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 Matthew 16:18.
What is “this rock” referring to? I don’t think it’s what has been traditionally taught (and it has had strong differences of opinion). The answer is really quite simple if you let Scripture offer its own interpretation.
In Matthew 7:24, Jesus said, whosoever heareth these sayings of mine, and doeth them, I will liken him unto a wise man, which built his house upon a rock… “These sayings of mine” are none other than the revelation of God. They are not the sayings of man, but the Word of God.
When Peter answered correctly that Jesus was the Son of the Living God, Jesus answered and said, Blessed art thou, Simon Barjona: for flesh and blood hath not revealed it unto thee, but my Father which is in heaven (Matthew 16:17). It was revealed to Peter from heaven, the word from the Father. It was spiritual wisdom, not revealed by flesh and blood.
Just as hearing and doing “These sayings of mine” would build a house on a rock, so the church would be built on this rock of divine revelation that no flesh and blood could reveal. The storms could not destroy the house built upon the rock. Upon this rock of God’s Word, the true church storms the gates of hell, as opposed to the sloppy institution built on man’s precepts that fosters division and weakness.
Jesus Himself is the divine revelation, the Word of God. Believe in Him and attend to His words! For they are life unto those that find them, and health to all their flesh (Proverbs 4:22).