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Old Testament priesthood versus Christ as the eternal High Priest  — Section 60

Christ is our Eternal High Priest, and the LDS still rely on the Old Testament priesthood

Representative of a Christian church:
Why do members of your church use Old Testament priesthood when Hebrews 7:12 tells us that “the priesthood being changed, there must also of necessity be a change of the law.”  Also, we know that Christ is the eternal High Priest and that Old Testament priesthood was done away with.  Why do you still teach something that is no longer applicable?

Missionaries of the Church of Jesus Christ of Latter-day Saints:
Paul taught in Hebrews 7:11-24 that the law or schoolmaster (Galatians 3:24) was to lead the people to Christ, but Paul clarified in these verses that the Aaronic (or Leviticial) priesthood could not do it alone.  Therefore, it was necessary for the Lord to send another Priest after the order of Melchizedek.  The priesthood now being changed by Christ coming as that Priest, there was also of necessity a change of the law (which could be the law of Moses).  We read of Melchizedek in Hebrews 7:1-3 and of his righteousness, and then in verse 3 it reads, “Without father, without mother, without descent, having neither beginning of day, nor end of life but made like unto the Son of God, abideth a priest continually.”  This clearly indicates that Melchizedek could not have been referred to in verse 3 because to be born he would have had to have a mother and father, but we learn from careful examination that it would have had to have been his priesthood which would be without beginning of day, nor end of life.  Then we read in Hebrews 5:1 of the requirements of an High Priest.  “For every High Priest taken from among man is ordained for men in things pertaining to God, as was Aaron.”  The scripture goes on to point out that even Christ glorified not himself to be made an high priest but was chosen and appointed by his Father as an High Priest forever.  We read where Moses, a prophet, called Aaron to the Priesthood.  Now that Christ was an high priest, he proceeded to call others, hence “Then Jesus said unto them (the Twelve) again, ‘Peace be unto you, as my Father hath sent me, even so I send you.”  “And he ordained twelve, that they should be with him and that he might send them forth to preach, and to have power to heal sicknesses and to cast out devils.”  (Mark 3:14-15)  That is why Peter said that the church had a “Royal Priesthood” and was “a holy nation.” (See 1 Peter 2:9)  Thus, the priesthood arose after the order of Melchizedek, which was Christ.  Joseph Smith was a prophet in 1829, and we have the sacred priesthood in the church today with the same powers as were held in ancient days.


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