The Priesthood // Part 4
Today, we will finish the Sunday morning study of the Priesthood. Last Sunday, we talked about the High Priesthood of Jesus. The priesthood of Jesus is a continuing one because of the needs of humanity in this world. We need an advocate because of the presence of a real enemy and his attacks against us. We need redemption because of the presence of sin and the unredeemed nature of our bodies in this life. We need ministry to us and on our behalf because we are not home yet. While Abraham recognized God’s High Priest of the order of Melchizedek, the leaders of Israel in Jesus’ day did not. They fulfilled the plan of God by crucifying Jesus. Jesus’ crucifixion fulfilled His role as the perfect sacrifice and established Him as the Advocate and High Priest over the house of God. His sacrifice removed the imperfect aspects of the Old Covenant and replaced them with the perfection needed to not just forgive mankind, but to cleanse humanity from sin’s control. His resurrection allowed for the outpouring of the Holy Spirit upon humanity. This allowed for the authority of mankind, which had been taken by the devil due to man’s rebellion against God in the Garden of Eden to be restored to all those who would accept Him as Lord!
There are still people who need the Lord in this world today. At Jesus’ ascension, the priesthood once again passed to Israel and Abraham’s descendants. The apostles of the Lord taught the atonement and fellowship with God first to the Jews and then – fulfilling Israel’s call to the world – they passed it on to the Gentiles.
For I could wish that I myself were accursed from Christ for my brethren, my countrymen according to the flesh, who are Israelites, to whom pertain the adoption, the glory, the covenants, the giving of the law, the service of God, and the promises; of whom are the fathers and from whom, according to the flesh, Christ came, who is over all, the eternally blessed God. Amen. But it is not that the word of God has taken no effect. For they are not all Israel who are of Israel, nor all they all children because they are the seed of Abraham; but, “In Isaac your seed shall be called.” That is, those who are the children of the flesh, these are not the children of God; but the children of promise are counted as the seed. /// Romans 9:3-8
Now, every believer in Jesus is a part of spiritual Israel and every believer has received the priestly ministry!
But you are a chosen generation, a royal priesthood, a holy nation, His own special people, that you may proclaim the praises of Him who called you out of darkness into His marvelous light. /// 1 Peter 2:9
Think of this: the priesthood of Aaron in Israel was a priesthood but not royalty because the conscience of man was not cleansed by their imperfect sacrifices. But, the perfect sacrifice of Jesus has cleansed us, provided for the presence of the Holy Spirit which empowers the believer to not just be forgiven but to be an overcomer – more than a conqueror! As long as this world exists, Jesus will continue His priesthood. We are his priestly class upon the earth, called to finish His ministry on the earth. We are not just intermediaries, we also carry His authority to establish, break down, bind and loose, whatever fulfills God’s plan upon the earth!
And God raised us up with Christ and seated us with him in the heavenly realms in Christ Jesus, in order that in the coming ages he might show the incomparable riches of his grace, expressed in his kindness to us in Christ Jesus. /// Ephesians 2:6-7 (NIV)
Through our restored authority, Christ has given us the keys to the kingdom. We don’t just mediate, we adjudicate, we emancipate, we celebrate, we enunciate – we establish the kingdom of God! Through our lives, we show the world how to fellowship with God and live the ways of God. We make God known by our lives. We walk in revelation through Bible wisdom and prayer. We reveal God’s goodness through revealing His love to others. We offer up sacrifices of praise and honor Jesus above circumstance and struggle. We use our finances and possessions to further Jesus’ ministry. We use our authority to command the devil to release those held captive.
Through these realities, we teach the world how to fellowship with God, to know His ways, to experience His blessing, to overcome the devil. And, we fulfill our priestly calling first revealed to our father, Abraham by Melchizedek – instituted by God and given to Aaron through our brother, Moses – perfected by our Savior, Jesus Christ the Great High Priest of God. Now, passed back to us till He comes again! How seriously do you take your calling?
- Romans 9:3-8
- 1 Peter 2:9
- Ephesians 2:6-7 (NIV)
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