Peter

Concise Bible Dictionary:

The son of Jonas and one of the twelve apostles. His name was originally Simon, and apparently at his first interview with the Lord he received from Him the surname CEPHAS. This is an Aramaic word, the same as Peter in Greek, both signifying “a stone” (John 1:4242And he brought him to Jesus. And when Jesus beheld him, he said, Thou art Simon the son of Jona: thou shalt be called Cephas, which is by interpretation, A stone. (John 1:42)). (In Acts 10:55And now send men to Joppa, and call for one Simon, whose surname is Peter: (Acts 10:5) he is called “Simon, whose surname is Peter.”) The next notice of Peter is in Luke 5 when he was called to the apostleship. Overpowered at the draft of fishes, he exclaimed, “Depart from me; for I am a sinful man, O Lord”; but at the bidding of Christ he forsook all and followed Him (Matt. 4:1818And Jesus, walking by the sea of Galilee, saw two brethren, Simon called Peter, and Andrew his brother, casting a net into the sea: for they were fishers. (Matthew 4:18); Mark 1:16-1716Now as he walked by the sea of Galilee, he saw Simon and Andrew his brother casting a net into the sea: for they were fishers. 17And Jesus said unto them, Come ye after me, and I will make you to become fishers of men. (Mark 1:16‑17); Luke 5:3-113And he entered into one of the ships, which was Simon's, and prayed him that he would thrust out a little from the land. And he sat down, and taught the people out of the ship. 4Now when he had left speaking, he said unto Simon, Launch out into the deep, and let down your nets for a draught. 5And Simon answering said unto him, Master, we have toiled all the night, and have taken nothing: nevertheless at thy word I will let down the net. 6And when they had this done, they inclosed a great multitude of fishes: and their net brake. 7And they beckoned unto their partners, which were in the other ship, that they should come and help them. And they came, and filled both the ships, so that they began to sink. 8When Simon Peter saw it, he fell down at Jesus' knees, saying, Depart from me; for I am a sinful man, O Lord. 9For he was astonished, and all that were with him, at the draught of the fishes which they had taken: 10And so was also James, and John, the sons of Zebedee, which were partners with Simon. And Jesus said unto Simon, Fear not; from henceforth thou shalt catch men. 11And when they had brought their ships to land, they forsook all, and followed him. (Luke 5:3‑11)).
He had a sort of prominence among the apostles: when a few of them were selected for any special occasion, Peter was always one of them, and is named first. The three names “Peter, James, and John” occur often together, still we do not read of Peter having any authority over the others: (compare Matt. 20:25-2825But Jesus called them unto him, and said, Ye know that the princes of the Gentiles exercise dominion over them, and they that are great exercise authority upon them. 26But it shall not be so among you: but whosoever will be great among you, let him be your minister; 27And whosoever will be chief among you, let him be your servant: 28Even as the Son of man came not to be ministered unto, but to minister, and to give his life a ransom for many. (Matthew 20:25‑28)). Peter was in character energetic and impulsive: he wanted to walk on the water to go to Christ, and his strong affection for the Lord led him to oppose when the Lord spoke of His coming sufferings, for which he was rebuked as presenting Satan’s mind. His self-confidence led him into a path of temptation, in which he thrice denied his Lord. But the Lord had prayed for him that his faith should not fail, and his repentance was real and instant. He was fully restored by the Lord, who significantly demanded thrice if he loved Him, and then committed to him the care of His sheep and His lambs (John 21).
When Peter confessed to Jesus, “Thou art the Christ, the Son of the living God,” the Lord said that He would build His church upon that foundation, and added, “I will give unto thee the keys of the kingdom of heaven,” with assurance that what he bound or loosed on earth would be ratified in heaven (Matt. 16). On the day of Pentecost we find Peter accordingly using these keys, and opening to three thousand Jews the doors of the kingdom. He afterward admitted Gentiles in the person of Cornelius and those that were gathered with him.
Peter was the apostle of the circumcision, as Paul was of the Gentiles, and was a long time getting entirely clear of Jewish prejudices. Paul had to withstand him to the face at Antioch, for refusing under Jewish influence to continue eating with Gentiles. On the other hand, Peter, while confessing that in some of Paul’s writings there were things hard to be understood, recognizes them as scripture.
In the beginning of the Acts Peter’s boldness in testimony is conspicuous. He was leaning on One stronger than himself and was carried on by the power of the Holy Spirit. He was miraculously delivered out of prison. The Lord had intimated to him that he would die the death of a martyr (John 21:1919This spake he, signifying by what death he should glorify God. And when he had spoken this, he saith unto him, Follow me. (John 21:19)), and historians relate that he was crucified, and with his head downward by his own request: they also state that his wife died with him. He was the writer of the two epistles bearing his name.

Jackson’s Dictionary of Scripture Proper Names:

a stone