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Ask the Pastor

† Theological musings and answers to selected questions by a confessional Lutheran pastor.






02 August 2005

Olive Oil and the Holy Spirit


Q: Why is olive oil a representation of the Holy Spirit in the New Testament?

A: God chose to use olive oil for anointing priests and kings, as well as some prophets. Since they were called to these offices by the Holy Spirit, the outpouring of olive oil was intimately tied to the outpouring of the Spirit. The New Testament only makes explicit (e.g., Revelation 11) what was already going on throughout the Old Testament (e.g., Zechariah 4).

I wouldn’t want to push anointing into the position of being considered a sacrament. However, I think that many Lutherans (and other Christians) sometimes distinctly underplay oil’s importance.

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Walter Snyder is the pastor of Holy Cross Lutheran Church, Emma, Missouri and coauthor of the book What Do Lutherans Believe.

1 Comments:

Blogger Webcritter said...

You wrote:

"I think that many Lutherans (and other Christians) sometimes distinctly underplay oil’s importance."

Could you please expand on that a bit, Pastor Snyder?

- Webcritter

03 August, 2005 19:26  

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