Our Prophet, Priest, and King

Many churches are described as H. R. Niebuhr famously said of liberalism regarding proclaim and worship “a God without wrath who brought men without sin into a kingdom without judgment through the ministrations of a Christ without a cross.”

That is quite a contrast with the 1689 London Baptist Confession which states: “Christ, and Christ alone, is fitted to be mediator between God and man. He is the prophet, priest and king of the church of God.”

Consider His roles as aligned with what many psychiatrists consider our three fold nature as: intellect, emotions, and will from a Biblical perspective.

INTELLECT – Our “understanding is darkened” (Ephesians 4:18)

EMOTIONS – Most are “unhappy” (Romans 7:24)

WILL – Our will is bent toward evil. (John 3:19)

In the Old Testament there was a threefold theocratic anointing:

Prophet, Priest, and King.

Our concept of Christ in these roles is traceable all the way back to the fourth-century writer Eusebius of Caesarea, who found it helpful to think about Christ as a Prophet, Priest, and King. 

As prophet He represents God to man, enlightening our intellect.

As priest He represents man to God having come to remove our guilt and inspire our feelings.

As King to rule and guide us on our life’s journey. The basis of kingdom loyalty is confidence in and love for the King. When we fully acknowledge we are kingdom citizens, it is logical our primary allegiance is to the King. 

He illumines our intellect, stimulates our emotions, and controls our will.

Affirm Him as your Prophet to teach you; your Priest to sacrifice for, intercede for, and bless you; and your King to rule and guide you.

After a stunning performance of Beethoven’s Ninth Symphony, the renowned Italian conductor Arturo Toscanini is said to have leaned forward and said to the orchestra: “I am nothing. You are nothing. Beethoven is everything.” If Toscanini could say that about a brilliant but dead composer, how much more should Christians say that about the living Savior who is our Prophet, Priest, and King.