Links Daily Devotional

Priestly Blessings

…you also, like living stones, are being built into a spiritual house to be a holy priesthood… (1 Peter 2:5, NIV)

Talking among the staff at Links Players and the leaders of Links Fellowships, it is not uncommon to consider our role in the clubs where we play and among the golfers we know.

In a golfing sense, we are those with a common interest, sometimes competitors, sometimes partners, often friends. But as men and women of the Lord, we must think beyond this; we must see ourselves in the role God has given us. Thus we ask: what is that role?

The Links Player’s Mission, which guides individuals and Fellowships, concludes with the discipling call of the Great Commission, and sets us to the task of 2 Corinthians 5:20, to be ambassadors on Christ’s behalf. Yes, this is among our roles—to carry the Gospel of the Christ in the spirit of Christ. Among other things, this role governs our ethics and our attitude. The reputation of Christ is to be demonstrated through us.

For all the grandness of an ambassador, however, we might sometimes find it more appropriate to take on a homey role—more personal and ministerial. In this sense, the term chaplain seems to fit. It is the chaplain who brings the comfort of Christ when one is in the hospital, either as a patient or a patient’s attending family. It is the chaplain who is on the spot in workplaces; this is common for athletes on the move, but also in some corporate settings where chaplaincy is provided. Chaplains come to the people where they have need, especially in the six days when they are not at church.

While exercising aspects of these roles, we must never forget to engage in one other form of biblically described interaction, and that is as priests. It is easy to quickly say, “Ah, but that is not me. The priest is the one in the robes, ascending to the pulpit and dispensing the rites.” This would be to dismiss the words delivered to both ancient Israel and in the words of Revelation that God’s people would be a kingdom of priests and a holy nation, and to miss the universality of Peter’s writing in today’s central passage: all believers, not just a particular few, are being built into the spiritual house that is a holy priesthood. And indeed this passage goes on to say that the role of us priests is to offer spiritual sacrifices through Christ. The picture is clear.

If this is the case, one aspect of priestly ministry you should not miss is that of blessing. God gave this well-known blessing to Aaron in the beginning of the Levitical priesthood: “The LORD bless you can keep you; the LORD make his face to shine upon you and be gracious to you; the LORD turn his face toward you and give you peace.” Taking this task to heart is an excellent way to move into the role of priest. Who are God’s people in your life? You can and should bless them today with reminders of God’s care and concern, his grace and his peace.

You are, as God’s man or woman filled with faith in Christ, an ambassador, a chaplain, and a priest. Don’t hesitate to take up these roles and minister as God has empowered and called you to do.

Jeff Hopper
February 22, 2017
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