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Priesthood, book by H. H. Pope Shenouda III

48- Priests


[11] Priests (elders) were Mentioned In The Book Of Acts

While Saint Paul and saint Barnabas were preaching in Lystra, Antioch and Iconium (Acts 14:21-23) And when they had preached the gospel to that city and made many disciples, they returned to Lystra, Iconium, and Antioch, {22} strengthening the souls of the disciples, exhorting them to continue in the faith, and saying, "We must through many tribulations enter the kingdom of God." {23} So when they had appointed elders in every church, and prayed with fasting, they commended them to the Lord in whom they had believed.


Here we note the liturgical prayers and fasting which accompanied the ordinations. The same was mentioned in the ordination of Saint Paul and Saint Barnabas.

(Acts 13:3) Then, having fasted and prayed, and laid hands on them, they sent them away. Image: Some of St. Takla Haymanot Church priests, Alexandria, Egypt - left to right: Fr. Angelos Saad, Fr. Angelos Fathy, Fr. Kirollos Kolta, the late Fr. Arsanios Aziz صورة في موقع الأنبا تكلا: بعض كهنة كنيسة الأنبا تكلاهيمانوت، الإسكندرية، مصر - القمص أنجيلوس سعد، القس أنجيلوس فتحي، القمص كيرلس قلته، المتنيح القمص أرسانيوس عزيز

It is noted that our Protestant brethren use the literal translation of Presviteros as a geriatric, while the ecclesiastical use of this word is clergy or Priests, and this is how the Roman Catholics have translated it.

The word Elder is normally used by many religions to denote the religious orders.

[12] The Word Priest Was Also Used In Many Places

(Titus 1:5) For this reason I left you in Crete, that you should set in order the things that are lacking, and appoint elders in every city as I commanded you;

(James 5:14) Is anyone among you sick? Let him call for the elders of the church, and let them pray over him, anointing him with oil in the name of the Lord.

[13] So If All Were Equal; Why Call The Priest To Anoint The Sick?

If all were priests, why call the priests and not any of the faithful to administer the oil?

[14] How Does This Fit With The Protestant Teaching Of No Intermediary Between God And Man

How is it that our Protestant brethren believe that there should be no mediation between God and Man, while the Scriptures teaches us to call an intermediary to pray for the sick? Why shouldnt the sick pray and anoint themselves by themselves?

Please note that the verse called for a priest and not for some one with the gift of healing, as we have discussed this issue before here on in other sections. Here the Scriptures speaks about a priestly office not a healing gift.

[15] We Also Reiterate First Timothy

(1 Tim 5:17) Let the elders (priests) who rule well be counted worthy of double honor, especially those who labor in the word and doctrine.

The word and doctrine were, since the apostolic age, entrusted to the apostles, their successors and helpers.

Here we also see that they were also rulers or hegomens.

[16] Our Evangelical brethren In Egypt Use The Title Priest (Kassis) And Not Elder (Sheik) For Their Pastors

Our Evangelical brethren use the word Priest without biblical differentiation between a Pastor and a Priest. And in the mean time they do not agree that the word Pastor or Priest carries with it any priestly rank.

This is also the practice of the Presbyterian denomination.

But the Plymouth do not use the word Pastor nor Priest, as all are in their eyes brethren, regardless of their office in the Church. They even call the apostles brethren!

But we believe in the priesthood and the rank of priests and bishops. This is as a result of the priestly office and work handed to them by the Lord.

Therefore, the matter is not a mere difference in translations or use of words. The principal difference is the priestly office, which differentiate between the office bearer and others.

Is the office bearer the person to be called to anoint the sick? Is the office bearer entrusted by the Church to teach and to rule?

Is the office bearer entrusted with the liturgy and baptism? Is the office bearer called by God like Aaron?

[17] Also The Plymouth Do Not Differentiate Between The Bishop And The Priest

The Plymouth and many other Protestant denominations do not differentiate between the bishop and the priest.

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