Marriage and Chastity among Priest
Mark 14:66 -
And as Peter was beneath in the palace, there cometh one of the maids of the high priest:
The Greek word 'paidiske' translated as maid here also means damsel and comes from the word 'pais' which also means child.
In one of the translations this young woman has referred to as daughter of the High Priest. This woman may or may not be a daughter but marriage in priesthood was a common thing during the Jewish Church and also in the Christian church.
The concept of chastity in the Bible is only twice and both places they are not connected with priesthood. In the early Church there was no restriction about getting married. Peter was married and had children; even the early Popes of the Catholic church were married and had children. It was only during the dark ages of the Catholic church (around 1400AD) after one of the Popes did the most shameful act that the concept of chastity was introduced into the church.
The teachings of Paul's preference of chastity for servants of God existed even before but became an excuse to hide the unthinkable shameful acts which almost destroyed the church at that time. These restrictions have of late resulted in another type of shameful incidents, with the people who vowed to chastity indulging in child molestation. Though they were happening since long it was only of late people have come to the knowledge of it. In western countries this has caused many to leave the church and some to even leave Christianity.
The cause of this is lack of understanding of marriage and the term chastity. Not going into the understanding of marriage I will touch on the understanding of chastity. People think chastity causes a person to be pure, and that is a very wrong notion.
God made man to reproduce and be fruitful. God created every part of the body of man and no part of our body or its functions are dirty. The purpose what we use it for may be bad but by itself our body is made by God and He said all is good. He created a relationship of husband and wife between man and woman. Sex is solely for reproduction and it is good and commanded by God in the relationship of husband and wife. Sex for the sake of pleasure is not what God made man and wife for but has allowed it in marriage but at the same time instructed us to overcome come it.
Paul too suggests if one is not called for marriage and has the grace to control the desires of the flesh they should not marry so that they can concentrate on their service by staying away from the responsibility of supporting a family.
Being married or staying chastity should be done according to the purpose that God has in the person's life and the grace that is on that person. Like Paul said it is better to be married then to struggle with one's flesh and sin. With people who called to lead the people of God it is a great responsibility for them to uplift the Name of the Lord. So married or unmarried their representation is more important.
[ Prayer Starter ]
Lord, You have made man and woman with purpose to understand your relationship with man. You made all things good and with reason. It is only when the purpose changes that the things turn away from being good. Lord, we pray specially that people follow You with understanding and not blindly follow men who mislead them by taking your name. Lord, let them know your purpose and their purpose in You...
This prayer we make in Jesus' Name, Amen.
[ Reference Scriptures ]
26 And God said, Let us make man in our image, after our likeness: and let them have dominion over the fish of the sea, and over the fowl of the air, and over the cattle, and over all the earth, and over every creeping thing that creepeth upon the earth.
27 So God created man in his own image, in the image of God created he him; male and female created he them.
28 And God blessed them, and God said unto them, Be fruitful, and multiply, and replenish the earth, and subdue it: and have dominion over the fish of the sea, and over the fowl of the air, and over every living thing that moveth upon the earth.
29 And God said, Behold, I have given you every herb bearing seed, which is upon the face of all the earth, and every tree, in the which is the fruit of a tree yielding seed; to you it shall be for meat.
30 And to every beast of the earth, and to every fowl of the air, and to every thing that creepeth upon the earth, wherein there is life, I have given every green herb for meat: and it was so.
31 And God saw every thing that he had made, and, behold, it was very good.
1 Corinthians 7:32-38
32 But I would have you without carefulness. He that is unmarried careth for the things that belong to the Lord, how he may please the Lord:
33 But he that is married careth for the things that are of the world, how he may please his wife.
34 There is difference also between a wife and a virgin. The unmarried woman careth for the things of the Lord, that she may be holy both in body and in spirit: but she that is married careth for the things of the world, how she may please her husband.
35 And this I speak for your own profit; not that I may cast a snare upon you, but for that which is comely, and that ye may attend upon the Lord without distraction.
36 But if any man think that he behaveth himself uncomely toward his virgin, if she pass the flower of her age, and need so require, let him do what he will, he sinneth not: let them marry.
37 Nevertheless he that standeth stedfast in his heart, having no necessity, but hath power over his own will, and hath so decreed in his heart that he will keep his virgin, doeth well.
38 So then he that giveth her in marriage doeth well; but he that giveth her not in marriage doeth better.
Luke 1: 5 - There was in the days of Herod, the king of Judaea, a certain priest named Zacharias, of the course of Abia: and his wife was of the daughters of Aaron, and her name was Elisabeth.
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