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The Presentation/Meeting Of Christ At The Temple 2 February 2011
The Epistle of St Paul to the Hebrews 7 : 7 The Epistle of St Paul to the Hebrews 7 : 7 The Epistle of St Paul to the Hebrews 7 : 7 The Epistle of St Paul to the Hebrews 7 : 7 – –– – 17 17 17 17
The Rules of the Priestly Orders
Brethren: beyond all contradiction the lesser is Blessed by the Better. Here mortal men receive Tithes, but there Hereceives them, of Whom it is witnessed that He Lives.Even Levi, who received Tithes, paid Tithes through Abraham, so to speak, for he was still in the loins of his father whenMelchizedek met him. Therefore, if Perfection were through the Levitical Priesthood (for under it the people received the Law), what further need was there for another Priest to arise according to the Order of Melchizedek, and not be called according to the Orderof Aaron? Or the Priesthood being changed, of necessity there is also a change of the Law.For He of Whom these Things are spoken, belongs to another Tribe, from which no man has officiated at the Altar. For it is evident that our Lord arose from Judah, of which Tribe Moses spoke nothing concerning Priesthood. And it is yet far more evident if, in the likeness of Melchezedek, there arises another Priest Who has come – not according to theLaw of a fleshly Commandment, but according to the Power of an Endless Life. For He testifies:
“Thou art a Priest forever, according to the Order of Melchezedek.”
Persecuted Christians were encouraged not toapostasies to Judaism because
THE FOUNDING FATHER OF CHRIST’S HOLY PRIESTHOOD, MELCHIZEDEK ( A PRIEST AND A KING OF SALEM WHO BLESSED ABRAHAM) WASSUPERIOR TO THE OLD COVENANT PRIESTHOOD OF LEVI.
The payment of tithes expressed the desire to enter intothe ministrations of a religious priesthood, which was only fulfilled once such an offering was made. This applied to all religions, both pagan – Gentile – andHebrew – Jewish. Throughout the Old Testament, we read how theIsraelites showed their continuing desire for God’sPriesthood by continuing to give a tenth of all they received.
CHRIST HAS PAID THE ULTIMATE PRICEFOR OUR REDEMPTION, OUR MOST LOVING GOD OFFERSUS HIS INFINITE DIVINE BLESSINGS FREELY.
OUR UNRESTRICTED, WILLING AND VOLUNTARY OFFERINGS TOGOD ARE CONSTANT TIME SPENT IN THANKSGIVING,PRAISING, HONOURING AND WORSHIPPING - AS WELL ASOUR SPIRITUAL STRUGGLES IN REPENTANCE, FASTING AND PRAYER.
AS FAITHFUL DISCIPLES OF CHRIST WE SHOULD GENEROUSLY OFFER OUR CONTINUOUS SUPPORT TO THE HOLY CHURCH– ESPECIALLY TO THE HOLY PRIESTHOOD
- so that
AS“THE CHURCH OF CHRIST” WE MAY ALL FULFIL OUR SACRED DUTIES TO GOD
during this preparatory period before Eternity.Our voluntary offerings and fundraising are vital for thegrowth, nurturing and maintenance of our Parishchurches and Archdiocese.
NOT ONLY IS THE FOUNDER OF OUR NEW COVENANT WITHGOD – OUR LORD JESUS CHRIST – SUPERIOR TO THAT OF THE OLD COVENANT, THE RULES OF THE NEW COVENANT’S PRIESTLY ORDER ARE ALSO SUPERIOR.
Any priesthood is so intertwined with a covenant that if the priesthood is changed, so is the covenant. Thus our Holy and Eternal Priesthood is intertwined with our New Perfect and Eternal Covenant withGod.
BEING ETERNAL AND ABSOLUTELY PERFECT, LIKE GOD, THENEW COVENANT IS UNCHANGEABLE – FOR EVEN THESLIGHTEST CHANGE WOULD DISTORT IT AND MAKE IT IMPERFECT AND NO LONGER ACCORDING TO HIS DIVINE TRUTH!
Thus by “modernising” or changing anything of the New Covenant to suit ourselves is Apostasy!Such a religion – even if we pick and choose from Holy Scripture to suit our flawed concepts - becomes anungodly, man-made concept that misguides andmisdirects us away from Eternal Life in Christ
LIFE IN CHRIST IS A TOTAL ACCEPTANCE OF ALL HOLY THINGS THAT HAVE BEEN TAUGHT AND INSTITUTED BY OUR ONE AND ONLY ETERNAL HIGH PRIEST – OUR LORD JESUSCHRIST
– Who verbally instructed His Holy Apostles.
BY THE DIVINE GUIDANCE AND INSPIRATION OF THE HOLY SPIRIT - GOD’S TRUTH IS PRESERVED AND PASSED DOWN TO US UNALTERED AND CORRECT - ACCORDING TO THEWORD AND WILL OF ALMIGHTY GOD – BY THE AUTHORITY AND MEANS OF THE APOSTOLIC SUCCESSION.
This means that
WE CAN TRACE OUR ORTHODOXY OR TRUE TEACHINGS ALL THE WAY BACK TO CHRIST THROUGH THE APOSTOLIC SUCCESSION
– an unbroken lineagethrough our Holy Church Fathers to the Holy Apostles of Christ and to Christ our Lord Himself!
The Holy Gospel According to St Luke 2 : 22 The Holy Gospel According to St Luke 2 : 22 The Holy Gospel According to St Luke 2 : 22 The Holy Gospel According to St Luke 2 : 22 – –– – 40 40 40 40
Our Lord Jesus Christ was Presented at the Holy Temple for His Dedication to God
At that time, when the days of her Purification according to the Law of Moses were completed, they took Jesus to Jerusalem to Present Him to the Lord, (as it is written in the Law of the Lord; ‘
Every male who opens the womb shall be called Holy to the Lord’
), and to offer a sacrifice according to what is written in the Law of the Lord: ‘
A pair of turtledoves or two young pigeons.’
And behold, there was a man in Jerusalem, whose name was Symeon, and this man was Just and Devout, waiting for theConsolation of Israel, and the Holy Spirit was upon Him. And it had been revealed to him by the Holy Spirit that he would not see death before he had seen the Lord’s Christ. So he went, by the Spirit, into the Temple. And when theparents brought in the Child Jesus, to do for Him according to the Custom of the Law, he took Him up in his armsand Blessed God and said:
“O Lord, now Thou art letting Thy servant depart in Peace, according to ThyWord; for my eyes have seen Thy Salvation, which Thou hast prepared before the face of all peoples, a Light to bring Revelation to the Gentiles, and the Glory of Thy People, Israel.”
And Joseph and the Mother of Jesus marvelled at those thing that were spoken of Him. Then Symeon Blessed them, and said to Mary, His Mother:
“Behold! This Child is destined for the fall and rising of manyin Israel, and for a Sign, which will be spoken against, (yes, a sword will pierce through Thine own soul also!), sothat the thoughts of many hearts may be revealed.”
Now there was one, Anna, a Prophetess, the daughter of Phanuel, of the Tribe of Asher, who was of a great age, and whohad lived with a husband seven years from her virginity; and this woman was a widow of about eighty-four years, whodid not depart from the Temple, but served God with Fastings and Prayers night and day. And entering in that instant, she gave Thanks to the Lord, and spoke of Him to all those who looked for Redemption in Jerusalem.So when they had performed all things according to the Law of the Lord, they returned to Galilee, to their own city,Nazareth. And the Child grew and became Strong in Spirit, filled with Wisdom; and the Grace of God was upon Him.On 2 February the Orthodox Church celebrates thePresentation of Christ - also known as “
The Meeting of the Lord
”- when - according to ancient Holy Tradition that is practised to this very day –
“The Blessing of a Child on the Fortieth Day After Birth “
is done at the Holy Temple of God.Our Most Pure and Holy Lady Theotokos faithfully andcorrectly fulfilled all requirements of the OldCovenant Law by taking the forty day old Christ Child to the Temple in Jerusalem to Present Himand to Dedicate Him to the Holy Service of the Lordour God.In the Orthodox Christian Church this is known as “The40
Day Church of the Mother and Child.” The Old Covenant Law required a sacrificial bloodoffering of an unblemished lamb – or if the mother