The Priesthood of Believers

2 November 2014


1.   Introduction

(a)  Old Testament – Israel

·         Exodus 19:4-6 “And you shall be to me a Kingdom of Priests”

·         God has redeemed Israel from bondage of Egypt – He now reveals His calling upon them.

·         Peculiar Treasure” =H5459 Segulah = Term given by groom to bride to initiate marriage.

·         Kingdom =H4427 = a realm or territory where heaven will invade earth.

·         Priests =H3548 = a person who comes before God to offer sacrifices on behalf of man.

·         God’s plan is a priesthood of all believers – able to access the throne room and presence of God.

(b)  New Testament – Jesus

·         Heb. 3:1 “Therefore holy brethren, partakers of the heavenly calling, consider the Apostle and the Priest of our profession Christ Jesus”.

·         All believers are called to sonship – to access the presence of God.

·         Apostle =G652 = one sent on a mission to conquer territory and expand Kingdom culture and law.

·         High Priest =G749 = the chief of a body of priests – the one who is over all other priests.

·         Jesus functioned on earth as a Priest and a King.

(c)  New Testament – The Church

·         Rev. 1:5-6 “He has made us Kings and Priests unto our God”.

·         Rev. 5:9-10 He has made us unto our God kings and priests and we shall reign on the earth.

·         The pattern throughout the Bible is consistent – believers are called to be priests and kings.

·         King = person who rules over a territory and establishes his culture, governance, laws.

·         Priest = person who goes before God with sacrifices and brings blessing from God to men.


2.      What is a Priest?

(a)  Spiritual Sacrifice

1 Pet. 2:5 “You also as living stones are built up a spiritual house, a holy priesthood, to offer up spiritual sacrifices acceptable to God by Jesus Christ.”

·         God has called us into covenant relationship with Him to represent Him on earth.

·         Culture: When we think of a priest, we think of a religious person in robes, a special person. This concept of a priest is deeply ingrained in religious culture.

·         NT: A priest is a person who presents spiritual sacrifices to God. Each of us who follow Christ are appointed as priests to God.

·         Sacrifice =G2378 = something completely surrendered, given over to another at personal cost.

·         Spiritual = The nature of our sacrifices is spiritual, not natural because we are spiritual people.

(b)  Sacrifice releases Power

·         All through the Bible sacrifice is associated with covenant relationship and release of power.

·         Examples:

1 Sam 7:9-13       Samuel subdues Philistines

Lev. 9:24             Aaron – fire from heaven

1 Chron. 21:26     David – fire from heaven

2 Chron. 7:1         Soloman – fire from heaven

1 Kg 18               Elijah – fire from heaven

Ps. 50:5              gather my saints together who have made covenant with me by sacrifice

Mt.27:50-53         Jesus sacrifice – great power released from heaven

Act 2:1-4             New Testament church – spiritual offering prayer – fire from heaven

·         We have covenant with God by faith in Jesus sacrifice.

·         Now positioned to be Kings/Priests.


3.      What is the Function of a Priest?

·         We must function as a priest before we can function as a King.

·         What are the spiritual sacrifices we can offer/present to God?

(a)  “Present your Body” – availability to serve

Rom.12:1 “present your bodies, a living sacrifice, holy, acceptable to God – reasonable service”

·         Body = temple/house of God, means of expressing your life in the earth

·         Present your body, soul spirit to God daily in prayer

·         Sacrifice = availability to serve Him, to act on His behalf, meet needs of people

·         Jesus set the example of availability and surrender to serve.

e.g. Jn 13 : foot washing; death on Cross

·         Most believers not called to die for Jesus but live sacrificially for Him.

(b)  Praise and Worship

Heb.13:15 “Therefore by Him, let us continually offer the sacrifice of praise to God, that is the fruit of our lips tgiving thanks to His name.”

·         Praise and gratitude (thanksgiving) are part of the atmosphere of heaven. (Ps22:3; Rev.5)

·         Praise and thanks can be a sacrifice – costly, because of negative feelings, circumstances.

·         1 Thess.5:18 “In everything give thanks for this is the will of God in Christ ….”

·         Thanks, praise, tender, heartfelt worship are a spiritual sacrifice – pleasing to God

e.g. Daniel – worshipper – man after God’s own heart.

(c)  Acts of Mercy and Kindness

Heb.13:16 “Do not forget to do good and to share for with such sacrifices God is well pleased.”

·         “Do good” = to show mercy and kindness in practical and spiritual ways to people.

·         Gal.6:10 “As we have opportunity, let us do good to all especially those of household of faith.”

·         Constantly be on the lookout for opportunities to be a blessing to others.

·         “Share” = G2842 Koinonia = participate in community, fellowship and not isolate.

(d)  Giving: Tithes and Offerings

Prov.3:9 “Honour the Lord with your possessions and with the first fruits of all your increase.”

·         Giving money to God is a spiritual sacrifice, act of honouring God as our source.

·         We honour God with tithese – regular 10% and with offerings – spontaneous giving

·         Putting finances into God’s order is a spiritual sacrifice that release blessing

·         Order = tithes/offerings; taxes; budget; management; savings; investment.

(e) Prayer and Intercession

Mk.1:35 “NJow in the morning having risen a long while before daylight, He went out and departed to a solitary place and He prayed.”

·         Jesus life of prayer and intercession released Kingdom Power to the earth (Heb.5:7)

·         Heb.7:25 “Jesus or the priest continues to make intercession for us.”

·         Prayer/intercession = Key to releasing the power of God to earth – ruling as King


What has the Holy Spirit been saying to you today?

What area of your priesthood do you need to strengthen and build?