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Kings and Priests Unto God

Divine leadership was paramount to the success of Israel's children. Inspired kings established good laws and enforced the functions of human government, and priests prophesied and taught God's law. When they worked together for the good of everyone, both king and priest dutifully obeyed each other's laws. Spiritual development would soon reveal the substance of king and priest to be one whole spiritualized man.

In Jewish history, their kings came through the tribe of Judah. Samuel first anointed Saul, whose leadership ability was awakened when the Spirit of God came upon him and he was turned into another man. When Saul honored the God of his Fathers by obeying divine law, he strengthened his brethren; but when he reverted to envy and psychic predictions, it cost him his reputation, his crown, and his life. David succeeded him, and because David followed God's precepts more carefully, he could foresee another king of his own spiritual lineage who would greatly outshine his reign. David said that this one would be "like unto him" but that he would call him Lord. He sang, "The Lord said unto my Lord, Sit thou at my right hand, until I make thine enemies thy footstool" (Ps 110:1). This Lord and king was to fulfill another prophecy: "There shall come forth a rod out of the stem of Jesse" who shall bring the Israelites out of slavery a second time (Isa 11:1).

Moses was a Levite. He was told by God that the priests would come from the spiritual root of Israel through his tribe. He prophesied that the Messiah would be one like unto him - a high priest of God. Jesus' fulfillment of both Moses' and David's prophesies made him king and priest, and so it is that "he hath on his vesture and on his thigh a name written, KING OF KINGS, AND LORD OF LORDS" (Rev 19:16).

Jesus understood and demonstrated his dual spiritual pedigree, imploring us to follow the same lineage and to reign with him in his Father's kingdom. "To him that overcometh will I grant to sit with me in my throne, even as I also overcame, and am set down with my Father in his throne" (Rev 3:21). Jesus prophesied that when we are properly prepared, he would send another Comforter that would be like unto him, and that we would then understand and demonstrate the true nature of king and priest for ourselves.

It is worth noting that in preparation for the appearing of His two witnesses, Elias first came and restored all things. "John the Baptist prophesied the coming of the immaculate Jesus, and John saw in those days the spiritual idea as the Messiah, who would baptize with the Holy Ghost, - divine Science" (SH 561:32). Saint John was in the Spirit on the Lord's day and saw "in the midst of the seven candlesticks one like unto the Son of man" (Rev 1:13). This man is not identified as a specific person, but he is obviously endowed with Christly qualities. Since Jesus told us to be like him and called himself the Son of man, we are like unto the Son of man. Is Jesus' angel presenting the divine prototype representing all ascended consciousness?

We learn from John's vision that there were "seven lamps of fire burning before the throne, which are the seven Spirits of God" and that round about the throne are twenty-four elders sitting on seats wearing crowns (Rev 4:5). Jesus foresaw that all of his disciples would attain this enlightened state of consciousness when he prophesied, "When ye have lifted up the Son of man, then shall ye know that I am he, and that I do nothing of myself; but as my Father hath taught me, I speak these things" (John 8:28). To win and wear the crown, we must be lifted above mortal mind's reach, unable to move or speak without the divine impetus. Then we know our mouth has God-crowned authority, and our grace has priestly reverence. Mrs. Eddy reaffirmed the message this way: "If man is governed by the law of divine Mind, his body is in submission to everlasting Life and Truth and Love" (SH 216:16).

The twenty-four elders present an exquisite idea of our dual nature. They sit on seats surrounding the throne, as a king's court. Elders are known for their maturity, dignity, experience, and honor. They are not elected to office but are known by their works. Jesus typified the work of an elder; he claimed no authority other than God and worked as His servant. Ideas that are ready to act on every impulse of God fall off their seats, take off their crowns, and listen, while they simultaneously sit on seats, wear crowns, and sing. Jesus' comment, "I can of myself do nothing," was made with his crown off, and his authoritative comment, "As I hear, I judge," was made with his crown on. With perfect humility, waiting on God and knowing none other, we hear the Word, are one with the Word, and speak the Word: "For by grace are ye saved through faith; and that not of yourselves: it is the gift of God" (Eph 2:8). Our identity and purpose are confirmed by thinking and acting in unison as the Mind of God.

Moses' temple in the wilderness prefigured our divine nature, and every condition necessary for the Comforter to arrive is symbolized in it. God told Moses, "I will meet with thee, and I will commune with thee from above the mercy seat" (Ex 25:22). The linen veil, which encircled the interior, had no animal component, indicating that the high priest should be prepared to be as Spirit and not entertain his own mind. The mercy seat (throne), God's law written in stone, the two witnessing angels, the showbread, and the manna - the Christ, truth, which comes down from heaven - are all there.

We must abandon mortal man, bow to the Mind of God, discover our spiritual origin (the center of all being), stand on the foundation of truth, sit down with Christ on the throne, and love understandingly, radiating that Love out upon the universe, for Jesus Christ "hath made us kings and priests unto God" (Rev 1:6).

George Denninger ©

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