President Duterte: “By the way, I believe in God. But Priests?”

In this interview by Russia Today, President Rodrigo Duterte talks about why he suddenly decided to open up about his past experience of being sexually abused by a “priest” (see 21:20). After giving the host a copy of his book, Duterte ends the interview by asking a rhetorical question, “By the way, I really believe in God. I put my destiny in the hands of God. But priests?” He left a smirk on his face.

But priests?

We do not really need man-made “priests” as those reinforced in the religious hierarchical system. Jesus Christ Himself is the High Priest “who in every respect has been tempted as we are, yet without sin” (Hebrews 4:15). He is the true priest after Melchizedek. He also sacrificed Himself as the once-for-all offering (Hebrews 10:10).

Because of Christ, all who put their trust in Him are now also royal priests (1 Peter 2:9). We all have the common access to the throne of grace (Hebrews 4:16) to make intercessions for others and to minister to one another freely.

“But you are not like that, for you are a chosen people. You are royal priests, a holy nation, God’s very own possession. As a result, you can show others the goodness of God, for he called you out of the darkness into his wonderful light.” (1 Peter 2:9 NLT)

Psalm 146:3 writes, “Don’t put your confidence in powerful people; there is no help for you there.” Let’s turn to God but not man-made “priests”, because all who partake of Him are God-made priests.

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