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In the light - 27.03.07
I am journaling through the book titled The Essential Jesus: 100 Readings Through the Bible's Greatest Story written by Whitney T. Kuniholm. In reflecting on Psalm 110 Kuniholm writes "... the New Testament refers to this psalm more than any other."

The LORD has sworn and will not change his mind: "You are a priest forever, in the order of Melchizedek." (Psalm 110:4)
Melchizedek, the King of Salem, is briefly mentioned near the beginning of the Bible (Genesis 14), in the middle (Psalm 110), and in more detail towards the end (Hebrews 5, 6, & 7).

Abraham's encounter with Melchizedek as recorded in the first book of the Bible (Genesis 14:17-20) was brief, but as we begin to learn in Psalm 110 had tremendous significance in telling us more about the Messiah.

So what do we know about Melchizedek:
  1. He was a King.
  2. He was King of Salem. Salem means peace.
  3. He was also "a priest of God Most High".
  4. He blessed Abraham and then Abraham "gave him a tenth of everything" he had just won back in battle.
  5. His name means "King of Righteousness".
  6. As pointed out in the book of Hebrews there is no record of his birth or death and so he has no beginning or end.
  7. He was the very first priest mentioned in the Old Testament.
  8. He was not a priest from the line of Levi as was required by the law established later under Moses. Aaron would become the first High Priest of the Israelites. In fact this encounter between Abraham and Melchizedek was before Levi and Aaron were born. Melchizedek was a pre-Israelite priest. Once God established the priesthood for his people all priests were to descend from the Levi tribe.
It is also important to point out that the Levitical priesthood was separate from the Kingship of Israel. Priests were not kings and kings were not priests. The priests were set apart to be mediators between the people and God. The High Priest was the only person permitted to enter the Most Holy part of the temple and only once a year and with animal sacrifice to cover the sins of the people and priests.

Ok, fascinating, we have a mysterious funky named king who was also the first priest recorded in the Bible. So what does this mean to me today?

King David in Psalm 110 compares Melchizedek, both a king and priest, with the coming Messiah. Before the Law was given, before the nation of Israel existed, this King of Salem, this priest of God Most High is a glimpse into the future. He is a preview, a sneak peak, of Christ. In Melchizedek God gives a hint of a new kind of priesthood before the old kind is even established. A hint of a future permanent priesthood. A new order, a new covenant. As we learn in Hebrews the Levitical priesthood was only temporary and could not ultimately change the underline problem - sin. Without a new order we humans could never have direct interaction with God.

Jesus is both our King and our High Priest. He is the King of peace. He is the King of Righteousness! He has no beginning or end. He is eternal. He is our permanent mediator between us and God. In our lives in this world where nothing is permanent, where nothing is forever, Christ is our permanent High Priest.



| More on the Essential Jesus journey. |

The Photo in this post was uploaded to flickr.com by .:: Tomz ::. on 28 Mar 07, 5.17PM PDT. It is titled "In the light - 27.03.07". .:: Tomz ::. gives this description about the photo: "This is Mt. Keilir, a mountain that everybody see on their way to Reykjavik. I was driving and saw the clouds open and letting the sunlight shine straight on the mountain, great moment to stop and take a shoot." It was taken with a with a Canon EOS 5D.

4 comments:

  1. An excellent blog, Brad. One of the best designs I've seen in a long time.

    It looks so professional! =)

    I love the snaps you have taken too. They are profound....and the teachings are very good.

    We're right now on a series on the foundations at Imrah. I just finished dealing with the topic of baptism in the Holy Spirit, right now Titto (iM team member) is dealing with the gifts of the Spirit. =) I will get back to teaching when it comes to the vocal gifts.

    Added your site to my favorites! =)

    Blessings

    Sid

    ReplyDelete
  2. Amen! Jesus is the creator of all things here on earth and in the heavens. He is Supreme in all His glory. He is King of Kings and Lord of Lords. To Him be the glory forever. Blessings my friend.

    ReplyDelete
  3. For some reason, I really liked reading this. Now I want to go study and meditate and pray about Melchizedek, Messiah, priesthood, all that. Then in valerie lynn's comment, a phrase I always love:
    King of Kings and Lord of Lords!

    ReplyDelete

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