You open your Bible, intrigued by references to “the anointed ones.” As a Christian, you know this term is important. But who exactly are the anointed ones?
In this comprehensive blog post, you’ll discover the different categories of anointed ones in Scripture. You’ll learn key lessons that can enrich your walk with God. Let’s explore this biblical theme together!
The concept of anointing permeates the Bible. From prophets to priests, kings to the Messiah, “anointed one” was a designation conferred on certain individuals. It signified being set apart and empowered by God.
Anointing involved the pouring or application of consecrated oil. It was an act of consecration, sanctifying the recipient for service. Anointed ones were authorized to fulfill divinely ordained roles.
As you’ll see, there were three primary categories of anointed ones in the Bible:
- Anointing was an act of consecration that set people apart for God’s service
- Three main groups of people were anointed: prophets, priests, and kings
- Jesus Christ is the ultimate Anointed One who fulfills all three roles perfectly
- All Christians have been anointed and commissioned by the Holy Spirit
- We must walk in humility, wisdom and obedience as God’s anointed ambassadors on earth
Now let’s explore each category of anointed ones in greater depth. Discover their purpose and calling. Reflect on lessons for your own life today.
Prophets played a vital role as God’s spokesmen. They heard His word and relayed it to His people. From Moses to John the Baptist, prophets were consecrated by anointing.
For example, God commanded Elijah to anoint Elisha as prophet in his place: “Also you shall anoint Jehu…as king over Israel. And Elisha…you shall anoint as prophet in your place” (1 Kings 19:16 NKJV).
Likewise, Isaiah proclaimed his anointed calling: “The Spirit of the Lord God is upon Me, because the Lord has anointed Me to preach good tidings to the poor” (Isaiah 61:1 NKJV).
As anointed prophets, these men were set apart to speak God’s truth boldly, confronting sin and calling people to repentance. They occupied a solemn position, often facing persecution and hardship.
You may not be a biblical-style prophet, but all believers have a prophetic calling. The Holy Spirit empowers you to share God’s heart with others. You are anointed to declare His truth, wisdom and salvation in your generation!
Priests acted as intermediaries between God and His people. They were consecrated through an elaborate ritual which included anointing them with oil (Exodus 28:41; 30:30 NKJV). This set them apart to serve at the tabernacle and temple, offering sacrifices and praying for God’s people.
The first priest was Aaron, chosen by God to lead Israel in worship: “Take Aaron and his sons…and anoint them, consecrate them, and sanctify them, that they may minister to Me as priests” (Exodus 28:41 NKJV).
Later, Levitical priests descended from Aaron presided over temple worship. As anointed ministers before the Lord, they had to pursue holiness and purity in their duties.
While you may not serve as a priest, all Christians are still called priests! You have direct access to God through Christ, your great High Priest (Hebrews 4:14-16). You’re anointed to serve Him, offer spiritual sacrifices, and minister His grace to others.
Kings were anointed to rule God’s people justly. As His earthly representatives, they were consecrated by holy oil. Saul and David were the first two kings anointed.
After David, kings were generally anointed as part of their coronation: “There Zadok the priest…anointed Solomon King” (1 Kings 1:38-39 NKJV). This divine act established them as God’s chosen ruler.
Sadly, many kings were unfaithful and disobeyed God. But the ideal was a righteous king who led the people in obedience to the Lord. He was anointed to administer justice, defend the nation, and promote true worship.
We are not earthly kings, but Christians still receive a kingly anointing! God calls you to rule your own “kingdom” – your sphere of influence – according to His principles. You are anointed to advance His righteous reign on earth as His ambassador!
The Messianic Anointed One
All these anointed roles found perfect fulfillment in Jesus Christ, the promised Messiah. Isaiah prophesied: “The Spirit of the Lord shall rest upon Him…His name will be called Wonderful, Counselor, Mighty God…” (Isaiah 11:2-5 NKJV).
When Jesus began His ministry, He read Isaiah’s words and declared: “Today this Scripture is fulfilled in your hearing” (Luke 4:21 NKJV). As the ultimate Anointed One, He fulfilled the messianic prophecies.
Jesus embodied the offices of prophet, priest and king. As the anointed Prophet, He proclaimed God’s truth and kingdom. As the anointed Priest, His sacrifice made final atonement for sin. As the anointed King, Herules God’s people with love and justice.
No ordinary anointed one could completely fulfill these roles. Only in Jesus Christ, the supreme Anointed One, do we see the perfect convergence of prophet, priest and king!
Christians as Anointed Ones
If you are a Christian, you also share in this comprehensive anointing of Jesus Christ! At your baptism, you were anointed with the Holy Spirit:
“The One who establishes us with you in Christ and has anointed us is God, who…has sealed us and given us the Spirit in our hearts as a guarantee” (2 Corinthians 1:21-22 NKJV).
Through the Spirit, you partake in Christ’s anointing. You are empowered to participate in His messianic mission as prophet, priest and king:
Prophet: You can hear God’s voice and share His heart with the world.
Priest: You are privileged to directly minister to God and bring others before Him.
King: You can advance God’s kingdom through righteous words and deeds.
This is an incredible calling! As an anointed one in Christ, be sure to walk in humility, wisdom and obedience. Rely on the Spirit’s empowerment to fulfill your divine role.
In a world of confusion, you carry the light of truth. In an age of injustice, you model righteousness. In spheres scarred by sin, you spread grace. You are anointed for such a time as this!
We’ve explored the diversity of anointed ones throughout Scripture – prophets, priests, kings and ultimately Jesus Christ. Their lives hold vital lessons for anyone who serves God.
As those anointed and gifted by the Holy Spirit, may we faithfully walk in our calling. Christ’s messianic anointing flows through us by God’s grace. Let’s be empowered witnesses and ambassadors of His kingdom every day!
The Bible’s message is timeless. Though times change, human needs remain. We still require truth, justice, healing and restoration. As God’s anointed ones, we are equipped to meet those needs. May we embrace this high calling with courage, wisdom and humility before Him.