...is he given the gift of infallible revelation.
Matthew 16:13-17 records a conversation between Christ and his
disciples where Jesus asks who people say he is. The disciples give all
kinds of answers and you can almost hear the chuckling among them at
the outlandish claims that people have made about Jesus. Jesus then
gets more specific and asks who they say
that he is. Simon (his name isn't Peter yet, more on that next time)
replies “you are the Messiah, the Son of the living God”.
take this truth for granted today. We all know that Jesus is the Son of
God and the long anticipated messiah of the Jews but at that moment it
wasn't obvious. Jesus was a good man to be sure. He was certainly a
prophet or one of the other great prophets come back to life but the Son
of God? That wasn't on most people's radar at the time of Matthew 16.
How does Simon Peter figure out who Jesus is? Direct and infallible
divine revelation: Jesus responds to him “blessed are you Simon, son of
Jonah, flesh and blood have not revealed this to you but my Father in
That God elected to use Simon Peter to reveal who
Christ is to others, even the other disciples, is yet another reason
Catholics regard him as our first pope.