Again, another bible class. It was written and given as a public talk but posted here in case anyone else would care to read it. This subject was a delight to study, especially in such exciting times where prophecy is speedily becoming a reality as we know with all certainty that it will.
Melchizedek is explicitly mentioned in three sections of scripture. The historical record of Melchizedek is found in Genesis 14, Then the sweet psalmist of Israel picks up the theme and links it to Christ in the millenium – Psalm 110. And finally, Paul in Hebrews 5 to 7, ties the theme together expounding many parts of these two earlier passages, showing that indeed Jesus was the Christ – the anointed king – foretold by the prophets.
Paul tells us that Melchizedek was:
Heb 7:3 Without father, without mother, without descent, having neither beginning of days, nor end of life; but made like unto the Son of God; abideth a priest continually.
Melchizedek was a man and therefore undoubtedly had parents, probably even children. Paul’s point is that Melchizedek has been made to look like Christ… he is a type of Christ! Hence all the details, or in this case, lack of them, are recorded for that purpose… nothing is left to chance in scripture. I’d like to look at both the prophecy and the exhortation.
Book of beginnings
Lets start then by looking at the context to Gen 14, and the very first recorded words of our Father,
Gen 1:1 In the Beginnings Elohim (mighty ones) created the Heavens and the Earth
And in the following 31 verses we have typified both the Beginning and the Ending of the purpose of our Father with celestial rock which we inhabit. An astounding fabrication of unfathomable complexity and beauty, every atom designed as a teaching aid to compliment his word.
And with the first opening of his mouth he provided light to a world ruled by darkness – the revelation of the gospel. He separated to himself the dry land from the sea, symbolic of people of Israel out from the tumultuous nations. And ending in a garden tended by the Adam, one flesh working in harmony with his wife – Christ and his bride tending to the people of the kingdom. We know that the seventh day of creation represents millennial reign of Christ, “…And Elohim did rest the seventh day from all his works. And in this place again, If they shall enter into my rest” (Heb 4:4,5)..
The Hebrew word for beginning in Genesis 1 is plural… there are multiple typical beginnings throughout Genesis – it is a book of beginnings. Each reiterating the pattern presented in the first chapter; each adding a little more detail to the various parts, and the events of Genesis 14 are no exception.
Christ and his bride typified in Abraham and Sarah
This type starts in chapter 12,
Gen 12:10 And there was a famine in the land: and Abram went down into Egypt to sojourn there; for the famine was grievous in the land.
Through fear Abraham asks Sarah not to mention she is his wife, and thereby unwittingly enacts the events of the children of Israel in Egypt – Yahweh’s people dwelling without a husband.
Gen 12:17 And Yahweh plagued Pharaoh and his house with great plagues because of Sarai Abram’s wife.
Like Sarah, the Pharoh would later be plagued to let Israel go.
Gen 13:1 And Abram went up out of Egypt, he, and his wife, and all that he had, and Lot with him, into the south.
:2 And Abram was very rich in cattle, in silver, and in gold.
Sarah came out of Egypt, recognised as Abraham’s wife, so too Israel.
Ezk 16:7 I have caused thee to multiply as the bud of the field, and thou hast increased and waxen great, and thou art come to excellent ornaments: thy breasts are fashioned, and thine hair is grown, whereas thou wast naked and bare.
8 Now when I passed by thee, and looked upon thee, behold, thy time was the time of love; and I spread my skirt over thee, and covered thy nakedness: yea, I sware unto thee, and entered into a covenant with thee, saith Yahweh Elohim, and thou becamest mine.
The household of Abraham was blessed and multiplied in Egypt, just like Israel his seed to come, and gathered back to the promised land. Again this type is repeated: first with Israel as a nation, secondly with Christ, and finally it will be repeated once again with Israel when Elijah calls them back (Hos 2:14,15).
Inevitably apostasy came to the Ecclesia, and there is great exhortation for us in how it started, “and there was a strife between the herdmen of Abram’s cattle and the herdmen of Lot’s cattle” (Gen 13:7). Because of strife between the leaders of the cattle, symbolic of those elders of the Ecclesia. Because of infighting, the Ecclesia is split, and in an attempt to get away they end up leaving the saftey and hardship of the mountains. they cross over the river Jordan leaving the promised land, for the easy life of the well watered plains of Moab. And as a result, the flock they are supposed to be caring for is lost to the cares of this life, and the prosperity of Sodom and Gomorrah.
2 Tim 2:23 But foolish and unlearned questions avoid, knowing that they do gender strifes.
:24 And the servant of the Lord must not strive; but be gentle unto all men, apt to teach, patient,
:25 In meekness instructing those that oppose themselves; if God peradventure will give them repentance to the acknowledging of the truth;
:26 And that they may recover themselves out of the snare of the devil, who are taken captive by him at his will.
We should strengthen the Ecclesia, settling our differences quickly “Be ye angry, and sin not: let not the sun go down upon your wrath:” (Eph 4:26). For if we are not careful, we will break up the safety of the Ecclesia and it’s members gradually fall away to the pray…
Ezek 16:49 Behold, this was the iniquity of thy sister Sodom, pride, fulness of bread, and abundance of idleness was in her and in her daughters, neither did she strengthen the hand of the poor and needy.
:50 And they were haughty, and committed abomination before me: therefore I took them away as I saw good.
Brethren and sisters, are we ever proud or haughty, thinking ourselves more than we ought? “Whoso privily slandereth his neighbour, him will I cut off: …him that hath an high look and a proud heart will not I suffer” (Psa 101:5). Are we satisfied with the bread of this life, that we do not thirst for the cooling streams of his word? Are we comfortable sitting around wasting our time on frivolous entertainment, or are we working to build up ourselves, our families, and our Ecclesia in the ways of our Father. Else as with Sodom, so with us…
Rev 2:5 Remember therefore from whence thou art fallen, and repent, and do the first works; or else I will come unto thee quickly, and will remove thy lamp-stand out of his place, except thou repent.
And so it was, in Gen 14, the northern confederacy came down and took away the Ecclesial lamp-stand of Lot from out of Sodom.
Northern invader purging the remnant
There are many verses we could look at concerning the northern invader. This whole pattern repeats itself throughout scripture, the Assyrians, the Romans, and ultimately as far as this type is concerned, Gog at the beginning of the millennium (Ezk 38).
In summary, using the language of the parables of our lord, our father sows the seed in his kingdom, he provides his people with his word. In some it grows, but in others it does not take root or the cares of this life smother out its affects and so they die a death of apathy (Mat 13:3-9). There is also the apostasy described as the tares, angels (or messengers) who have fallen from their first estate. Those corrupt the word they were given, who deceive people to follow the lusts of their bodies, and justify themselves by the serpents lie – “thou shalt not surely die” (Mat 13:24-30).
Jude 12 These are spots in your feasts of love, when they feast with you, feeding themselves without fear: clouds they are without water, carried about of winds; trees whose fruit withereth, without fruit, twice dead, plucked up by the roots;
13 Raging waves of the sea, foaming out their own shame; wandering stars, to whom is reserved the blackness of darkness for ever.
These tares are left among the corn until the harvest, lest uprooting the tares also uproots the immature corn. At the harvest all will be plucked up: the corn into the barn and tares burnt with fire. However the righteous should be compassionate with all, and with love pull those they can from out of the fire (Jude 1:21-25). This harvest fire is the burning of the northern invader (Ezk 1, Mat 3:10-12).
Isa 4:2 In that day shall the branch of Yahweh be beautiful and glorious, and the fruit of the earth shall be excellent and comely for them that are escaped of Israel.
3 And it shall come to pass, that he that is left in Zion, and he that remaineth in Jerusalem, shall be called holy, even every one that is written among the living in Jerusalem:
4 When Adonay (my lords – the Gogean host) shall have washed away the filth of the daughters of Zion, and shall have purged the blood of Jerusalem from the midst thereof by the spirit of judgment, and by the spirit of burning.
Through this cleansing fire, the oppressive leaders of the Jewish Commonwealth are removed, and replaced by shepherds who care for the flock as their father does.
Matt 21:40 When the lord therefore of the vineyard cometh, what will he do unto those husbandmen?
41 They say unto him, He will miserably destroy those wicked men, and will let out his vineyard unto other husbandmen, which shall render him the fruits in their seasons.
And this is the scene onto which Melchizedek comes, and the reason for his arrival.
Bread and wine to feed the remnant
Melchizedek comes with bread and wine to nourish Abraham after the battle. What a wonderful type of future events, Christ and his bride feeding the remnant of Israel after their purging by the Gogean invasion of Ezk 38.
Gen 14:18 And Melchizedek (king of Righteousness) king of Salem brought forth bread and wine: and he was the priest of the most high Ail (Power).
:19 And he blessed him, and said, Blessed be Abram of the most high Ail (Power), possessor of heaven and earth
:20 And blessed be the most high Ail (Power), which hath delivered thine enemies into thy hand. And he (Abraham) gave him a tenth of all.
Right now, the main religious leaders of Israel aptly answer to the description of Jude. Squabbling amongst themselves for pre-eminence and teaching the traditions of men (oral torah) rather that the word of Yahweh (written torah). The community is rife with scandals from the top down – just like most organisations in this world. Yet our father loves the people and so will we if we love our father.
Isa 63:9 In all their affliction he was afflicted, and the angel of his presence saved them: in his love and in his pity he redeemed them; and he bare them, and carried them all the days of old.
After the invasion of Gog and the salvation of Israel by their Messiah (anointed king), he will nourish them with bread and wine… just as when he first came to them.
John 6:32 Then Jesus said unto them,Verily, verily, I say unto you, Moses gave you not that bread from heaven; but my Father giveth you the true bread from heaven.
33 For the bread of God is he which cometh down from heaven, and giveth life unto the world.
34 Then said they unto him, Lord, evermore give us this bread.
35 And Jesus said unto them, I am the bread of life: he that cometh to me shall never hunger; and he that believeth on me shall never thirst.
Mat 26:26 And as they were eating, Jesus took bread, and blessed it, and brake it, and gave it to the disciples, and said, Take, eat; this is my body.
27 And he took the cup, and gave thanks, and gave it to them, saying, Drink ye all of it;
28 For this is my blood of the new testament, which is shed for many for the remission of sins.
29 But I say unto you, I will not drink henceforth of this fruit of the vine, until that day when I drink it new with you in my Father’s kingdom.
And that time, is the glorious time we are now considering in Gen 14. But we can take this even further… our lord said “Take, eat; this is my body”. He is the head and his body is the Ecclesia.
Col 1:24 Who now rejoice in my sufferings for you, and fill up that which is behind of the afflictions of Christ in my flesh for his body’s sake, which is the Ecclesia:
After the pattern of the feeding of the five thousand, the living bread comes from the father – Christ. The apostles heard and ate of that bread, and becoming that bread shared it to those around them.
1 John 1:1-3 “That which was from the beginning, which we have heard, which we have seen with our eyes, which we have looked upon, and our hands have handled, of the Word of life; (For the life was manifested, and we have seen it, and bear witness, and shew unto you that eternal life, which was with the Father, and was manifested unto us;) that which we have seen and heard declare we unto you, that ye also may have fellowship with us: and truly our fellowship is with the Father, and with his Son Jesus Christ.”
Christ will present his bride to the Israel and she will feed them, opening their eyes to the reality of the words they know so well!
Isa 25:7 And he will destroy in this mountain (Zion, Jerusalem) the face of the covering cast over all people, and the vail that is spread over all nations.
The people will go up to the temple to learn of Yahweh and of his ways, here the vail will be removed, and the world will finally understand the words of the most familiar book in the world.
8 He will swallow up death in victory; and Yahweh Elohim (the saint body) will wipe away tears from off all faces; and the rebuke of his people shall he take away from off all the earth: for Yahweh hath spoken it.
Yahweh is a family name, and sometimes refers to the father, sometimes to his first born son Christ, and other times to all his children collectively – those who manifest his name, bear his characteristics. In prophecy, we often find that the Yahweh Elohim is talking of the immortalised saint body. For in that age, the angels will not control the events of the world, this role will be given to Christ and his bride (Heb 2:5)
9 And it shall be said in that day, Lo, this is our Elohim (mighty ones – the saints); we have waited for him, and he will save us: this is Yahweh; we have waited for him, we will be glad and rejoice in his salvation
Play on words here, as the word salvation is “Shua”. Yashua is the Hebrew name from which we get the Anglicized Greek transliteration “Jesus”, and it comes from the same root word. So rather fittingly, the name of the saviour is alluded to here.
Tithes – the tenth part for the priests
Notice verse 20 of Gen 14. Abraham gave Melchizadek a tenth of all the spoil, “…and he (Abraham) gave him tithes (heb: a tenth) of all.” (Gen 14:20). We know that the “he” there is Abraham, because Paul says so in Hebrews 7 and verse 6“But he (Melchizadek) whose descent is not counted from them, received tithes of Abraham, and blessed him (Abraham) that had the promises.”.
Taking of the tenth part was later taken as part of the mosaic law.
Num 18:21 And, behold, I have given the children of Levi all the tenth in Israel for an inheritance, for their service which they serve, even the service of the tabernacle of the congregation.
So it was made an institution that of the produce of the land, a tenth was to be given to the priests – for their work was to serve the tabernacle and teach the people the law. And this will be reintroduced in the millennial reign of Christ.
We will now move on to look at Christ as the high priest of the most high Ail (power). Then as the king of the earth: first King of Righteousness, and thereafter king of Salem (or as it later became know – Jeru-salem).
Priest of the most hight Ail
First a few questions, why are sacrifices needed? and what is a priest?
Well the answer to the first is fairly simple, the sacrifices show us our natural state before our father, where we should be going, and how we get there. The sacrifices and the law are “the patterns of things in the heavens“ (Heb 9:23). And it is the work of the priests to show the example and to preserve the tabernacle, the patterns as teaching aids, preserve the words of our father for future generations.
Mal 2:7 For the priest’s lips should keep knowledge, and they should seek the law at his mouth: for he is the messenger of Yahweh of Armies.
So what is our state? The earth and all that is within it was created “very good” (Gen 1:31). Yet only a few year later Yahweh declares of the generation of Noah, “every imagination of the thoughts of his heart was only evil continually” (Gen 6:5). And Christ declares, “why callest thou me good? there is none good but one, that is, God” (Matt 19:17).
Rom 5:12 Wherefore, as by one man (Adam) sin entered into the world, and death by sin; and so death passed upon all men, for that all have sinned (lit. have missed the mark):
2 Cor 5:21 For he hath made him to be sin for us, who knew no sin; that we might be made the righteousness of God in him.
Christ was made sin, made flesh, of the same nature we have… yet he knew no sin, he did not transgress the law of his father. In his last letter to us, he writes:
Rev 3:21 To him that overcometh will I grant to sit with me in my throne, even as I also overcame, and am set down with my Father in his throne.
What did he overcome exactly?
Rom 8:3 …God sending his own Son in the likeness of sinful flesh, and for sin, condemned sin in the flesh
Paul describes it as the “dwelling in me sin” (Rom 7:20), and again he says:
Rom 7:23 But I see another law in my members, warring against the law of my mind, and bringing me into captivity to the law of sin which is in my members.
24 O wretched man that I am! who shall deliver me from the body of this death?
25 I thank God through Jesus Christ our Lord. So then with the mind I myself serve the law of God; but with the flesh the law of sin.
Since by Adam sin entered into the world, and there is a law of sin in our members, then this must have been added in a change to our nature at the fall. As well as man becoming a dying, the natural desires our bodies need to ensure survival became enhanced and lustful – “so the eyes of man are never satisfied” (Prov 27:20).
Husband and wife clothed with one skin
This physical change was noticed by Adam and his wife, and they felt their nakedness… and tried to hide it by their own means. And so the grand archetype of corrective path was revealed in one short verse – later to be elaborated by countless related types building out from this theme.For example, the Mosaic priests must wear the linen breeches to cover their nakedness else they would die when they entered the tabernacle (Exo 28:42-43)
Gen 3:21 Unto Adam also and to his wife did Yahweh Elohim make coats of a skin, and clothed them.
The clothing of both Adam and his wife with coats from one single skin – the skin of the Lamb slain from the foundation of the world (Apoc 13:8). To understand this properly we need to note that the verse in Apocalypse 13 is not talking of the foundation of the literal world, but the world to come – which Christ laid the foundations of in his death. There are have been three foundations of three worlds, and three slain lambs; the first two are but typical shadows of Christ, who would realise all the types. These worlds, or political constitutions of things, are enumerated for us in 2 peter 3:
- verses 5-6: the lamb slain for Adam and Eve at the beginning of the antediluvian world (the world before the deluge, the flood), and destroyed by the flood.
- verses 7-12: the world which was (at the time of peters writing), the mosaic world which was founded on the slaying of the passover lamb at the exodus from Egypt. We are told explicitly that this lamb was Christ, “for even Christ our passover is sacrificed for us” (1 Cor 5:7). And this world was destroyed by the fire of the Roman armies lead by the power of Christ at AD 70.
- verse 13: the new heavens and new earth which are yet to be fully established, yet Christ laid the foundations of it in his death. And this Heaven and earth will not pass away (Dan 7:14).
When the priests offered the sacrifices they laid their “hand upon the head of the burnt offering; and it shall be accepted for him to make a covering for him.” (Lev 1:4), thereby associating himself symbolically with the death. Furthermore,
Lev 7:8 And the priest that offereth any man’s burnt offering, even the priest shall have to himself the skin of the burnt offering which he hath offered.
Showing the grand type that Christ would die for both himself and his bride, just as with the type of the first Adam – and they both covered by his one symbolic skin covering.Israel had a similar covering provided by the father, “and I spread my skirt over thee, and covered thy nakedness” (Ezk 16:8) All those who enter the marriage covenant with Christ, and purify themselves through baptism, and remain faithful to him, will be taken in marriage at his return – become one flesh, and our nakedness is covered by his garment.
Gal 3:27 For as many of you as have been baptized into Christ have put on Christ.
Col 3:2 Set your affection on things above, not on things on the earth.:3 For ye are dead (to the flesh), and your life is hid with Christ in God
Mortify the flesh
Though we be baptised, though we be covered by the betrothal garments of our Lord… we still need to stay faithful, to mortify the lusts of the flesh, and daily wash our garments in the spirit word. Christ’s sacrifice has opened the way, and through him we may enter, yet we must still harken to his voice and follow the footsteps of our shepherd. And this is brought out by Paul to the Hebrews,
Heb 6:20 Whither the forerunner is for us entered, even Jesus, made an high priest for ever after the order of Melchisedec.
1 John 3:2 Beloved, now are we the sons of God, and it doth not yet appear what we shall be: but we know that, when he shall appear, we shall be like him; for we shall see him as he is.
If we are to see him as he is upon his return. If we are to be able to stand before him as a help meet for him in his work in the future age. Then we must now become like him.
1 Cor 15:20 But now is Christ risen from the dead, and become the firstfruits of them that slept.
:21 For since by man came death, by man came also the resurrection of the dead.
:22 For as in Adam all die, even so in Christ shall all be made alive.
:23 But every man in his own order: Christ the firstfruits; afterward they that are Christ’s at his coming.
In Christ we shall be made alive, out of him we shall perish.
Now we will briefly look at Christ as king. Paul in Hebrews says,
Heb 7:1 For this Melchisedec, king of Salem, priest of the most high God, who met Abraham returning from the slaughter of the kings, and blessed him;
:2 To whom also Abraham gave a tenth part of all; first being by interpretation King of righteousness, and after that also King of Salem, which is, King of peace;
There seems to be two stages of this kingship, first Righteousness, then Peace. Coming over to Hebrews we see the same two stages…
Heb 1:8 But unto the Son he saith, Thy throne, O God, is for ever and ever: a sceptre of righteousness is the sceptre of thy kingdom.
:9 Thou hast loved righteousness, and hated iniquity; therefore God, even thy God, hath anointed thee with the oil of gladness above thy fellows.
So Christ was anointed king because he had loved righteousness and hated iniquity. Brethren and sisters, he truly was our forerunner, bearing the same flesh as us,
Heb 4:15 For we have not an high priest which cannot be touched with the feeling of our infirmities; but was in all points tempted like as we are, yet without sin.
16 Let us therefore come boldly unto the throne of grace, that we may obtain mercy, and find grace to help in time of need.
Heb 5:6 As he saith also in another place, Thou art a priest for ever after the order of Melchisedec.
7 Who in the days of his flesh, when he had offered up prayers and supplications with strong crying and tears unto him that was able to save him from death, and was heard in that he feared;
8 Though he were a Son, yet learned he obedience by the things which he suffered;
9 And being made perfect, he became the author of eternal salvation unto all them that obey him;
10 Called of God an high priest after the order of Melchisedec (king of righteousness).
Although he never sinned, and never failed, Christ also went through the trials of life to develop his character – he became perfect by his suffering. Only then was he called king of righteousness. We too must learn to choose the good and hate the evil, following his example. There are many times daily where we are presented with a choice to choose the good or take the temporary pleasures of the evil. We need to train ourselves to run the race, exercising our conscience, constantly fighting the lusts that our flesh presents – and through it, move towards perfection.
Oh how we long for the time when Christ will become king of Salem, king of Jeru-salem, the city of peace. Reigning on the throne of his father David…
Psa 76 – To the chief Musician on Neginot,
A Psalm or Song of Asaph (gathering together of the children of Israel back to the land).
1 In Judah is Elohim known: his name is great in Israel.
2 In Salem also is his tabernacle, and his dwelling place in Zion.