A Kingdom of Priests; March 6, 2023

Exodus 19:5-6 “Now if you obey me fully and keep my covenant, then out of all nations you will be my treasured possession. Although the whole earth is mine, you will be for me a kingdom of priests and a holy nation.’ These are the words you are to speak to the Israelites.”

This passage is the basis for Peter’s famous statement that we have used as the Verse for the Year in this church in the past: “But you are a chosen people, a royal priesthood, a holy nation, a people belonging to God, that you may declare the praises of him who called you out of darkness into his wonderful light.” (1 Peter 2:9) It is significant that the Lord here points out that the whole earth belongs to Him, so calling the Israelites “a kingdom of priests” indicates that they are to be mediators between God and the rest of mankind, because that is the function of priests. The physical descendants of Abraham didn’t seem to get that message very clearly, and frankly, it seems the majority of Christians don’t have a firm grasp on it either. Peter’s expansion of this passage should make it perfectly clear that those who belong to God in this way are to be proclaiming Him to all those who are not yet in that category. That’s a major reason for Him giving us His Spirit, so that we may be His witnesses to those who do not yet know Him. (Acts 1:8) Like the Israelites, we tend to rejoice that God has chosen us, and essentially forget about everyone else. That is a sad misunderstanding of the heart of God.

I can never forget that the way God confirmed to me that He had indeed baptized me in His Spirit, according to His promise, was when I realized that I was talking to a total stranger about Jesus. I am a Teacher, not an Evangelist, but that doesn’t mean I’m not to be sharing Christ with those who don’t yet know Him. He didn’t save me just for me to feel good about myself and give me a “ticket to heaven,” He saved me to use me in drawing others to Him as well. My particular gifting makes me more proficient at training those who have already acknowledged Jesus as Lord, but I’m never to draw back from opportunities the Lord gives me to share Him with anyone at all, whether they have ever even heard of Him or not. And of course, as a priest I am to be interceding for others. That’s what being a mediator is all about. If I forget that I will be missing a vital part of God’s purposes for me.

Father, thank You for this reminder. Thank You for the not-yet-Christian who came to the service yesterday. Thank You for the relationship You have grown between him and me, and for how You continue to develop it. I pray that Your Spirit would continue to work in Him, giving him both faith and the courage to act on it, so that he too may be added to Your family, for Your glory. Thank You. Hallelujah!

About jgarrott

Born and raised in Japan of missionary parents. Have been here as an adult missionary since 1981.
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