Posted by: biblestudyseattle | December 10, 2014

Priests who don’t marry

Why is it that Catholic preists don’t marry?  According to a Catholic website:

Theologically, it may be pointed out that priests serve in the place of Christ and therefore, their ministry specially configures them to Christ. As is clear from Scripture, Christ was not married (except in a mystical sense, to the Church). By remaining celibate and devoting themselves to the service of the Church, priests more closely model, configure themselves to, and consecrate themselves to Christ.

As Christ himself makes clear, none of us will be married in heaven (Mt 22:23–30). By remaining unmarried in this life, priests are more closely configured to the final, eschatological state that will be all of ours.

Paul makes it very clear that remaining single allows one’s attention to be undivided in serving the Lord (1 Cor 7:32–35). He recommends celibacy to all (1 Cor 7:7) but especially to ministers, who as soldiers of Christ he urges to abstain from “civilian affairs” (2 Tm 2:3–4).

For starters, Jesus did not say there would be no marriage in heaven. He himself will be married to the church! He meant that most people would not be married. Paul recommended singleness, but he knew that was not a biblical commandment.  Jesus never recommended that his followers be single.  And why was Jesus single?  Because his bride had not yet been selected by his Father!  Jesus definitely wants to get married.  That’s why he died on the cross.  It’s only through his marriage to the church that he can redeem mankind!  They will be born again through his bride the church.

Notice that the Israelite for runners of the church were married.  The priests were to marry and have children.  Priests could only come from other priests.  Would those priests be less effective with a family!  By no means!  In fact they had more life experience to enable them to relate to more situations.  Ministers of the church should be the same.  Notice what Paul says:

“The Spirit clearly says that in later times some will abandon the faith and follow deceiving spirits and things taught by demons.  Such teachings come through hypocritical liars, whose consciences have been seared as with a hot iron.  They forbid people to marry and order them to abstain from certain foods, which God created to be received with thanksgiving by those who believe and who know the truth.  For everything God created is good, and nothing is to be rejected if it is received with thanksgiving, because it is consecrated by the word of God and prayer.”  1 Timothy 4:1-4

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