Sons and Priests
According to the World Christian Database, there are over 9,000 denominations of Christianity in the earth today – 9,000 distinct groups of believers who define themselves according to a different set of doctrines and practices than their brothers and sisters down the road. Let’s be honest. This is a crisis – an identity crisis. Perhaps our generation is struggling to discover and define who we are because we have strayed from God’s definition and declaration of our identity. It was never his intention that we define ourselves, but rather that we would find our true selves within the words he has spoken over us.
When it comes to understanding our biblical identity, we’ve simply been sold short. We recognize that God has a Son who died and rose again so that we, too, might become “sons of God.” God is a Father, and to be in his family naturally means to be a son. Regardless of how well we actually embrace this, at least there is a consensus around that part of our identity.
The problem is we didn’t read any further along once we realized we were sons, when in fact God had much more to say. Speaking directly to Jesus, he says, “You are my Son, today I have begotten you”; as he says also in another place, “You are a priest forever, after the order of Melchizedek.” (Hebrews 5:5-6, quoting Psalm 2:7 and Psalm 110:4)
These two passages from the Psalms are woven together for a reason. There is a message here:
The revelation of sonship is merely the door of entrance into the court of the priesthood.
Our “calling” is simply that which God calls us – a royal priesthood…
Being a son is the qualification that positions us before God to be and do the very thing we were created for: priesthood. For Jesus is not the only one who bears the name of priest – 1 Peter 2:9 reminds us who God called his people to be: “You are…a royal priesthood.” Revelation 1:6 and 5:10 reiterate this concept that God has made us a “kingdom of priests.” More than that, Hebrews 3:1 tells us that we “share in a heavenly calling” with the one who even now is in Heaven serving as a priest! Our “calling” is simply that which God calls us – a royal priesthood – and this calling we share with our Great High Priest in Heaven.
Beloved, it is in being priests that we have been given the utmost privilege in all of creation. Intrinsic to that identity is the access granted to approach the One who dwells in unapproachable light. We are invited to search out God’s unsearchable greatness. And we are anointed to decree the Word that proceeds from God’s very own mouth. This is who we are. This is that for which we were created. This is the purpose, calling, and identity that we all desperately ache to realize. And when the Body of Christ worldwide grasps this truth – when we collectively embrace our God-given identity as the priesthood, we will witness the glory, the power, and the presence that will fulfill the long-awaited promise of a glorious Church.