A decree, defined as an official order, issued by a legal authority, is what took place at the Cave called the Gates of Hell(Matt. 16:13-19). This incident, took place six months before Jesus entered into Jerusalem and was Crucified. It was pivotal in Jesus’ ministry, marking the climax of His teaching concerning His own Person. Here, as well, He began preparing His disciples for His approaching death. While standing at the Gates of Hell, He reveals that He is the Great I Am, with all authority and power shaking all the demons in hell. This reality needed to be understand and declared by His disciples, however when asked “who do people say I Am, they didn’t know. All except for Peter. His response, “You are Christ, the Son of the Living God” was the right answer. This is the moment His church was birthed.
On Palm Sunday, the triumphal entry into Jerusalem, the people that we’re singing His praises failed to realize who was passing by on a colt (Luke 19:41-42,44). The people shouting Hosanna and laying down their cloaks, like the disciples at the cave, missed it. They were hoping this King would over throw Roman tyranny and set them free. This made Jesus weep. No one knew what His entry into Jerusalem was all about, the agreement that Peter had at the cave with Christs identity was not to be found here. As Jesus is moving into Jerusalem, He reveals His identity, as a sacrificial Lamb. At the Gates of Hell, He revealed Himself as the Lion of Judah, but now His tone changes as they start to celebrate the Passover meal together. He expresses His fervent desire to eat the Passover with His disciples before He has to suffer. As He sits down with His disciples to celebrate, He reveals His identity as a sacrificial lamb to them as He declares, “This is my body which is given for you; do this in remembrance of me.” He then took the cup after supper saying, “This cup is the new covenant in My blood, which is shed for you.” (Mathew 22:19&20). As He declares who He is and what He is called to do, His disciples demonstrate their agreement by partaking of the bread and wine. Christ asks them to continue to “do this in remembrance of me.” (Mathew 22:19).
They were obedient to Christs instruction to take, eat and drink, missing the complete meaning, it was His body breaking and His blood bleeding as our sacrificial Lamb for all our sins. This sacrificial Lamb was to become their savior. How many times have we obeyed without understanding the importance it has for our lives.
Question: Do we hinder the Kingdom of God in our lives when we don’t come into agreement with Gods purposes?
Key Thought: The parallels found in the Gates of Hell and the Passover table are so powerful. In both places, Jesus declares His identity (the Lion and the Lamb) and as the disciples came into agreement and alignment with Gods word His Kingdom is released here on earth as it is in heaven. At that Passover table as He broke the bread, He gave it New Meaning as He fulfilled the Old Covenant: It’s now His body being broken. As He took the cup and drank, He once again gave it New Meaning and fulfilled the Old covenant: It’s His blood being poured out in a New Covenant for them, now becoming their Savior.