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4.16.2016

A hidden big problem in the whole church thing

Look at this line from a Minister: "So likewise the angels of the churches— the ministers of the gospel— that are of an higher order and office than other saints..." This Minister thinks the angels of the churches are the actual ministers of those churches and are of a higher class or order than the Christians sitting in the pews. (Quote is from Jonathan Edwards, but that's neither here nor there.)

So, you know seminary graduates are taught this or some species or degree of it, yet they can't really talk about it because their conscience tells them it's asinine to think of themselves that way, yet they believe it still and have it in their self-image still.

Here is the problem: all Christians are to be prophets, priests, and kings. The bar is set high to be a Christian. You have to read the Bible and get parts-in-relation-to-the-whole understanding of it; then you have to learn on-the-mark biblical doctrine. Then you have to learn how to practice the faith. Be a Christian. These things become what we are as they are fused into our memory and will and understanding. It's a tall order, yet the Holy Spirit enables us to meet and exceed the high bar. For some it comes easier, quicker, for others it's a lifelong process, and progress is by degree and in stages, yet a simple, real faith is what saves, not complete knowledge. OK. Still, progress will be made by real Christians.

Now what does this say about our priesthood of seminary educated elitists? They become the enemy to the rank and file Christian. Why? Because to maintain a self-image of being special, and of a higher order (and appointed so by God Himself) you have to protect the knowledge. You have to keep it from the hands of the unwashed. The low brows who think they can understand what can only uniquely be understood by members of the guild. "Oh, look, that rube in row five is reading the Bible/Geerhardus Vos/systematic theology, how quaint. Actually, it's dangerous. Have one of the elders speak to him. Give him one of our David vs. Goliath video games."

Guilds, to exist, have to protect the knowledge of the guild, and who can have access to that knowledge and teach that knowledge. In this sense all clericalism, Protestant as much as the other branches, gravitates toward dumb Magisteriumism. Which itself becomes darkness.

Christians are prophets, priests, and kings. In a real sense when we're first reading the Bible and learning doctrine from on-the-mark, time-vetted sources (hopefully), we are sheep. In a real sense. Yet the metaphor is abused by guild interest. In Christianity sheep become lions. Kings. Prophets, priests, and kings.

This is seen as an assault to the guild-minded. So be it.

An aside: think of the thought process of the cleric as guild member with the guild interests. At one time he hadn't read the Bible (I assume seminary graduates eventually read the Bible complete?), and he certainly knew nothing of on-the-mark biblical doctrine, if he ever does. So what does he think about that? "Well, nobody could possibly learn what I've come to learn. It's just too difficult. Yes, I learned it, but I am special. I am of a higher order." Only the typically dumbest people in the room think like that.

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