Thursday, March 26, 2009

Hebrews 5:(1-4), 5-10

Lent 5 – Year B

Hebrews 5:(1-4), 5-10

A priori problem: Every high priest selected to represent men and women before God and offer sacrifices for their sins . . . . Says who? Why is the sacrificial aspect of a priest the most important one?

How many high priests are in the order of Melchizedek? How many such mature priests came before and after Jesus' ordination? How is it that none of them are heard of as entries to temporal or eternal salvation? This seems, more and more, to be a preconceived idea that was wrapped around Jesus and no matter how helpful it was to some at the time, it has been more in the way than helpful in the long run.

Melchizedek, as priest and king, seems to be two things Jesus, in the gospels, had a great deal of trouble with. Now, in anticipation of Constantine, Jesus is officially powerful. But, I guess if God decrees it's OK, then I'll have to relearn everything – what a brave new world where learning to unlearn and relearn takes place by decree. Is aversion therapy the kind of learning we need if sacrificing priest (as a disciple this is our aspiration) are to deal gently with the difficult spots of life?

It may be that we'll have to start a new Christian sect – The Church of the Ancient Order of Melchizedek. Come, mature your faith through suffering now to achieve life later.

Wouldn't you know, someone beat us to it:

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