Sunday, June 27, 2010

Luther: the quandary of priesthood

Sunday, June 27, 2010
    [Grace and peace] from Jesus Christ, who is the faithful witness, the firstborn from the dead, and the ruler of the kings of the earth. To him who loves us and has freed us from our sins by his blood, and has made us to be a kingdom and priests to serve his God and Father—to him be glory and power for ever and ever! Amen.
    —Revelation 1:5-6 (NIV)
    A priest, especially in the New Testament, was not made, he was born,... created, not ordained. He was born, not indeed of the flesh, but through a birth of the Spirit... It is not enough for anyone who follows Christ to be anointed to become a priest. To say that outward ceremonies make a priest... is to [say that we can] make no one a priest until he denies that he was a priest before. Thus, in the very act of making him a priest, they in fact remove him from his priesthood.
    ... Martin Luther (1483-1546), “Concerning the Ministry” [1523] in Church and Ministry II, as v. XL of Works of Martin Luther, v. XL, Concordia Pub. House, 1986, p. 19-20 (see the book)
Quiet time reflection:
    Lord, teach us how to exercise the priesthood You have bestowed.
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