He takes the disciples on a field trip away from the crowds, 20 miles north of the Sea of Galilee to the town of Caesarea Philippi. This place is known for its pagan worship of Baal and a god named Pan.
There is a spring that comes out of a large cave at the foot of Mount Hermon where the town is located. The mouth opening of the cave is called ‘the Gate of Hades’ and the rock platform near the opening is called ‘Rock of the Gods.’
Imagine Jesus with his disciples being very near this cave when you read the text for Sunday from Matthew 16:13-28. Does this help you understand Jesus words, “On this rock I will build my church”? A couple other questions: What is Jesus saying about the cost of discipleship (following him) in these verses? And why does he get so angry with Peter for opposing Jesus teaching on his need to die?
Its gonna be a fascinating time together this Sunday… text and context are closely tied together to unpack this one. Take a look at this 4 minute clip as preparation for Sunday’s message, The Cost of Discipleship Matthew 13:13-28.