Matthew 18:18 Parallel Verses [⇓ See commentary ⇓]

Matthew 18:18, NIV: "Truly I tell you, whatever you bind on earth will be bound in heaven, and whatever you loose on earth will be loosed in heaven."

Matthew 18:18, ESV: "Truly, I say to you, whatever you bind on earth shall be bound in heaven, and whatever you loose on earth shall be loosed in heaven."

Matthew 18:18, KJV: "Verily I say unto you, Whatsoever ye shall bind on earth shall be bound in heaven: and whatsoever ye shall loose on earth shall be loosed in heaven."

Matthew 18:18, NASB: "'Truly I say to you, whatever you bind on earth shall have been bound in heaven; and whatever you loose on earth shall have been loosed in heaven."

Matthew 18:18, NLT: "'I tell you the truth, whatever you forbid on earth will be forbidden in heaven, and whatever you permit on earth will be permitted in heaven."

Matthew 18:18, CSB: "Truly I tell you, whatever you bind on earth will have been bound in heaven, and whatever you loose on earth will have been loosed in heaven."

What does Matthew 18:18 mean? [⇑ See verse text ⇑]

Prior verses outlined out a process for Christians to follow when dealing with a believer who refuses to repent of sinful behavior. That process ends, as a last resort, with the person being removed from the community and treated as an outsider (Matthew 18:15–17).

Now Jesus extends what He has said to Peter earlier in Matthew to include the rest of the disciples. After Peter's declaration that Jesus is the Messiah and Son of God, Jesus said, "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" (Matthew 16:19).

In this context, Jesus seems to be telling the disciples that heaven will confirm their decisions to include or remove people from the community of believers in Jesus. It's important to see that this is a privilege and power given to the twelve disciples who will become the twelve apostles as the Holy Spirit comes and the church is born. For now, Jesus makes this promise to them and not to others. They will fill a unique and special role in the history of God's people and the church that will set them apart from most other people.