Matthew 16:13

When Jesus came into the region of Caesarea Philippi, he asked his disciples, saying, Whom do men say that I the Son of man am?
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Epiphanius the Latin

AD 403
Caesarea Philippi is outside Judea in the region of the Gentiles. Why therefore did our Lord not examine his own disciples within the borders of Judea? Why did he go far north into the territory of the Gentiles? But as our insignificance [as Gentiles] works against us, he questioned the disciples in Gentile territory. The result was that by the true and everlasting conviction of the blessed apostle Peter—what flesh and blood had not unveiled, the Father revealed from the heavens. Through faith the Gentiles rather than the Jews would come to acknowledge the Son of God. This indeed occurred in the city of Caesarea—Cornelius who was first among the Gentiles to believe with all his own household, through the holy apostle Peter. The Lord was not inclined to question his own disciples in Judea, when the Jews did not believe that he was the Son of God but regarded him merely as the son of Joseph.

George Leo Haydock

AD 1849
Cæarea Philippi, was first called Paneades, and was afterwards embellished and greatly enlarged by Philip the tetrarch, son of Herod the great, and dedicated in honour of Augustus, hence its name. There was moreover another Cæsarea, called Straton, situated on the Mediterranean: and not in this, but in the former, did Christ interrogate his disciples. He first withdrew them from the Jews, that they might with more boldness and freedom deliver their sentiments. (St. Chrysostom, hom. lv.) The Cæsarea here mentioned continued to be called by heathen writers Panea, from the adjoining spring Paneum, or Panium, which is usually taken for the source of the Jordan.

John Chrysostom

AD 407
Wherefore has he mentioned the founder of the city? Because there was another besides, Cæsarea Stratonis. But not in that, but in this does He ask them, leading them far away from the Jews, so that being freed from all alarm, they might speak with boldness all that was in their mind. And wherefore did He not ask them at once their own opinion, but that of the people? In order that when they had told the people's opinion, and then were asked, But whom say ye that I am? by the manner of His inquiry they might be led up to a sublimer notion, and not fall into the same low view as the multitude. Accordingly He asks them not at all in the beginning of His preaching, but when He had done many miracles, and had discoursed with them of many and high doctrines, and had afforded so many clear proofs of His Godhead, and of His unanimity with the Father, then He puts this question to them. And He said not, Whom say the Scribes and Pharisees that I am? often as these had come unto Him, and di...

John Chrysostom

AD 407
Why does he mention Philip, the founder of the city? Because there was another city, Caesarea Stratonis. He does not go there, but rather he leads them far away from Judea, so that being freed from all alarm, they might speak with boldness all that was in their mind. The Gospel of Matthew, Homily

Theodore the Stratelates

AD 319
Jesus asks this in order that we might know what opinions about him were current among the Jews. [He also asks] so that we might learn to inquire intently into what people are saying about him, and if it is bad, to remove the causes, or if complimentary, to increase them. But he said “Son of man” in order to show that he himself not only appears to be but in fact unchangeably is man, and again, is true God. [It is] not as if he were divided into different species, one part God and one part man; rather one may address him as Son of man with no doubt that this very same one is also the Son of God.

Theophylact of Ochrid

AD 1107
The evangelist mentions the founder of the city, Philip, because there is another Caesarea, of Strato, and it was not in the latter, but in the former, that Christ asked them the question. He leads the disciples far away from the Jews so that they could speak boldly without fear of anyone. First He asks for the opinion of the multitude so that the disciples would be directed upwards to a greater understanding and not fall into the same lowliness of understanding as that of the people. He does not ask them, "Who do the Pharisees say that I am?" but "Who do men say?" referring to the guileless multitude.

Knowing this first, that no prophecy of the scripture is of any private interpretation - 2 Peter 1:20

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