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The Glad Tidings

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    Withstanding Peter

    “But when Peter was come to Antioch, I withstood him to the face, because he was to be blamed.” We need not magnify nor dwell upon the mistakes of Peter or any other good man, because that is not profitable for us; but we must note this overwhelming proof that Peter was never considered the “prince of the apostles,” and that he never was, and never considered himself to be, pope. Fancy any priest, bishop, or cardinal, withstanding Leo XIII. to the face in a public assembly. He would be considered extremely fortunate if the papal guards allowed him to escape with his life for thus presuming to oppose the self-styled “vicar of the Son of God.” But Peter made a mistake, and that upon a vital matter of doctrine, because he was not infallible, and he meekly accepted the rebuke that Paul gave him, like the sincere, humble Christian that he was. If there were such a thing as a human head to the church, it would evidently be Paul, instead of Peter, as appears from the whole narrative. Paul was sent to the Gentiles, and Peter to the Jews; but the Jews formed only a very small portion of the church; the converts from the Gentiles soon outnumbered them, so that their presence was scarcely discernible. All these Christians were largely the fruit of Paul’s labors, and they naturally looked up to him more than to others, so that Paul could say that upon him daily came “the care of all the churches.” 2 Corinthians 11:28. But infallibility is not the portion of any man, and Paul himself did not claim it. The greatest man in the church of Christ has no lordship over the weakest. “One is your Master, even Christ; and all ye are brethren.” “Be subject one to another.”GTI 73.1

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