Contrast

We have established a new priesthood, not after the order of Levi, and certainly not the order of Melchizedek, but after the order of Luther, and, after that, pick your flavor of preference.
 
We have done any and all of the things those who came before us did, and we have made all their mistakes, including Adam, those at the tower of Babel, the children of Israel, the Pharisees, the early Church, and on and on.  Have we owned up to that?  Wait… we are better than them, less prone to errors, more enlightened, stronger.


 
We have forgotten the exhortation that speaks to us as sons, and embraced the exhortation that speaks to us as parishioners?  “Attend the meeting, pay your tithe, and don’t cause any trouble, and this new priesthood will hear God for you, and guide you in the path you should go.”
 
We fall back upon and put our confidence in the tenants of the old covenant: priests, kings, ceremony, external cleanliness, and deities that live in buildings.
 
Awake, oh sleeper!
 
Few have seen Him as He is, and yet the invitation stands:  “Today if you will hear My voice…”  All day long I extend my hands to you, tho you be a stubborn and rebellious lot, I don’t withdraw my offer.  Perhaps some of you, tho a remnant, will hear the Voice and take the Hand.
 
WOE TO YOU, you leaders, you don’t enter in, and you work to prevent those who hear the Voice and reach for the Hand from doing so.  But your glory is fading, Moses.  And your priesthood is failing, Eli.  And your reign is crumbling, Saul.  May we come to ourselves and repent before it is truly said of us what Jesus said of those leaders in that day:
 
Matthew [23:34] “Therefore, I am sending you prophets and wise men and teachers of religious law. But you will kill some by crucifixion, and you will flog others with whips in your synagogues, chasing them from city to city. 35 As a result, you will be held responsible for the murder of all godly people of all time—from the murder of righteous Abel to the murder of Zechariah son of Barachiah, whom you killed in the Temple between the sanctuary and the altar. 36 I tell you the truth, this judgment will fall on this very generation…”
 
We claim to be sent from God, while we bear so little resemblance to the One we claim as our sender.
 
2 Corinthians 13:5 Test yourselves to see if you are in the faith; examine yourselves! Or do you not recognize this about yourselves, that Jesus Christ is in you—unless indeed you fail the test?
 
Will God indeed send again the spirit of Elijah before the great and terrible day of the Lord?  Hopefully we don’t regard those who wear this mantle as babblers and fools who exist just outside the legitimate borders of credibility.

4 Replies to “Contrast”

  1. I agree and have had my best spiritual experience in home group (when properly led).

    I think, to be fair, most pastors I know would like more authenticity as well. I wonder if the blame does not fall upon the congregation since they show up at the last moment bringing nothing in their collective baskets (not so in periods of revival). “God inhabits the praises of his people” -“He does not dwell in temples made with hands.” We expect the worship team to go up to the mountain and bring it down to us.

    I’m careful to not beat the “organized” church too much since I hear my mother’s voice in my head, “What kinda of church would this church be if every church member was just like me?”

    Finally, we have a new evangelical priesthood not much different than the Jews or Catholics. We care not a straw about the “priesthood of every believer.” The Jehovah’s Witnesses understand this concept better than Reformation Christians. No, rather, we leave it to the professionally, seminary trained or the most clever and charismatic person to interpret God for and to us.

    Pity.

  2. we have made all the same mistakes..perhaps this has as much to do with our being human as it does anything else. His word goes out and does not return to us void, but accomplishes His desire, fulfilling the purpose for which it is sent. Our worldy cultures highly value learning and education but when it comes to owning our own crap and shortcomings ..well.. kinda the point where He leads every one of us, the point of having skin in the game. Meanwhile we wrestle within, each of us with the truth we knowingly resonate with and yet hesitate as we are so used to our comfort zones and the fearing the places within we spent so much of our time distancing ourselves from. Its where pastors of large churches shrink when it comes to their own private securities and their own private failures. An d somehow in this preoccupation we lose sight of His remaining in us and with us not recognizing the very presence of grace and our own healing,The word goes out and does not return void is a truth that remains. Our world doesn’t seem to value a father’s warning or his wisdom in restraint..but His confidence continues to rule in realms we cannot imagine so great is He, our God.
    Thank you Scott for holding the line and speaking out this Word of life and grace and healing.

Leave a Reply

Your email address will not be published. Required fields are marked *