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Matthew chapter 16

New International Version

1 The Pharisees and Sadducees came to Jesus and tested him by asking him to show them a sign from heaven.
2 He replied, 'When evening comes, you say, 'It will be fair weather, for the sky is red,' 3 and in the morning, 'Today it will be stormy, for the sky is red and overcast.' You know how to interpret the appearance of the sky, but you cannot interpret the signs of the times. 4 A wicked and adulterous generation looks for a sign, but none will be given it except the sign of Jonah.' Jesus then left them and went away.
5 When they went across the lake, the disciples forgot to take bread. 6 Be careful,' Jesus said to them. 'Be on your guard against the yeast of the Pharisees and Sadducees.'
7 They discussed this among themselves and said, 'It is because we didn't bring any bread.'
8 Aware of their discussion, Jesus asked, 'You of little faith, why are you talking among yourselves about having no bread? 9 Do you still not understand? Don't you remember the five loaves for the five thousand, and how many basketfuls you gathered? 10 Or the seven loaves for the four thousand, and how many basketfuls you gathered? 11 How is it you don't understand that I was not talking to you about bread? But be on your guard against the yeast of the Pharisees and Sadducees.' 12 Then they understood that he was not telling them to guard against the yeast used in bread, but against the teaching of the Pharisees and Sadducees.
13 When Jesus came to the region of Caesarea Philippi, he asked his disciples, 'Who do people say the Son of Man is?'
14 They replied, 'Some say John the Baptist; others say Elijah; and still others, Jeremiah or one of the prophets.'
15 But what about you?' he asked. 'Who do you say I am?'
16 Simon Peter answered, 'You are the Messiah, the Son of the living God.'
17 Jesus replied, 'Blessed are you, Simon son of Jonah, for this was not revealed to you by flesh and blood, but by my Father in heaven. 18 And I tell you that you are Peter, and on this rock I will build my church, and the gates of Hades will not overcome it. 19 I will give you the keys of the kingdom of heaven; whatever you bind on earth will be bound in heaven, and whatever you loose on earth will be loosed in heaven.' 20 Then he ordered his disciples not to tell anyone that he was the Messiah.
21 From that time on Jesus began to explain to his disciples that he must go to Jerusalem and suffer many things at the hands of the elders, the chief priests and the teachers of the law, and that he must be killed and on the third day be raised to life.
22 Peter took him aside and began to rebuke him. 'Never, Lord!' he said. 'This shall never happen to you!'
23 Jesus turned and said to Peter, 'Get behind me, Satan! You are a stumbling block to me; you do not have in mind the concerns of God, but merely human concerns.'
24 Then Jesus said to his disciples, 'Whoever wants to be my disciple must deny themselves and take up their cross and follow me. 25 For whoever wants to save their life will lose it, but whoever loses their life for me will find it. 26 What good will it be for someone to gain the whole world, yet forfeit their soul? Or what can anyone give in exchange for their soul? 27 For the Son of Man is going to come in his Father's glory with his angels, and then he will reward each person according to what they have done.
28 Truly I tell you, some who are standing here will not taste death before they see the Son of Man coming in his kingdom.'
English Standard Version

1 And the Pharisees and Sadducees came, and to test him they asked him to show them a sign from heaven. 2 He answered them, “When it is evening, you say, ‘It will be fair weather, for the sky is red.’ 3 And in the morning, ‘It will be stormy today, for the sky is red and threatening.’ You know how to interpret the appearance of the sky, but you cannot interpret the signs of the times. 4 An evil and adulterous generation seeks for a sign, but no sign will be given to it except the sign of Jonah.” So he left them and departed.
5 When the disciples reached the other side, they had forgotten to bring any bread. 6 Jesus said to them, “Watch and beware of the leaven of the Pharisees and Sadducees.” 7 And they began discussing it among themselves, saying, “We brought no bread.” 8 But Jesus, aware of this, said, “O you of little faith, why are you discussing among yourselves the fact that you have no bread? 9 Do you not yet perceive? Do you not remember the five loaves for the five thousand, and how many baskets you gathered? 10 Or the seven loaves for the four thousand, and how many baskets you gathered? 11 How is it that you fail to understand that I did not speak about bread? Beware of the leaven of the Pharisees and Sadducees.” 12 Then they understood that he did not tell them to beware of the leaven of bread, but of the teaching of the Pharisees and Sadducees.
13 Now when Jesus came into the district of Caesarea Philippi, he asked his disciples, “Who do people say that the Son of Man is?” 14 And they said, “Some say John the Baptist, others say Elijah, and others Jeremiah or one of the prophets.” 15 He said to them, “But who do you say that I am?” 16 Simon Peter replied, “You are the Christ, the Son of the living God.” 17 And Jesus answered him, “Blessed are you, Simon Bar-Jonah! For flesh and blood has not revealed this to you, but my Father who is in heaven. 18 And I tell you, you are Peter, and on this rock I will build my church, and the gates of hell shall not prevail against it. 19 I will give you the keys of the kingdom of heaven, and whatever you bind on earth shall be bound in heaven, and whatever you loose on earth shall be loosed in heaven.” 20 Then he strictly charged the disciples to tell no one that he was the Christ.
21 From that time Jesus began to show his disciples that he must go to Jerusalem and suffer many things from the elders and chief priests and scribes, and be killed, and on the third day be raised. 22 And Peter took him aside and began to rebuke him, saying, “Far be it from you, Lord! This shall never happen to you.” 23 But he turned and said to Peter, “Get behind me, Satan! You are a hindrance to me. For you are not setting your mind on the things of God, but on the things of man.”
24 Then Jesus told his disciples, “If anyone would come after me, let him deny himself and take up his cross and follow me. 25 For whoever would save his life will lose it, but whoever loses his life for my sake will find it. 26 For what will it profit a man if he gains the whole world and forfeits his soul? Or what shall a man give in return for his soul? 27 For the Son of Man is going to come with his angels in the glory of his Father, and then he will repay each person according to what he has done. 28 Truly, I say to you, there are some standing here who will not taste death until they see the Son of Man coming in his kingdom.”
King James Version

1 The Pharisees also with the Sadducees came, and tempting desired him that he would shew them a sign from heaven. 2 He answered and said unto them, When it is evening, ye say, It will be fair weather: for the sky is red. 3 And in the morning, It will be foul weather to day: for the sky is red and lowring. O ye hypocrites, ye can discern the face of the sky; but can ye not discern the signs of the times? 4 A wicked and adulterous generation seeketh after a sign; and there shall no sign be given unto it, but the sign of the prophet Jonas. And he left them, and departed.
5 And when his disciples were come to the other side, they had forgotten to take bread. 6 Then Jesus said unto them, Take heed and beware of the leaven of the Pharisees and of the Sadducees. 7 And they reasoned among themselves, saying, It is because we have taken no bread. 8 Which when Jesus perceived, he said unto them, O ye of little faith, why reason ye among yourselves, because ye have brought no bread? 9 Do ye not yet understand, neither remember the five loaves of the five thousand, and how many baskets ye took up? 10 Neither the seven loaves of the four thousand, and how many baskets ye took up? 11 How is it that ye do not understand that I spake it not to you concerning bread, that ye should beware of the leaven of the Pharisees and of the Sadducees? 12 Then understood they how that he bade them not beware of the leaven of bread, but of the doctrine of the Pharisees and of the Sadducees.
13 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? 14 And they said, Some say that thou art John the Baptist: some, Elias; and others, Jeremias, or one of the prophets. 15 He saith unto them, But whom say ye that I am? 16 And Simon Peter answered and said, Thou art the Christ, the Son of the living God. 17 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. 18 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. 19 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. 20 Then charged he his disciples that they should tell no man that he was Jesus the Christ.
21 From that time forth began Jesus to shew unto his disciples, how that he must go unto Jerusalem, and suffer many things of the elders and chief priests and scribes, and be killed, and be raised again the third day. 22 Then Peter took him, and began to rebuke him, saying, Be it far from thee, Lord: this shall not be unto thee. 23 But he turned, and said unto Peter, Get thee behind me, Satan: thou art an offence unto me: for thou savourest not the things that be of God, but those that be of men.
24 Then said Jesus unto his disciples, If any man will come after me, let him deny himself, and take up his cross, and follow me. 25 For whosoever will save his life shall lose it: and whosoever will lose his life for my sake shall find it. 26 For what is a man profited, if he shall gain the whole world, and lose his own soul? or what shall a man give in exchange for his soul? 27 For the Son of man shall come in the glory of his Father with his angels; and then he shall reward every man according to his works. 28 Verily I say unto you, There be some standing here, which shall not taste of death, till they see the Son of man coming in his kingdom.
New American Standard Bible

1 The Pharisees and Sadducees came up, and testing Jesus, they asked Him to show them a sign from heaven. 2 But He replied to them, 'When it is evening, you say, 'It will be fair weather, for the sky is red.' 3 'And in the morning, 'There will be a storm today, for the sky is red and threatening.' Do you know how to discern the appearance of the sky, but cannot discern the signs of the times? 4 'An evil and adulterous generation seeks after a sign; and a sign will not be given it, except the sign of Jonah.' And He left them and went away.
5 And the disciples came to the other side of the sea, but they had forgotten to bring any bread. 6 And Jesus said to them, 'Watch out and beware of the leaven of the Pharisees and Sadducees.' 7 They began to discuss this among themselves, saying, 'He said that because we did not bring any bread.' 8 But Jesus, aware of this, said, 'You men of little faith, why do you discuss among yourselves that you have no bread? 9 'Do you not yet understand or remember the five loaves of the five thousand, and how many baskets full you picked up? 10 'Or the seven loaves of the four thousand, and how many large baskets full you picked up? 11 'How is it that you do not understand that I did not speak to you concerning bread? But beware of the leaven of the Pharisees and Sadducees.' 12 Then they understood that He did not say to beware of the leaven of bread, but of the teaching of the Pharisees and Sadducees.
13 Now when Jesus came into the district of Caesarea Philippi, He was asking His disciples, 'Who do people say that the Son of Man is?' 14 And they said, 'Some say John the Baptist; and others, Elijah; but still others, Jeremiah, or one of the prophets.' 15 He said to them, 'But who do you say that I am?' 16 Simon Peter answered, 'You are the Christ, the Son of the living God.' 17 And Jesus said to him, 'Blessed are you, Simon Barjona, because flesh and blood did not reveal this to you, but My Father who is in heaven. 18 'I also say to you that you are Peter, and upon this rock I will build My church; and the gates of Hades will not overpower it. 19 'I will give you the keys of the kingdom of heaven; and whatever you bind on earth shall have been bound in heaven, and whatever you loose on earth shall have been loosed in heaven.' 20 Then He warned the disciples that they should tell no one that He was the Christ.
21 From that time Jesus began to show His disciples that He must go to Jerusalem, and suffer many things from the elders and chief priests and scribes, and be killed, and be raised up on the third day. 22 Peter took Him aside and began to rebuke Him, saying, 'God forbid it, Lord! This shall never happen to You.' 23 But He turned and said to Peter, 'Get behind Me, Satan! You are a stumbling block to Me; for you are not setting your mind on God's interests, but man's.'
24 Then Jesus said to His disciples, 'If anyone wishes to come after Me, he must deny himself, and take up his cross and follow Me. 25 'For whoever wishes to save his life will lose it; but whoever loses his life for My sake will find it. 26 'For what will it profit a man if he gains the whole world and forfeits his soul? Or what will a man give in exchange for his soul? 27 'For the Son of Man is going to come in the glory of His Father with His angels, and WILL THEN REPAY EVERY MAN ACCORDING TO HIS DEEDS.
28 'Truly I say to you, there are some of those who are standing here who will not taste death until they see the Son of Man coming in His kingdom.'
New Living Translation

1 One day the Pharisees and Sadducees came to test Jesus, demanding that he show them a miraculous sign from heaven to prove his authority.
2 He replied, 'You know the saying, 'Red sky at night means fair weather tomorrow; 3 red sky in the morning means foul weather all day.' You know how to interpret the weather signs in the sky, but you don't know how to interpret the signs of the times! 4 Only an evil, adulterous generation would demand a miraculous sign, but the only sign I will give them is the sign of the prophet Jonah.' Then Jesus left them and went away.
5 Later, after they crossed to the other side of the lake, the disciples discovered they had forgotten to bring any bread. 6 'Watch out!' Jesus warned them. 'Beware of the yeast of the Pharisees and Sadducees.'
7 At this they began to argue with each other because they hadn't brought any bread. 8 Jesus knew what they were saying, so he said, 'You have so little faith! Why are you arguing with each other about having no bread? 9 Don't you understand even yet? Don't you remember the 5,000 I fed with five loaves, and the baskets of leftovers you picked up? 10 Or the 4,000 I fed with seven loaves, and the large baskets of leftovers you picked up? 11 Why can't you understand that I'm not talking about bread? So again I say, 'Beware of the yeast of the Pharisees and Sadducees.''
12 Then at last they understood that he wasn't speaking about the yeast in bread, but about the deceptive teaching of the Pharisees and Sadducees.
13 When Jesus came to the region of Caesarea Philippi, he asked his disciples, 'Who do people say that the Son of Man is?'
14 'Well,' they replied, 'some say John the Baptist, some say Elijah, and others say Jeremiah or one of the other prophets.'
15 Then he asked them, 'But who do you say I am?'
16 Simon Peter answered, 'You are the Messiah, the Son of the living God.'
17 Jesus replied, 'You are blessed, Simon son of John, because my Father in heaven has revealed this to you. You did not learn this from any human being. 18 Now I say to you that you are Peter (which means 'rock'), and upon this rock I will build my church, and all the powers of hell will not conquer it. 19 And I will give you the keys of the Kingdom of Heaven. Whatever you forbid on earth will be forbidden in heaven, and whatever you permit on earth will be permitted in heaven.'
20 Then he sternly warned the disciples not to tell anyone that he was the Messiah.
21 From then on Jesus began to tell his disciples plainly that it was necessary for him to go to Jerusalem, and that he would suffer many terrible things at the hands of the elders, the leading priests, and the teachers of religious law. He would be killed, but on the third day he would be raised from the dead.
22 But Peter took him aside and began to reprimand him for saying such things. 'Heaven forbid, Lord,' he said. 'This will never happen to you!'
23 Jesus turned to Peter and said, 'Get away from me, Satan! You are a dangerous trap to me. You are seeing things merely from a human point of view, not from God's.'
24 Then Jesus said to his disciples, 'If any of you wants to be my follower, you must turn from your selfish ways, take up your cross, and follow me. 25 If you try to hang on to your life, you will lose it. But if you give up your life for my sake, you will save it. 26 And what do you benefit if you gain the whole world but lose your own soul? Is anything worth more than your soul? 27 For the Son of Man will come with his angels in the glory of his Father and will judge all people according to their deeds. 28 And I tell you the truth, some standing here right now will not die before they see the Son of Man coming in his Kingdom.'
Christian Standard Bible

1 The Pharisees and Sadducees approached, and tested him, asking him to show them a sign from heaven. 2 He replied, "When evening comes you say, 'It will be good weather because the sky is red.' 3 And in the morning, 'Today will be stormy because the sky is red and threatening.' You know how to read the appearance of the sky, but you can't read the signs of the times. 4 An evil and adulterous generation demands a sign, but no sign will be given to it except the sign of Jonah." Then he left them and went away.
5 The disciples reached the other shore, and they had forgotten to take bread. 6 Then Jesus told them, "Watch out and beware of the leaven of the Pharisees and Sadducees."
7 They were discussing among themselves, "We didn't bring any bread."
8 Aware of this, Jesus said, "You of little faith, why are you discussing among yourselves that you do not have bread? 9 Don't you understand yet? Don't you remember the five loaves for the five thousand and how many baskets you collected? 10 Or the seven loaves for the four thousand and how many large baskets you collected? 11 Why is it you don't understand that when I told you, 'Beware of the leaven of the Pharisees and Sadducees,' it wasn't about bread?" 12 Then they understood that he had not told them to beware of the leaven in bread, but of the teaching of the Pharisees and Sadducees.
13 When Jesus came to the region of Caesarea Philippi, he asked his disciples, "Who do people say that the Son of Man is?"
14 They replied, "Some say John the Baptist; others, Elijah; still others, Jeremiah or one of the prophets."
15 "But you," he asked them, "who do you say that I am?"
16 Simon Peter answered, "You are the Messiah, the Son of the living God."
17 Jesus responded, "Blessed are you, Simon son of Jonah, because flesh and blood did not reveal this to you, but my Father in heaven. 18 And I also say to you that you are Peter, and on this rock I will build my church, and the gates of Hades will not overpower it. 19 I will give you the keys of the kingdom of heaven, and whatever you bind on earth will have been bound in heaven, and whatever you loose on earth will have been loosed in heaven." 20 Then he gave the disciples orders to tell no one that he was the Messiah.
21 From then on Jesus began to point out to his disciples that it was necessary for him to go to Jerusalem and suffer many things from the elders, chief priests, and scribes, be killed, and be raised the third day. 22 Peter took him aside and began to rebuke him, "Oh no, Lord! This will never happen to you!"
23 Jesus turned and told Peter, "Get behind me, Satan! You are a hindrance to me because you're not thinking about God's concerns but human concerns."
24 Then Jesus said to his disciples, "If anyone wants to follow after me, let him deny himself, take up his cross, and follow me. 25 For whoever wants to save his life will lose it, but whoever loses his life because of me will find it. 26 For what will it benefit someone if he gains the whole world yet loses his life? Or what will anyone give in exchange for his life? 27 For the Son of Man is going to come with his angels in the glory of his Father, and then he will reward each according to what he has done. 28 Truly I tell you, there are some standing here who will not taste death until they see the Son of Man coming in his kingdom."

What does Matthew chapter 16 mean?

Matthew 16 begins with another confrontation between Jesus and some of Israel's religious leaders. A group of Pharisees and Sadducees approach Jesus together. This is unusual, since the two sects don't agree on more than the most basic points of theology. Their demand to Jesus is for another sign from heaven (Matthew 12:13–14, 22). Jesus points out they can read basic signs in the skies to predict weather. However, they refuse to recognize obvious signs such as the many miracles He has already accomplished. He declares He will not give them any sign but that of Jonah (Jonah 1:17), who was swallowed by the great fish and restored on the third day (Matthew 16:1–4).

Jesus and the disciples get in a boat again to cross the Sea of Galilee, perhaps to gain space away from Jewish religious leaders. The disciples realize they have forgotten to bring bread for this trip. Jesus, apparently still thinking about His exchange with the Pharisees and Sadducees, warns the disciples to watch out for the "leaven" of those religious leaders. Leaven, or yeast, was often used as a metaphor for sin: something tiny which could thoroughly infiltrate and change whatever it entered. The disciples wonder if Jesus is upset because they forgot the bread (Matthew 16:5–7).

Instead, Jesus becomes upset about their small faith and focus on earthly bread. He reminds them that they were present—twice—when He fed thousands of people from just a few loaves (Matthew 14:13–21; 15:34–38). There's no reason they should be so worried about food as to miss such an obvious metaphor. He warns them again about the false teaching of the Pharisees and Sadducees (Matthew 16:8–12).

Jesus and the disciples travel north about 25 miles from the Sea of Galilee to Caesarea Philippi. There, Jesus asks them who the people say He is. By this, He means the general opinion of the public. The disciples report that some people think He is the return of a great prophet, others that He is somehow John the Baptist. Making an important contrast between "popular opinion" and "personal belief," Jesus asks who the disciples say He is. Peter answers for the group: "You are the Christ, the Son of the living God" (Matthew 16:13–16).

This results in an enthusiastic response, with Jesus saying God the Father has revealed the truth to Peter. Jesus then makes a wordplay out of Peter's name, using two different Greek words. One, referring to Peter, means "a stone or a rock." The other, referring to the substance on which the church will be built, refers to "rock" as a substance or a material. On Peter's statement—the belief he expressed—Jesus says He will build His earthly church. The gates of hell won't prevail against it. Jesus tells Peter he will be given the keys of the kingdom of heaven. Whatever the disciples bind or loose on earth will be bound or loosed in heaven (Matthew 16:17–19).

Surprisingly, Jesus then tells this group of men not to tell others about His role as Messiah, just yet. Jesus is aware that the people are hungry for a victorious, earthly Messiah. They are likely to revolt against Rome, based on how they've responded to Jesus in the past (John 6:15). For that reason, widespread proclamation of His role needs to wait (Matthew 16:20).

Jesus, who has limited His travels and ministry mostly to the region of Galilee in northern Israel, begins to show the disciples that He must go to Jerusalem. This is literally the headquarters—the home territory—of the enemies who hate Him the most. He predicts He will suffer many things from those elders, chief priests, and scribes. Ultimately, He will even be killed. Of course, Jesus also mentions that He will be raised on the third day (Matthew 16:21).

Peter seems to have gained too much confidence from Jesus' recent praise. He does not merely disagree with Jesus, he rebukes Him. Peter is scolding the same Man he recently identified as Messiah, because Jesus is not meeting Peter's expectations. In what must have been a devastating reply to Peter, Jesus shockingly refers to Peter as Satan. Peter's mind is set on human things, including human preferences and human traditions, and not the things of God (Matthew 16:22–23).

Jesus repeats an earlier message to those gathered nearby. Anyone who would come after Him must take up their cross of self-denial and follow Him. Crucifixion, in that era, evoked concepts like humiliation, dishonor, shame, agony, misery, and death. Christ is not speaking about tolerating minor inconvenience; He's speaking of willingness to sacrifice everything associated with the world. Those who live for themselves—clinging to worldly things and earthly ideals—will lose their eternal lives. Those who lose their earthly lives will find true eternal life. Jesus frames this in a common-sense rhetorical question: what good would it be to gain all the temporary things of the world, only to suffer an eternity of loss? Judgment will come, for all people, and those who reject Christ will be lost (Matthew 16:24–27).

The final comment made by Jesus in this chapter is a reference to "some" of these disciples seeing Him coming into His kingdom before they die (Matthew 16:28). This is a reference to the transfiguration: the very next thing described by Matthew (Matthew 17:1–2). In that event, Peter, James, and John will witness a glorified scene which foreshadows Jesus' rule on earth.