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Our Prophet, Priest, and King #1

The Truth Pulpit / Don Green
The Truth Network Radio
January 4, 2022 7:00 am

Our Prophet, Priest, and King #1

The Truth Pulpit / Don Green

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January 4, 2022 7:00 am

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I just want to ask and answer three simple questions here about these roles of Christ, these offices of Christ, prophet, priest, and king. And first of all, we'll just ask and answer this question, how is Christ a prophet for his people? Hello and welcome to the Truth Pulpit with Don Green, founding pastor of Truth Community Church in Cincinnati, Ohio.

I'm Bill Wright. Today, as Don begins a series called The Glory is Person of Christ, he'll take a look at the role Christ plays in the life of believers as prophet, priest, and king. So Don, what does the Bible mean when it refers to Jesus Christ in this way? Well Bill, in the Old Testament, God's people knew three separate leadership roles in the nation of Israel.

The prophet who spoke God's word to them, the priest who was their mediator with God, and the king who ruled over them. In different ways, all those different Old Testament offices were foreshadowing the coming of Christ. And today, in the New Testament era, part of the glory of Christ is that he is prophet, priest, and king to us, all three roles in one person. And to understand that is to enter into the glorious person of Christ and to know something of his great magnificence. Stay with us today as we study these wonderful truths on the Truth Pulpit.

Thanks, Don. And friend, if you've got your Bible handy, let's get started with today's study. Here's Don with part one of his message called Our Prophet, Priest, and King on the Truth Pulpit.

Little bit of word of introduction here and qualification maybe. It's common for people to think about a prophet as being one who predicts the future. And that is certainly an aspect of the role that a prophet played in the Old Testament. But even more than that, and that was only a part of a larger role that he filled, the prophet was the spokesman for God. The prophet was the one who had the words of God in his mouth. And when he spoke, he was revealing God's will for the people. He was often confronting them about their sinfulness and calling them to repentance.

In the simplest of terms, you could think about it like this. The prophet is one who teaches us the will of God. The prophet is teaching us the will of God. Now, as far back as the days of Moses, God had promised an ultimate prophet to his people. In Deuteronomy 18, 15, you don't need to turn there, but in Deuteronomy 18, verse 15, Moses told the people as they were about to enter the Promised Land, he said, the Lord your God will raise up for you a prophet like me from among you.

From your countrymen you shall listen to him. And there were prophets who came and went, but we find the ultimate fulfillment, the ultimate and the final prophet is found in our Lord Jesus Christ. If you would turn to the book of Acts, chapter 3 with me, Acts chapter 3, in verse, let's say, 18. Peter is preaching to the Jews and he says this, he says, the things which God announced beforehand by the mouth of all the prophets that his Christ would suffer, he has thus fulfilled.

You see Christ being the culmination of the predictions of the prophets and going further even being the fulfillment of all of their ministry, the fulfillment of all that they were pointing to. And he preaches a word that is fitting even for those of you that are here today without Christ and I would appeal to you and ask you to hear these words that Peter preached to people that needed to come to Christ, that were still lost in their sins as he spoke these words to them. He said, therefore repent and return so that your sins may be wiped away in order that times of refreshing may come from the presence of the Lord and that he may send Jesus the Christ appointed for you.

My friends, God has appointed a savior and that savior is only the Lord Jesus Christ and he is the one who comes to you through the proclamation of his word today, calling you to himself, calling you to repent of your sins, calling you to turn from the world and to embrace the living God through the one that he has appointed, the Lord Jesus Christ. And so Peter is preaching in that same spirit after the resurrection of the Christ and he says this in verse 21, speaking of Christ, it says, whom heaven must receive until the period of restoration of all things about which God spoke by the mouth of his holy prophets from ancient times. You see that emphasis on the office of the prophets? And now Peter says this, he quotes Moses from that passage I read just a moment ago. Moses said, the Lord God will raise up for you a prophet like me from your brethren.

To him you shall give heed to everything he says to you. Peter is making clear that this Christ that he is proclaiming is the fulfillment of that final great prophet who was to come. It is Christ now who we find the final and the ultimate revelation of God. It is Christ who is declaring to us the will of God. And so we ask this question, how is Christ a prophet?

How does Christ carry out the office of a prophet? Well, beloved, understand in the simplicity of God's design, Christ reveals the will of God to us in the Word of God and by the Spirit of God. So that when we come to Scripture and read it for ourselves, when the Bible is opened and taught accurately, Christ is exercising the office of the prophet through the ministry of the Word as the Spirit comes and gives us illumination and helps us to understand what is being said.

Christ is coming. Christ delivers the Word to us and in that way makes the Word and makes the will of God known to us. So that we could say with this, with final authority, Jesus Christ reveals God's plan for salvation to sinners just like you.

He is the prophet who makes known to us how God has appointed that men can be reconciled to Him. Let me show you just a few instances of this from the Gospel of John. Turn to John chapter 14 with me, if you will. John chapter 14, beginning in verse 6, Jesus said to Thomas, He said, I am the way and the truth and the life. No one comes to the Father but through Me. And He goes on to say, If you had known Me, you would have known My Father also.

From now on you know Him and have seen Him. Phillip said to Him, Lord, show us the Father and it is enough for us. And Jesus said to him, Have I been so long with you and yet you have not come to know Me, Phillip? He says, He who has seen Me has seen the Father.

How can you say, Show us the Father? He says, Phillip, I am the revelation of God the Father. When you see My life, when you hear My words, when you see My ministry, you are seeing a perfect revelation of God because Christ is of one essence with the Father.

They share the exact same character. Colossians chapter 2 says that in Christ all the fullness of deity dwells in bodily form so that when we study the words and the actions of Christ, we are seeing God revealed to us. God is manifested to us. And in that way, Christ in His office as prophet to His people is revealing God and making Him known so that all can see and that all can understand. And so Christ is fulfilling that role that the prophets fulfilled in the Old Testament in part as they spoke the word of God but spoke merely as sinful men.

Now Christ comes as the prophet, fullness of God in human flesh and fully makes known, fully reveals God to us. In part, He does this through the ministry of the Holy Spirit. As I alluded to earlier, John chapter 14 verse 26, Christ says, the Helper, the Holy Spirit, whom the Father will send in My name. You realize that in those brief words Jesus had given a Trinitarian manifestation of God. He refers to the Father.

He refers to Himself. He refers to the Holy Spirit. This is a Trinitarian revelation. And Christ says, I am sending the Spirit, the Father and I are sending the Spirit and the Spirit will teach you all things and bring to your remembrance all that I said to you. And so by the ministry of the Holy Spirit, Christ sends out the Spirit, the Father sends out the Spirit and God is made known through the work of the Holy Spirit. Christ exercising His office of the prophet through the ministry of the Holy Spirit. And what is God's plan for salvation?

How is it that a man, a woman like you could be saved from your sins? Look at John chapter 20. John chapter 20, Christ had made Himself known. Now to Thomas had revealed Him in His resurrected glory. And He said to Thomas in verse 27, reach here with your finger and see My hands.

Reach here your hand and put it into My side and do not be unbelieving but believing. And Thomas answered and said to Him, My Lord and My God. And Jesus said to him, because you have seen Me have you believed? Blessed are they who did not see and yet believed.

Then in verse 30 we find this, therefore many other signs Jesus also performed in the presence of the disciples which are not written in this book. But these have been written so that you may believe that Jesus is the Christ, the Son of God and that believing you may have life in His name. Christ in His office of the prophet has come and made Himself known to Thomas and then by extension to us, see My mortal wounds and yet I live. He has made Himself known, He has revealed God in the resurrection.

And he goes on and Thomas responds, My Lord and My God. And John summarizes the significance of this force, that Jesus had done works throughout His earthly ministry that were sufficient for all men who would read and understand to see that He is the Christ. And the nature of that revelation is such that each one of us here can look at Christ as He is revealed in Scripture. Look at Christ as He is made known in the Gospel of John and understand that God has revealed His will for salvation in Him. Christ has made the will of God known for the salvation of men through His works and through His words, through His death and resurrection. In Christ we find the way of God revealed to us and thus He has fulfilled the office of the prophet. This is a revelation of God. The unseen God has made Himself known in physical flesh in the Lord Jesus Christ.

He has preserved an accurate and fully trustworthy record of His life and ministry in the Scriptures. And so Christ has done a magnificent thing for us. Christ has done what we could never have discovered on our own. Christ has made known that which was hidden from us. In Christ we find our ultimate prophet making known God in His way of reconciliation known to us now.

That raises a subsidiary question, you could say. And in all of these offices, prophet, priest, and king, in all of these offices that Christ fulfills there's a corresponding kind of a secondary revelation about you that you need to understand. That the office of Christ corresponds to a need of yours and a lack of yours. And this is very important for us to understand.

And it's humbling, but it's necessary for us to come to grips with. Why is it, my friends, why is it that you need a prophet? Why is it that you need Christ to fulfill this role? Why was it such an act of magnanimous grace from God to send Christ in this revealing role in His office as a prophet? Why do you need Christ as a prophet? Why do I need Christ as a prophet?

Well, the truth of the matter is, and I'm not here to flatter you, I'm never here to flatter you. You need Christ as a prophet, my friends, because apart from Him you are ignorant and you are lost. Romans chapter 3 verse 11 says there is none who understands, there is none who seeks for God.

All have turned aside, together they've all become useless. Romans 3 quoting the language from the Old Testament. You see, we are ignorant. We are lost. We do not know God naturally. We are not born into this world with an understanding of God and knowing how to be reconciled to Him.

Oh, there is some measure of a revelation of God in a general sense from the nature of His creation, and we see something of the majesty of His power and glory revealed in creation. But friends, when it comes to knowing Him in a saving way, none of us were born with any understanding of how that was to come to pass. And we could not find Him on our own because we were born into a state of sin and misery and lostness and death. And our hearts were darkened, and Ephesians 4 speaks about the ignorance that is within those who are born into this world.

We're lost without Him. In fact, let's look at that passage in Ephesians chapter 4 that's in my mind here just to make emphasis of the point. In Ephesians chapter 4 verse 17, the apostle Paul said, This I say and affirm together with the Lord that you walk no longer just as the Gentiles also walk in the futility of their mind, being darkened in their understanding, excluded from the life of God because of the ignorance that is in them, because of the hardness of their heart. And they, having become callous, have given themselves over to sensuality for the practice of every kind of impurity and greediness. Friends, Scripture does not commend us for the spark of divinity that is within us.

There is no such thing. We are in a natural state of ignorance apart from Christ. Our minds are darkened and there is no light within us. And therefore, you need Christ to exercise this office as a prophet so that the way of God could be made known to you from outside of your mind and injected into it. And Christ could inject truth into your ignorance, knowledge into your darkness. And if Christ had not done that, beloved, you and I would be miserably lost with no hope of salvation.

Death would merely be the dungeon door that enters us into judgment and clangs shut behind us with no hope of ever finding escape. Do you see, my friends, that in His office as a prophet, Christ has exercised great mercy to the world and a special particular grace to His people, that in Christ we have a knowledge of God that otherwise we would never have had. Christ is the ultimate prophet who reveals God to you. And what that means is that your response to Christ should be one of loving adoration, it should be one of worship, it should be one of reverence, it should be one of dependence. It says, oh, Christ, if you had not come, I would be in utter darkness. Thank you for coming.

Thank you for saving me by the work of your Holy Spirit. Thank you for being my teacher. Christ said in Luke chapter 6, you call me teacher and Lord, and thus I am. Apart from Christ, we have no teacher. And that's why we reject any effort by any modern theologian, any modern scientist to try to alter or reinterpret the clear teaching of Scripture.

They are not our teachers, beloved. Our teacher is Christ, and He has made Himself known in His Word. He is our prophet, and we allow no one to compromise that clear role that He has in our lives or in the life of the church. So, Christ is our prophet.

Secondly, let's answer this question. How is Christ a priest? How is Christ our priest? Well, we have the privilege of coming to Scripture and seeing this laid out for us very clearly as well. The purpose of a priest is different from the purpose of a prophet.

The prophet reveals God's Word to the people. The purpose of a priest is to mediate between God and man, to be a go-between, to be a reconciler, as it were, between God and man. So that in the Old Testament, the priest offered sacrifices to God that were laid out in great detail in the book of Exodus and in other places. The Old Testament priest offered sacrifices to God on behalf of a sinful people.

And by God's appointed mean, slayed animals, and offered up a blood sacrifice in order to bring about a temporary appeasing of the wrath of God by the means that he had appointed, you could say. The priest was one who prayed for the people. We often read a priestly benediction from Numbers chapter 6.

The Lord bless you and keep you. The Lord make His face shine upon you and give you peace. These were words that the priest prayed. And so they offered these animal sacrifices again and again and again, offering blood as a means of being a go-between between the sinful people and the holy God. Well, when you come to the New Testament, you ask the question, how does Christ fulfill the office of the priest? How did he execute the office of a priest? Well, and you know these things, at least you should, Christ executed the office of a priest by offering himself as a sacrifice to satisfy divine justice and to reconcile us to God. When we say that Christ is our priest, what we are saying is that for those who believe in Christ, Christ intercedes for us before God. Christ represents us before God and goes to him, as it were, on our behalf and bridges the gap that our sin had created between a holy God and our sinful selves. And the glory of Christ, beloved, is this. The priest, in the Old Testament, the priest offered the blood of an animal.

It wasn't his own blood that he offered. The glory of Christ is that he is both the priest and the sacrifice that reconciles us to God. Look at the book of Hebrews chapter 7. Hebrews chapter 7. And you can go to verse 23. This is, of course, a major theme in the book of Hebrews.

We spoke briefly on that some two or three years ago. In Hebrews chapter 7, verse 23, it says, the former priests, on the one hand, existed in greater numbers because they were prevented by death from continuing. But Jesus, on the other hand, because he continues forever, holds his priesthood permanently. Therefore, he is able also to save forever those who draw near to God through him, since he always lives to make intercession for them. For it was fitting for us.

Oh, these are precious, precious words. You young people in high school, I would encourage you to memorize verses 26 and 27. It was fitting for us to have such a high priest, holy, innocent, undefiled, separated from sinners and exalted above the heavens, who does not need daily like those high priests to offer up sacrifices, first for his own sins and then for the sins of his people, because this he did once for all when he, the priest, offered up himself the sacrifice, referring to the death of Christ on the cross. Christ interceded for us. Christ the priest offered a sacrifice to satisfy the justice of God, which was invoked against us because of our guilt. Christ the priest offered the sacrifice, which was himself and in his shed blood satisfied everything that the law of God demanded as a payment, as a ransom price for your sin. And so Christ, in his act of sacrifice on the cross, interceded as a priest for us, offered himself up for us in order to intercede for us, to go before God for us on our behalf and do for us that which we could not do for ourselves. People of Israel in the Old Testament, they needed a priest to offer a sacrifice for them.

We're in a similar position where we have no sacrifice of our own that can work. You could not have even offered your own blood as a sacrifice for your own sins because your blood is guilty. It's tainted with guilt. It's not pure.

It's not innocent. No one else could offer blood for you. An animal can't take away the sins of a man. No man, apart from Christ, could offer his blood for yours because his blood is tainted with guilt. Do you see how desperately lost we are without Christ interceding and coming and acting as a priest and offering himself as a sacrifice for us? He did that ministry of sacrifice at the cross. And look at verse 25. There's another aspect of his priestly intercession for us that he's exercising right now, even at this moment, that he has been exercising ever since his ascension. Verse 25, he is able also to save forever those who draw near to God through him, since he always lives to make intercession for them. Our Christ, our wonderful Lord Jesus, offered a sacrifice that was completely sufficient to atone for the sins of everyone who would ever believe in him. Amen. You know, it's so incredibly comforting to know that Jesus has done for us what we could never hope to do for ourselves.

Well, that's all the time we have for now. But be sure to join us again next time for the second half of this powerful study. If you'd like to find out more about this ministry, or you'd like to have copies of this message to share with friends and loved ones, just go to TheTruthPulpit.com and look for the series, The Glorious Person of Christ. That's TheTruthPulpit.com. I'm Bill Wright. Join us next time for more from The Truth Pulpit.
Whisper: medium.en / 2023-06-26 15:19:07 / 2023-06-26 15:27:55 / 9

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