THE HIGH PRIEST

Rev.1:13 – and among the lampstands was one like the Son of Man, dressed in a robe and with a golden sash wrapped around his chest.

It is hard for many Christians to really imagine the present day ministry of Jesus. He is really a man, flesh and bones, seated in heaven as our Heavenly High Priest. The Apostle John had a rare encounter with Jesus on the Island of Patmos where he was in exile because of his preaching of the word of God. He was praying in the Spirit on a Sunday when suddenly Jesus Himself was standing on the beach in front of Him. He was quite different in appearance from the last time John had seen Him at His ascension in Israel. He had eyes like lightning, a face like the blazing sun, a voice like a trumpet blast, and a two edged sword coming out of His mouth. John saw Him as He is now. His dress spoke of His current heavenly ministry as our High Priest. Gordon Fee shares about John seeing Jesus as our Heavenly Priest.

“The figure, John says, was like a son of man, which all of his readers will know from the Gospel narratives is the title Jesus used of himself. But it does not appear here in titular form; rather it is expressed in the precise language of Daniel 7:13, where the mysterious figure (from the perspective of the readers of the OT) who stood before Daniel was described as “one like a son of man.” For Daniel this would have meant simply “a human figure,” almost certainly intended to describe Israel’s hoped-for Messiah. But at “the same time, and thus creating a unique collage of images, John describes his array as that of Israel’s chief priests: he was dressed in a robe reaching down to his feet and with a golden sash around his waist. In so doing, John is deliberately borrowing language from the Septuagint, where it is used exclusively for the full-length tunic of the high priest; thus his readers would readily understand that Jesus, the “son of man,” is also being presented as the great high priest.”

This amazing encounter was preparing John for an unveiling of the future of man and our planet. All revelation flows from Jesus. The words that John was about to write would impact the world for the next 2000 years.

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