On This Rock

Last evening, a brother in Christ started a study of difficult Bible passages.  I found his presentation thought provoking, so I decided to write a few blog entries about it. He began with Matthew 16:13-20.   What makes this passage difficult is verse 18:

I also say to you that you are Peter, and upon this rock I will build My church; and the gates of Hades will not overpower it.

Christ’s words challenge us because who or what the rock represents is not immediately apparent.    During the study, the brother described the three principal ways one could interpret “the rock”:  either the rock is Peter, or it is Peter’s faithful confession of Christ (see verse 16), or it is Christ Himself.  And, I might add, it could be some combination of the three.

Over the next couple of weeks, I plan to consider the merits of each interpretation.  Quite frankly, I believe two of these have more Biblical grounds than the third.  However, I’m interested to know what you think the rock represents.  What do you think is the foundation of Christ’s church?