Kefa Rebukes Yeshua

In my last post, we learned that Kefa Learns Why Yeshua Teaches in Parables. In this post, we see that Kefa Rebukes Yeshua.

Yeshua Predicts His Death and Resurrection

Immediately after Yeshua warned the talmidim not to tell anyone that he was the Messiah, He 21began making it clear to His talmidim that He had to go to Yerushalayim and endure much suffering at the hands of the elders, the head cohanim and the Torah-teachers; and that He had to be put to death; but that on the third day, He had to be raised to life.

As we have learned earlier in Mathew 16:16, Kefa had previously divulged Yeshua’s secret identity yet retained a flawed concept of what that identity entailed. Yeshua teaches His talmidim what must happen to Him as Messiah and is completely misunderstood, both here and on two later occasions (Matthew 17:22-23, 20:17-19), so different is His scenario from that popularly expected. Even at the Last Supper (Yochanan 14:28) and after his resurrection (Acts 1:6-7), they did not comprehend God’s plan for the Messiah.

Even most of the prophets in the Tanakh sought to avoid martyrdom insofar as possible and complained about their sufferings (1 Kings 19:3-4; Jer. 20:7-18). Although martyrdom was associated with the prophets, it was not their goal; but it seems to be Yeshua’s goal here. Yeshua foreknows His death as a prophet. Still, He also orchestrated it in a sense: no one could stir a commotion in the Temple and defy its officials as Yeshua did, then remain in the city unarmed, without expecting martyrdom.

22 Kefa took Him aside and began rebuking him, “Heaven be merciful, Lord! By no means will this happen to you!” 23 But Yeshua turned His back on Kefa, saying, “Get behind me, Satan! You are an obstacle in my path because your thinking is from a human perspective, not from God’s perspective!” ~ Matthew 16:21-23 (CJB)

However, Kefa could not accept the warning because his messianic expectations did not include a suffering, executed Messiah.

Jewish tradition in this period emphasized a triumphant Messiah; only a century after Yeshua’s teaching did Jewish teachers begin to accept the tradition of a suffering Messiah in addition to a triumphant one. One of the first rules of ancient discipleship (with noticeably rare exceptions) was: Never criticize the teacher, especially publicly. Here Kefa breaks that rule, even on standard cultural grounds. [1]

Talmidim sometimes walked behind their teachers to signify submission. The term obstacle (stumbling block in many translations) is referring to something over which people tripped, and came to be used figuratively for things that led people to sin or stumble in their faith. Kefa here offers the same temptation as Satan, the Kingdom without the cross.

Your thinking is from a human perspective means Kefa’s viewpoint was warped. He saw things from a merely human perspective, not a divine perspective. His words were flawed because his thinking was flawed. He had aligned himself with Satan’s program without realizing it.

How often do we follow Kefa in our thinking? How often do we make decisions without consulting with Yeshua first?

In my next post, we continue our chronological journey of Kefa and learn that he accompanies Yeshua, Ya’akov, and Yochanan Up to the Mount of the Transfiguration.

Click here for the PDF version.

[1] Bible Background Commentary – New Testament.

5 thoughts on “Kefa Rebukes Yeshua

  1. The Lord has tamed me a bit so I don’t jump ahead of Him or go off in my own direction thinking it’s His as often as I once did. I must say I’m still a work in progress…but at least still progressing.

    Liked by 1 person

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