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The Pamphlet Collection of Sir Robert Stout: Volume 5

Priesthood of the Kingdom

Priesthood of the Kingdom.

This is an order of men in the State who shall have become priests "after the power of an endless life" having been during the interregnum washed in baptism, sanctified by the

According to the Aaronic types of consecration, for the service to God in the Holy and Most Holy place of the Temple.

page 37 anointing Spirit, and consecrated by the blood of the Covenant. These are "priests to God" who, saith the Lord, "shall enter into my temple, and they shall come near to my table to minister unto me, and they shall keep my charge"—Ezek. xliv. 16.

They are then the priests of Zion clothed with righteousness and salvation—Psa. cxxxii. 9, 16.

"The meek whom the Lord hath beautified "—Psa. cxlix. 4. They are representatively styled "the Sons of Zadoc," and are kings also, as well as priests, and, therefore, priests after the order of Melchisedec. The priesthood of the kingdom is consequently a Royal Priesthood, and as it is "for ever" its officials are immortal, and "equal to the angels." They are perfect as their Father who is in heaven, having no evil in their flesh, nor impurity of character.

The Royal priesthood is an order under one Chief, who is called High Priest. He is the Elder Bother, of the Order, all the rest being "his brethren." He was once like them in the days of his flesh of sin, "a little lower than the angels;" but being also made "after the power of an endless life" he enjoys the spiritual, angelic, or higher nature, and sits as High Priest for ever on his Father David's throne, and bears the glory. The Sons of Zadoc, or Jesus and his brethren, are constituted priests for ever by the word of the oath, so that the Royal priesthood of the kingdom is without predecessor or successor. Its officials do not derive their inheritance from Aaron and his Sons, nor from the Old Covenant of the kingdom. They inherit under the New, which gives them all the privileges and honours they possess. The word of the Oath made their Chief, though a Son of Judah and of David, High Priest,* contrary to the Mosaic Law which created Aaron; it makes them priests also of the same Order by constitution, when in the interregnum they were made the "righteousness of God in him." Betog in him, they are complete in him, and "joint heirs" with him of all his titles and honours, and real and personal estate.

Contemporary with this Order of priests, there will be in the Kingdom a class of priests not royal, nor having the power

* In the Christ are, nevertheless, concentered the lines of Aaronic as well as Davidic descent, to prevent the possibility of any Jew attempting to claim by such descent his title to this priesthood or the royalty under the Mosaic Covenant, still held in reverence by the Nation.

page 38 of an endless life. This inferior class is Lcvitical,* mortal, and corruptible, degraded from their former rank under the Old constitution to an inferior station under the New, to minister before the people instead of before the Lord as in the days of old. The reason of this degradation is the misconduct of their Order under the Mosaic Covenant. When the people turned to the worship of Idols, the Aaronic Levites became their ministers, instead of vindicating the honour and institutions of Jehovah, therefore, says he, "they shall bear their iniquity," they shall not come near to me to do the Office of a priest unto me, nor come near to any of my holy things in my most holy place"—Ezek. xliv. 10-13.
These Levitical priests under the old Covenant officiated at the Altar, entered the Holy Place, and burned incense, and ate the shew-bread at the Lord's Table, and their Chief also passed into the Most Holy with the blood of the Atonement. This was coming near to Jehovah, and ministering unto Him. But their Order had caused the people to serve idols, and had officiated as idol priests. They had done this while the Kingdom existed under the Mosaic code, and the punishment of the offence is decreed to fall upon the Order under the New or amended constitution. They may not approach the altar to offer the fat and the blood of the sacrifices, nor enter into the Holy and Most Holy to stand before the Lord. There is a vacancy" here. The High priesthood is vacated, and the Altar and Holy places are devoid of ministers. There are the Nations, and the Twelve Tribes, and the ministering Levites, who minister to the worshippers, but cannot approach to the Lord. There is a space to be occupied by an Order that may appear before the Lord, burn the fat, and sprinkle the blood upon the Altar, and enter the Holies, and minister for the world as priests to God, and not to the people. The chain is complete when the Order of the Sons of Zadok is introduced between the people's priests and Jehovah. Counting the links from the remotest, there is—1st, the nations; 2nd, Israel; 3rd, the Leviticals; 4th, the Sons of Zadok; 5th, the High Priest, or Prince of Israel; and 6th, Jehovah. This is the chain that

* The vision of the Prophet Ezekiel must, therefore, refer to a Temple yet to be erected and a service yet to be instituted, for the Levites have never yet suffered this degradation.

page 39 connects the ends of the earth to the throne of the eternal when the Kingdom shall exist in the Age to Come.

It is evident that the Sons of Zadok* are resurrected men. Ezekiel is testifying things which had not existed previous to his day, could not exist contemporarily with him, and have not existed since. They are at variance with the Mosaic Law, and could not exist so long as it continued in force. But they are things foretold while the Temple was in smoking ruins, and affirmed of God as certain to come to pass. The reason given why the Sons of Zadok shall burn the fat, and sprinkle the blood on the altar, and appear before Jehovah in the Holy place is, because "they keep the charge of his sanctuary, when the children of Israel went astray from him."

But these faithful men have been dead for ages. They must therefore Rise from the Dead and Receive Eternal Life to perform the service to which they are appointed.

* Etymological meaning of Zadok—the Just One.