Confession of Faith (1617) - Article XVII
Of the office of Christ, and the specific reason of His coming into the world.
We confess: That Christ is the true promised Prophet, High Priest, and King, whom Moses and all the prophets foretold and proclaimed, and to whom the former priests and kings pointed as figures and shadows. And the specific reason of His coming into the world was: to destroy the works of the devil, to seek that which was lost, to deliver the whole human race from the captivity of sin, and the power of the devil, and to reconcile them with God His Father, and thus to save sinners.
According to His prophetical office He went out from God, and came into the world to proclaim unto men,, through the Gospel, the full counsel and will of God, which had been hid from the beginning of the world, and thus to preach deliverance to the captives, the Gospel to the poor, and the acceptable year of the Lord, according to which as the last declaration and will of God, all the children of the New Covenant are required to live and walk, according to a perfect rule of faith, which shall obtain until the end of the world.
According to His office as High Priest He fulfilled and changed the Levitical priesthood; and by His one offering, made on the cross, He opened the closed entrance to the Holy of Holies; and through this His one offering, which is of eternal value, He fulfilled and finished the sacrifice of the law, and obtained an eternal redemption. And thus reconciling mankind with the Father, He sat down on the right hand of the Majesty in heaven, and is become the believers' only Advocate, Mediator, High Priest, and Intercessor with God His Father, and ever lives to make intercession for them.
And according to His office as King He came with full. power from His
almighty Father from heaven, to reestablish, as a mighty King of kings, and
commander of the people, judgment and righteousness on earth; and He was the end
and fulfillment of all the kings of Israel. But as His kingdom was not of this
world, and He was a spiritual, heavenly King, He avoided all earthly kingdoms of
this world, and desired and had only a spiritual, heavenly kingdom. Among His
subjects He reformed, improved and fulfilled the commandments, laws, and
customs, given by Moses. As a commanding king He dissuaded and prohibited His
followers from all revenge, whether with words or by deed; (and taught them)
that they should beat their swords into ploughshares, and their spears into
scythes and sickles, and should learn war no more; but that, on the contrary,
they, according to, the example of Christ, their Captain, should love their
enemies, and pray for those who injure and persecute them -- very far indeed
from allowing them to wage war against their enemies with carnal weapons. But
armed His people only with the armor of God, and the sword of the Spirit, which is the word of God, with which to fight against flesh and blood, the world, sin, and the manifold wiles of the devil, and thus finally to receive, through grace, from this eternal King, the crown of everlasting life, as their recompense and exceeding great reward.
How Christ is the prophet promised by God, whom we must hear and follow as the perfect teacher of the will of God, read: "The Lord thy God will raise up unto thee a prophet from the midst of thee, of thy brethren, like unto me; unto him ye shall hearken" (Deuteronomy 18:15; Acts 7:37; 3:22; Matthew 17:5).
"We have also a more sure word of prophecy; whereunto ye do well that ye take heed, as unto a light that shineth in a dark place" (2 Peter 1:19).
"God, who at sundry times and in divers manners spake in time past unto the fathers by the prophets, hath in these last days spoken unto us by his Son," etc. (Hebrews 1: 1, 2).
Of His prophecies, read: Matthew 24 throughout; Luke 17:20; 19:41-44.
Of His priestly office, read: "And having a high priest over the house of God; let us draw near with a true heart in full assurance of faith," etc. (Hebrews 10:21, 22).
"For the priesthood being changed, there is made of necessity a change also of the law" (Hebrews 7:12; 8:6; 10:12).
"But Christ being come a high priest of good things to come," etc. (Hebrews 9:11).
Of His preaching, read: Matthew 9:35; Mark 1:14; Matthew 5:2; 11:1; Luke 4:15.
Of His office of King, read: "Rejoice greatly, O daughter of Zion; shout, O daughter of Jerusalem; behold, thy King cometh unto thee," etc. (Zechariah 9:9; Matthew 21:5).
Behold, the days come, that I will raise unto David a righteous Branch, and a King shall reign and prosper, and shall execute judgment and justice in the earth" (Jeremiah 23:5; 33:15; Isaiah 32:1).
"Rabbi, thou art the Son of God; thou art the King of Israel" (John 1:49; Acts 10:36; 1 Corinthians 4:5; Philippians 2:11).
Of His spiritual kingdom and dominion, read: "And the Lord God shall give unto him the throne of his father David: and he shall reign over the house of Jacob forever; and of his kingdom: there shall be no end" (Luke 1:32, 33).
"For he is Lord of lords, and King of kings: and they that are with him are called, and chosen, and faithful" (Revelation 17:14).
"But ye are a chosen generation, a royal priesthood," etc. (1 Peter 2:9; Exodus 19:6; Revelation 5:10; John 18:36, 37; Psalms 22:28).
Of His government, read: "Behold, I have given him for a witness to the people, a leader and commander to the people" (Isaiah 55:4).
"There is one lawgiver, who is able to save and to destroy," etc. (James 4:12; 1 Corinthians 9:21; Matthew 12:8; 28:20; James 1:25).
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APA style: (1617). Confession of Faith (1617) - Article XVII. Global Anabaptist Mennonite Encyclopedia Online. Retrieved 19 June 2013, from http://www.gameo.org/encyclopedia/contents/C6653.html/c6653_17.