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Binding and Loosing

BINDING AND LOOSING. The carrying of a key or keys was a symbol of the delegated power of opening and closing. In Matt.16.19 our Lord gave the “power of the keys” to Peter, and Peter’s use of the keys is narrated in what may be called the “three stages of Pentecost.” On the Day of Pentecost (Acts.2.14-Acts.2.40) Peter preached the first Christian sermon and opened “the kingdom of heaven” to what became a Hebrew-Christian church; then, with John, he went to Samaria (Acts.8.14-Acts.8.17) and opened the same “kingdom” to the Samaritans; still later in the house of Cornelius (Acts.10.44-Acts.10.48) he opened it to the Gentiles. Thus, the church became universal. The medieval teaching about Peter standing at the gate of heaven to receive or reject souls of men has no basis in biblical teaching.