Priests as "other Christ"


#1

Can anyone explain this statement, “The priest, as you know, is by the grace of ordination configured to Christ. He is another Christ…”


#2

[quote=Angel Bradford]Can anyone explain this statement, “The priest, as you know, is by the grace of ordination configured to Christ. He is another Christ…”
[/quote]

You wouldn’t, by chance, happen to have the rest of that quote, would you? I only ask because, oftentimes, the context of the sentence will elucidate the meaning.

Sounds like the beginning of a “Vicar of Christ” argument, just from that fragment. I could be off though. :confused:


#3

The Bible renders it this way:**

2 Corinthians 5:20**
Now then we are ambassadors for Christ, as though God did beseech you by us: we pray you in Christ’s stead, be ye reconciled to God.

The CCC says:
**1548 **In the ecclesial service of the ordained minister, it is Christ himself who is present to his Church as Head of his Body, Shepherd of his flock, high priest of the redemptive sacrifice, Teacher of Truth. This is what the Church means by saying that the priest, by virtue of the sacrament of Holy Orders, acts in persona Christi Capitis:
It is the same priest, Christ Jesus, whose sacred person his minister truly represents. Now the minister, by reason of the sacerdotal consecration which he has received, is truly made like to the high priest and possesses the authority to act in the power and place of the person of Christ himself (virtute ac persona ipsius Christi). Christ is the source of all priesthood: the priest of the old law was a figure of Christ, and the priest of the new law acts in the person of Christ.

God Bless,
RyanL


#4

St Augustine, as did others, referred to ALL baptized Christians as “other Christs”. Specifically, he said, “we have not only become Christians, but Christ himself . . . Stand in awe and rejoice, we have become Christ.” St Clement wrote, “The Word of God became man so that you might learn from a man how a man may become God”.

Both quotes came from “Living the Mysteries” by Scott Hahn and Mike Aquilina.

David


#5

Someone will come along and explain this much more eloquently than I…but I can’t resist taking a shot! :smiley:

When Christ was leaving, bodily mind you…He gave commission to the Apostles to do his work on earth…they could forgive sins, heal the sick…teach…exercise Demons…all the things that Jesus did he gave them this so that he could be with us in body.

The priests are “standing in” for Christ. They can only do these things only through Christ…and through Apostolic succesion


#6

Hi Angela,

Welcome to the forums!!

What do you think about the above posts? Did you find what you were looking for?

God Bless,
VC


#7

[quote=RyanL]The Bible renders it this way:

2 Corinthians 5:20
Now then we are ambassadors for Christ, as though God did beseech you by us: we pray you in Christ’s stead, be ye reconciled to God.
[/quote]

I agree that one can be an ambassador for Christ, but I don’t agree with the statement that a priest can be **another **Christ. For one to assert that he or she is another Christ is blasphemous.

There’s a difference between being “one in Christ” (i.e.: Galatians 3:28) and being “another Christ” and I personally would definitely steer clear of anybody who claimed that they were another Christ.

A person can serve God and obey His laws, but only One was capable of performing the work necessary for salvation and that One was THE Christ – Jesus. I need Him for Salvation and, unless I’ve misread the Bible in several places, everybody else needs Him as well.


#8

[quote=ChristianWAB]You wouldn’t, by chance, happen to have the rest of that quote, would you? I only ask because, oftentimes, the context of the sentence will elucidate the meaning…
[/quote]

I did a quick search, and this article has the exact quote. I can only guess it comes from there (as it was the only google return).

As for the “another Christ” argument, it is fine if it is shorthand for “acting in the place and person of Christ”, but wrong if it means “I *am *Christ” in an exclusionary way. There is only one Christ, but when we (and the priest, by a special vocation) act in the place and person of Christ, or rather as His ambassadors, that is a good and very biblical thing. In that regard, we are certainly another Christ in that we are His Body, and are commanded to act as He did.

I highly doubt that many folks use “another Christ” to mean that this person is either an exact duplicate or that you should use personX* instead* of Christ, but rather I would imagine most folks understand the circumlocution to mean “ambassador” or some derivative (David Koresh as an obvious exception).

…Unless, of course, they’re just looking for a reason to dispise the Catholic Church…

God Bless,
RyanL


#9

The “another Christ” language has the benefit of emphasizing the reality of our being One with Christ and having His Spirit dwelling in us and His power, via the Holy Spirit, flowing through us . . . yet it has the detriment of being easily misunderstood and confused for heresy and even cultish beliefs.

David


#10

Here is what John Vianney would say about the priesthood.

My children, we have come to the Sacrament of Orders. It is a Sacrament which seems to relate to no one among you, and which yet relates to everyone. This Sacrament raises man up to God. What is a priest! A man who holds the place of God – a man who is invested with all the powers of God. "Go, " said Our Lord to the priest; "as My Father sent Me, I send you. All power has been given Me in Heaven and on earth. Go then, teach all nations. . . . He who listens to you, listens to Me; he who despises you despises Me. " When the priest remits sins, he does not say, “God pardons you”; he says, "I absolve you. " At the Consecration, he does not say, “This is the Body of Our Lord;” he says, "This is My Body. "

Saint Bernard tells us that everything has come to us through Mary; and we may also say that everything has come to us through the priest; yes, all happiness, all graces, all heavenly gifts. If we had not the Sacrament of Orders, we should not have Our Lord. Who placed Him there, in that tabernacle? It was the priest. Who was it that received your soul, on its entrance into life? The priest. Who nourishes it, to give it strength to make its pilgrimage? The priest. Who will prepare it to appear before God, by washing that soul, for the last time, in the blood of Jesus Christ? The priest – always the priest. And if that soul comes to the point of death, who will raise it up, who will restore it to calmness and peace? Again the priest. You cannot recall one single blessing from God without finding, side by side with this recollection, the image of the priest.

Go to confession to the Blessed Virgin, or to an angel; will they absolve you? No. Will they give you the Body and Blood of Our Lord? No. The Holy Virgin cannot make her Divine Son descend into the Host. You might have two hundred angels there, but they could not absolve you. A priest, however simple he may be, can do it; he can say to you, "Go in peace; I pardon you. " Oh, how great is a priest! The priest will not understand the greatness of his office till he is in Heaven. If he understood it on earth, he would die, not of fear, but of love. The other benefits of God would be of no avail to us without the priest. What would be the use of a house full of gold, if you had nobody to open you the door! The priest has the key of the heavenly treasures; it is he who opens the door; he is the steward of the good God, the distributor of His wealth. Without the priest, the Death and Passion of Our Lord would be of no avail. Look at the heathens: what has it availed them that Our Lord has died? Alas! they can have no share in the blessings of Redemption, while they have no priests to apply His Blood to their souls!

The priest is not a priest for himself; he does not give himself absolution; he does not administer the Sacraments to himself. He is not for himself, he is for you. After God, the priest is everything. Leave a parish twenty years without priests; they will worship beasts. If the missionary Father and I were to go away, you would say, "What can we do in this church? there is no Mass; Our Lord is no longer there: we may as well pray at home. " When people wish to destroy religion, they begin by attacking the priest, because where there is no longer any priest there is no sacrifice, and where there is no longer any sacrifice there is no religion.

cont


#11

[quote=Angel Bradford]Can anyone explain this statement, “The priest, as you know, is by the grace of ordination configured to Christ. He is another Christ…”
[/quote]

Briefly, during the Holy Sacrifice of the Mass the priest “stands as alter Christus. That is, he literally stands in the place of Another (Christ) and not in his own place. It is Christ who does the consecration and the Eucharistic offering is made by him, not by the priest or by the power of the priest’s personal sanctity.”

catholicexchange.com/css/answers.asp?cat=7&quest=716


#12

When the bell calls you to church, if you were asked, “Where are you going?” you might answer, "I am going to feed my soul. " If someone were to ask you, pointing to the tabernacle, “What is that golden door?” "That is our storehouse, where the true Food of our souls is kept. " “Who has the key? Who lays in the provisions? Who makes ready the feast, and who serves the table?” "The priest. " “And what is the Food?” "The precious Body and Blood of Our Lord. " O God! O God! how Thou hast loved us! See the power of the priest; out of a piece of bread the word of a priest makes a God. It is more than creating the world. . . . Someone said, “Does Saint Philomena, then, obey the Cure of Ars?” Indeed, she may well obey him, since God obeys him.

If I were to meet a priest and an angel, I should salute the priest before I saluted the angel. The latter is the friend of God; but the priest holds His place. Saint Teresa kissed the ground where a priest had passed. When you see a priest, you should say, "There is he who made me a child of God, and opened Heaven to me by holy Baptism; he who purified me after I had sinned; who gives nourishment to my soul. " At the sight of a church tower, you may say, “What is there in that place?” "The Body of Our Lord. " “Why is He there?” "Because a priest has been there, and has said holy Mass. "

What joy did the Apostles feel after the Resurrection of Our Lord, at seeing the Master whom they had loved so much! The priest must feel the same joy, at seeing Our Lord whom he holds in his hands. Great value is attached to objects which have been laid in the drinking cup of the Blessed Virgin and of the Child Jesus, at Loretto. But the fingers of the priest, that have touched the adorable Flesh of Jesus Christ, that have been plunged into the chalice which contained His Blood, into the pyx where His Body has lain, are they not still more precious? The priesthood is the love of the Heart of Jesus. When you see the priest, think of Our Lord Jesus Christ.

That is how beautiful Christ’s priesthood is.


#13

[quote=Hegesippus]That is how beautiful Christ’s priesthood is.
[/quote]

Amen! :thumbsup:

(Thank you for the excerpts from St. John Vianney.)


#14

[quote=ChristianWAB]I agree that one can be an ambassador for Christ, but I don’t agree with the statement that a priest can be **another **Christ. For one to assert that he or she is another Christ is blasphemous.

There’s a difference between being “one in Christ” (i.e.: Galatians 3:28) and being “another Christ” and I personally would definitely steer clear of anybody who claimed that they were another Christ.

A person can serve God and obey His laws, but only One was capable of performing the work necessary for salvation and that One was THE Christ – Jesus. I need Him for Salvation and, unless I’ve misread the Bible in several places, everybody else needs Him as well.
[/quote]

I strongly dissagree.

The priest, in order to change the bread and wine into the Body, Blood, Soul and Divinity of Jesus Christ and then offer Him to the Holy Trinity for sin has to be “Alter Christus” as the Church has defined over and over again.

Ken


#15

[quote=DavidB]The “another Christ” language has the benefit of emphasizing the reality of our being One with Christ and having His Spirit dwelling in us and His power, via the Holy Spirit, flowing through us . . . yet it has the detriment of being easily misunderstood and confused for heresy and even cultish beliefs.

David
[/quote]

“Cultish”?


#16

[quote=kleary]“Cultish”?
[/quote]

When one makes statements that we become God, not “like God”, but “become God”, yeah, that sounds pretty wacky and cult-like if you prefer. There were all kinds of heresy accusations flying around the charismatic movement when folks such as Kenneth Copeland and others began teaching this exact same principle a few decades ago - caused quite a stir since it sounded so much like a cult in which everyone believes they are god.

David


#17

Sometimes we hear it at Mass, other times the priest says it quietly (But I wish they would always say it out loud).

*“By the mingling of this water and wine, may we come to share in His divinity, as He humbled Himself to share in our humanity”.

*[size=4]I like to sit and meditate on those words from time to time. They help give me a glimpse of just how much God loves us, His children.

NotWorthy[/size]


closed #18

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