[R4759 : page 44]


THERE was really but one priest—the High Priest. The under-priests were merely representatives of the High Priest. So with Christ, the Great Priest of the future. The association of the under-priests with the Lord recognizes him as the Head and the under-priests as his members, and the "great company" as the servants of this Great Priest.

God's work for the world is future. The only work yet accomplished is the providing of the priesthood and the qualification of the Great Priest and his members and his servants for the work of instructing, healing and uplifting mankind during the thousand years of Messiah's reign.

During the Gospel Age the getting ready of the Great Priest, Head and members, has required of them sacrifice. As the Apostle declares, "I beseech you, brethren, by the mercies of God, that ye present your bodies living sacrifices, holy and acceptable." The sacrifice of the Head was acceptable because of his perfection. And all the sacrifices which he subsequently offers, represented in his members, are likewise acceptable to the Father, because the merit of the Head Priest is imputed to the other sacrifices.


Two priesthoods are set before us in the Scriptures, the Aaronic and the Melchisedec. Both typify The Christ—Head and Body. The Aaronic pictures the sufferings of Christ, but shows nothing of the glory and reign, except as these were symbolized in the garments of glory and beauty. The Melchisedec Priest represents merely the future of The Christ, after the sacrificing shall have been finished and all the members of the Body completed.

The work of the Priest may be viewed from these two standpoints. His sacrificing is the most important in one sense, because all of his future work is based upon these sacrifices. But in another sense the sacrificings are merely a preparation for the great work which will follow. The Priest must first offer sacrifice, in order to become worthy of his own exaltation to the Priestly Office and glory; and, secondly, he must have the merit of that sacrifice wherewith to satisfy Justice on behalf of the sins of the world, in order that, as the Glorified Priest, he may have the full right to stand as Mediator between God and mankind—to bless the latter and uplift them during the thousand years of his reign as the Melchisedec Priest—a priest upon his Throne.

The Apostle declares that Messiah is a Priest after the order of Melchisedec, and not after the order of Aaron (Heb. 7:21); for if he were on earth, he could not be a priest. The significance here is that Jesus, being of the Tribe of Judah, and not of the Tribe of Levi, could not have served as a priest under the Mosaic Law, which gave this office to Aaron and his sons forever. Aaron and his sons, however, as a priesthood typified the preparatory feature of Messiah's priesthood—the sacrificial preparation. Messiah's claim to priestly functions is not, therefore, to be expected from the Aaronic line, for the Scriptures expressly declare, "I have sworn; I will not repent; Thou art a priest ever after the order of Melchisedec." (Heb. 7:21.) The Priest here referred to is the glorified Messiah, Head and Body, at the conclusion of this Gospel Age, when the consecrating and sacrificing will be at an end and the glorious Priestly Office, serving the world of mankind, will begin.


[R4760 : page 44]


"Like a river glorious is God's perfect peace,
Over all victorious in its glad increase.
Perfect; yet it floweth fuller every day;
Perfect; yet it groweth deeper all the way.
Stayed upon Jehovah, hearts are truly blest,
Finding, as he promised, perfect peace and rest.

"Hidden in the hollow of his blessed hand,
Never foe can follow, never traitor stand;
Not a surge of worry, not a shade of care,
Not a blast of hurry toucheth spirit there.
Stayed upon Jehovah, hearts are truly blest,
Finding, as he promised, perfect peace and rest.

"Every joy or trial cometh from above,
Traced upon our dial by the Sun of love.
We may trust him solely, all for us to do;
They who trust him wholly, find him wholly true.
Stayed upon Jehovah, hearts are truly blest,
Finding, as he promised, perfect peace and rest."