This edition of our Newsletter discusses the Priesthood of Christ Jesus as prophesied by the Old Testament Prophets. The teaching of His Holy Apostles on this subject would also be discussed.
The Old Priestly Covenant
The work of God in the sanctuary was committed to the tribe of Levi. Any other tribe in Israel was considered a stranger as far as the ministration of holy things in the sanctuary was concerned. The Lord God said to Aaron that the priestly assignments in the sanctuary pertain to him and his Children. Aaron´s brethren who belonged to the tribe of Levi was also mandated to serve as the priest of God in the Temple. Those unqualified to serve as the priests under this old covenant did so at their own Peril (Num 18:1-6).
It was further emphasized that Aaron and his children shall keep the priest’s office for everything of the altar, and within the veil, and he shall serve. God gave the priest’s office unto Aaron as a service of gift, and the stranger that was to come nigh was to be put to death (Num 18:7). This Levitical priesthood was intended to be an everlasting one for Aaron and his descendants (Num 25:12-13). God said His covenant was with Levi and that was a covenant of life and of peace (Mal 2:4). However, Jeremiah prophesied that this covenant would change as detailed below.
The New Priestly Covenant
“Behold, the days come, saith the LORD, that I will make a new covenant with the house of Israel, and with the house of Judah: Not according to the covenant that I made with their fathers in the day that I took them by the hand to bring them out of the land of Egypt; which my covenant they brake, although I was a husband unto them, saith the LORD: But this shall be the covenant that I will make with the house of Israel; After those days, saith the LORD, I will put my law in their inward parts, and write it in their hearts; and will be their God, and they shall be my people” (Jer 31:31-33).
Jeremiah foresaw God´s choice of Judah over Levi in establishing a perfect priesthood in Christ Jesus. In explaining the above scripture, Paul writes that perfection did not come by Levitical priesthood under which the Law was given and received, so God promised another priesthood after the order of Melchisedec, but not that of Aaron. For the change in priesthood necessitated a change also in the Law. The Law could not regard any person from the tribe of Judah as a priest. But it is evident that it is from this tribe that Christ Jesus came. Again, it is yet far more evident that after the order of Melchisedec there arises another priest who is not made after the carnal law, but after the power of an endless life. God testifies that Christ is a priest for ever after the order of Melchisedec (Heb 7: 11-15).
It should convincingly be said that today, the priesthood is for Christ Jesus, the King, and His Descendants. Peter, therefore, writes that all those who are in Christ are His royal priesthood (1Pt 2:9).
Prophet Jeremiah prophesied and testified of the shift in priesthood from the tribe of Levi to that of Judah, and that is seen realized in Christ Jesus, the perfect High Priest, and His children.
Prayer: Dear Lord God, we pray for your wisdom and knowledge with understanding as we study your word, through Jesus Christ, our Lord. AMEN.