Jesus: Prophet, Priest, and King

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Prophet

Deuteronomy 18:15, 18 (See Acts 3:22-23)
“The Lord your God will raise up for you a prophet like me from among you, from your countrymen, you shall listen to him.. . .
I will raise up a prophet from among their countrymen like you, and I will put My words in his mouth, and he shall speak to them all that I command him.”

Matthew 13:57
And they took offense at Him. But Jesus said to them, “A prophet is not without honor except in his hometown and in his own household.”

The prophet’s task was to be a spokesman for God, to speak His word, to reveal God and His ways to men. Jesus fulfilled the prophecy of Moses and was the long-expected prophet. But, like so many of the Old Testament prophets, He was rejected by those to whom He was sent.

He Revealed God

John 1:18
No one has seen God at any time; the only begotten God who is in the bosom of the Father, He has explained Him.

He Spoke for God

John 7:16
So Jesus answered them and said, “My teaching is not Mine, but His who sent Me.”

John 8:28
So Jesus said, “When you lift up the Son of Man, then you will know that I am He, and I do nothing on My own initiative, but I speak these things as the Father taught Me.”

He Revealed the Future

Matthew 24:1-4
“Jesus came out from the temple and was going away when His disciples came up to point out the temple buildings to Him. And He said to them, “Do you not see all these things? Truly I say to you, not one stone here will be left upon another, which will not be torn down.” As He was sitting on the Mount of Olives, the disciples came to Him privately, saying, “Tell us, when will these things happen, and what will be the sign of Your coming, and of the end of the age?” And Jesus answered and said to them, “See to it that no one misleads you.”

The rest of Matthew 24 and 25 is called the Olivet Discourse (because it was delivered on the Mount of Olives; see Matt. 24:3). In this discourse Jesus gives His version of the events of the tribulation (see Matt. 24:5– 25), the rise of the Antichrist (see Matt. 24:15), and His own second coming (see Matt. 25:26–31). With this sermon Jesus confirms that He is one with the great apocalyptic prophets like Daniel and Zechariah.

Priest

Intercession

John 17:9, 20
“‘I ask on their behalf; I do not ask on behalf of the world, but of those whom You have given Me; for they are Yours.’. . .
‘I do not ask on behalf of these alone, but for those also who believe in Me through their word.’”

Romans 8:34
Who is the one who condemns? Christ Jesus is He who died, yes, rather who was raised, who is at the right hand of God, who also intercedes for us.

Hebrews 7:25
Therefore He is able also to save forever those who draw near to God through Him, since He always lives to make intercession for them.

Sacrifice

Hebrews 2:17 (See Heb. 9:26-27; 10:12)
Therefore, He had to be made like His brethren in all things, so that He might become a merciful and faithful high priest in things pertaining to God, to make propitiation for the sins of the people.

Hebrews 4:14
Therefore, since we have a great high priest who has passed through the heavens, Jesus the Son of God, let us hold fast our confession.

Hebrews 9:11-12
But when Christ appeared as a high priest of the good things to come, He entered through the greater and more perfect tabernacle, not made with hands, that is to say, not of this creation; and not through the blood of goats and calves, but through His own blood, He entered the holy place once for all, having obtained eternal redemption.

Hebrews 10:12
But He, having offered one sacrifice for sins for all time, sat down at the right hand of god.

The work of a priest is twofold: to offer sacrifices and to intercede before God on behalf of the people. Christ as high priest has made the offering for His people and He “makes intercession” (offers up prayers) for His own. His intercessory work began while He was still on earth (see John 17) and continues in heaven.

King

Matthew 2:2
“Where is He who has been born King of the Jews? For we saw His star in the east and have come to worship Him.”

Matthew 27:11
Now Jesus stood before the governor, and the governor questioned Him, saying, “Are You the King of the Jews?” And Jesus said to him, “It is as you say.”

Revelation 19:16
And on His robe and on His thigh He has a name written, “KING OF KINGS, AND LORD OF LORDS.”

Jesus was the King from the moment of His birth, but He was rejected by His people. In His first coming He did not come to establish the Davidic, messianic kingdom, which is what the Jews were expecting. He will establish that kingdom at His second coming.

For Further Reading:

The Essential Scriptures

by Kevin Zuber

Which Bible verses support that doctrine? All good theology is grounded in the Word of God. Yet sometimes it’s hard to keep track of...

book cover for The Essential Scriptures