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APPENDIX V Who is Melchizedek

Who is Melchizedek
Genesis 14:18-20 depicts an interesting encounter between a mysterious, unknown figure and Abram. 

Jesus is said to "have been called out by God as a High Priest according to the order of Melchizedek." (Heb. 5:10).

Jesus, the Son of God, is said to be a High Priest, not unto an order of Himself, but unto the order of this mysterious Priest/King!

The verse in full is as follows:
"and, once made perfect, he became the source of eternal salvation for all who obey him and was designated by God to be high priest in the order of Melchizedek." (Heb. 5:9-10)

A chapter later the same information is deemed so important as to be reiterated once again. This time, the name Jesus is specifically mentioned.
Jesus, who went before us, has entered on our behalf. He has become a high priest forever, in the order of Melchizedek." (Heb. 6:20)

The association with Jesus cannot be denied. Thus the question naturally arises; Just who was this mysterious figure? Was he an Old Testament manifestation of Jesus Christ Himself? Was he one of the Antediluvian Patriarchs, allowed to live a very long life in order to help establish God's chosen nation? Was he simply a righteous king, misinterpreted through the ages, a victim of translation? As is the usual case, many theories abound, some creative and fantastic, some remarkably persuasive.  Even Abraham, one of the mightiest men in the Bible, subjected himself to the Priest of the Most High God. the priestly tribe was descended from Levi, through Aaron, the brother of Moses. Melchizedek, however, predated this priestly tribe, as stated in Hebrews 7:10. "because when Melchizedek met Abraham, Levi was still in the body of his ancestor." The following verses continue to focus on the comparison between the two separate orders of priests.

"11. If perfection could have been attained through the Levitical priesthood, for on the basis of it the law was given to the people, why was there still a need for another priest to come-one in the order of Melchizedek, not in the order of Aaron?12. For when there is a change of priesthood, there is also a change of the law. 13. He of whom these things are said belonged to a different tribe, and no one from that tribe has ever served at the altar."
When read in context with the passage, the "one in the order of" from verse 11, appears to be Jesus.  He has come not in the order of Aaron, but to change the law found within the order of Aaron. Thus, Jesus comes in the order of Melchizedek. The "He of whom these things are said" in verse 13, appears to refer to the Priest/King.  He certainly belonged to another tribe, yet a tribe where he served as priest of the Most High God, and blessed Abraham, the father of the fledgling nation.  Yet, neither the King of Salem, nor any of his descendants, ever served at the altar, as indeed, that became the duties of the Levites. There can be no doubt, however, that he served in an order of priests God had in operation centuries before Moses and Aaron.
Verses 15 and 16 talk of the qualifications necessary to be a priest of this order.

"And what we have said is even more clear if another priest like Melchizedek appears, one who has become a priest not on the basis of a regulation as to his ancestry but on the basis of the power of an indestructible life. For it is declared, 'You are priest forever, in the order of Melchizedek'. " (Heb. 7:15-17)
This priesthood was not based on lineage, handed down from one generation to the next. In fact, this priesthood was not handed down at all, but, rather, appointed by the Most High God, in reward for an "indestructible life". 

Click Here To Post Your Theories & Questions on Melchizedek. Do you have a theory as to the Priest/King's identity? Give us your insights, thoughts, questions, and comments by clicking on the link above! 

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