the priesthood and the kingship

Living Stream Ministry Podcast ::

There are two (2) basic ministries that characterize both the Old and New Testament. The ministry of the priesthood and the ministry of the kingship. It’s interesting that in Matthew chapter 3, we see two representatives of these two basic ministries together as the age is changing.

Well, we’re coming to the first part of Matthew chapter 3 today and the appearance of the ministry of John the Baptist. This chapter is very interesting, because in a very real sense the whole age is changing…some would say the dispensation is changing. This is a pivot point in God’s economy…in His divine revelation. And we see these two ministries…John the Baptist and the Lord Jesus Christ…together in this chapter for the first time. It’s very interesting…John the Baptist’s heritage is one out of the tribe of Levi which was the tribe of the priesthood. And John the Baptist was somebody who ended the Old Testament economy which was of the law.

The law was lifeless…helpless…could cause no one to really experience the King…but only be exposed by the King. But this marvelous ministry of John the Baptist also introduced the King of kings and ushered people to the King and allowed the King to be brought to the people.

John the Baptist ministry therefore is something that terminated the Old Testament economy and ushered in the New Testament economy…which is an economy of grace. And grace is just God in Christ coming to us to be our life and our everything…even coming into us to be our “Inside King.”

So John the Baptist terminated that Old Testament priesthood and brought us into the New Testament priesthood which is a priesthood full of the experience of Christ. Full of the King of the kingdom of the heavens who wants to come into us as life and everything and be the “Inside King” within us.

We need to repent for the kingdom.

In the whole Bible, there are only two basic ministries that constitute the kingdom of God. And these two ministries are firstly the priesthood…then the kingship. In the Old Testament, the priesthood was with the tribe of Levi. John the Baptist was just a descendant of Levi. He is the consummation of the priesthood of the Old Testament. Then Jesus is the consummation of the Old Testament kingship. The kingship in the Old Testament was in the tribe of Judah, and Jesus came to be a descendant of Judah as the consummation of the kingship.

So you can see these two persons…John the Baptist and Jesus Christ…They, on the one hand, terminated the old priesthood and kingship. They also germinated the New Testament priesthood and kingship. When the priesthood brings people to God, the kingship brings God to man. Then there is the heavenly reigning…the heavenly ruling. That is the kingdom.

And this kingdom is just today’s proper church life. And this church life will continue till the millennium comes. Then in the millennial kingdom, there will be the priesthood and the kingship. The overcomers will be there…on the one hand the priests…and on the other hand the kings. So in the millennial kingdom, the priesthood and the kingship will be even stronger to maintain God’s kingdom on this earth. That the king may have the people and all the people may gain the king. This is the millennium.

Then after the millennium there will be no more need of the priesthood. What will be left for eternity will be only the kingship, because in the new heaven and new earth with the New Jerusalem, everyone is in the presence of God. So there’s no need any longer for the priesthood to bring people to God, because by that time God will be with man. God’s presence eliminates the priesthood by that time. But the kingship will be still there reigning over the surrounding nations.

Well, this is just a summary of the whole Bible in the light of the priesthood and the kingship.

Living Stream Ministry

the Lord will judge and examine His people

Living Stream Ministry Podcast ::

Of all the parables in the final chapters of Matthew, none is more striking and sobering than the parable of the ten virgins in chapter 25. Coupled with the other parables around it, we can clearly see that at His coming, the Lord will judge and examine His people…the believing and saved ones.

This judgement will not be concerning sin or our eternal salvation. Of that, we have been assured. But in the matters of watchfulness and faithfulness, we will be examined. Not at the risk of our salvation, but at the potential risk of the reward of the enjoyment of the kingdom.

…You have to pay a price. There is some cost. To be a foolish virgin…while you were living on this earth, you didn’t pay the proper price, and the price is mainly to deal with yourself, to give up the world and to love the Lord by all means. Then verse 10, “And as they were going away to buy, the bridegroom came and those who were ready went in with him to the wedding feast. And the door was shut”. Not the door to go to heaven, but the door to go to the marriage feast. Not the door of salvation, but the door of the reward of the enjoyment of the kingdom age. This door was shut. Verse 11, “And later the rest”, the foolish ones, “of the virgins came also.” Not only resurrected but also raptured; “came” means raptured. They also got raptured, but late. They got the help, and they bought the oil, and they paid the price and they got it…but too late. Time means a lot. The door into the feast was shut. So they say, “Lord, lord, open to us!”

“But he answered and said, Truly I say to you, I do not know you.” The simply means, I do not approve your way. The way you lived on the earth and the way you came so late…I do not approve. That means rejection. Not rejection for eternal salvation, but rejection for the enjoyment…the participation…in the kingdom feast. Watch therefore. After we get through this completing word, we can see how to be watchful…how to be ready. You have a complete word concerning watchfulness and readiness. This is a serious matter! I do believe no other book warns us so much as the book of Matthew. Are you going to be foolish? Are we the foolish ones or the prudent ones? We all have to answer this question. It all depends upon the preparation of the extra portion of the Holy Spirit in our vessels.

Living Stream Ministry

Listen! Behold, the sower went out to sow

Living Stream Ministry Podcast ::

Here is a mystery; Jesus as (1)The Sower. (2)The Seed. (3)And the Kingdom. All the three are just one wonderful all-inclusive Person. Mark chapter 4 is a definition of what He did in the preceding 3 chapters. After He live…moved…ministered…in the 3 chapters He jumped in the boat, and He gave them at least 2 or 3 parables. These parables indicate the very significance of what He did in the preceding 3 chapters.

Listen! Behold, the sower went out to sow. Whatever He did there, that was the sowing. A sowing of the seed. Apparently, He was a preacher because He preached the Gospel. Apparently, He was a teacher because He taught the Truth. Apparently, He was the one who cast out the demons and healed the sick…

But actually, whether the Preacher, the Teacher, the Caster, the Healer or the Cleanser…HE WAS THE SOWER! Consider a little bit. When the Lord Jesus touched Peter’s mother-in-law and healed her, do you think that’s all? I don’t believe so. That touching…that healing…was a sowing. Something of the Lord Himself was sown into that mother-in-law. There was the Reality.

When He touched the leper and cleansed him, don’t you believe something from the Cleanser has been sown into the cleansed one. And from the time they got healed, there was a change in their being. You see, Peter’s mother-in-law got healed…right away, she served. And the leper…right after being cleansed, he moved in a different way. And that indicated something got into them!

Living Stream Ministry