Jesus as Prophet, Priest, and King

Mark Driscoll, in his book Vintage Jesus, succinctly and simply explains how Jesus perfectly fulfilled the three main offices of the Old Testament: Prophet, Priest, and King. He describes how Jesus fulfills each one:

Prophet: confronts us and calls us to repentance of sin (through the Holy Spirit)
Priest: comforts us and comes to us to save us from sin and enable a new life; mediates for us to the Father
King: commands us to relinquish authority of our life so that every facet of our life is under constant sanctifying transformation

At different times, I am more in need of one of Jesus’ roles being more evident (like prophet when in stubborn sin, priest when despairing over sin, etc.), but have also wrongly over-emphasized one or more aspect at the expense of the others – sometimes in the course of one day! I found each section helpful, but what I most needed to hear at the time of my reading was Jesus as King. Good stuff.

Driscoll also presents some admittedly over-simplified formulas for what happens when Jesus’ offices are out of whack in the American church:

Prophet + Priest – King = Jesus of Evangelicalism

Prophet + King – Priest = Jesus of Fundamentalism

Priest + King – Prophet = Jesus of Liberalism

Driscoll summarizes the chapter with: “Jesus came to the earth to reveal himself to us as our prophet who speaks to us, priest who walks with us, and king who rules over us. Jesus’ ministry continues today and his roles are the same yesterday, today, and forever. For the three offices of Jesus to be of the greatest benefit to us, we must humbly ask God to reveal to us which aspect of Jesus’ ministry we are most likely to misunderstand or even ignore and read Scripture with a humble heart seeking to see Jesus in the fullness of his glory.” (p. 84)

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