Monday, January 11, 2010

The Key to Heaven

Returning to our evaluation of the claims of the Bishop of Rome:

"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." Matthew 16:19

What keys are being referred to here? The word key is not a common one in the New Testament:
  1. Here (Matt 16:19) - "kingdom of heaven"
  2. Luke 11:52 "knowledge"
  3. Rev 1:18 "Hell and death" (Hades)
  4. Rev 3:7 "David"
  5. Rev 9:1 "bottomless pit" (abyss)
  6. Rev 20:1 "bottomless pit" (abyss)
The references in Revelation 9 and 20 are "the key of the bottomless pit" (abyss), possibly part of Hell (the main areas being Hades and Gehenna). Satan and demons are bound in this pit, and later transferred to the lake of sulfur.

Revelation 3:7 is interesting "And to the angel of the church in Philadelphia write; These things saith he that is holy, he that is true, he that hath the key of David, he that openeth, and no man shutteth; and shutteth, and no man openeth"

My main focus is Luke 11:52:
"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."

It would seem this passage is different, but I believe it is exactly on target.

The question is, is this key one of power - deciding who is in and who is out (shutting what Christ has opened, and opening what Christ has closed - see Rev 3:7)?

Or is it one of knowledge? How it is that we are saved - the Gospel (soteriology).

Peter was given "the key" to salvation ("the kingdom of heaven") - the Gospel of Jesus Christ. A key which had been given to the Jews, and which had been bent out of shape by the Pharisees.

Now, historically, has the Bishop of Rome made good use of this key? Or has he (multiple individuals in this one seat) bent this key with a gospel of works? And hidden this key in Latin - hindering the translation of the Bible (and thus, understanding and evaluation of the gospel) into local languages? Reading the Bible in only Latin from 1570 to 1962?

1 comment:

TheDen said...

I think to understand this verse, you need to reference Isaiah 22: 20-22. It talks about Eliakim whom He will give authority--father to the inhabitants of Jerusalem. He will give him the key to the house of David--when he opens, no one shall shut and when he shuts, no one shall open.

To be given the key is to be given authority. Jesus is giving Peter authority in this passage. What he binds on earth, is bound in heaven. Whe he loosens on earth shall be loosed in heaven.

The key to the kingdom of heaven is the Church. The Church is the Body of Christ. You cannot be saved unless you are a member of Christ's Church ie a member of His body (which we've discussed before.) Salvation comes through Christ--through His Body...through His Church.

Regarding your question about the Bishop of Rome, the answer is yes. Not every Pope has been good. Heck...not every Pope may be in heaven. BUT every Pope has guarded the message of Jesus Christ and has not altered it. If you read the early Christian writings, they are remarkably similar to Catholicism today.

As for the Bible in Latin, the Douay-Rheims bible was translated into English before the King James. The Bible was originally translated into Latin by St. Jerome back in the 4th century (I believe) which was the common language at the time.

As for the Latin mass, they may have moved a bit slow on that one. The Church doesn't move quickly on anything.