maketh no matter to me: GOD ACCEPTETH NO MAN’S PERSON)...." It is obvious that Paul did not care what they "seemed to be", and clearly says God doesn’t either!
In these next verses, Paul rebukes Peter, evidently not regarding his "position" in the church. He even goes so far as to say that if an angel from heaven or any of them preach any other gospel than that which has been preached, they should be accursed. But let’s carefully read Galatians 2:11-16:
"But when Peter was come to Antioch, I WITHSTOOD HIM TO THE FACE, BECAUSE HE WAS TO BE BLAMED. For before that certain came from James, he did eat with the Gentiles: but when they were come, he withdrew and separated himself, FEARING THEM which were of the circumcision. And the other Jews dissembled likewise with him; insomuch that Barnabas also was carried away with their dissimulation [condemnation, hypocrisy]. But when I saw that THEY WALKED NOT UPRIGHTLY ACCORDING TO THE TRUTH OF THE GOSPEL, I said unto Peter before them all, If thou, being a Jew, livest after the manner of Gentiles, and not as do the Jews, why compellest thou the Gentiles to live as do the Jews? We who are Jews by nature, and not sinners of the Gentiles, Knowing that a man is not justified by the works of the law, but by the faith of Jesus Christ, even we have believed in Jesus Christ, that we might be justified by the faith of Christ, and not by the works of the law: FOR BY THE WORKS OF THE LAW SHALL NO FLESH BE JUSTIFIED." (Gal.2:11-16)
It is evident in these verses that Peter erred concerning doctrine which nullifies any argument Rome uses to justify her false doctrine of the infallibility of popes.
Of course, several popes have been "heretics" by admission of other popes. Pope Adrian VI in 1523 said: "If by the Roman church you mean its head or pontiff, it is beyond question that he can err even in matters touching the faith. He does this when he teaches heresy by his own judgment or decretal. In truth, many Roman Pontiffs were heretics. The last of them was Pope John XXII [1316-1334]" (Vicars of Christ, DeRosa, 204).
Not only are the scriptures clear concerning Peter’s fallibility, but it also clear that he was never considered a pope by anyone, including himself. Peter does however call himself an "elder" and clearly states that Jesus alone is the "Chief Shepherd" (a title the popes take for themselves contrary to Peter’s words). (1Pet.5:1-4)
The only scripture Rome has to support her supposed "foundation of the papacy" is Matthew 16:13-20. Let’s take a closer look at these verses.
"When Jesus came into the coasts of Caesarea Philippi, he asked his disciples, saying, WHOM DO MEN SAY THAT I THE SON OF MAN AM? And they said, Some say that thou art John the Baptist: some, Elias; and others, Jeremias, or one of the prophets. He saith unto them, But WHOM SAY YE THAT I AM? And Simon Peter answered and said, THOU ART THE CHRIST, THE SON OF THE LIVING GOD. And Jesus answered and said unto him, Blessed art thou, Simon Barjona: for flesh and blood hath not revealed it unto thee, but my Father which is in heaven. And I say also unto thee, That 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 unto thee the keys of the kingdom of heaven: and whatsoever thou shalt bind on earth shall be bound in heaven: and whatsoever thou shalt loose on earth shall be loosed in heaven. Then charged he his disciples that they should tell no man that he was Jesus the Christ. To thee I will give the keys of the kingdom of heaven."
It is Catholic doctrine, that at this time, our Lord Jesus Christ, by changing Simon’s name to Peter, was making him the first pope and head of the Roman Catholic church as well as establishing apostolic succession. Catholic popes would be given these keys of Peter to reign as "Pontifex Maximus" in Rome, a title held by the Caesars of Rome as well.
Of course, this is a far stretch of the imagination. Peter, in Greek, is "petros" (masculine - a piece of a rock, a stone, a pebble); but the "rock" in Matthew 16:18 is "petra" (feminine-mass rock).
Thus, in modern English, Jesus said, "And I tell you, you are Peter, a stone, and upon this massive rock I will build My church and the gates of Hell shall not stand against it."
Peter just confessed that Jesus was the Messiah, the Son of God. It was upon this truthful confession that Jesus planned to build his church. I Cor.10:4 tells us that Christ is that "rock" (petra, massive rock). I Cor.3:11says: "For other foundation can no man lay than that is laid, which is Jesus Christ."
Catholic apologists, in an attempt to deceive the people, say that Jesus was speaking Aramaic and Matthew was written in Aramaic. They say this because in the Aramaic language, there is only one word for stone or rock, the word "cephas". Therefore, Jesus would have said "Thou art Cephas, and upon Cephas I will build my church". They feel this better supports their case. However, there is not one shred of proof that Matthew was written in Aramaic. We do have proof it was written in Greek, and that the author did indeed use two different Greek words that changed the gender from "Peter" (masculine stone) to "rock" (feminine, massive), denoting a change in subject as well.
While it is true that "Cephas" can mean "rock or stone", God settled the argument once and for all when He gives us Greek and Aramaic together in John 1:42: "And he brought him to Jesus. And when Jesus beheld him, he said, Thou art Simon the son of Jona: thou shalt be called CEPHAS [Aramaic], WHICH IS BY INTERPRETATION, A STONE [petros, small stone]." (John.1:42) Jesus, in His All Knowledge, knew the time would come when men would lie about Peter and twist the meaning in this most important Scripture. Therefore, Jesus gave us the bold, clear translation Himself.
It may jolt most Catholics to read that the "great fathers" of the "church" saw no connection between Mt.16:18 and apostolic succession. Not one of them applies "Thou art Peter" to anyone other than Peter. For Catholic Fathers Cyprian, Origen, Cyril, Hilary, Jerome, Ambrose, Augustine etc., it was Peter's faith in the Lord that is called the Rock.
"All the Councils from Nicea in the fourth century to Constance in the fifteenth agree that Christ himself is the only foundation of the church, that is, the Rock on which the church rests. Perhaps this is why not one of the Fathers speaks of a transference of power from Peter to those who succeed him; not one speaks, as church documents do today, of an 'inheritance'. There is no hint of an abiding Petrine office" (Vicars of Christ: The Dark Side Of The Papacy, Peter De Rosa, 24).
Papal power was gradually developed by deceit and forgeries. The Donation of Constantine, a proven forgery, was used by the papacy to establish its base in Rome. The pseudo Isidorian Decretals (of French origin) consisted of 115 documents, purportedly written by early bishops of Rome, beginning with Clement (88-97) along with the pseudo-Clementine letters and homilies (invented by a heretic in the second century...professed to be from the hand of Clemens Romanus, who writes to James after the death of Peter, "...appointing the writer his successor....") were instrumental in convincing the people they were the true successors of Peter. Tertullian repeated the story that Clement was ordained Bishop of Rome by St. Peter. In the Secrets of Romanism, by former priest Zachello, page 46, we read:
"The bishop of Manchester is of the opinion that the only early persuasion of St. Peter's Roman episcopate was due to the acceptance in the third and following centuries of the Clementine fiction as genuine history."
The truth is that there is only ONE ROCK (1Cor.10:4), the HEAD of the true church, Jesus Christ Himself, (Eph.1:22-23, Col.1:18) and Rome with all her lies cannot change that truth!
What about the keys? What did our Lord mean when he told Peter he would give him the keys? First let us consider that a key is used to open a door. We know that on the day of Pentecost, Peter was given an open door to preach the gospel to the Jews. We also know that it was Peter who first preached the gospel to the Gentiles. It was common in their day, as it is in our own day, to say that God "...had opened the door of faith...." (Acts 14:27) or "...a great door and effectual is opened unto me...." (1Cor.16:9) And again, "a door was opened unto me of the Lord" (2Cor.2:12)
We also know in Revelation 3:7 that Jesus has the "key of David" and "openeth and no man shutteth and shutteth and no man openeth". It is God who opens doors and makes the way for us to preach the gospel. Peter was given an opportunity to preach to the Jews and the Gentiles. In Luke 11:52, Jesus rebukes the Pharisees of his day saying:
"Woe unto you, lawyers! for ye have taken away the key of knowledge: ye entered not in yourselves, and them that were entering in ye hindered."Peter, on the day of Pentecost, was given the privilege of confessing before Israel that Jesus was the Messiah, the Son of the living God, the same confession he made in Matthew 16 by the Spirit of God.
Somehow, the meaning of the keys has been distorted to take on the pagan meaning instead of the scriptural one. There was a Peter in Rome, but it was not the apostle Peter. There were keys that stood for all authority in heaven and in earth, but they were the pagan keys of Janus and Cybele. Roman Catholicism has adapted the pagan symbols in an attempt to convert the pagans of their times to a religion with which they could easily identify.
"The very apostolic designation, Peter, is from the Mysteries. The hierophant or supreme pontiff bore the Chaldean title peter, or interpreter. The names Phtah, Peth’r, the residence of Balaam, Patara, and Patras, the names of oracles-cities, pateres or pateras and, perhaps, Buddha, all come from the same root ... No apostle Peter was ever at Rome; but the Pope, seizing the scepter of the Pontifex Maximus, the keys of Janus and Kubelé, and adorning his Christian head with the cap of the Magna Mater, copied from that of the tiara of Brahmâtma, the Supreme Pontiff of the Initiates of old India, became the successor of the Pagan high priest, the real Peter-Roma, or Petroma (the tiara of the Pope is also a perfect copy of that of the Dalai-Lama of Thibet)" (Isis Unveiled, Blavatsky, p. 30).
Alexander Hislop, in his book The Two Babylons, expounds on the connection between the keys of Roman Catholicism and the keys of Janus and Cybele:
"If there be any who imagine that there is some occult and mysterious virtue in an apostolic succession that comes through the Papacy, let them seriously consider the real character of the Pope's own orders, and of those of his bishops and clergy. From the Pope downward, all can be shown to be now radically Babylonian.
The College of Cardinals, with the Pope at its head, is just the counter-part of the Pagan College of Pontiffs, with its "Pontifex Maximus," or " Sovereign Pontiff," which had existed in Rome from the earliest times, and which is known to have been framed on the model of the grand original Council of Pontiffs at Babylon. The Pope now pretends to supremacy in the Church as the successor of Peter, to whom it is alleged that our Lord exclusively committed the keys of the kingdom of heaven.
But here is the important fact that, till the Pope was invested with the title, which for a thousand years had had attached to it the power of the keys of Janus and Cybele, no such claim to pre-eminence, or anything approaching to it, was ever publicly made on his part, on the ground of his being the possessor of the keys bestowed on Peter. Very early, indeed, did the bishops of Rome show a proud and ambitious spirit; but, for the first three centuries, their claim for superior honour was founded simply on the dignity of their see, as being that of the imperial city, the capital of the Roman world.
When, however, the seat of empire was removed to the East, and Constantinople threatened to eclipse Rome, some new ground for maintaining the dignity of the Bishop of Rome must be sought. That new ground was found when, about 378, the Pope fell heir to the keys that were the symbols of two well-known Pagan divinities at Rome. Janus bore a key, and Cybele bore a key; and these are the two keys that the Pope emblazons on his arms as the ensigna of his spiritual authority...
Now, when he had come, in the estimation of the Pagans, to occupy the place of the representatives of Janus and Cybele, and therefore to be entitled to bear their keys, the Pope saw that if he could only get it believed among the Christians that Peter alone had the power of the keys, and that he was Peter's successor, then the sight of these keys would keep up the delusion, and thus, though the temporal dignity of Rome as a city should decay, his own dignity as the Bishop of Rome would be more firmly established than ever..."
"Few lies could be more gross; but, in course of time, it came to be widely believed; and now, as the statue of Jupiter is worshipped at Rome as the veritable image of Peter, so the keys of Janus and Cybele have for ages been devoutly believed to represent the keys of the same apostle. While nothing but judicial infatuation can account for the credulity of the Christians in regarding these keys as emblems of an exclusive power given by Christ to the Pope through Peter, it is not difficult to see how the Pagans would rally round the Pope all the more readily when they heard him found his power on the possession of Peter's keys."
"The keys that the Pope bore were the keys of a "Peter" well known to the Pagans initiated in the Chaldean Mysteries. That Peter the apostle was ever Bishop of Rome has been proved again and again to be an arrant fable.
That he ever even set foot in Rome is at the best highly doubtful. His visit to that city rests on no better authority than that of a writer at the end of the second century or beginning of the third-viz., the author of the work called The Clementines, who gravely tells us that on the occasion of his visit, finding Simon Magus there, the apostle challenged him to give proof of his miraculous or magical powers, whereupon the sorcerer flew up into the air, and Peter brought him down in such haste that his leg was broken.
All historians of repute have at once rejected this story of the apostolic encounter with the magician as being destitute of all contemporary evidence; but as the visit of Peter to Rome rests on the same authority, it must stand or fall along with it, or, at least, it must be admitted to be extremely doubtful."
"But, while this is the case with Peter the Christian, it can be shown to be by no means doubtful that before the Christian era, and downwards, there was a "Peter" at Rome, who occupied the highest place in the Pagan priesthood. The priest who explained the Mysteries to the initiated was sometimes called by a Greek term, the Hierophant; but in primitive Chaldee, the real language of the Mysteries, his title, as pronounced without the points, was "Peter"-i.e., "the interpreter." As the revealer of that which was hidden, nothing was more natural than that, while opening up the esoteric doctrine of the Mysteries, he should be decorated with the keys of the two divinities whose mysteries he unfolded.
Thus we may see how the keys of Janus and Cybele would come to be known as the keys of Peter, the "interpreter" of the Mysteries. Yea, we have the strongest evidence that, in countries far removed from one another, and far distant from Rome, these keys were known by initiated Pagans not merely as the "keys of Peter" but as the keys of a Peter identified with Rome...what more natural than to seek not only to reconcile Paganism and Christianity but to make it appear that the Pagan Peter-Roma with his keys, meant " Peter of Rome," and that that "Peter of Rome " was the very apostle to whom the Lord Jesus Christ gave the "keys of the kingdom of heaven "?
Hence, from the mere jingle of words, persons and things essentially different were confounded; and Paganism and Christianity jumbled together, that the towering ambition of a wicked priest might be gratified; and so, to the blinded Christians of the apostasy, the Pope was the representative of Peter the apostle while to the lnitiated Pagans, he was only the representative of Peter, the interpreter of their well-known Mysteries."
"Thus was the Pope the express counterpart of ‘Janus, the double-faced’...The reader will now be prepared to understand how it is that the Pope's Grand Council of State which assists him in the government of the Church, comes to be called the College of Cardinals. The term Cardinal is derived from Cardo, a hinge. Janus, whose key the Pope bears, was the god of doors and hinges, and was called Patulclus, and Clusius ‘the opener and the shutter’...Now, to this Janus, as Mediator, worshipped in Asis Minor, and equally, from very early times, in Rome, belonged the government of the world; and, ‘all power in heaven, in earth, and the sea,’ according to Pagan ideas, was vested in him. In this character he was said to have ‘jus vertendi cardinis; -the ‘power of turning the hinge; -of opening the doors of heaven, or of opening or shutting the gates of peace or war upon earth. The Pope, therefore, when he set up as the High-priest of Janus, assumed also the ‘jus vertendi cardinis,’ the ‘power of turning the hinge,’ of opening and shutting in the blasphemous Pagan sense" (The Two Babylons, Hislop, 206-210)
The fact is that Peter never went to Rome, never wore a crown, and never sat on a throne.
In the book Behind the Purple Curtain , by Montano, pages 26-28, we read of another deception concerning Peter:
"Eminent archeologists and historians are inclined to believe that the bronze statue of St. Peter in Rome, standing on a pedestal about four feet high near the Main Altar close by one of the four massive pillars supporting the dome, was originally the statue of Jupiter Capitolinus. It is said that Pope Leo the Great transformed it into the traditional likeness of Saint Peter." Thus, people are really paying homage to a pagan god, not the Apostle Peter!
"From an article written by Dr. H. P. Morgan we infer that the same opinion is held regarding the Chair of Saint Peter, the Cathedra Petri, where dogmas for the entire Catholic Church are promulgated by the Popes. Saint Peter's Chair, mounted on a magnificent throne of bronze and gilt, is surmounted by a canopy and supported by four colossal figures, Augustine, Ambrose, Chrysostom, and Athanasius.
The relic stands at the extreme end of the basilica, faces the main entrance, and thus dominates the whole building. Its design includes angels floating over the chair. Above the angels is the emblem of God the Spirit in the form of a dove, from which rays of divine light pour down upon this seat of ecclesiastical authority.
Thus God Himself is represented as honoring the chair, notwithstanding the fact that its voice is heard frequently in direct opposition to the voice of God's Word. A solemn festival in honor of "Peter's Chair" is held each year on January 19, when it is displayed publicly, yet held out of reach of curious, impious hands. It is interesting to note that this sculptured symbolism dates from the year 1659 - the Papacy's answer to the Protestant Reformation. Roman Catholic tradition asserts that this chair is the very one upon which Peter sat when he officiated as Bishop of Rome, and from whence his utterances were issued."
"THE CRITICAL DICTIONARY OF ENGLISH LITERATURE, however, in its three columns devoted to Lady Morgan's literary activities, tells quite another story. Lady Morgan, a much traveled and prolific writer, states that when the French took possession of Rome at the time of the French Revolution, sacrilegious curiosity induced the soldiery to break through the reliquary. Upon examination the old wooden chair was seen to be of fifth century design, altogether dissimilar in design and structure to the chairs pictured in the catacombs.
Beneath the dust and cobwebs, so the story runs, was found an inscription in Arabic characters - the well-known confession of Mohammedan faith, ‘There is but one God, and Mohammed is his prophet.’ Lady Morgan suggests that the chair was brought from the East among the spoils of the Crusaders and presented to Saint Peter's at a time when antiquarian research was not much in fashion.
Nicholas Cardinal Wiseman, Archbishop of Westminster, trying to settle the controversy about the Cathedra Petri, wrote declaring that its original owner was a converted Roman Senator, Pudens by name, friend and host to Peter. In 1851, Lady Morgan addressed a clever rejoinder to Wiseman, in which she suggested a way of solving the dispute: let the chair be examined by a group of experts chosen from Catholic and Protestant scholars. Apparently that ended the controversy."
The chair was never closely investigated.Professor H. Forbes Witherly, who has had the opportunity for a close investigation of this matter, goes into detail regarding the structure and composition of the chair. He says in a valuable monograph: ‘The ornaments of the chair, generally, tell their own tale. They are designs on ivory, three rows of six each; the two upper rows are mainly representations of the labors of Hercules.
The chair, therefore, in its decorations, is in honor of the pagan hero, the man-god of Roman mythology - the man that pagan Roman loved the most, the most powerful of men, and the man of the most atrocious morals.’ Dr. Witherly adds: ‘Imagine that strong-minded, paganism-hating Jew, seated in honor and honored in the midst of these pagan abominations! No one having read Peter's Epistles and the account of his character and activities in the Acts can tolerate such disreputable slander against him.’"
In other words, Jewish Peter would have never allowed himself to sit on such an obviously pagan decorated chair. This chair could never have been used by the Jewish Apostle Peter.
Peter never claimed infallibility. He was a married man whose wife traveled with him. (I Cor.9:5, Matt.8:14) In his epistles, Peter warned against traditions:
"Forasmuch as ye know that ye were not redeemed with corruptible things, as silver and gold, from your vain conversation received by tradition from your fathers; But with the precious blood of Christ, as of a lamb without blemish and without spot." (1Pet.1:18-19)
It was Peter who also warned "...no prophecy of the Scripture is of any private interpretation". Yet Rome reserves all rights to privately interpret the word, as though she wrote it. The Bible is the word of God, not of men.
"For this cause also thank we God without ceasing, because, when ye received the word of God which ye heard of us, YE RECEIVED IT NOT AS THE WORD OF MEN, BUT AS IT IS IN TRUTH, THE WORD OF GOD, which effectually worketh also in you that believe." (1Thess.2:13)
Peter warned us to take heed to the word and not to follow after cunningly devised fables. (2Pet.1:16- 19) Rome has cunningly devised another Peter, just as they have devised another Jesus and another Mary. Their foundation is corrupt and has its roots in Satanic Babylon. In Rev.18:4-5, God gives a warning to his people:
"...Come out of her, my people, that ye be not partakers of her sins, and that ye receive not of her plagues. For her sins have reached unto heaven, and God hath remembered her iniquities."
by Rebecca A. Sexton, Former Catholics For Christ
Part 3 Should Apostleship Still Exist?
If you have any questions specifically about Catholicism, you can email Rebecca Sexton, Former Catholics For Christ or write to me.
Please also check out my article giving further evidence why the Catholic Institution cannot save you and why it is not a biblically Christian church. Please click on this link