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(Part 32)


January 28, 2018

Today’s readings:

Deuteronomy 18:15-20

Psalm 95:1-9

Mark 1:21-28

We are destined for greatness, as we partake of the mission and ministry of Jesus himself as priest, king and prophet.

To be a priest is to come into the presence of God to give Him worship. “Let us come before him with a song of praise” (Ps 95:2a). Our God is a great God. “For the Lord is a great God, the great king over all gods” (Ps 95:3). He is the awesome Creator of the universe and owns all things in it, “who made them, formed them by hand.” (Ps 95:5b). Our greatness stems from the greatness of God, as we are to be like Him. As priests, we enter into His very presence, acknowledging His dominion over us and over all. “Enter, let us bow down in worship; let us kneel before the Lord who made us.” (Ps 95:6). As priests, we are His people, and pastor His sheep. “For he is our God, we are the people he shepherds, the sheep in his hands.” (Ps 95:7).

To be a king is to be a servant of the King of kings. Like Jesus, servant leaders are given authority over God’s people, intended for them to care for the flock. Like Jesus, they are to teach “as one having authority” (Mk 1:22b). Kings are protectors of the people. They lead in the assault on the enemy. This is especially true of spiritual warfare, as kings help break the dominion of the enemy over people. Like Jesus, they are to expel demons from people’s lives. Jesus cured the demoniac, as he rebuked the unclean spirit: “Quiet! Come out of him!” (Mk 1:25).

To be a prophet is to speak for God, just as Moses did. If God is speaking, then His people must listen. “A prophet like me will the Lord, your God, raise up for you from among your own kindred; this is the one to whom you shall listen.” (Dt 18:15). Prophets represent God in guiding, forming, correcting, rebuking, leading, encouraging His people. They speak only what God wants to tell His people. “I will put my words into the mouth of the prophet; the prophet shall tell them all that I command.” (Dt 18:18b). If people do not listen, then they are ignoring not the prophet but God Himself. “Anyone who will not listen to my words which the prophet speaks in my name, I myself will hold accountable for it.” (Dt 18:19).

To be a prophet is a great privilege but also a great responsibility. It is greatness to represent God, to speak His words, to guide and form His people. As such, they are also accountable for what they say. “But if a prophet presumes to speak a word in my name that I have not commanded, or speaks in the name of other gods, that prophet shall die.” (Dt 18:20).

So we serve a great God, and we are called to do the very work of God. We are to be priests, kings and prophets. That is greatness.

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