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By our baptism we all become part of a priestly people, and are ambasadors of Christ. We are all responsible to show Christ in our lives, not simply by teaching others about Christ by words, but also by our actions.
Jesus also selected individual men who we read about in the Bible. These men were given a special commission, they were told at the last supper to do what He did, (Take bread and wine, bless it, and repeat the words He uses, “This is My Body” and “This is My Blood”*. He also laid His hands on them, and breathed on them and gave them the authority to forgive sins. He commissioned specific desciples to preach teach and baptize.
In the New Testament we also read that there are those who are given special authority over the Church, that there is a division between the clergy and the laity. St. Paul tell us to be obedient to those who have this authority over us. The authority does not come from the congregation as in Protestantims, but from the Apostles, who laid hands on them. The Apostles authority is from Christ Himself.
* There are many Protestants who will argue that Jesus just wanted us to remember Him by having a communion or Lord’s Supper service. They will even try to change what Jesus said and did, by using the modern interpretation of the event and say, “Jesus said, Do this in memory, or rememberence of Me.” However what is recorded in the Original Greek Scriptures is something different. In the Original Greek Jesus commands the Apostles to “Make Amensis of Me.” Amensis is a greek term that does mean rememberance, but in a much stronger manner than the way we use it today. Amensis is to make oneself present at an event from the past. That Jesus would celebrate the Passover, and institute the Eucharist at that time is very telling.
Anmensis for Jews and Chrisitans.
We have to remember that Jesus lived on this earth as an observant Jew. At Passover the Jews gathered to eat a ritual meal called the Seder. During the Seder the Jews told the story of the Exodus from Egypt. It is explained to all who celebrate the Seder Ritual, that by participating in the Seder, they are not simply to regard themselves as having remembered the events of the Exodus, but that they should consider that they too participate in the coming out of Egypt, that they too by making this Amensis, are there with those who followed Moses throught the desert. So when Jesus tells us to make Amensis of Him, we are being instructed by Him that when those who do what He has done, we are there, in the Upper Room, and as He told us the cup is the cup of His blood and the sacrifice of Himself, we are also mystically present at the Cross on Calvary. So since we see that Jesus only commanded a select group to “do” what He did. (Elsewhere before the Last Supper He commanded that we must eat His Body and Drink His blood if we were to have life in us.) But here he only commands a select group, and grants them the authority to do so.