Sunday, May 10, 2009

Priestly Prayers and Praises

Coming to Him as to a living stone, rejected indeed by men, but chosen by God and precious, you also, as living stones, are being built up a spiritual house, a holy priesthood, to offer up spiritual sacrifices acceptable to God though Jesus Christ. 1 Peter 2:4-5

The Lord calls those who know Him a holy priesthood. We are given the task of offering spiritual sacrifices that are acceptable to God. When we intercede for someone, we bring a spiritual offering to the Lord on behalf of another. Our prayers communicated in faith and love are pleasing to the Lord. In Psalm 141:2 David says, “Let my prayer be set before You as incense, the lifting up of my hands as the evening sacrifice.”

Another way that we please the Lord is through our praise. Hebrews 13:15 says, “Therefore by Him let us continually offer the sacrifice of praise to God, that is, the fruit of our lips, giving thanks to His name.” Worship delights the heart of God, and praise lifts up the one who worships, by drawing him or her into God's presence.

One of the functions of the priests in the Old Testament was to present to God different types of offerings. They did this to worship the Lord and as a type of intercession for the Jewish people. The priests led the Israelites by their godly example, they oversaw the worship in the temple, and they regularly prepared sacrifices in the temple on behalf of others.

Now we all as priests of the New Covenant are to continually praise God and pray for others. We are to pray without ceasing. We may not be able to verbally worship and pray all throughout the day, but with the Holy Spirit as our Helper, we can stay in an attitude of prayer and praise.

Some may question my use of the term “priests” in describing Christ followers, but this is what the Scripture says we are. Certain denominations give their leading ministers this title. This is fine, but in the New Testament every believer is given the title of priest because all of us share in the responsibility of offering spiritual sacrifices that are acceptable to God.

Let's comprehend Christ's calling on our lives with fresh eyes. Let's pursue His face in worship and let's offer our the Lord our time in praying for others. God will not only hear us, He will answer our cries. The Lord will move mountains for us as we offer priestly prayers and praises to God.

Dear Lord,

Help me to fix my eyes on You continually. Forgive me for getting distracted with other things. Keep me in an attitude of worship and prayer. Teach me to pray for others and draw me into your presence day by day. In Jesus Name I pray, Amen.

© Copyright 2009 Tom Toya. All rights reserved.

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