Segoe UI – (We rented and watched Wall-e, Journey to the Center of the Earth, and Indiana Jones and the Kingdom of the Crystal Skull yesterday. I’ve been slugging through Champions of Norath: Return to Arms with my Iksar Shaman named Slithzerikai, I’m almost at level twenty. We’ve gotten a fair amount of snow over the last few days.)
More than once, people have asked about Melchizedek on the “Ask the Pastor” show. We first meet him in the Old Testament, which explains why many new Christians are quite confused about him. His name means ‘King of Righteousness. His job is the King of Salem (Jerusalem) and priest of El Elyon (Most High God) which is a reference to God. In Genesis 14:17-24, Mel brings some bread and wine and he blesses Abram. Abram gives Mel a tenth of everything, hence where the tradition of tithing comes from. Not everybody agrees on the meaning of Hebrews 7:3. Some argue that Mel was immortal, but I think the point was that the Order of Aaron depended on having a descendant to keep the priesthood going, only Levites could be priests. The order of Melchizedek was different. It was not bound by time, once a priest always a priest.
When it is said that Jesus is a priest in the Order of Melchizedek, it means simply these things, 1.) He holds the priestly office, though he is not a Levite, 2.) The priesthood is permanent , and 3.) Both hold another office, the office of king.
Hebrews 7:23-28, ” 23Now there have been many of those priests, since death prevented them from continuing in office; 24but because Jesus lives forever, he has a permanent priesthood. 25Therefore he is able to save completely those who come to God through him, because he always lives to intercede for them.
26Such a high priest meets our need—one who is holy, blameless, pure, set apart from sinners, exalted above the heavens. 27Unlike the other high priests, he does not need to offer sacrifices day after day, first for his own sins, and then for the sins of the people. He sacrificed for their sins once for all when he offered himself. 28For the law appoints as high priests men who are weak; but the oath, which came after the law, appointed the Son, who has been made perfect forever.”
And the end result? Well, it’s pretty wonderful if you ask me:
1 Peter 2:9-10, “9But you are a chosen people, a royal priesthood, a holy nation, a people belonging to God, that you may declare the praises of him who called you out of darkness into his wonderful light. 10Once you were not a people, but now you are the people of God; once you had not received mercy, but now you have received mercy.”