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You are a priest for ever

Thứ tư - 18/01/2017 06:46
What we do at Mass has great meaning and value not because of ourselves but primarily because of Jesus Christ.
 
YOU ARE A PRIEST FOREVER
 
What we do at Mass has great meaning and value not because of ourselves but primarily because of Jesus Christ.  
 
Deacon John Ruscheinsky
 
Among the Israelites a man became a priest by being born from a descendent of Levi who was of the family of Moses' brother Aaron, who was made a priest by God. A levitical priest ceased being a priest upon his death and the priesthood was passed on to his sons. (All priests were Levites, but not every Levite was a priest, as there were also tests of ritual and moral purity.) In contrast to the levitical priesthood we hear about Melchizedek, a Gentile priest in the time of Abraham. The Bible is deliberately silent about his ancestry as a symbol that he did not inherit his priesthood. Jesus is compared to Melchizedek to emphasize that his priesthood is different from the levitical priesthood. He does not inherit his priesthood but is made a priest directly by his heavenly Father. Moreover, his priesthood does not end with his death but continues because he is a priest forever. Incidentally the episode in today's Gospel is just one instance whereby Jesus was showing that he supersedes the old order.
 
Melchizedek as priest of God Most High and King of Salem (that is, of peace) offered a sacrifice of bread and wine. The author of the book of Hebrews points out this parallel to Jesus, whose priesthood is of divine origin. This link to the signs we use throughout the centuries should move all of us deeply. Verse five of today's Gospel passage mentions two of Jesus' emotions. "Jesus looked around at them with anger (that is the Pharisees, who were blind to Jesus teachings) and Jesus was grieved at their hardness of heart."
 
It is of significance for us that we do not worship alone at Mass. Jesus is the principle priest in the Eucharistic celebration. He is present in the clergy by virtue of Ordination and active in you by virtue of Baptism. He is present and active in the inspired word of Scripture and in a pre-eminent way in the Eucharist. Jesus as priest is our mediator. He brings the Father's truth and love to us, and he unites our prayers and sacrifices to His own offering to the Father.
 
Points to Pray and Ponder: What we do at Mass has great meaning and value not because of ourselves but primarily because of Jesus Christ. He is our priest among us at this moment because he is a priest forever according to the order of Melchizedek. We need to continue to pray for vocations to the priesthood. Let us pray in a special way today for our priests!
 
 
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