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Illustration results for priesthood

Contributed By:
Michael McCartney
 
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SAINT PATRICK

Historical Background of Patrick:

Patrick lived in the fifth century, a time of rapid change and transition. In many ways we might say that those times of turbulence and uncertainty were not unlike our own. The Roman Empire was beginning to break up, and Europe was about to enter the so-called Dark Ages. Rome fell to barbarian invaders in 410. Within ten years of that time, the Roman forces began to leave Britain to return to Rome to defend positions back home. Life, once so orderly and predictable under Roman domination, now became chaotic and uncertain. Patrick entered the world of that time (Joyce).

Partick’s biography is as follows: By Anita Mc Sorley

The uncontested, if somewhat unspecific, biographical facts about Patrick are as follows: Patrick was born Patricius somewhere in Roman Britain to a relatively wealthy family. He was not religious as a youth and, in fact, claims to have practically renounced the faith of his family. While in his teens, Patrick was kidnapped in a raid and transported to Ireland, where he was enslaved to a local warlord and worked as a shepherd until he escaped six years later. He returned home and eventually undertook studies for the priesthood with the intention of returning to Ireland as a missionary to his former captors. It is not clear when he actually made it back to Ireland, or for how long he ministered there, but it was definitely for a number of years. By the time he wrote the Confession and the "Letter to Coroticus," Patrick was recognized by both Irish natives and the Church hierarchy as the bishop of Ireland. By this time, also, he had clearly made a permanent commitment to Ireland and intended to die there. Scholars have no reason to doubt that he did. He died on March 17 the day we celebrate St. Patrick’s Day.

 
Contributed By:
Jeff Strite
 
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WHY DID JESUS NEED TO BE BAPTIZED?

So why would Jesus need to be baptized by John?
Well... Jesus' baptism by John was the beginning of Jesus' ministry

Mark 1:1 starts out: "The BEGINNING of the gospel of Jesus Christ, the Son of God" and then Mark starts telling us about Jesus' baptism by John.

In Luke 3:23 we're told of Jesus' baptism by John and then we read: "Now Jesus himself was about thirty years old when he BEGAN HIS MINISTRY..."

Obviously, for some reason, Jesus' ministry began with His baptism.

Now, at this point in Jewish history, water baptism served one of 3 purposes.
1st, there was the Baptism Of Repentance.
This was what John the Baptist's was preaching.
But of course Jesus didn't need to repent because He hadn't sinned.

The 2nd kind of baptism was for people who desired to convert to Judaism.
It was a Baptism Of Conversion.
If you were a Gentile who wanted to convert to Judaism, they baptized you in water.

ILLUS: Jamieson, Fausset and Brown explained that: "The Jews were accustomed to say of a heathen proselyte, on his public admission into the Jewish faith BY BAPTISM, that he was a new-born child."

So, baptism was used when someone wanted to convert to Judaism. But Jesus had no need to convert to Judaism. He already was one. He'd been born a Jew.

So baptism in those days could be for repentance or conversion... and Jesus did not need to be baptized for those reasons. So, for what OTHER reason would a person be baptized in water back then???

Well, the only other people who experienced baptism - in the Jewish faith in that day were priests. The Law dictated that especially the High Priest was to "washed with water." And the Temple had pools set aside for just that purpose.

In Leviticus 8:6 we're told that - by the instruction of God -- "Moses brought Aaron and his sons forward and washed them with water."
Then, later, during that ceremony Moses "poured some of the anointing oil on Aaron's head and anointed him to consecrate him." Leviticus 8:12

This act INITIATED Aaron's ministry as High Priest. When Aaron and his sons were washed with water and anointed with oil, they BEGAN their priesthood and were empowered to make sacrifices and to handle holy things as God's representatives.
At that point (their baptism) God put His mark of approval on the ministry of Aaron and his sons.

The Bible tells us that Jesus' ministry began with His baptism by John.
After His baptism, the Father anointed Jesus with the Holy Spirit as it descended on Him in form of a dove. And the Father put His mark of approval on Jesus by loudly declaring:
"This is my Son, whom I love; with him I am well pleased." Matthew 3:17

This was the beginning of Jesus' ministry as our High Priest.
Did you realize Jesus was our High Priest?
Indeed He is!
Hebrews 4:14: "...we have a great high priest who has gone through the heavens, Jesus the Son of God..."

From the day of His baptism by John at the Jordan until His death on the Cross, Jesus (as our High Priest) prepared the ultimate sacrifice for our sins... His own body.

 
Contributed By:
Davon Huss
 
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From R. Paul Stevens:

Christian priesthood is not a matter of being religious and Mr. Goody two shoes but of serving God and God’s purposes in the nitty gritty everydayness of life in the world, not a matter of sacred times and sacred places but ordinary times and ordinary places, not a matter of ordained ministers but the whole people of God. Talking about God’s people folded into the world as seed and yeast and salt. Every church of 200 hundred members has two hundred missionaries penetrating neighborhoods, offices, factories, workshops and schools, into all the powers and places, seven days a week.

 
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ST. PATRICK, A BRIEF HISTORY

The uncontested, if somewhat unspecific, biographical facts about Patrick are as follows:

Patrick was born Patricius somewhere in Roman Britain to a relatively wealthy family. He was not religious as a youth and, in fact, claims to have practically renounced the faith of his family.

While in his teens, Patrick was kidnapped in a raid and transported to Ireland, where he was enslaved to a local warlord and worked as a shepherd until he escaped six years later.

He returned home and eventually undertook studies for the priesthood with the intention of returning to Ireland as a missionary to his former captors. It is not clear when he actually made it back to Ireland, or for how long he ministered there, but it was definitely for a number of years.

By the time he wrote the Confession and the "Letter to Coroticus," Patrick was recognized by bo...

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Contributed By:
Michael McCartney
 
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ANOINTING AND THE HOLY SPIRIT

In Scripture there seems to be a parallel in the operation of the Holy Spirit and anointing oil:

1. Anointing. The act of anointing indicated the bestowal of authorization through the spirit to act in certain capacities.
a. The anointing symbolized the empowerment of the individual by the Spirit to fulfill His divine calling.
2. Kings were anointed. The kings of Israel anointed (1 Samuel 10:1; 16:13).
3. Priests were anointed. In establishing a priesthood for Israel, not only was Aaron anointed (Leviticus 8:12), his sons were too (Numbers 3:3). The unity of the priesthood’s anointing with the high priest is nicely expressed in Psalm 133:1, 2.
a. Throughout the Old Testament we see oil being used for holy purposes. The priests were consecrated and ordained unto God as oil was poured upon their heads … "Then shalt thou take the anointing oil, and pour it upon his head, and anoint him" (Exodus 29:7 - see also Leviticus 8).
b. During such ceremonies oil was used abundantly, for it ran down the priest's beard and clothing … "It is like the precious ointment upon the head, that ran down upon the beard, even Aaron's beard: that went down to the skirts of his garments" (Psalm 133:2).
c. The large quantity of oil used reminds us of the New Testament Baptism in the Spirit.
i. So we seek to immersed in water baptism rather than sprinkled.
4. A Prophet was anointed. The only biblical example was when Elijah was told to anoint Elisha as his successor (1 Kings 19:16).
5. Jesus was anointed. The anointing spoken of in Isaiah 61:1 is applied by Jesus to himself in Luke 4:18, 19.
6. Christians Today: The same anointing he had is passed on to the Christian’s authorizing the church as his body to spread the good tidings in his name.

 
Contributed By:
Ronnie Miller
 
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PRECIOUS STONE

Peter says that Jesus is a living stone rejected by men, but chosen by God and precious. He also says that we are living stones...so we are precious to God also. We are precious to God because of what Jesus has done for us.
If we are precious to God and he calls us a living stone, we must be a precious stone.

What is an example of a precious stone? A diamond is the one that comes to mind. It comes from the darkest part of this world, just like me. A diamond starts out just a chunk of coal, not worth much of anything. But God saw something different. God saw something different in each of His children. He saw us, the Bible says, before the foundations of the world, even before there was coal in the ground. Even before there was ground.

God saw something precious in each one of the ones that accept Jesus as their Saviour. God sees the finished product, because our God is the first, the last. There is no other.

The day we ask Jesus into our heart, a miracle happens, even more of a miracle than a chunk of coal turning into a diamond over time. We became a stone in the spiritual house, a holy priesthood acceptable to God by Jesus Christ. A living stone that will never die again. A living stone that rest upon a corner stone by the name of Jesus Christ our Lord. There is none greater.

 
Contributed By:
Ross Cochrane
 
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DOES GOD HAVE FAVOURITES?

One of the things that A BIRTHRIGHT carries with it is the PRIESTHOOD of the family. Fathers consecrate their firstborn sons to God (Exodus 22:29). They look after the family concerning their spiritual life in serving God. The firstborn has the responsibility of building and worshiping God at the altar (Genesis 22:9; 26:25; 35:1; etc.), as well sharing God's word and His promises to his family.

We all know the story. Esau sells his BIRTHRIGHT to Jacob because he is hungry for some stew. Red hair. Red stew. Red name. In the red regarding his BIRTHRIGHT. Edom (Red) is an appropriate name.

Hebrews 12:16 (NLT) says that Esau was "IMMORAL OR GODLESS" despite being a firstborn son. This is evident in that he "TRADED HIS BIRTHRIGHT as the firstborn son for a single meal". I suppose when this transaction was made it was made in front of witnesses for this to be official. "He showed CONTEMPT for his rights as the firstborn." (Genesis 25:34 NLT) Perhaps Jacob was doing him a favour. Esau was hungry for PHYSICAL things. Jacob was hungry for SPIRITUAL things.

It seems to me that if I am INDIFFERENT to Christ then I have DESPISED MY BIRTHRIGHT? The invitation is to believe in Christ. When I believe in Christ and what He has done for me by dying on the Cross for my sins I enter into the things that God has promised before the world was created. Chosen in Christ, loved and favoured with His grace.

 
Contributed By:
Mark Brunner
 
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“The Hound of Heaven!” Nehemiah 4:1-6 Key verse(s) 6:“So we rebuilt the wall till all of it reached half its height, for the people worked with all their heart.”

It’s just too hard! The more I worked at it, the farther it seemed to slip away from me. I just couldn’t seem to stem the rapid progression of failure. I thought, if radios have buttons with which to turn them off and cars have ignition keys, why not me? Hadn’t I been “running” long enough? Perhaps it would be best if I just called it quits and left it at that. Turn off my key and park me right now. Sometimes you just have to know when to quit.

Have you ever worked at something so long and hard only to realize that, work accomplished, you are little farther than from where you started? To me there is nothing more frustrating than putting in the time and effort and realizing nothing for it. Like most people I am task-driven and goal-oriented. That’s just the way God made me. Deep down inside of there is that still small voice that can never be stopped; it is always whispering, “If you just give it one more turn, one more twist, you can make it work.” Nevertheless, there usually comes a point in any project where, because of the size and nature of the work, it just doesn’t seem feasible or reasonable to spend the effort.

If you are like me, quitting seems sometimes like a very good option. You are provided a certain measure of peace when, freed from the slavery of competition and accomplishment, you can just sit back and watch someone else beat his head against the wall for a change. Sounds logical, doesn’t it? Perhaps. But, when all is said and done, we seldom find that comfort we seek when we put something worthwhile aside. Simply because we don’t have the patience or endurance to make it work, doesn’t seem like a good excuse deep down, does it? And, when you think about it, what if God had that attitude? Where would we be today?

The son of a doctor, Thompson started out with great potential. His father sent him to study for the priesthood, and then to another school to become a doctor. But he failed at both professions and became a wastrel instead, running from responsibility, family, and God. Eventually, this prodigal hit bottom. Wandering the back alleys of London, he was hungry, friendless, and addicted to drugs. With tattered clothes and broken shoes, he barely survived by selling matches and newspapers. Still, God did not relent in His dogged chase to capture the young man’s soul. A ray of hope came when Thompson began to write poetry. Wilfred Meynell, an editor, immediately saw Thompson’s genius. He published his works, encouraged him to enter a hospital, and personally nursed him through his convalescence. This marked a spiritual turnaround in Thompson’s life. In the poem “The Hound of Heaven,” he writes of his flight from God and God’s pursuit of him.

I fled Him, down the nights and down the days; I fled Him, down the arches of the years;
I fled Him, down the labyrinthine ways, Of my own mind; and in the midst of tears
I hid from Him, and under running laughter . . . Still with unhurrying chase,
And unperturbed pace, Deliberate speed, majestic instancy,
Came on the following Feet, And a Voice above their beat––
“Naught shelters thee, who wilt not shelter Me.”

With this same breathless pursuit, the Hound of Heaven once chased another running man. This person was not a vagrant; he was a well-educate...

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Contributed By:
Kent Kessler
 
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G. Campbell Morgan speaks of it like this, “Luke thus gives us a graphic suggestive picture of the time and conditions, as he introduces His forerunner. The king is there, degenerate. The Temple is there, desecrated. The priesthood is there, degraded. The people are there, debased. Nevertheless, God proceeds upon the line of His own ordination. He comes to the Temple, though it is desecrated. He comes to the priesthood, though on the whole it is degraded. He did not come to the king. He did not come to the people, save through the appointed channel of the priesthood… God comes to the priest, but not to the high priest, not to the priest degraded and debased by a false thinking about God, but to a priest fulfilling his service. All the old was being linked up to the new.”

 
Contributed By:
Mark Eberly
 
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I remember speaking with a very devoted follower of Jesus that is a Catholic. And a homeless man came and asked to be blessed. This follower of Jesus was taught that she could not offer a blessing for this person because she did not hold the proper status. While I respect the tradition that seeks to maintain a sense of order in the church and prevent the name of Jesus from being misused, I do not agree that it is worth the cost. We are the priesthood of believers and I see God’s intentions and plans is for His people to bless other people whether it is through the passing of material goods and money to others or a prayer for another person or the laying of hands upon that person as a symbol of God’s hand upon that person. If God has blessed you then you can bless others.

 
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