So, I am reading this book called "Answering a Funcamentalist" by Albert J. Nevins. The book is written by a Catholic to clear up the "ignorant" statements made by fundlementalists though I can safetly report that he never answers my objection and even raises more questions (such as, "sure we encourage people to read the Bible, we even give out indulgences if they read it for 1/2 an hour a day" (paraphrased)!!!!!" In one section he discusses Peter being the Pope. Real quick, Matthew 16:18 says, "That thou art Peter, and upon this rock I will build my church;" Now he claims that Jimmy Swaggart claims that the two words are different, one petros and the other petra. Petros meaning "small stone", petra meaning "large rock". He then claims that this is not the case and that Swaggart has betrayed that he knows no Greek. He says its petra because it follows the prepostion (which he says is "on"). That sounded like complete foolishness to me so I busted out the NA27. The word petra is feminine (as I expected from the ending) and it being feminine has nothing to do with it following a prepostion (which is emi, which can most certainly take a masculine noun). This dupe now has betrayed he knows no Greek even after claiming the same for Swaggart. But that got me thinking, if petra is feminine why DOES ANYBODY think it refers to Peter and not some feminie antecedant. A little aside, I actually believe this verse refers to Peter. The Church was build on Peter as we see in early Acts, that doesn't have anything to do with claims of infallibility or ANY SUCCESSOR WHATSOEVER for his role, or even a role for Peter himself. Christ built the church any way He pleased and He happened to use Peter. But now my view (pseudo RC I guess) is being threatened because I can't figure out why anybody would think this. So I check the back dictionary of said NA27 and it doesn't list the definition for petros I was expected (namely peter and small stone) but ONLY Peter. I then checked out BAGD and while I admit I have trouble reading the enormous thing I can't find anything but the name of Peter again. So I don't don't know where Swaggart is coming from. So that leaves me with this, the only thing that can connect the two is that there IS NO word for Rock that is masculine, but Peter is a man so when the word gets nameolized (made into a name) it naturally becomes masculine. So it is not a stretch to connect the two because basically there are the same word. Or maybe it is just a play on words on Jesus part, and it is two different words that sound similar. Now I have always heard protastants says that "this rock" refers to Peter's statement, namely, "you are the ... the living God", but why? Clearly the gender of "this" follows "rock" but why the feminine word, and how can you be sure since there are no feminine words associated with Peter's statement. In this case, it would seem a toss up and if I had to choose, I would choose Jesus play on words with Peter Himself? Okay Greek scholors, do your thing.