Priesthood and consecration


#1

A Catholic friend is agreeing with her non-Catholic friends that each of us, as members of the Body of Christ, can consecrate the Eucharist since we are anointed priest, prophet and king. And, therefore, all communion services at all churches (or even done by individuals at home) are the same as the Eucharistic celebration in the Catholic Church with the real presence of Jesus–body,blood, soul and divinity.


#2

[quote=rjlama]A Catholic friend is agreeing with her non-Catholic friends that each of us, as members of the Body of Christ, can consecrate the Eucharist since we are anointed priest, prophet and king. And, therefore, all communion services at all churches (or even done by individuals at home) are the same as the Eucharistic celebration in the Catholic Church with the real presence of Jesus–body,blood, soul and divinity.
[/quote]

She needs to understand the difference between the Sacred Priesthood or Ordained Priesthood and the “Universal priesthood of all believers” She could start with the Catechism and then the document on the Priesthood from Vatican II.


#3

Allot of us Protestants, at least from what I understand of the others, don’t “consecrate” the “host” though. So from our perspective, we never even pray for it to become the actual Body and Blood. So even if your Theology could work that way, it would seem we would also have to follow your Liturgical prayers to some extent. Not sure though.


#4

Ah, the priesthood of all believers bit. We had a topic on this recently.

Check my posts, specifically posts 29, 30, 31, and 33.
My argument rested on a few things. Posts 29-31 dealt with what the priesthood of all believers meant, and additionally with whether or not women can be priests.

The reason I dwelt on women and the priesthood is that if you can prove that women can’t be priests, then the interpretation of the priesthood of all believers which claims that everyone has the authority of an ordained minister is rendered seriously wounded. The Bible never shows an ordained priest that is a woman, and Tradition is likewise unanimous on this point. If the powers conferred in baptism included the that of the ministerial priesthood, then women too could hold it, yet they cannot. So the meaning must be something different.

In any case, my look at what a priesthood of all believers is shows that it isn’t anything like what Protestants claim it is.


#5

(Reproduced, my posts from the other thread.)
Angainor had quoted:

“’…Now if you obey me fully and keep my covenant, then out of all nations you will be my treasured possession. Although the whole earth is mine, you will be for me a kingdom of priests and a holy nation.’ These are the words you are to speak to the Israelites.”

Exodus 19:5-6

My post began:
From Revelation 1:5-6:

5 …To him who loves us and has freed us 5 from our sins by his blood,
6 who has made us into a kingdom, priests for his God and Father, to him be glory and power forever (and ever). Amen.

Where you see a contradiction between God calling certain people to share in His priesthood and the way the Christian people form a royal priesthood, there is none. Priesthood is what we’re going to have to explore.

First, we need to look at Leviticus, 7:11-21. Here we have regulations set down by God for offering sacrifice. Only in the peace offering can the giver of the victim partake of the sacrificial meal. Usually only members of the priestly family can eat sacrificial offerings.

Leviticus 22:10-13

10 "Neither a lay person nor a priest’s tenant or hired servant may eat of any sacred offering. 11 But a slave whom a priest acquires by purchase or who is born in his house may eat of his food. 12 A priest’s daughter who is married to a layman may not eat of the sacred contributions. 13 But if a priest’s daughter is widowed or divorced and, having no children, returns to her father’s house, she may then eat of her father’s food as in her youth. No layman, however, may eat of it.

Now, when it came to be that a man of the priestly clan was disqualified from the exercise of the priesthood (offering sacrifices), he could still partake in the sacrificial offering.

Leviticus 21: 21-23

21 No descendant of Aaron the priest who has any such defect may draw near to offer up the oblations of the LORD; on account of his defect he may not draw near to offer up the food of his God. 22 He may, however, partake of the food of his God: of what is most sacred as well as of what is sacred. 23 Only, he may not approach the veil nor go up to the altar on account of his defect; he shall not profane these things that are sacred to me, for it is I, the LORD, who make them sacred."

This is a distinction between the priestly ministry and the dignity of the priestly clan. Thus in Christ’s Church, priests are set aside to carry out sacred functions (especially the Eucharist, or as Lutherans term it, the Lord’s Supper). Priests also are official preachers of the Church. Everyone else, all the members, form a priestly people because they are called to unite themselves to Christ’s sacrifice by partaking of the Body of the Lord.

This is a distinction between the priestly ministry and the dignity of the priestly clan. Thus in Christ’s Church, priests are set aside to carry out sacred functions (especially the Eucharist, or as Lutherans term it, the Lord’s Supper). Priests also are official preachers of the Church. Everyone else, all the members, form a priestly people because they are called to unite themselves to Christ’s sacrifice by partaking of the Body of the Lord.

Hence, 1 Peter 2:9

95 But you are “a chosen race, a royal priesthood, a holy nation, a people of his own, so that you may announce the praises” of him who called you out of darkness into his wonderful light.

With 1 Cor 11:26

26 For as often as you eat this bread and drink the cup, you proclaim the death of the Lord until he comes.

In the Old Testament, priests were called from among Aaron’s descendants who were a priestly clan within God’s people. NT priests are chosen from among baptized people, who are children of God, brothers of Jesus, and members of God’s family. The members of God’s Church form a race of priests. The ministerial priesthood is a special calling.


#6

1 John 2:20

20But you have the anointing that comes from the holy one, 11 and you all have knowledge.

Anointing, in the Old Testament, was done to priests and kings as a sign that God set them apart for a sacred function. Not only priests, but objects for the worship of God were anointed:

Lev 8:10-12

10Taking the anointing oil, Moses anointed and consecrated the Dwelling, with all that was in it. 11Then he sprinkled some of this oil seven times on the altar, and anointed the altar, with all its appurtenances, and the laver, with its base, thus consecrating them. 12He also poured some of the anointing oil on Aaron’s head, thus consecrating him.

Or when Samuel anoints Saul: 1 Samuel 10:1

1 Then, from a flask he had with him, Samuel poured oil on Saul’s head; he also kissed him, saying: "The LORD anoints you commander over his heritage. You are to govern the LORD’S people Israel, and to save them from the grasp of their enemies round about. "This will be the sign for you that the LORD has anointed you commander over his heritage.

Obviously, Jesus is the Christ, or the Messiah, “Anointed.” Jesus was to be priest and king of a kingdom that will have no end (cf. Hebrews 7:24, Luke 1:33). Hence, in Confirmation, the person is anointed with chrism, when a man is ordained a priest, the bishop anoints his hands, and obviously, in the Anointing of the Sick (cf. Mark 6:13, James 5:14).

Paul says in 1 Cor 1:21-22

21 12 But the one who gives us security with you in Christ and who anointed us is God;22 he has also put his seal upon us and given the Spirit in our hearts as a first installment.

Hence, through the anointing of the priests hands, and the laying on of the hands (cf. 2 Tim 1:6) the priest is set aside to serve God.

(I think this anointing bit is a little bit weak, please feel free to strengthen this.)


#7

On the issue of women and the priesthood.

Let it be noted:

  1. Christ called no women to the ministerial priesthood.
  2. If Christ had wanted to, He undoubtedly could have. Mark 3:13 states that he selected the apostles “as He desired,” or “those whom He wanted.” It wasn’t merely cultural. You can criticize God for that one, if you wish. In any case, a model among women, who is noted as “blessed among women” and someone who “found favor in the sight of God,” would certainly have been a prime candidate. Mary, however, was never chosen.
  3. The Old Testament allowed no women priests. Even the ideal priesthood of all believers did not contain women priests. The levitical priesthood contained sons of Aaron’s line. The priesthood of Melchecidek was that of a man (Melchecidek) and of Christ (a man also).

Also, Jesus, intercedes on behalf of us as the Son of God. Since the priest acts in the person of Christ (“This is my body that is for you.” 1 Cor 11:23), it is also important that he can accurately represent Christ as a male, and as a son.

Furthermore, priests preach in the stead of Christ, and as we’ve dicussed, women would not be able to preach in Church.

Judges 17:10

10 “Stay with me,” Micah said to him. “Be father and priest to me, and I will give you ten silver shekels a year, a set of garments, and your food.”

Judges 18:19

19 They said to him, “Be still: put your hand over your mouth. Come with us and be our father and priest. Is it better for you to be priest for the family of one man or to be priest for a tribe and a clan in Israel?”

Fatherhood and priesthood are connected intimately here. In any case,
Heb 5:4

4 No one takes this honor upon himself but only when called by God, just as Aaron was.

No women were called as priests.

The priesthood is associated with fatherhood… which women cannot fulfill. The priesthood is associated with the Son’s sonship… which women cannot fulfill. The priesthood has never had women consecrated into it in the Bible, which no one can deny. And the tradition of the Church for two thousand years has been likewise, to bar women from the priesthood.

This is why I’ve come to the conclusion, along with Christianity and Judiasm’s conclusion for thousands of years, that women aren’t called to the priesthood.

Furthermore, to extend the idea of the maleness of a priest:

Ephesians 5:24-31

23 For the husband is head of his wife just as Christ is head of the church, he himself the savior of the body. 24 As the church is subordinate to Christ, so wives should be subordinate to their husbands in everything. 25 Husbands, love your wives, even as Christ loved the church and handed himself over for her 26 to sanctify her, cleansing her by the bath of water with the word, 27that he might present to himself the church in splendor, without spot or wrinkle or any such thing, that she might be holy and without blemish. 28So (also) husbands should love their wives as their own bodies. He who loves his wife loves himself. 29For no one hates his own flesh but rather nourishes and cherishes it, even as Christ does the church, 30because we are members of his body.

Christ is the New Adam in Romans 5:12-14. In Genesis 2:18 Adam is made “a suitable partner.” The Church is the Bride of Christ. Therefore, a male priest perfectly corresponds to Christ’s role, which the priest carries out.


#8

Finally, the Catechism on the priesthood of all believers, which Catholics certainly believe in.

1546 Christ, high priest and unique mediator, has made of the Church "a kingdom, priests for his God and Father."20 The whole community of believers is, as such, priestly. The faithful exercise their baptismal priesthood through their participation, each according to his own vocation, in Christ’s mission as priest, prophet, and king. Through the sacraments of Baptism and Confirmation the faithful are "consecrated to be . . . a holy priesthood."21

1547 The ministerial or hierarchical priesthood of bishops and priests, and the common priesthood of all the faithful participate, “each in its own proper way, in the one priesthood of Christ.” While being “ordered one to another,” they differ essentially.22 In what sense? While the common priesthood of the faithful is exercised by the unfolding of baptismal grace --a life of faith, hope, and charity, a life according to the Spirit–, the ministerial priesthood is at the service of the common priesthood. It is directed at the unfolding of the baptismal grace of all Christians. The ministerial priesthood is a *means *by which Christ unceasingly builds up and leads his Church. For this reason it is transmitted by its own sacrament, the sacrament of Holy Orders.

Oh and, post 8 was my syllogism on the inability of women to be priests invalidating this particular theory of priesthood of all believers. (But my proof for women being unable came in my last posts, if you find that ironic.)

Whoo, I’m tired.

EDIT: Father Hardon on the Priesthood of the Faithful.


#9

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