Posts Tagged ‘priesthood’

Joy As the Power to Suffer in the Path of Love for the Sake of Liberation





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2. Priesthood Of All Believers:

A special Priesthood to manage religious affairs
is known in all religions, including the Jewish
faith. It is God Himself who appointed the Old
Testament priesthood, its protocols, and its
standard operating procedure. However, by
the time of Eli the Jewish priesthood was used
by many in priestly families for unlawful gains
and improper favours. By the time of
Nehemiah things degenerated to such a level
that Jewish priesthood joined hands with
abominable people to work against God’s
people and divine statutes.
God had different plans for the New
Testament era. He brought forth this plan first
by destroying the separation between holy
and the most holy place in the Jewish temple.
Second, place he promoted ALL his people to
priesthood so that in the New Testament
there is no longer a special priestly class of
people. With that God abolished the special
priestly class, priestly families, priestly
protocols, standard operating procedures, the
altar, sacrifices, incense, and the special
vestments worn by priests. We read in the
· Ye also, as lively stones, are built up a
spiritual house, an holy priesthood, to
offer up spiritual sacrifices, acceptable
to God by Jesus Christ. 1Peter 2:5
· But ye are a chosen generation, a royal
priesthood, an holy nation, a peculiar
people; that ye should shew forth the
praises of him who hath called you out
of darkness into his marvelous light.
1Peter 2:9
· And hath made us kings and priests
unto God and his Father; to him be
glory and dominion for ever and ever.
Amen. Revelation 1:6
· And hast made us unto our God kings
and priests: and we shall reign on the
earth. Revelation 5:10
Thus God has brought in a radically new
system in the New Testament where every
believer, man or woman, is a priest. He/she no
longer needs the ministry of a priestly class of
special people. On the contrary, each
believer-priest in the New Testament is
expected by God to function faithfully in the
priestly duties given to that person.
While many Protestant churches pay lip
service to this New Testament principle, they
effectively nullify this principle by “granting”
titles like Pastor, Center Pastor, Reverend,
Most Reverend, Right Reverend, Archbishop,
etc. The Brethren are the only group that
emphasizes this New Testament principle with
all their heart and all their might. This is the
reason why we do not see a special class of
priesthood in the Brethren assemblies. There
is no special vestment, no hierarchy of priests
and bishops. No special priestly class is
needed in the Brethren Assemblies to conduct
marriages, funerals, dedicatory prayers,
baptisms, or the Lord’s Supper. No formal

license is needed to preach or teach, and
every person gifted in teaching is encouraged
to teach, while even those without the gift of
teaching are encouraged to share their
insights from the Scriptures. This is
something unique to the assemblies, and it is
impossible to find a church which gives such

an emphasis to this most important New
Testament principle.

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1 Separation

With Protestant Reformation, an increasing
number of churches realize that their
doctrine needs to be right. Many of them
have produced statements of doctrine that
are highly biblical. However, for such a doctrinal stand to become effective, the right kind of
emphasis is needed. Just as prescription of medicine should be followed by regular consumption of
medicine, right doctrine becomes practical only when there is right emphasis in the church.
However, today the Protestant Christendom has become so corrupt that they have added man-made
sets of stipulations along with right doctrines. This in effect has totally destroyed the unique
character of the New Testament church and has made these churches resemble the Roman
Catholicism out of which we came out.
The Scripture is very clear that
salvation comes only and only
through Christ. Only Lord Jesus
is the mediator between God
and man. There is no other
mediator, and there is none
other than Christ who is
qualified to be such a mediator.
The Brethren have given emphasis to the essentials right from the beginning, and some of these
· Separation
· Priesthood Of All Believers
· Autonomy Of The Local Church
· Necessity Of Evangelism
· Necessity Of Church Planting
We need to discuss each one in detail:
1. Separation: It becomes clear even to a
casual observer of the Scripture that God
wants His children to be in the world, but be
separated from the world in certain things. In
other words, we are people with dual
citizenships and therefore we need to be
careful in what we do and in what we avoid.
This is based upon the principle, ” If ye were of
the world, the world would love his own: but
because ye are not of the world, but I have
chosen you out of the world, therefore the
world hateth you.” (John 15:19). “I have
given them thy word; and the world hath
hated them, because they are not of the
world, even as I am not of the world.” (John
The human race craves for pagan practices, as the
Old Testament history has repeatedly demonstrated,
but God’s children need to practice separation.
God’s children continue to live in this world
after their salvation. During this time they
enjoy dual citizenship, of the earth and of the
heaven, with totally conflicting demands. Thus
there is a constant battle within the Christian
life (and within the Christian society) to arrive
at a compromise between the demands of the
old and new citizenships of the Christian – a
compromise between Christian theology and
earthly outlook. This kind of a compromise
reduces the conflict, and is a great gain for the
world, but is a great loss for the church. Such
a compromising believer is never able to
attain the sanctification, maturity, and
spiritual effectiveness for which he/she has
been called by Christ. The Scripture warns
against compromise, against mingling with
error, and against certain types of fellowships.
We read in the Scripture:
· I pray not that thou shouldest take
them out of the world, but that thou
shouldest keep them from the evil.
They are not of the world, even as I am
not of the world. (John 17:15,16)
· I wrote unto you in an epistle not to
company with fornicators: Yet not
altogether with the fornicators of this
world, or with the covetous, or
extortioners, or with idolaters; for
then must ye needs go out of the
world. But now I have written unto
you not to keep company, if any man
that is called a brother be a fornicator,
or covetous, or an idolater, or a railer,
or a drunkard, or an extortioner; with
such an one no not to eat. For what
have I to do to judge them also that
are without? do not ye judge them
that are within? But them that are
without God judgeth. Therefore put
away from among yourselves that
wicked person. (I Corinthians 5:9-13)
.If there come any unto you, and bring
not this doctrine, receive him not into
your house, neither bid him God
speed: For he that biddeth him God
speed is partaker of his evil deeds. (2
John 10,11)
· Beware lest any man spoil you through
philosophy and vain deceit, after the
tradition of men, after the rudiments
of the world, and not after Christ.
Let no man therefore judge you in
meat, or in drink, or in respect of an
holiday, or of the new moon, or of the
sabbath days: Which are a shadow
of things to come; but the body is of
Christ. Let no man beguile you of your
reward in a voluntary humility and
worshiping of angels, intruding into
those things which he hath not seen,
vainly puffed up by his fleshly mind,
And not holding the Head, from which
all the body by joints and bands having
nourishment ministered, and knit
together, increaseth with the increase
of God. Wherefore if ye be dead
with Christ from the rudiments of the
world, why, as though living in the
world, are ye subject to ordinances,
(Touch not; taste not; handle not; 22
Which all are to perish with the using;)
after the commandments and
doctrines of men? Which things have
indeed a shew of wisdom in will
worship, and humility, and neglecting
of the body; not in any honour to the
satisfying of the flesh. (Colossians
2:8, 16-23)
· And I heard another voice from
heaven, saying, Come out of her, my
people, that ye be not partakers of her
sins, and that ye receive not of her
plagues. (Revelation 18:4)
From these it is obvious that God wants his
children not to be part of those forms of
Christianity which are contrary to the
Scripture. God also wants His children to be
away from evil and sin. What is more, He
wants His children not to have fellowship with
heretics who are within the family of God, if
the heretics do not give heed to doctrinal
correction and if they continue to perpetuate
their teaching in the family.
As a result though the Brethren are courteous
and friendly to all, they refuse to be part of
any endeavor that encourages sin,
compromise, error, or heresy. They do not
endorse ecumenism, and do not participate in
activities that are aimed to promote
ecumenism. They are also the first to spot
error within the assemblies and
outside and they are the first to
expose such error. The ultimate
aim of all this is to show the world
that God’s children do not
endorse sin, compromise, and
heresy within the assemblies and outside and
they are the first to expose such error.  There are very few
churches that are as strong in these matters
as the Brethren Assemblies are.
Ecumenism tries to unite all Christian denominations
under the Roman Pope, and the tries to bring all
religions under one roof and under one head!
Brethren are totally opposed to this compromise.

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