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Priests ... Who are they BIBLICALLY?
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BruisedReed
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Priests ... Who are they BIBLICALLY?

Good evening all ... :hibye:

It is late and I have spent the last two colds searching through scriptures :read: cdrom :post: and praying and thinking all the while struggling with a cold ... :sick: so not sure how this is going to sound ... :funnyface:

Since I have over 30 pages of stuff I promise I will only put up a tiny bit ... and ya'll have SOJ to thank ... ;)

You know as witnesses and former witnesses that the whole idea of the 'new covenant' is central to so many beliefs and 'rewards' ... and sadly DIVISIONS ... :(

SOJ made this comment in another thread but I didn't want to hijack it :opps: so I thought I would start another one ... :blush:

He said this ...

This covenant, or contract, makes it possible for 144,000 faithful Christians to go to heaven. There they will serve as kings and priests for the blessing of all mankind.—Genesis 22:18; Jeremiah 31:31-33; 1 Peter 2:9; Revelation 5:9, 10; 14:1-3.

Now I have quite a few angles of reasoning on this ... probably some have already done so themselves in the various threads that have been put up by so many wise :grad: heads and hearts!:happyheart:

But I stumbled upon this site and thought that it merited some consideration ... at least by me anyway ... :thinking::redface:

Language and the thought process behind words is so very important isn't it trying to understand the 'intent' or 'meaning' behind what is written ...

And the Hebrew:rabbi: and Greek :roman: (pretend he's a greek soldier) :whistle:languages are not like English in a lot of ways, and with language constantly changing in it meanings ... well I personally have tried in my research over the years to get as close as I possibly can to try to understand what was meant in the scriptures at the time it was written ... :huh::reading::questioning:

That is why I was kind of excited to read this definition of what is meant by 'priest' ... and the implications this could have in our reasoning with those who think only a 'chosen few' have the privlege of being such ... maybe ... (don't want to be dogmatic) :redface:

One of the scriptures our brother SOJ used was ...

Revelation 5:9-10 ...


9 And they sing a new song, saying: “You are worthy to take the scroll and open its seals, because you were slaughtered and with your blood you bought persons for God out of every tribe and tongue and people and nation, 10 and you made them to be a kingdom and priests to our God, and they are to rule as kings over the earth.”

For now ... :siskiss::whistle:

I would like to focus on the 'pries' part of 'priest' if I may ... :priest:

The Greek word used in Revelation is ...

G2409 ἱερεύς

hiereus hee-er-yooce'


From G2413; a priest (literally or figuratively): - (high) priest.

G2413 ἱερός

hieros hee-er-os'


Of uncertain affinity; sacred: - holy.


However, John was a 'Jewish person' or Hebrew or natural Israelite wasn't he? So what would he have understood a 'priest' to be according to the Hebrew language? :confused:

I think that might be a good thing wonder wouldn't it? :thinking::dontknow:

H3548 כּהן

kôhên ko-hane'


Active participle of H3547; literally one officiating, a priest; also (by courtesy) an acting priest (although a layman): - chief ruler, X own, priest, prince, principal officer.

H3547 כּהן

kâhan kaw-han'


A primitive root, apparently meaning to mediate in religious services; but used only as denominative from H3548; to officiate as a priest; figuratively to put on regalia: - deck, be (do the office of a, execute the, minister in the) priest (‘s office).


For a bit more of a definition of what a priest is ...

http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Kohen

A Kohen (or Kohein, Hebrew כֹּהֵן, 'priest', pl. כוהנים, Kohanim) is the Hebrew word for priest. Jewish Kohens are traditionally believed to be of direct patrilineal descent from the Biblical Aaron, as are modern Jews bearing the name Kohen, Cohen, Kogen or similar derivations.
The name Kohen is used in the Torah to refer to priests, both Jewish and non-Jewish, as well as the Jewish nation as a whole. During the existence of the Temple in Jerusalem, Kohanim performed specific duties vis-à-vis the daily and festival sacrificial offerings.
Today Kohanim retain a lesser though still somewhat distinct status within Judaism and are bound by additional restrictions according to Orthodox Judaism.


Here is another site that I found which I really loved the explanation and imagery ... for isn't the Hebrew language more like 'poetry and images (illustrations) in words' ... :happyheart: :rose:

http://www.ancient-hebrew.org/1_faqs.html#priest1


What does the Hebrew word "kohen" (priest) mean?

The word kohen comes from the root ken. Ken is spelled kaph-nun, the kaph is a picture of the open hand and means open, the nun is a picture of a seed. ken then means an opening of a seed. When the seed opens the roots come out to form the base for the plant and provides the support. The stalk then rises up straight and stiff.

The word Ken is the word for "yes," in other words, if you ask me to do something, I will say "ken" or "yes, I will be firm in this." A kohen is one who will stand firm with a strong base on the earth (could represent the people) and the stalk will rise up (could represent God). The kohen was one who stood as the mediator between man and God, he was the firm base of the people and the stalk that stood tall for the people to God.


Now I hope ya'll will bear with me for I am still in the 'mulling' :thinking: and 'meditating' :pray: stage of all the info I have ... but i was just so excited :Dthat I wanted to start to put something up ... :post:

So, now it would seem that these 'priests' of the 'new covenant' would have 'duties' to perform just as the foreshadowing priests did in the temple wouldn't it ...?

So, just what would these 'duties' be ...?

Well, according to the definitions above there are various duties they perform according to the circumstance, time of year (Sabbaths, Festivals, and so on ...)

But one could sort of encompass their 'duties' under the word 'minister' or 'serve' or offer 'worship of their God' perhaps ...? :worthy:

This would seem to be in accord with the scripture the NWT translates as saying they are 'serving' as 'priests' ...

Now, I am hoping that our brother SOJ will kind of agree with my reasoning so far ... and that he will share some scriptural reasoning with us as well as ya'll ... :giverose:

Also, according to witness belief this 'royal priesthood', in their estimation 144,000) will serve or 'render sacred service' in this position of 'ministering' in the 'temple' ...

Maybe, I should stop there for now ... I have probably already went on too long and am not sure if I am making any sense of logical thought process with my stuffy head and sore throat ... :sick:

I am hoping for some input before continuing ... if you think you want me to that is ... :giverose:

My sincere love to all of you dear ones ... BR :sheepy: :bouncyhearts:


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01-31-2011 12:38 AM
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COMankind
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RE: Priests ... Who are they BIBLICALLY?

BR -feel better! Sorry to hear you're sick.

Nothing like light reading on the biblical priesthood to help pass the time though :read: I have such a hard time focusing when ive got a head cold...well, even when I don't. So kudos.

I'll say i was challenged to find the actual crescendo....looks like you stopped yourself mid thought? Heres a point about priests I always liked (many of us may know this one)


"You have made them to be a kingdom and priests to serve our God, and they will reign on the earth." - rev 5:10 (NIV)

"and you made them to be a kingdom and priests to our God, and they are to rule as kings over the earth." - rev 5:10 (NWT)

"and you made them to the God of us kingdom and priests, and they are reigning upon the earth" - rev 5:10 (NWT Kingdom Interlinear)

Even in the organizations own Greek translation, they put the kings on earth. But in the published NWT, the priests are over - and this is applied as 144k in heaven.

Random fact :)


philia, COMankind

"The tent of God is with mankind" - Rev 21:3

01-31-2011 01:19 AM
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Lauderdale
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RE: Priests ... Who are they BIBLICALLY?

Hello BR

Please some more, you stopped right in the middle!


Your Sis Lauderdale :cheer:

01-31-2011 02:02 AM
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BruisedReed
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RE: Priests ... Who are they BIBLICALLY?

Good morning! :):drinking:

Thanks for the warm replies ... :love: I finished typing after midnight last night and went to bed ... and yeah I kinda did finish in mid thought didn't I ... ;) but for those who don't like real long posts to read I was trying to cut down my post length ... I wish I had the gift of some of you who can say so much in so few words ... :blush:

Okee dokee as E&E would say ...

Br. COmankind I too noticed that 'on' the earth in that verse as well ... and to me at least this would be a closer use of the Greek word 'epi' ... as the scriptures say New Jerusalem 'COMES DOWN FROM heaven' as Revelation 21:2 says ...

2 I saw also the holy city, New Jerusalem, coming down out of heaven from God and prepared as a bride adorned for her husband.

When I read the definition about the 'open seed' it so reminded me of the promise to Abraham about his seed and the blessings that he would receive through his 'line' ... kind of makes you wonder doesn't it ...!:whistle:

There are so many angles that I just want to write 'poof' ... the more research I continue to do on this topic ... and I have done a LOT in the last 6 years the more convinced I am that we ARE in the new covenant as that is the only thing that makes sense when you look at the whole scope of scripture and not try to 'fit' them into the WT view ...

Now which angle first is the problem ... ;)

Perhaps going back to the beginning and where we come to get the idea of a 'spiritual nation of Israel' that is in the 'new covenant' just as 'natural Israel' was in a 'covenant relationship' with the father ...

We will again begin with one of the scriptures that SOJ used ...

Gen 22:18 ...

(ASV) And in thy seed shall all the nations of the earth be blessed. Because thou hast obeyed my voice.

(BBE) And your seed will be a blessing to all the nations of the earth, because you have done what I gave you orders to do.

(CEV) You have obeyed me, and so you and your descendants will be a blessing to all nations on earth."


So identifying just WHO this 'seed' would be, since it is THEY who would be in the 'new covenant' arrangement, is paramount to trying to RE-understand who this 144,000 might be is worth exploring I think ...:blush:

Well, WHO in the nation of Israel, (and since the whole witness structure is based on the Hebrew Scriptures I think it a good place to start:redface:) were considered to 'sons to God'?

Did Jehovah ever use the same kinds of words to the natural Israelites that he used in Revelation to 'spiritual Israel' ...?

Let's take a look at Ex. 19:6 ...

6 And YOU yourselves will become to me a kingdom of priests and a holy nation.’ These are the words that you are to say to the sons of Israel.”

Then we have the scripture at Deuteronomy 7:6 ...

For you are a holy people to Jehovah your God. It is you Jehovah your God has chosen to become his people, a special property, out of all the peoples that are on the surface of the ground.


So, again WHO is being spoken of as a 'special property' ... 'holy people/nation' ... 'chosen' ... 'kingdom of priests' ... was it only a 'select few' or was it the ENTIRE nation of Israel ...? :dontknow:

Now I know that in this 'holy nation' that were some 'chosen out of them' to be 'literal priests' ... and what was their main 'job' description?

Well, Isa. 61:6 tells us ...

(ASV) But ye shall be named the priests of Jehovah; men shall call you the ministers of our God: ye shall eat the wealth of the nations, and in their glory shall ye boast yourselves.

(BBE) But you will be named the priests of the Lord, the servants of our God: you will have the wealth of the nations for your food, and you will be clothed with their glory.


So this would be a nation of priests/ministers to their brothers and to others ...

The Hebrew word for 'priest' is kôhên as we have already seen above so let us look at the Hebrew word for 'minister' ...

H8334 שׁרת

shârath shaw-rath'


A primitive root; to attend as a menial or worshipper; figuratively to contribute to: - minister (unto), (do) serve (-ant, -ice, -itor), wait on.


So while these 'priests/ministers' had a very important and special job to do ... what they had to keep in mind IMHO is that they had to show first and foremost a 'special' kind of humility ... for they were SERVANTS TO THEIR FELLOW BROTHERS!

Indeed, did not the WHOLE nation, whether a priest in the temple or not have to show such a humble attitude toward their brothers?

That being said, our God is a God of order and so to make it 'easier' for the nation to be 'orderly' so as to continue obedient as Abraham did (thus his receiving this blessing for future generations) he set up an arrangement to help this 'chosen nation' ... men, women and children ... remain 'holy' and 'clean' and 'obedient' to ther heavenly Father.

Even Jesus tried to help his disciples have this HUMBLE attitude, not to think themselves as greater than their fellow brothers, but that they were servants or slaves to their brothers.

WHO do we consider to be the GREATEST man who ever lived on this earth? :dontknow:

Well, I know ya'll know the answer ...

JESUS ...

And HOW did he view himself ... the only-begotten son of God the Almighty?

Mat 20:28 ...

(ASV) even as the Son of man came not to be ministered unto, but to minister, and to give his life a ransom for many.

(BBE) Even as the Son of man did not come to have servants, but to be a servant, and to give his life for the salvation of men.

(CEV) The Son of Man did not come to be a slave master, but a slave who will give his life to rescue many people.


And Jesus was a ... HIGH priest ... hmmm ...

Yes 'ministered' to the people ... even going so far as to wash his disciples feet ... truly showing he fully understood what ministering to his brothers and others means ...

G1247 διακονέω

diakoneō dee-ak-on-eh'-o


From G1249; to be an attendant, that is, wait upon (menially or as a host, friend or [figuratively] teacher); technically to act as a Christian deacon: - (ad-) minister (unto), serve, use the office of a deacon.


So, these 'priests' that the scriptures speak about, while having an 'office of responsibility' need to be careful not to let it go their heads so to speak, to think themselves 'above' their brothers ... but as their servants doing even the 'menial' duties of a host.

And again the 'kind' of duties that the priesthood had IMHO was sort of the same as the entire nation at least when it came to 'teaching' ... for did not ALL the nation have the responsibility to teach in their homes/roadway etc.

So, another duty of the priests was being a 'teacher' to others ... and this is in accord with Isa. 61:1-3 ...

61 The spirit of the Sovereign Lord Jehovah is upon me, for the reason that Jehovah has anointed me to tell good news to the meek ones. He has sent me to bind up the brokenhearted, to proclaim liberty to those taken captive and the wide opening [of the eyes] even to the prisoners; 2 to proclaim the year of goodwill on the part of Jehovah and the day of vengeance on the part of our God; to comfort all the mourning ones; 3 to assign to those mourning over Zion, to give them a headdress instead of ashes, the oil of exultation instead of mourning, the mantle of praise instead of the downhearted spirit; and they must be called big trees of righteousness, the planting of Jehovah, for [him] to be beautified.

So, this nation of people went from being unclean to holy and was given a job to do that would eventually affect millions ...

Now one could ask ... WHO is the nation of Israel was considered to HOLY? :thumbsup:

Was it just the 'priests' who were considered HOLY ...? Or was it the ENTIRE nation ...? And 'how many' was that ...? And what would this picture not only for 'today' but for the 'future' ... again considered the 'job description ...?

Again I will sign off temporarily to collect some more thoughts ... I am trying to be coherent and logical ... and trying to go somewhere with this reasoning angle ... not sure I'm succeeding though ... :sick:

If anyone 'is' following my brain process feel free to step in anytime!:thumbsup:

Luv as always ... BR :sheepy: :bouncyhearts:


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01-31-2011 12:12 PM
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BruisedReed
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RE: Priests ... Who are they BIBLICALLY?

Okay I'm back with another cuppa coffee and just ate some toast ... :drinking::eat:

So, priests serving in the temple had special garments they would wear to identify their position of service in the temple didn't they ...

Notice some scriptures that speak about the 'clothing' worn by the 'priests' who are in 'Jerusalem' ...

Psalm 132:16 ...


And its priests I shall clothe with salvation; And its loyal ones will without fail cry out joyfully.

Isaiah 52:1 ...

Wake up, wake up, put on your strength, O Zion! Put on your beautiful garments, O Jerusalem, the holy city! For no more will there come again into you the uncircumcised and unclean one.


Psalm 132:9 ...

Let your priests themselves be clothed with righteousness, And let your own loyal ones cry out joyfully.


So, this 'clothing' that was to be 'worn' by the priests was not only a 'visible' sort of cloth ... but also an INNER type of clothing ... one of their own heart :heartbeat:and one of approval by God himself! :hug:

But is this beautiful type of 'clothing' only to be worn by the 'priests' ...?:thinking:

Weelllll ... ;)

In a 'JWs' mind only the 'anointed', those who will 'rule in heaven with Christ' are worthy to be called HOLY, RIGHTEOUS, and wear the 'raiment of a 'priest and king' ... the 'great crowd' or 'other sheep' do not have this privilege of responsibility but look to them, the 'little flock' for guidance and spiritual food, for they alone a 'joint heirs with Christ', they alone who are in this 'new covenant' arrangement. :king::grouphug:

Now, I have some thoughts I read in various articles in the Watchtower that describe some of the 'duties' of what witnesses refer to as 'other sheep' and try to imagine the literal temple arrangement and how it was set out ... and those who have good historical recall I hope you will add something or correct me ... :blush:

In the 'temple' only the priests were allowed in certain areas due to their being 'chosen' for this privelege of service to their brothers ...

Now I ask myself ...? :confused: :scratchhead:

Self ... could they have had 'fill-ins', as it were, for their assignments from those not of the priestly lineage? Could they, if their duties overwhelmed them, or they got sick or too old ask other members not of the levites for example, of the nation to do their job for them? :dontknow:

Here is where those with deeper knowledge of 'who' did 'what' would help ... ;):giverose:

I am kind of thinking ... no ... :blush:

Everyone had a 'place' (and even the 'society' says that we should 'keep our place' ;) ) in the nation of Israel and every place was important IMHO whether one be a 'priest' or not ... for it was the on the ENTIRE NATIONS' head whether they were viewed as 'clean and obedient' or not ... (Achan for example)

So, what is our 'place' ... are 'we' (whom we so long thought of that 'special possession' ... 'chosen' by our God and Father and considered clean and holy to be only those of the 144,000 anointed) going to be in 'priesthood' and thus in a 'teaching' and 'mediating' type of role ...?

Here is where a complete mindset change is needed for witnesses, and what we 'thought' the 'new system of things' is to be may need to changed to 'GOD'S THOUGHTS :angel: (and arrangement) and NOT 'men thoughts or interpretations) :(

Let us go for a moment longer though in using the 'idea' of the 'great crowd' or 'other sheep' being the majority of witnesses today ... and thus being in existance 'now' ... in our time period ...

According to Revelation 7:14 ...

14 So right away I said to him: “My lord, you are the one that knows.” And he said to me: “These are the ones that come out of the great tribulation, and they have washed their robes and made them white in the blood of the Lamb.

Okay, so we have this 'great crowd' wearing ROBES

Next ...

Revelation 7:15 ...

15 That is why they are before the throne of God; and they are rendering him sacred service day and night in his temple;and the One seated on the throne will spread his tent over them.

So, we have the GREAT CROWD ...

STANDING BEFORE THE THRONE ... ahhemm ... clear throat ... that 'cold' don't ya know ... ;) :sick:

Is 'anyone else' 'standing before 'the throne' ...

Revelation 14:3 ...


3 And they are singing as if a new song before the throne and before the four living creatures and the elders; and no one was able to master that song but the hundred and forty-four thousand, who have been bought from the earth.

So, we have the 144,000 (anointed in JW'S minds) ... AS WELL AS ... the 'GREAT CROWD' ...

STANDING BEFORE THE THRONE ...! :king:

Interestingly, the Greek word for 'standing before' is ...

G1799 ἐνώπιον

enōpion en-o'-pee-on


Neuter of a compound of G1722 and a derivation of G3700; in the face of (literally or figuratively): - before,in the presence (sight) of, to.


Next ...

We have the 'great crowd' rendering SACRED SERVICE ...

Watchtower footnote for Revelation 7:15 for 'sacred service' ...

“They are rendering . . . sacred service.” Gr., la‧treu′ou‧sin; J22(Heb.), we‛oh‧vedhim′, “and they are serving (worshiping).” Compare Ex 3:12 ftn.


And just WHERE are they doing this 'worshipping or serving' ...?

IN HIS TEMPLE ...

The Greek word for 'temple' is ...

G3485 ναός

naos nah-os'


From a primary word ναίω naiō (to dwell); a fane, shrine, temple: - shrine, temple. Compare G2411.

G2411 ἱερόν

hieron hee-er-on'


Neuter of G2413; a sacred place, that is, the entire precincts (whereas G3485 denotes the central sanctuary itself) of the Temple (at Jerusalem or elsewhere): - temple.


So now ... :shocked:

The GREAT CROWD get to go IN ... the CENTRAL SANCTUARY ITSELF OF THE TEMPLE ... or ... 'New Jerusalem'!!!!:cheer::cheer::cheer:

As witnesses we had always been taught that ONLY THE 144,000 had the opportunity to go into the NAOS (heaven) ... while we as the 'great crowd' were in the 'outer courtyard' (earth)

Here is an interesting article on how we have been 'controlled' to think that we won't go to heaven for one ... and that the only place that New Jerusalem is going to be is in 'heaven' ... (both wrong idea in my humble and still learning opinion)

*** w80 8/15 pp. 14-15 pars. 3-4 The “Great Crowd” Renders Sacred Service Where? ***


3 What an honored position this “great crowd” is said to occupy, and what a dignified appearance they are said to have! Even in modern times it is proper for one to stand when in the presence of a monarch who is seated on his throne. But here those of that “great crowd” are seen standing before the throne of God himself. Also, in order to suit the occasion, they are clothed with spotless white robes. Are they seen standing in some out-of-doors gathering? No, for Revelation 7:15 (ED) says that “they . . . publicly serve him day and night in his temple [na‧os′ in the Greek original text].” Well, now, does this mean that those making up this “great crowd” finally go to heaven where the God is to whom they ascribe their “salvation”? The answer generally given is Yes! Why? Because it is said to be “in his temple” (ED), or, “in his sanctuary” (Rotherham), that they render to him public service or “divine service.”

4 However, does that view fit all the detailed facts set out in the last book of the Bible, Revelation? Also, as regards those who today consider themselves part of that “great crowd” that is now being formed, do they expect to go to heaven and become spirit creatures like angels? Do they even want to go to heaven? They will tell you No! and they do not consider themselves to be begotten by God’s spirit to such a heavenly hope. The question revolves around that original Greek word that is variously translated as “tent,” “temple” and “sanctuary.” For example, in the Bible account of where Jesus Christ drove the money changers and merchantmen out of Herod’s temple, the original Greek word used is na‧os′. There we read: “Jesus answered, ‘Destroy this sanctuary [na‧os′], and in three days I will raise it up’. The Jews replied, ‘It has taken forty-six years to build this sanctuary [na‧os′]: are you going to raise it up in three days?’ But he was speaking of the sanctuary [na‧os′] that was his body.” (John 2:19-21, The Jerusalem Bible) By “sanctuary,” what did those Jews mean?


There is of course more if you want to look it up for yourselves ... but I think you will probably get the 'gist' that 'we' wouldn't ever DARE think that we 'could' go to HEAVEN ... and be 'SPIRIT CREATURES' (who can only 'see' God) like the angels or Jesus our God ... or ... here a big gasp ... :shocked: would we even WANT TO ...?!!:confused:

And yet ... in spite of the SCRIPTURES :read: ... thus JESUS' OWN WORDS (for it was he that gave John this vision to write down) ... CLEARLY telling us that the 'great crowd' will be able to entire INTO the 'naos' ... temple ... New Jerusalem ... we are be told BY MEN ... to accept their IMHO 'flawed interpretation' as they are trying to fit something into their own preconcieved viewpoint) that we WON'T ...!!

Who will we listen to in this case??!!:dontknow:

And what does that mean in regard to the 'new covenant' and the idea of 'priests' ...?

Well, we have been 'told' for decades that ONLY those of the 'heavenly hope' ... those who are 'joint heirs' ... those who will in 'heaven' as 'kings and priests' ... those in the 'new covenant' are the 144,000 ... that OUR hope is 'earthly' ...

So now we have to try to get out of our heads and hearts the 'words of men' and try to put in instead the 'words of God' ...

The Great Crowd will ...

Wear white robes
Stand before the throne
Render worship or sacred service in the temple (naos) ... (in the Watchtower's definition ... 'divine habitation') ...
Be washed clean in the blood of the lamb


First of all ... I can't help but go back and think the literal nation of Israel from where the 'spiritual Israelites' have a modern day application ...

HOW MANY of the nation were considered HOLY to Jehovah?

Was it not the nation in its ENTIRETY when they were acting obediently as they be?

And were they not numbered into the MILLIONS ... a 'great crowd' indeed?!

We cannot fully go by the 'temple arrangement' as it was back then for it was 'done away with' ... but the principles I think do apply ...

Now it will be argued that 'New Jerusalem is IN HEAVEN ...

But is that necessarily the case ....?

It will COME DOWN OUT OF HEAVEN the BIBLE says ... and if this is the case ... then indeed those who will 'inhabit the earth' ... who are TOTALLY CLEAN in the blood of the Lamb WILL be able to enter its gates ...

And since Christ will be 'reigning' in the MIDST OF HIS ENEMIES ... there will be a 'priestly' ... a MINISTERING or TEACHING work that will need to be done ... and since 'we' are getting lots of practice NOW ... in trying to 'teach' the truth as best we know it ... I think this will be of some help during that future time don't you ...? But that of course is for another topic probably ... ;):whistle::P

I have found an interesting thought as to the number 144,000 if anyone wants to hear it ... but this is already way too long so I'll stop for now :post: :quiet:

Hubby says I have a fever so not sure if what I wrote is in logical order but I did try ...

Luv ya'll BR :sheepy: :bouncyhearts:


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01-31-2011 02:18 PM
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COMankind
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RE: Priests ... Who are they BIBLICALLY?

Whew - and I thought this was going to be about the Levite Priesthood.

Great research BR. I like the points about the robes, thats probably worth a thread on its own.

You had me along with you right up to the point that you put New Jerusalem on earth - and even then you seemed a bit on the fence? In Rev 21 it talks about NJ holding the river of water of life, that's of eternal life, which was offered to the Samaritan woman. So it's certainly important to know where that city is supposed to be. God and Jesus sit in it, their thrones are there - and THEY are the temple (there is no more temple) The apostles are there. There are dogs, cowards, immoral people (on earth) There is a tent with mankind (on earth) Leaves fall from trees in the city to heal kings and nations. (From heaven down to earth)

I think of the tent being the new earth. The city being the new heaven.

But Priests:
Substitute priests: interesting question. I'll see if I can dig it up.

A priest indeed is more like a servant, that's how Jesus taught for sure (washing feet) but the position is one of greater honor.

As far as 144K vs GC:
Maybe read Rev 7:14-17 and compare to Rev 21:3,4. These are people on earth, under the tent of God. Jesus is shepherding them, leading them to that water eventually.

They are distinctly different from the 144K, who are said to be kings & priests...the 144K are shepherds. But that job only lasts 1000 years. (rev 20:4)

The great multitude start joining later (20:5) - notice there was no distinction between coming to life in heaven or on earth - they just 'came to life' - and the 144K stopped ruling. Now people were flowing into heaven.

hope you heal soon :thumbsup:


philia, COMankind

"The tent of God is with mankind" - Rev 21:3

01-31-2011 07:55 PM
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gogh
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Post: #7
RE: Priests ... Who are they BIBLICALLY?

re: "...great crowd” are seen standing before the throne of God himself." (as per Watchtower article)

This may be completely unimportant, but.....regarding Revelation 7:15, seems most translations (I have referenced) do not indicate (bodily) position of "standing".

greek interlinear states: "they are in view of the throne"

(NWT) "That is why they are before the throne of God;"

(ASV) "Therefore are they before the throne of God; and they serve him day and night in his temple: and he that sitteth on the throne shall spread his tabernacle over them."

(ISV) "That is why: "They are in front of the throne of God and worship him night and day in his temple. The one who sits on the throne will shelter them."

If bodily position, wherever indicated in scripture, is of any significance, ie: bowing, kneeling, standing etc....scripture (most translations) seem to not indicate position of "standing", that's all, over and out, for what it's worth, etc...

.02,

gogh


"......."This is my Son, whom I have chosen. Keep listening to him!" Luke 9:35
01-31-2011 09:27 PM
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RE: Priests ... Who are they BIBLICALLY?

Yes dear br. gogh ... I noticed that as well ... in referring to the 'standing' part ...

In the Greek it doesn't seem to be there ... 'standing' ... just 'before' ...

G1799 ἐνώπιον

enōpion en-o'-pee-on


Neuter of a compound of G1722 and a derivation of G3700; in the face of (literally or figuratively): - before, in the presence (sight) of, to.


So if we are 'in the presence' of someone or something ... wouldn't it 'stand' (pardon the pun it just slipped out :P) to reason that it is something 'seen' to 'us' ... or those who are 'before it' ...?:dontknow:

I understand br. COmankind that the thought that New Jerusalem being connected or on the earth in any way must be something quite new to think about ... and indeed I am not dogmatic in any way about 'future events' as they have yet to unfold ... so I would also think anyone else, be they claim to be 'anointed' or not would hesitate to state some as concrete when the spirit has yet to fully reveal what needs to be revealed to the 'God's servants' ... :blush:

You state ...

God and Jesus sit in it, their thrones are there - and THEY are the temple (there is no more temple) The apostles are there. There are dogs, cowards, immoral people (on earth) There is a tent with mankind (on earth) Leaves fall from trees in the city to heal kings and nations. (From heaven down to earth)

If I may respectfully ask you some questions here ...

If there is 'no temple' then HOW can God and Jesus 'sit IN IT ON their thrones? Are the thrones they themselves that they are sitting on?

I truly don't mean to sound in any mocking ... for I am not even a little bit ... but there are other things that come into play when speaking about New Jerusalem and those who have the honor and RIGHT to 'go into it' through the 'gates' ...

So are you saying that there are literal 'trees' in heaven and the leaves fall out of the sky for us to eat ... sort of like the 'manna from heaven'?

And if 'New Jerusalem is in HEAVEN ... and all the chosen ones are in it ... then how can it be surrounded by these 'dogs, cowards, and immoral, and Gog of Magog ...?

New Jerusalem is likened to a 'bride' ... (pardon me if what come next doesn't make any sense but I'm talking off the cuff ...)

A bride 'adorned' (dressed) for her husband (Christ, King, God and Father 'of' New Jerusalem)

The scriptures in speaking about the 'marriage arrangement' is a JOINING OF TWO INTO ONE ... and is that not what our Lord said when on earth that his followers would be 'one' with him ... could this be loosely pictorial of this 'future wedding' where two become yoked together in a bond that is meant to last forever (Adam and Eve) and will be so for our future as we will not die and thus that bond that unity will never be broken ... ? :dontknow: (end of weird talk ... hopefully ...:funnyface: )

What is the requirement of those whom will be one with Christ ... who will be 'heirs with promise' ... the very promise that was spoken of to Abraham?

Is it not those who put faith in his Son and accept him as their Savior, king, god, prince of peace and so on ...?

The Watchtower Society says that only those who are of the 144,000 can be called 'sons of God', the spiritual Israelites, the anointed, the little flock are to be considered 'holy' ... and can be called so now because of being sanctified and cleansed due to the 'blood of the Lamb'.

Now I need to ask myself ... :huh::dontknow::confused:

If having faith in the ransom of the shed blood of the lamb ... (a blood which was offered for ALL of mankind if they so choose to accept it redeeming quality) ... accepting Christ our Lord and King and Savior ... and if one feels God's spirit is with them ... the spirit we (I) ask for every night to be upon me and in me that I may be 'one with my God and his Son' ... that I was 'baptized into Christ' at my water baptism the same way that all others were (thankfully before the changes were made) ... then how can it be 'limited' to this small number of 144,000 when the promise to 'Abraham's seed' was to be countless ... ? Is it not to 'Abraham's seed' that these 'joint heirs' would come from? :dontknow:

Galatians 3:26-29 ...


26 YOU are all, in fact, sons of God through YOUR faith in Christ Jesus. 27 For all of YOU who were baptized into Christ have put on Christ. 28 There is neither Jew nor Greek, there is neither slave nor freeman, there is neither male nor female; for YOU are all one [person] in union with Christ Jesus. 29 Moreover, if YOU belong to Christ, YOU are really Abraham’s seed, heirs with reference to a promise.

Now then remembering that Revelation is indeed a book of 'vision' ... of 'figurative' things could it just be possible that this 'number' of 144,000 might not be a 'literal' number as we have been taught by those who claim to be of that number ...?

In trying to look up symbolic numbers and what they may mean, and to seek to once again understand the mindset of the people who wrote the Bible I ran into this information ...

http://www.mountainretreatorg.net/bible/numbers.html

There is a lot of information on the various symbolic meanings of number, the Watchtower publications seem to only go as far as 40 that ya'll might find interesting ... but I am in particular thinking about the number 1000 right now and to see if there is anything about this one ..

The Numbers 10, 100, 1000

The Numbers ten and it's multiples (100, 1000) often illustrates the Fullness of whatever is in view, without it "necessarily" being the totality. As a practical illustration, Monday would be a full day, but not the totality of the week. Likewise ten would represent the fullness or completeness of that particular day, but not necessarily the totality of the whole week which that day is part of. A perfect Biblical example is the Beast of Revelation chapter 12 and chapter 17, with it's 7 heads and 10 horns. The number seven illustrates the totality or total length of time of Satan's authority (heads) and rule (crowns), while the ten horns illustrates His rule only near the end of the world. i.e., as said in Revelation 17, the ten horns had no kingdom as yet (when revelation was written), but is prophesied to reign one hour with the Beast. The ten horns signified the fullness of time (10) that these kings would have power (horns) to reign with the beast. It's called a short season, but it is the fullness of time within the time context of the rule of this Beast! That number ten signifies that fullness of time.


Also I thought the number 12 ... (as 12x12 is 144) might be good to look at ...

The Number 12

The number twelve is another prime example of spiritual significance. In other words, God uses this number to show us some spiritual truth in it's application. Would we be prudent Bible students in thinking that it has no meaning besides a count, and it's mere coincidence the places which it is found? No, we would be negligent to think so. In my studies I have found that the number twelve spiritually points to the Congregation of God.
A good example would be the twelve brothers, the twelve sons of Jacob who were the progenitors of the twelve tribes of Israel. This was the Old Testament congregation, or Children of God. The number twelve spiritually signified this! These twelve sons were not a coincidental number of births, they were God ordained! Likewise, the significance is passed on after the cross as the twelve apostles became the New Testament representative of the congregation or Children of God. The exact same spiritual number attached to God's congregation on both sides of the cross. We can see this brought forth Gloriously as in Revelation 21, the Bride of Christ, the New Jerusalem (Thee Church) comes down from Heaven.

Revelation 21:12
• "And had a wall great and high, and had twelve gates, and at the gates twelve angels, and names written thereon, which are the names of the Twelve Tribes of the Children of Israel:"
Revelation 21:14
• "And the wall of the City had twelve foundations, and in them the names of the Twelve Apostles of the lamb."
The twelve gates signify the entrance to the City. And note that the Old Testament congregation is represented as well as the New. The names of the twelve tribes of Israel at the gate, and the names of the twelve Apostles in the foundations. Why would anyone make the assumption that this number twelve is not spiritually significant, or that it's just some coincidence that there were twelve tribes, twelve Apostles, twelve gates, the City measuring twelve thousand furlongs, having twelve precious stones, etc. No, it is obviously not coincidence. And if it's not coincidence, then the number twelve has special meaning there. God "specifically" made sure there were twelve sons, and twelve Apostles, twelve gates, twelve fragments of food left over, etc. That means He did it for a reason. And the reason is to show us some spiritual consistency in where He is using it. To say that the number twelve has no special significance, is to not fully understand that God's inspired Word, is not just words, they're numbers also!
When we look at the miracle that Jesus did for the damsel who was twelve years old in raising her from the dead, we see it was a signification that the Church would be raised from the dead. This is why it is meticulously pointed out that the woman was twelve. There is no other reason for God pointing out her age except this spiritual signification.

Another example would be the woman who had suffered many things of Physicians, and none could heal her. God meticulously points out that it was for twelve years..
Mark 5:25
• "And a certain Woman which had an issue of blood twelve years.."
This woman touched but the hem of Jesus garment, and was made whole. I.e., what was unclean for 12 years was now clean. The garment of Christ is signifying the Righteousness of Christ. Just as scripture says we are clothed in the Righteousness of Christ. This Woman had been made righteous, by the virtue of Christ!


Now the watchtower has this to say about the number 12 ... and it seems to me to be in pretty good harmony with the comments above ...

*** it-2 p. 513 Number, Numeral ***

Twelve. The patriarch Jacob had 12 sons, who became the foundations of the 12 tribes of Israel. Their offspring were organized by God under the Law covenant as God’s nation. Twelve therefore seems to represent a complete, balanced, divinely constituted arrangement. (Ge 35:22; 49:28) Jehovah chose 12 apostles, who form the secondary foundations of the New Jerusalem, built upon Jesus Christ. (Mt 10:2-4; Re 21:14) There are 12 tribes of “the sons of [spiritual] Israel,” each tribe consisting of 12,000 members.—Re 7:4-8.

Multiples of 12 are also sometimes significant. David established 24 divisions of the priesthood to serve by turn in the temple later built by Solomon. (1Ch 24:1-18) This assists in identifying the “twenty-four elders” who were seated round about God’s throne in white outer garments and who were wearing crowns. (Re 4:4) The footstep followers of Jesus Christ, his spiritual brothers, are promised kingship and priesthood with him in the heavens. These elders could not be only the apostles, who numbered just 12. They therefore evidently represent the entire body of the “royal priesthood,” the 144,000 (as represented in the 24 priestly divisions serving at the temple) in their positions in the heavens, as crowned kings and priests.—1Pe 2:9; Re 7:4-8; 20:6.


Now, seems it would appear that completeness, balanced, thus symbolically speaking would have to include ALL those who would become part of God's loving spiritual arrangement for the salvation of mankind ...!

Just as Jesus said ... no more would there be 'two flocks' ... but there would be ONE FLOCK ... ONE SHEEPFOLD ... and it would seem logical to to me that various one of those in the this flock would have differing jobs and assignment depending on their skills and need ...

As to where Mount Zion or New Jerusalem might be ... what about thinking on these scriptures ...? :thinking::read:

the society has said that we as the 'great crowd of other sheep' would reside in the 'outer courtyard' of New Jerusalem ... and that this courtyard is of course here on earth while the anointed reside in the 'naos' or the 'divine habitation' in heaven ...

And yet clearly Revelation said that the great crowd would render sacred service in the temple (New Jerusalem) in the naos which is supposed to be in 'heaven' ...

So, how can one make sense of this ...? :scratchhead: :shocked::confused:

To me that is why it is so important to try to look at these things from a neutral or unbiased point of view from what we may have believed with all our heart and try to look at it through the eyes of the scriptures and let God's word speak for itself ...:giverose: with our understanding growing more and more brighter and richer the more we rely on God's spirit for enlightenment and not that of our own ... the best we can ... :blush:

br. COmankind you mentioned that 'tent' in Revelation ... well it would seem it is also referred to in this scriptures as well ... and please notice the setting and think about 'whom' this is talking to ... a people who wouldn't have had a 'heavenly hope' for they were born BEFORE Jesus and thus hoped to live here on EARTH ... ;)

Psalm 15:0-2 ...

A melody of David. 15 O Jehovah, who will be a guest in your tent? Who will reside in your holy mountain? 2 He who is walking faultlessly and practicing righteousness And speaking the truth in his heart.

Psalm 15:1 ...

O Jehovah, who will be a guest in your tent? Who will reside in your holy mountain?

Isaiah 2:2 ...


And it must occur in the final part of the days [that] the mountain of the house of Jehovah will become firmly established above the top of the mountains, and it will certainly be lifted up above the hills; and to it all the nations must stream.


Well, it would seem that this 'holy mountain' would be referring to 'New Jerusalem' perhaps? :dontknow:

And King David was saying to the people of Israel that they could look forward to being a guest or living in this 'tent' ... and 'in' this 'holy mountain' ...:huh:

So if it is something for these one to look forward as having as a faithful people ... and since the society teaches that ones born before Christ would have an earthly hope (with 'maybe' some of the patriarchs having special assignments as princes on the earth) then how can this be brought in harmony with Revelation ...

Maybe it has to do with it saying that 'New Jerusalem COME DOWN OUT OF OR FROM HEAVEN maybe ...? :dontknow:

What do you think ... :giverose:

And oh yes ...

We can't forget that 'SONG' ... ;)

Well once again I've rattled on ... sorry ... :quiet:

luv as always to ya'll BR :sheepy: :bouncyhearts:


http://bruisedreednotbroke.blogspot.com
01-31-2011 11:35 PM
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COMankind
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Post: #9
RE: Priests ... Who are they BIBLICALLY?

You are so very sweet BR. No need to say 'respectfully' - matter of fact, I probably need to learn to use that term more. I have a tendency to be too 'to the point'

Quote:
"If there is 'no temple' then HOW can God and Jesus 'sit IN IT ON their thrones? Are the thrones they themselves that they are sitting on?"

New Jerusalem is the heavenly equivalent of Jerusalem...a figurative city. Jerusalem had a temple. NJ - well God and Jesus ARE the temple...no need for some 'thing' to worship at, they are right there.

"I did not see a temple in the city, because the Lord God Almighty and the Lamb are its temple." rev 21:22

What you are reading in Rev 7 is a figurative temple. NJ (the new heavens and new earth) have not been instituted yet.

Quote:
literal trees...leaves

well, this IS Revelation :) So literal is subjective like anything else. But no, I do not believe these are literal. I believe it is symbolic of this: Life giving water does not belong on earth. But it feeds or nourishes something in heaven that then comes to earth to give it a 'boost' - and it eventually stops and must be replenished (like a leaf dying) but more come. holy spirit? angels? I don't know.


Quote:
if in HEAVEN...why are cowards on outside

(sorry for paraphrase, but my cut/paste is failing me.
There's three or four verses in Revelation 21 & 22 referring to the wicked that would exist while NJ existed. One of those is:

"Outside are the dogs, those who practice magic arts, the sexually immoral, the murderers, the idolaters and everyone who loves and practices falsehood." 22:15

Now, I suppose that could mean right outside, like the front yard or the front porch. Or it could just mean they aren't inside. Either way...if NJ is on earth while wicked are there, and kings, and nations, and dogs...etc, then what is NJ vs. the tent? Because according to this, the wicked are a part of the new earth...this IS the new earth. The wicked are not suppposed to be destroyed in Rev 23 (not being sarcastic just trying to be clear)


Quote:
bride

Very intriguing concept of the bride. It paints a very warm picture. I completely agree about your references to the apostles 'joining' and 'becoming one' - but honestly I only think that could happen in a spiritual state/body. I.E. 'where I am going, you cannot follow' 'you will see God' etc.

Quote:
144K


Cant agree more. Did you also mention (I didn't notice) that John measured New Jerusalem at 144 cubits thick? More figurativity.

I personally believe the distiction between the two groups is this:
144K - this represents a total and complete group, but finite in number.
Great crowd- no man can number, why? Because is it infinitely recycyling. It's not simply a bigger group, its an endless one.


Great work BR. Lovingly presented as usual...again, the biggest lesson for me.


philia, COMankind

"The tent of God is with mankind" - Rev 21:3

02-01-2011 12:34 AM
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BruisedReed
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Post: #10
RE: Priests ... Who are they BIBLICALLY?

Good morning COmankind!:):hibye::drinking:

I thought I would share my first cuppa coffee with you this morning and thanks for the kind words and comments ... :giverose:

I read them last night and was pondering over them ... :thinking:

I am not sure if you are a 'witness' or 'former' or 'inactive' ... but I think if you are that this is one topic for witnesses that can be very hard to grasp as we have been told since the 'split' occurreed in hopes that our hope is an earthly one and that we are not in the 'new covenant' arrangement ... really any arrangement at all when you look closely at the writings in the magazines and books except by our 'association with the holy ones, the anointed' ... :shocked::huh::read:

That being said, and I don't want to sound like I'm 'bashing the society' because I no longer belileve that to be so based on countless hours and prayers for understanding and wisdom and insight on this matter ...

Indeed Jesus himself said that we ARE a part of this covenant and who am I to argue with him! ;)

If I may make some comments as to your comments ...

You said ...

New Jerusalem is the heavenly equivalent of Jerusalem...a figurative city.

First of all, if this is so ... that this 'New Jerusalem' is the 'heavenly equivalent' ... that what about the real 'Heavenly Jerusalem' ... is there to be 'two' in heaven? :dontknow:

I know the differentiation of the two that the Watchtower speaks of ... 144,000 being 'New Jerusalem' and 144,001 being 'Heavenly Jerusalem' ... but which scripture says that 'New Jerusalem' will exist in heaven ...?

Also, I looked up in my Greek thesarus on the meaning of 'new' just for fun, which of course got me thinking ... :thinking:

G2537 καινός

kainos kahee-nos'


Of uncertain affinity; new (especially in freshness; while G3501 is properly so with respect to age): - new.


I love this definition of freshness don't you!

the property of being pure and fresh (as if newly made); not stale or deteriorated; "she loved the freshness of newly baked bread"; "the freshness of the air revived him"

Yes, New Jerusalem will rather be like a 'new beginning' for us won't it ... which would correspond to the thought in Rev. 21:5 ...

5 And the One seated on the throne said: “Look! I am making all things new.” Also, he says: “Write, because these words are faithful and true.”

Yes, only a cleansed people will be allowed to pass through its gates to bask in the light of love that will never stop shining ...

You also said ...

"I did not see a temple in the city, because the Lord God Almighty and the Lamb are its temple." rev 21:22

Now I sat and rethought this one in light of the definition above about 'newness' ... and had a wonderful thought ... :bulb: :rose:

Jesus said we could be ONE with him and his Father did he not ... he prayed for this to his Father while he was with his followers to show the CLOSENESS of the RESTORED RELATIONSHIP we can have with our HEAVENLY FAMILY ... at least that is one way I like to think on it ... :giverose:

If indeed there is no temple ... and the scriptures say we can go 'into' it ... couldn't that mean this 'CLOSENESS' ... this 'ONENESS' ... this 'completely restored familial relationship' that Adam lost will be 'made new' for us in a completely 'new' (fresh) way perhaps ...

For the scriptures unfold to us more and more with added depths to their meanings to strengthen and enrich our faith so that when the time comes to 'prove' ourselves ... to show that the 'tested quality of faith' is 'pure and steadfast' ... we WILL remain firm to the end!!

Now the Scriptures says about the 'temple' ... and 'who' CAN GO 'IN' THERE ... through one of the 'gates' ... ironic that Jesus said he was a 'gate' ...

But if Jehovah and Jesus ARE the 'temple' ... then couldn't this show that we GO INTO THEM then ... that we are indeed ONE ... that we are fully accepted in a unique way ... that 'heaven and earth are joined together ... for Jesus and his Father showed that heaven and thus Jehovah is not far from each one of us ... and this will be made more clear in the new heavens and earth arrangement ... (I am relying on many scriptures here that I am sure you know as well!) :friends::thumbup:

So, if this 'city' ... this 'New Jerusalem' is a 'figurative' city ... that what could it picture ... could it not picture US ... then ... as MEMBERS of it?

Just a thought ... :blush:

You said ...

Life giving water does not belong on earth.

Well as to 'life-giving water' ... I right away thought of the scripture at

Isaiah 55:1 ...

Hey there, all YOU thirsty ones! Come to the water. And the ones that have no money! Come, buy and eat. Yes, come, buy wine and milk even without money and without price.

Who is this Scripture referring to here ...? :dontknow:

Is it not to those who will live on the earth ...?

Notice the reference Scripture at John 4:14 ...

14 Whoever drinks from the water that I will give him will never get thirsty at all, but the water that I will give him will become [b]in him a fountain of water bubbling up to impart everlasting life.”[/b]


Again ... 'refreshing' us ... making us 'new' will this water be! Water that comes OUT FROM ... not DOWN FROM the throne of God ... because the Scripture said that 'New Jerusalem had ALREADY COME DOWN ...!

I don't think this is a far stretch for us to think of Jesus being with us here on earth ... in his 'glory' even ... because didn't he already once before ... guiding a 'lost people' through the wildnerness ... and allowing himself to be 'seen' ... albeit in ways that IMPERFECT could be able to without hurting them ...?

At least that is what the Watchtower said may have the case ...

*** it-2 p. 53 Jesus Christ ***


The angel who guided Israel through the wilderness and whose voice the Israelites were strictly to obey because ‘Jehovah’s name was within him,’ may therefore have been God’s Son, the Word.—Ex 23:20-23; compare Jos 5:13-15.

So, may this have been a 'hint' of the 'tent' that will be WITH mankind only in a MUCH GRANDER ... and certainly MORE LASTING way? :dontknow:

*** w77 7/1 p. 397 Israel’s Wilderness Testing of Jehovah ***

ISRAEL’S WILDERNESS JOURNEYINGS


It was on the twentieth day of the second month of the second year after leaving Egypt that the cloud resting above the tabernacle began to move, indicating that Israel was to go on the march. At night it was a pillar of fire that rested over the tabernacle and guided them. When Israel broke camp, Moses would say: “Do arise, O Jehovah, and let your enemies be scattered; and let those who intensely hate you flee from before you.” And when the cloud came to rest, Moses would say: “Do return, O Jehovah, to the myriads of thousands of Israel.”—Num. 10:35, 36.

So in a very REAL sense ... the 'tent of God was with mankind' wasn't it ... and wasn't this possibly a 'foreshadowing' of the time ahead when he, Jeus, tells us in Revelation that he will once again be 'with' us ... :hug:

You also mentioned the 'dogs, cowards, immoral ones' and other unclean 'outside' of 'New Jerusalem' ...

Well if we look at the preceding verse before this statement it says ...

Rev. 22:14 ...

14 Happy are those who wash their robes, that the authority [to go] to the trees of life may be theirs and that they may gain entrance into the city by its gates.

Now ... WHO ... is it that 'washed their robes and made them white' ... thus indicating a 'clean and pure state ...?

Revelation 7:9 ...


9 After these things I saw, and, look! a great crowd, which no man was able to number, out of all nations and tribes and peoples and tongues, standing before the throne and before the Lamb, dressed in white robes; and there were palm branches in their hands. . .

The 'palm branches' indicating their support and acceptance of Christ as their King!

Revelation 7:14 ...

14 So right away I said to him: “My lord, you are the one that knows.” And he said to me: “These are the ones that come out of the great tribulation, and they have washed their robes and made them white in the blood of the Lamb.


So, these ones with 'washed robes' have the 'authority' as the NWT says to go 'in through the gate' ... the Greek word for 'authority' I found interesting as some of the words used for its meaning touched my heart with meaning from other scriptural references ...

G1849 ἐξουσία

exousia ex-oo-see'-ah


From G1832 (in the sense of ability); privilege, that is, (subjectively) force, capacity, competency, freedom, or (objectively) mastery (concretely magistrate, superhuman, potentate, token of control), delegated influence: - authority, jurisdiction, liberty, power, right, strength.


Yes, the 'freedom of Christ' that we can have as his followers will grant us much won't it!! :cheer::cheer:

And in seeking to understand the 'where' of 'New Jerusalem' ... and that it just 'might' be here on earth in some manner ... ;) makes the next verse of Rev. 22:15 make more sense doesn't it ...? :dontknow:

15 Outside are the dogs and those who practice spiritism and the fornicators and the murderers and the idolaters and everyone liking and carrying on a lie.’

For obviously these one have not as of yet accepted Jesus as their King, they have not as of yet 'washed their robes' ...

And isn't that what the job of those who can go out and come in through the gates of New Jerusalem is ... to try to 'teach' or 'minister' to these ones throughout Christ's reign amidst his enemies ...?

Any, yet once again I ramble on ... :blush: but there really is so much to say isn't there ... so hopefully you will forgive me ... ? :giverose:

Hope to hear some more of your thoughts ...

Your sis in the faith with luv... BR :sheepy: :bouncyhearts:


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02-01-2011 12:21 PM
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symbiosis
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Post: #11
RE: Priests ... Who are they BIBLICALLY?

some interesting thoughts from all, if i may i would like to add something which changed my perspective that the WTO gave me

i would ask a question at this point and it would be is there a difference between washing garments and being bodily washed by someone?

i think there is, because the greek indicates that a different word is used to describe those who are priests and those who are of the GC.

ref e-sword

rev 1:5
"and washed us from our sins in his own blood"

e-sword states

"g3068 a primary verb to bath the WHOLE person wheras g1450 is to launder clothing

rev 7:14

"they have WASHED their robes"

e sword

" g1450 launder clothing"

it is two different washes, one of the body by Christ himself and one of the clothing surrounding the body through faith in christ at a critical juncture in time

but what is important, and i think this is where the WTO has mislead many is that both groups are washed in the blood of the lamb, both are covered by the ransom of Christ and therefore both are in the new covenant.
not all are priests but all get to enter the temple whether it is physical or spiritual

symbiosis

02-01-2011 03:33 PM
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e-magine
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Post: #12
RE: Priests ... Who are they BIBLICALLY?

Hi Peeps!
I think we can over think this subject to death!
Heres the simple version:
*The number 144000 is symbolic, just as the 12 tribes are.
*The Great Crowd is standing before the throne, and are priests just like the 144000. They are the same people folks.
*They have washed their robes and are declared rightous.
*All Christians are in the New Covenant.
*Heaven is not a place that someone can go to. It is more like a state existing far beyond our 3 dimensional world. Heaven is the state that God exists in and this state can be on Earth.
*All Christians are anointed. Thats the definition of being like Christ.
*All Christians will serve as Priests, on the Earth. But over whom?
Have you not read, that there is going to be a resurection of the unrightous as well as the rightous?
*The unrightous will receive the second resurection, and will need the services of the Christian "Priests", to learn and be taught. At the end of the Millennial Reign, they will come to life as true Christians already have.

I hope I don't sound dogmatic, but to me it just seems obvious.


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Henry Ward Beecher-1872 Preacher of Plymouth Church, Brooklyn, in his home later bought by C.H. Russell.
He is looking at the Brooklyn Bridge,,,, is it the way into, or, out of Brooklyn for you?
02-01-2011 04:44 PM
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BruisedReed
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Post: #13
RE: Priests ... Who are they BIBLICALLY?

Hi there br. emagine ... :hibye:

Loved your comment ... :thumbsup:

Short, concise and to the point ... which I had that 'gift' ... ;):siskiss::whistle:

However, if I may add something to it ... :P

While 'we' have come to 'know' and 'see' this big easy picture ... our brothers still inside or just coming out or in doubt will want 'proof' ... 'SCRIPTURAL proofs and reasonings' on such an important topic wouldn't you agree ...?

They may be just beginning to 'think' for 'themselves' ... and all I was seeking to do was give them some of the puzzle pieces ... scriptures ... to help them along their path to Christ and life!

And a glorious and beautiful path it is to be sure ...! :rose: :rose: :rose:

Thanks again for putting it in a nutshell for us ...:giverose::thumbup:

Lotso luv bro ... your sis BR :sheepy::bouncyhearts:


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02-01-2011 04:54 PM
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BruisedReed
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Post: #14
RE: Priests ... Who are they BIBLICALLY?

Hi there symbiosis ... :hibye:

Just got finished going through some scripture references ... read emagine's timely post ... and thought I would put this up ...

Maybe it has to do with the fact that in Rev. 1:5 Jesus is doing the washing ... and in Rev. 7:14 'we' are doing the washing ...?

Perhaps it has to do with our 'inner and outer garments' as well ...

Jesus' ransom 'cleansed' us if we choose to 'wash' ourselves in it ...

What is it we are 'washing' ...? Is it literal clothing ...?

Well for sure we want clean clothing ... but isn't it more to do with WHO we are ... WHAT we are inside and out ...

Jesus told Peter that his washing their feet would cleanse their whole body ...

John 13:10 ...

10 Jesus said to him: “He that has bathed does not need to have more than his feet washed, but is wholly clean. And YOU men are clean, but not all.”

So how do 'we 'bathe' ourselves ... or put on clean garments as it were ...? Isn't it by putting on the new 'us' ...? By making ourselves over in Christ's image and then hence forth leading a clean life spiritually and morally?

Since our God and his Son judges not only the outside but the inside of the 'cup' ... then we need to make sure to keep ourselves that way! :thumbsup:

Another interesting Scripture along this line is the one in ...

Revelation 3:5 ...

He that conquers will thus be arrayed in white outer garments; and I will by no means blot out his name from the book of life, but I will make acknowledgment of his name before my Father and before his angels.


Yes, it would seem the ONLY way we can get to wear this 'white robe' is to conquer the world as our Lord did ... by remaining firm and true to the end ... and for this unswerving loyalty and devotion we will be 'blessed' or 'rewarded' richly ... with everlasting life!!

Not sure if this is anything like you had in mind ... but it sure is an interesting topic isn't it! ;)

Christian love, BR :sheepy: :bouncyhearts:


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02-01-2011 05:07 PM
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symbiosis
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Post: #15
RE: Priests ... Who are they BIBLICALLY?

i agree that both the GC and the 144k are Christians but i don,t see how they can be one and the same group.
firstly one is numbered the other is not
but mainly i would ask the reason why two seperate identities would be given to the same group
one depicting the 12 tribes the other no doing so, and further, why it would require that an angel clarifies the identity of the second group to John.

surely there would be no need for such clarification of the GC by the Angel if they were the same persons as the 144k.

wiith regard to heaven not being a place, i disagree, Christ ascended to heaven he came from heaven and he has prepared a place in heven for those who love Him.
satan is also thrown from heaven

with regard to the washing of body and robes my main point was that both are washed by the blood of Christ.
but it seems to me that the GC have work to do ,they exist at a specific point in time during which they have a test to pass in the face of adversity, and that is why they are depicted as a seperate group and that is why the angel needs to explain who they are to John


symbiosis

02-01-2011 06:00 PM
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