MELCHIZEKEK

If you examine the passages that refer to Melchizedek, you will find that the only One that Melchizedekit could be is Jesus Christ Himself in His preincarnate appearances - the only one Who could be high priest of the order of Melchizedek:

[Gen 14:18-19]:

(v. 18) Then Melchizedek king of Salem brought out bread and wine. He was priest of God Most High,

19 and he blessed Abram, saying, "Blessed be Abram by God Most High, Creator of heaven and earth.

[Ps 110:1-4]:

PS 110:2 The LORD will extend your mighty scepter from Zion; you will rule in the midst of your enemies.

PS 110:3 Your troops will be willing on your day of battle. Arrayed in holy majesty, from the womb of the dawn you will receive the dew of your youth.

PS 110:4 The LORD has sworn and will not change his mind: "You are a priest forever, in the order of Melchizedek."

[BSM: A priest that rules forever must be in the order of a priesthood that is forever]

[Heb 5:4-10]:

HEB 5:4 No one takes this honor upon himself; he must be called by God, just as Aaron was.

HEB 5:5 So Christ also did not take upon himself the glory of becoming a high priest. But God said to him, "You are my Son; today I have become your Father. "

HEB 5:6 And he says in another place, "You are a priest forever, in the order of Melchizedek."

[BSM: God appointed Christ to be a priest forever in the order of Melchizedek which implies that Melchizedek must be suitable for Christ Who is eternal and perfect / without sin. Hence Melchizedek must be eternal and perfect / without sin, i.e., God]

HEB 5:7 During the days of Jesus' life on earth, he offered up prayers and petitions with loud cries and tears to the one who could save him from death, and he was heard because of his reverent submission.

Heb 5:8 Although he was a son, he learned obedience from what he suffered

Heb 5:9 and, once made perfect, he became the source of eternal salvation for all who obey him

Heb 5:10 and was designated by God to be high priest in the order of Melchizedek.

[BSM: Christ was through His Perfect Humanity through His sacrifice for the sins of the whole world was made perfect and became the sourse of eternal salvation for all who obey / believe in Him for that eternal salvation and was designated by God to be a high priest in the order of Melchizedek, which order must be eternal and perfect]

[Heb 6:19-20]:

19 We have this hope as an anchor for the soul, firm and secure. It enters the inner sanctuary behind the curtain,

20 where Jesus, who went before us, has entered on our behalf. He has become a high priest forever, in the order of Melchizedek.

[Heb 7:1-3, 9-28]:

HEB 7:1 This Melchizedek was king of Salem and priest of God Most High. He met Abraham returning from the defeat of the kings and blessed him,

[BSM: Note that just as God's presence was in the tabernacle in the wilderness and in the temple in Jerusalem for a period of time, so Melchizedek, Who is God, was present as king of Salem [future Jerusalem] and priest of God Most High for a period of time]

HEB 7:2 and Abraham gave him a tenth of everything. First, his name means "king of righteousness"; then also, "king of Salem" means "king of peace."

[BSM: Furthermore, Melchizedek's name means "king of righteousness" then also "king of Salem" which means "king of peace;" all of which signify that Melchizedek can only be God, nothing less. For no one else can be king of righteousness and king of peace except God Himself. So there is only one Who can be appointed high priest of the order of Melchizedek, Jesus Christ, the Son of God, Who is eternal God, king of peace, king of righteousness. No one else]

(HEB 7:3) "Without father or mother, without genealogy, without beginning of days or end of life, like the Son of God he remains a priest forever."

[BSM: This cannot be taken that there is no record of Melchizedek in the sense of no "paper trail," i.e., no record, as some contend. It is too specific and repetitive: Melchizedek is without father or mother??? without genealogy??? without beginning of days or end of life???, like the Son of God he remains a priest forever??? He cannot be a mortal human being because he, like the Son of God, remains a priest forever. If there were no record of Melchizedek yet he is nevertheless mortal, why the emphatic repetitive phrases, "Without father or mother, without genealogy, without beginning of days or end of life, like the Son of God he remains a priest forever. Why not simply write that there is no official record of him]"

HEB 7:9 One might even say that Levi, who collects the tenth, paid the tenth through Abraham,

HEB 7:10 because when Melchizedek met Abraham, Levi was still in the body of his ancestor.

HEB 7:11 "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 need for another priest to come--one in the order of Melchizedek, not in the order of Aaron?

[BSM: Notice that there is a clear indication that there must be a priesthood that is not flawed but perfect and forever to accomodate Christ Who is not flawed but perfect and forever / eternal. The implication is that the order of Melchizedek is perfect hence a high priest that is perfect and eternal, one appointed by God in the order of the perfect priesthood: the order of Melchizedek substantiates that Melchizedek is Christ in His preincarnate appearance which includes His encounter with Abram . Could Christ be of the order of an imperfect, mortal priesthood if He is to be perfect and eternal? No. Hence the order of Melchizedek is perfect and forever]

Heb 7:12 For when there is a change of the priesthood, there must also be a change of the law.

Heb 7:13 He of whom these things are said belonged to a different tribe, and no one from that tribe has ever served at the altar.

Heb 7:14 For it is clear that our Lord descended from Judah, and in regard to that tribe Moses said nothing about priests.

Heb 7:15 And what we have said is even more clear if another priest like Melchizedek appears,

Heb 7:16 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.

[BSM: So the priesthood of Melchizedek is based on the power of an indestructible / forever life which is compatible for Christ, for He is indestructible / eternal just as Melchizedek is Who therefore is God, the Son of God preincarnate appearing before Abram]

Heb 7:17 For it is declared: 'You are a priest forever, in the order of Melchizedek.' 

[BSM: So the priesthood of Melchizedek is characterized by and based on the power of an indestructible / forever life which is compatible /commensurate with Christ being appointed by God to be of the order of the priesthood of Melchizedek, because Christ is indestructible / eternal. For Christ is indestructible / eternal just as Melchizedek is by dint of being qualified for Christ to be appointed of the order of Melchizedek, Who Christ therefore is God, the Son of God in His preincarnate appearing before Abram in Gen 14:18-19 being King of Salem, Priest of God Most High for a season, just as the Lord God made His presence in the Tabernacle and the Temple in Jerusalem amidst His chosen people Israel]

Heb 7:18 NASB For, on the one hand, there is a setting aside of a former commandment because of its weakness and uselessness

Heb 7:19 NASB (for the Law made nothing perfect), and on the other hand there is a bringing in of a better hope, through which we draw near to God.

Heb 7:20 NASB And inasmuch as it was not without an oath 

Heb 7:21 NASB (for they indeed became priests without an oath, but He with an oath through the One who said to Him, "THE LORD HAS SWORN AND WILL NOT CHANGE HIS MIND, 'YOU ARE A PRIEST FOREVER'"); 

Heb 7:22 NASB so much the more also Jesus has become the guarantee of a better covenant.

Heb 7:23 NASB The former priests, on the one hand, existed in greater numbers because they were prevented by death from continuing

(Heb 7:24 NASB) but Jesus, on the other hand, because He continues forever, holds His priesthood permanently.

(Heb 7:25 NASB) Therefore He is able also to save forever those who draw near to God through Him, since He always lives to make intercession for them.

[BSM: Notice that in order for Jesus to provide salvation unto eternal life He must continue forever as it stipulates in Heb 7:24 and thereby He holds His priesthood permanently so that all may believe in His propitiation for the sins of the whole world and forever be saved - because He continues forever - thereby He always lives to make intercession for them]

(Heb 7:26 NASB) For it was fitting for us to have such a high priest, holy, innocent, undefiled, separated from sinners and exalted above the heavens; 

(Heb 7:27 NASB) Who does not need daily, like those high priests, to offer up sacrifices, first for His own sins and then for the sins of the people, because this He did once for all when He offered up Himself.

(Heb 7:28 NASB) For the Law appoints men as high priests who are weak, but the word of the oath, which came after the Law, appoints a Son, made perfect forever."

[BSM on Heb 7:26-28]:

[So the priesthood of the priests of the order of Aaron who administered the Law to Israel were limited in their mortal  lifespans, weak, sinful and not able to administer salvation unto eternal life to themselves or to others. It was fitting that all of mankind in order to have available to them eternal life to have a high priest, holy, innocent, undefiled, separated from sinners and exalted above the heavens, Who does not need daily, like those high priests who administered the Law to Israel - the priesthood of Aaron - to offer up sacrifices for their own sins. So Christ offered up Himself once for the sins of all mankind. But the word of the oath, which came after the Law, appoints a Son - Jesus Christ made perfect forever - appointed by God Himself as high priest to the order of the priesthood of Melchizedek - a priesthood equal to the eternality and perfection of the highpriest Jesus Christ.

[BIBLE KNOWLEDGE COMMENTARY HEB 7:1-10:18]:

"C. The greater Priest and His greater ministry (7:1-10:18)

Here begins the longest single expository passage in the epistle. Its very length suggests its importance. Its theme is the core theme of Hebrews. The real resource of the readership, in the midst of their pressures, is the high priesthood of Christ. They must realize the greatness of that priesthood, its superiority to the Levitical institutions, and the perfect access they have to it on the basis of Christ's death.

1. The Superior Priest (chap. 7)

The writer returned to the theme he had introduced in 5:1-10, but which he doubted his readers would comprehend (cf. 5:11). In the conclusion of his most recent warning (5:11-6:20) he had renewed the subject of the Melchizedek priesthood (6:19-20). The exposition of that theme is now given.

a. The greatness of Melchizedek (7:1-10)

7:1-3.

(HEB 7:1) '''This Melchizedek was king of Salem and priest of God Most High. He met Abraham returning from the defeat of the kings and blessed him,

(HEB 7:2) and Abraham gave him a tenth of everything. First, his name means "king of righteousness"; then also, "king of Salem" means "king of peace."

(HEB 7:3) Without father or mother, without genealogy, without beginning of days or end of life, like the Son of God he remains a priest forever.'''

To begin with, the writer set forth the personal greatness of the Old Testament figure Melchizedek. As a fit prototype for Christ Himself, Melchizedek was both a king and a priest. He both blessed... Abraham and received his tithes. Melchizedek's name and title suggest the messianic attributes of righteousness and peace. So far as the Old Testament record is concerned, he was without father or mother, without genealogy, without beginning of days or end of life. In saying this, the author is often taken to mean that the silence of the inspired record presents Melchizedek as typologically like the Son of God. But though this is possibly true, the statements do not sound like it, particularly the assertion that Melchizedek remains a priest forever.

[BSM: There is nothing to indicate that there is no official record of Melchizedek. This cannot be taken that there is no record of Melchizedek in the sense of no "paper trail," i.e., no record, as some contend. It is too specific and repetitive: Melchizedek is without father or mother??? without genealogy??? without beginning of days or end of life???, like the Son of God he remains a priest forever??? He cannot be a mortal human being because he, like the Son of God, remains a priest forever. If there were no record of Melchizedek yet he is nevertheless mortal, why the emphatic repetitive phrases, "Without father or mother, without genealogy, without beginning of days or end of life, like the Son of God he remains a priest forever. Why not simply write that there is no official record of him]"

The word "forever" translates a phrase ( eis to diēnekes) that occurs only in Hebrews (here and in 10:12, 14) and means "continuously" or "uninterruptedly."

It seems more natural that the author meant that Melchizedek belonged to an order in which there was no end to the priesthood of those engaged in it. (He later said in 7:8 that Melchizedek "is declared to be living."

[BSM] On the contrary, Heb 7:8 contrasts those of the Arronic priesthood who are mortal and all die with those of the Melchizedek priesthood who "live on" which is the acceptable translation. Compare Heb 5:6 which stipulates that the priests of the order of Melchizedek live forever, i.e., live on.]

If this is correct, Melchizedek may have been an angelic being who reigned for a time at Salem (i.e., Jerusalem). If so, the statement that he was "without beginning of days" would not mean that he was eternal, but simply that he had a pretemporal origin.

[BSM] You cannot presuppose that Melchizedek was an angel without some evidence. And then redesign the meaning of the phrases "without father or mother??? without genealogy??? without beginning of days or end of life???, like the Son of God he remains a priest forever??? "without beginning of days" into a conclusion that Melchizedek was of a "pretemporal origin," and not eternal. Angels were created just like man was. And why would an angelic being be a suitable priest hood for God to appoint Christ Who is God and eternal to be of the order of a "pretemporal" angelic being]

Nor would this concept of Melchizedek as an angel elevate him to the same level as God's Son, since the author painstakingly asserted the Son's superiority to the angels (1:5-14). There is indeed evidence that, at Qumran, Melchizedek was regarded as an angelic personage. If this is the case in Hebrews, then the Son of God is the High Priest in an order in which Melchizedek is simply a priest.

[BSM: Why would such a priesthood be suitable to the eternal Son of God?]

7:4-10. The personal superiority of Melchizedek over the patriarch Abraham is guaranteed by the fact that Abraham gave him a 10th of the plunder. And though Melchizedek had no connections with the Levitical order, still he both received this tithe from Abraham and blessed him. This act of blessing reinforced his superiority to the patriarch. Moreover, he was evidently superior to the Levites as well, who collected tithes but were nonetheless subject to death. By contrast the tithe collected from Abraham was collected by him who is declared to be living. Furthermore, in a sense Levi paid the tithe through Abraham because... Levi was still in the body of his ancestor. The original expression, rendered one might even say, probably means something like "so to speak." The writer knew that Levi did not literally pay tithes to Melchizedek, but on the principle that an ancestor is greater than his descendants, Abraham's act affirmed Melchizedek's superiority even to the Levitical priests themselves. Melchizedek thus has a greatness which the Old Testament record clearly attests.

b. The new priesthood supersedes the old (7:11-19)

Having established Melchizedek's greatness both personally and in comparison with Abraham and Levi, the writer was ready for a new point. This superiority was needed, since the Law was superseded. The inadequacy of the legal and Levitical systems had to be replaced by something better.

(HEB 7:11 "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 need for another priest to come--one in the order of Melchizedek, not in the order of Aaron?

(HEB 7:12 For when there is a change of the priesthood, there must also be a change of the law.

"7:11-12. In the simplest manner, the author argued for the imperfection of the Levitical priesthood on the basis of God's promise (recorded in Ps. 110:4) that a new Priest would arise belonging to an order other than Aaron's. Since there was a change of the priesthood, it follows that the whole legal system on which the Levitical institutions were predicated also had to be changed. Here the writer virtually affirmed the Pauline truth that "you are not under Law" (Rom. 6:14), though he approached it from a different angle.

[BSM: The angle is Jesus Christ and His propitiation for the sins of the whole world, providing salvation unto eternal life NOT through keeping rules of human conduct such as the Mosaic Law but as a free gift through a moment of faith alone in Christ alone:

Ro 6:14 "For sin shall not be your master, because you are not under law, but under grace."]

(HEB 7:13 "He of whom these things are said belonged to a different tribe, and no one from that tribe has ever served at the altar.

(HEB 7:14 For it is clear that our Lord descended from Judah, and in regard to that tribe Moses said nothing about priests."

"7:13-14. Levitical priesthood was superseded by the fact that our Lord descended from Judah. That tribe had no role in the Levitical institutions, and the things God had said about the new Priest applied to One from Judah, which is proof that a change was made."

(HEB 7:15 "And what we have said is even more clear if another priest like Melchizedek appears,

(HEB 7:16 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.

(HEB 7:17 For it is declared: 'You are a priest forever, in the order of Melchizedek.'

(HEB 7:18 NASB For, on the one hand, there is a setting aside of a former commandment because of its weakness and uselessness.

(HEB 7:19 NASB (for the Law made nothing perfect), and on the other hand there is a bringing in of a better hope, through which we draw near to God."

"7:15-19. A further proof (and what we have said is even more clear) is found in the consideration that the new Priest has an indestructible (akatalytou) life. Psalm 110:4 was here quoted again to show that such an unending life is an inherent part of the order of Melchizedek. (The author probably had this text in mind when he made the statement about Melchizedek in Heb. 7:8.) Thus the new Priest does not hold His office on the basis of a regulation as to His ancestry. This rendering freely translates the original which is more nearly represented by the words "not after the Law of a carnal commandment." The writer seems to mean that the Law which regulated the priestly institution and succession was "carnal" or "fleshly," not in the sense of being evil, but in the sense that it pertained to people of flesh who died. But this former regulation has been replaced because of its inherent weakness and uselessness. What has replaced it is the new priesthood which constitutes a better hope... by which we draw near to God. Thus the writer established the point that the Law which made nothing perfect was replaced by a priestly institution which can accomplish its objectives in those who approach God through it.

c. The superiority of the new Priest (7:20-28)

If, as the author has shown, Melchizedek was greater than Levi (vv. 4-10) and the new priesthood necessarily abrogates the old (vv. 11-19), then the new Priest has to be greater than the Levitical priests.

(HEB 7:20 NASB) "And inasmuch as it was not without an oath [which God swore that Christ was high priest of the order of Melchizedek]

(HEB 7:21 NASB) (for they indeed became priests without an oath, but He with an oath through the One who said to Him, "THE LORD HAS SWORN AND WILL NOT CHANGE HIS MIND, 'YOU ARE A PRIEST FOREVER'"); 

(HEB 7:22 NASB) so much the more also Jesus has become the guarantee of a better covenant."

"7:20-22. The priesthood of Christ differs dramatically from the Levitical priesthood in that it was instituted with an oath. By contrast, the descendants of Aaron assumed their jobs without any oath. The writer then quoted again the divine oath [which God swore that Christ was high priest of the order of Melchizedek]of Psalm 110:4 whose very solemnity argues for the superiority of the new Priest, who was majestically inducted into His role. Moreover, because of this oath, Jesus became the guarantee (engyos, used only here in the NT) of a better covenant. In His own person, Jesus assured the superiority of the new order over the old because His oath [which God swore that Christ was high priest of the order of Melchizedek]secured His permanent installation in the priestly office."

(HEB 7:23 NASB) The former priests, on the one hand, existed in greater numbers because they were prevented by death from continuing

(HEB 7:24 NASB) but Jesus, on the other hand, because He continues forever, holds His priesthood permanently.

(HEB 7:25 NASB) Therefore He is able also to save forever those who draw near to God through Him, since He always lives to make intercession for them."

'''7:23-25. No Old Testament priest ever functioned in this permanent way, since all were subject to death. But the permanent priesthood of Jesus gives Him the capacity to carry His saving work to completion. When the writer asserted that He is able to save completely, he continued to have in mind the salvation-inheritance first referred to in 1:14. The readers were to hold fast to their professions of faith and to continue numbering themselves among those who come to God through Him, knowing that He can see them through every trial and difficulty right to the end of the road because He always lives to intercede for them. In saying this, the author reverted again to a truth he had already enunciated (4:14-16) where he had invited the readers to avail themselves boldly of the mercy and grace accessible to them through Jesus' priesthood. As they did so, they would find that their Captain and High Priest could get the job done! He could lead them victoriously into the glory of the many sons. In this way He saves "completely." '''

(Heb 7:26 NASB) For it was fitting for us to have such a high priest, holy, innocent, undefiled, separated from sinners and exalted above the heavens; 

(Heb 7:27 NASB) Who does not need daily, like those high priests, to offer up sacrifices, first for His own sins and then for the sins of the people, because this He did once for all when He offered up Himself.

(Heb 7:28 NASB) For the Law appoints men as high priests who are weak, but the word of the oath, which came after the Law, appoints a Son, made perfect forever."

"7:26-28. After all, He is the kind of High Priest who meets our need. His character is utterly without blemish and He has been exalted above the heavens. Consequently too, He had no need like the Levitical priests to offer sacrifices day after day, first for His own sins, and then for the sins of the people. At first sight verses 27-28 seem to refer to the ritual of the Day of Atonement (Lev. 16), but that was yearly, not "day after day." Probably these verses telescope that ritual with the regular sacrificial routine. There seems to be some evidence from Jewish tradition that a high priest was thought to offer daily sacrifice, and the stipulations of Leviticus 6:12-13 may refer to him.

In any case the new Priest had no need either for sacrifices for Himself or for repeated sacrifices for others. His one act of self-offering was definitive and sufficient. Of this more will be said in Hebrews 9 and 10. Here the author was content to conclude that, in contrast with the Levitical priests, the Son is a perfected High Priest. The reference to the fact that He has been made perfect forever recalls 5:8-10. The sufferings of the Son, here referred to as His sacrificial offering of Himself once for all (ephapax, cf. 9:12; 10:10; also cf. hapax, "once" in 9:26, 28), are what have constituted Him "perfect" for His role in God's presence where He intercedes for His followers. Thus the Law appointed as high priests those who were weak, but the oath, which came after the Law, appointed this kind of Priest. Accordingly the readers could go to Him at all times, fully confident of His capacity to serve their every need."

[EXPOSITOR'S BIBLE COMMENTARY ON HEB 7:1-28]:

(HEB 7:1 '''This Melchizedek was king of Salem and priest of God Most High. He met Abraham returning from the defeat of the kings and blessed him,

"1 The writer begins his explanation of the significance of Melchizedek by referring to the incident in Genesis 14:17ff. His minor changes from the LXX do not affect the sense. First he describes Melchizedek as "king of Salem," which may mean "king of Jerusalem" ("Salem" is another name for Jerusalem in Ps 76:2). But it is curious that if the writer thought that Jerusalem was in fact where Melchizedek ministered, he does not mention the fact that Jesus suffered there. Perhaps he was not particularly interested in geography. But it is also possible that he saw Salem as some other place. Westcott (in loc.) says that in Jerome's time Salem was understood to be near Scythopolis, and, again, the LXX of Genesis 33:18 seems to identify Shechem with Salem.

[BSM: If Ps 76:2 indicates that "Salem" is another name for Jerusalem, why speculate about some other location????? The writer of Hebrews does not have to indicate that Jesus suffered in Jerusalem either. There is no problem with his credibility because he does not mention this. What he wrote suffices. He does not have to display an interest in geography. Nor is it worth while speculating about the author thinking of another place besides "Salem" = Jerusalem; or that the LXX stipulates that Salem is Shechem]

Melchizedek was not only a king but a "priest of God Most High." It was not uncommon for one person to combine the roles of priest and king in antiquity. It is, however, the special characteristics of this man rather than the dual offices that are noteworthy. In Genesis 14:17-18 we read that the king of Sodom, who had suffered at the hands of the kings Abraham had just routed, went out to meet the triumphant patriarch and that Melchizedek brought out bread and wine; but the author passes over both of these facts. He concentrates on those aspects of the incident that will help him make the points he has in mind about the work of Christ. The first of them is that he "blessed him," a point he will return to in v. 7.

(HEB 7:2) '''and Abraham gave him a tenth of everything. First, his name means "king of righteousness"; then also, "king of Salem" means "king of peace." '''

"2 Abraham gave Melchizedek a tenth of everything, i.e., of the spoils from the battle. This is another point that is elaborated later (in vv. 4ff.). So far the author is simply identifying Melchizedek with his reference to the incident after the battle. Now he goes on to the significance of Melchizedek's name and title. The name, he says, means "king of righteousness." (This is a translation of the Heb. name; it might be more accurate to render it "my king is righteous," but NIV gives the sense and brings in the noun "righteousness" that features so largely in the NT vocabulary of salvation.)

Then the writer goes on to the title "king of Salem." The place name comes from the same root as salom, the Hebrew word for "peace," and it may accordingly be translated in this way. The Greek word "peace" (eirene) has about it the negative idea of the absence of war; in the NT, however, it picks up something of the fuller meaning of the Hebrew salom, which it regularly translates in the LXX. So eirene comes to signify the presence of positive blessing, the result of Christ's work for men. We are reminded of the "Prince of Peace" (Isa 9:6; righteousness in v. 7 is among the qualities linked with this messianic figure). The combination of righteousness and peace is seen in Psalm 85:10. As used here, the two terms point to distinctive aspects of Christ's saving work."

(HEB 7:3) Without father or mother, without genealogy, without beginning of days or end of life, like the Son of God he remains a priest forever.

"3 The terms "without father" and "without mother" (apator, ametor) are used in Greek for waifs of unknown parentage, for illegitimate children, for people who came from unimportant families, and sometimes for deities who were supposed to take their origin from one sex only. Some scholars hold that Melchizedek is viewed in the last mentioned way and is being pictured as an angelic being. But it seems much more likely that the author is proceeding along the lines that the silences of Scripture are just as much due to inspiration as are its statements. When nothing is recorded of the parentage of this man, it is not necessarily to be assumed that he had no parents but simply that the absence of the record is significant."

[BSM: This cannot be taken that there is no record of Melchizedek in the sense of no "paper trail," i.e., no record, as some contend. It is too specific and repetitive: Melchizedek is without father or mother??? without genealogy??? without beginning of days or end of life???, like the Son of God he remains a priest forever??? He cannot be a mortal human being because he, like the Son of God, remains a priest forever. Furthermore in multiple places Melchizedek is stipulated as having the qualities of the Son of God, i.e., God. If there were no record of Melchizedek yet he is nevertheless mortal, why the emphatic repetitive phrases, "Without father or mother, without genealogy, without beginning of days or end of life, like the Son of God he remains a priest forever. Why not simply write that there is no official record of him]"

On the other hand, "Forever" translates εἰς τὸ διηνεκές (eis to dienekes), which occurs only in Hebrews in the NT (four times). It does not necessarily indicate duration without any end but rather duration which lasts through the circumstances indicated in the particular case. Here, however, no limit is expressed or implied and the expression thus indicates that Melchizedek's priesthood goes right on without cessation.

[BSM: Melchizedek, being the signatory representation of priests in the priestly order of priests in His priesthood must be eternal, forever, i.e., God because that is the essence of Christ Who is of the order of the priesthood of Melchizedek who can be nothing less: eternal, God]

What was true of Melchizedek simply as a matter of record was true of Christ in a fuller and more literal sense.

[BSM: There is no fuller and more literal sense indicated. What is clearly indicated is that Christ's quality / essence is compatible / the same as that of Melchizedek, i.e., eternal, i.e., God]

So the silence of the Scripture points to an important theological truth. Melchizedek is also "without genealogy," a term the writer apparently coins. Taken together, the' three terms are striking, for in antiquity a priest's genealogy was considered all-important. After the Exile, certain priests whose genealogy could not be established "were excluded from the priesthood as unclean" (Neh 7:64). And just as the record says nothing of Melchizedek's genealogy, so it says nothing of his birth or death. This further silence in Scripture points the writer to another truth about Jesus—viz., that his priesthood is without end. He uses the full title of Jesus—"Son of God"—as in 4:14; 6:6; 10:29 ("my son" in 1:5; 5:5). Since the writer does not use it often, we may sense an emphasis on the high dignity of the Son of God. And it is the Son of God who is the standard, not the ancient priest-king. The writer says that Melchizedek is "made like" (aphomoiomenos) the Son of God, not that the Son of God is like Melchizedek. Thus it is not that Melchizedek sets the pattern and Jesus follows it. Rather, the record about Melchizedek is so arranged that it brings out certain truths that apply far more fully to Jesus than they do to Melchizedek. With the latter, these truths are simply a matter of record; but with Jesus they are not only historically true, they also have significant spiritual dimensions. The writer is, of course, speaking of the Son's eternal nature, not of his appearance in the Incarnation."

[BSM: Melchizedek cannot be "made like" the Son of God in the sense of less than the Son of God because one cannot be "made like" yet be less than the Son of God yet qualify to have the characteristic of being eternal in order to qualify for Melchizedek to be a priest of a priesthood that God might appoint Christ to be a high priest of. So one must conclude that Melchizedek was "made like" the Son of God in the sense of actually being as the Son of God is, i.e., He was the Son of God in every way, eternal, God]

(Heb 7:4 NASB) "Now observe how great this man was to whom Abraham, the patriarch, gave a tenth of the choicest spoils."

'''4 The author proceeds to bring out the greatness of Melchizedek with an argument the modern mind may find rather curious but which would have been compelling to his contemporaries. In the ancient world, it was generally recognized that there was an obligation to pay tithes to important religious functionaries. This implies a certain subjection on the part of those paving to those to whom the tithe was paid. So it was significant that Abraham paid to Melchizedek "a tenth of the plunder." This last word means literally "the top of the heap" and was used of the choicest spoils of war. From these spoils an offering would be made to the gods as a thanksgiving for victory. Abraham gave a tenth of the very best to Melchizedek. In the Greek text the subject "the patriarch" comes at the end of the sentence, giving it strong emphasis; i.e., "none less than the patriarch." '''

(Heb 7:5 NASB) "And those indeed of the sons of Levi who receive the priest's office have commandment in the Law to collect a tenth from the people, that is, from their brethren, although these are descended from Abraham. 

(Heb 7:6 NASB) But the one whose genealogy is not traced from them collected a tenth from Abraham and blessed the one who had the promises."

"5-6a Here the meaning of the payment of the tithe is spelled out. Not only was such a payment widely customary but the law required it to be made. The writer speaks of "the descendants of Levi who become priests" as "collecting a tenth from the people." In the law it was provided that the people were to pay tithes to the Levites (Num 18:21, 24). But the Levites similarly paid tithes to the priests (Num 18:26ff.); so it could well be said that the people paid tithes to the priests. In any case there seems to be some evidence that in the first century the priests carried out the whole tithing operation, and the writer may be glancing at contemporary custom. This tithing was done by divine appointment.

The writer is strongly interested in "the law," which he mentions fourteen times. The word can denote law in general or a principle according to which one acts. But it is specially used for the law of Moses, which is the meaning here. The law required tithes to be taken of people of whom the priests were "brothers." There is a sense in which the priests had no inherent superiority. They were kin to those who gave tithes to them. They owed their ability to collect tithes to the provision made in the law and not to any natural superiority. But with Melchizedek it was different. He "did not trace his descent from Levi." Melchizedek was not simply one among a host of brothers. He was a solitary figure of grandeur. And he exacted tithes not simply from his brothers but from Abraham. His greatness stands out."

(Heb 7:6 NASB) "But the one whose genealogy is not traced from them collected a tenth from Abraham and blessed the one who had the promises. 

(Heb 7:7 NASB) But without any dispute the lesser is blessed by the greater."

'''6b-7 Not only did Melchizedek exact tithes from Abraham, but he also blessed him. The giving of a blessing was a significant act in antiquity. As Calvin puts it, "Blessing is a solemn act of prayer with which one who is endowed with some outstanding public honour commends to God private individuals who are under his care" (in loc). There are senses of the word "bless" in which men "bless" God, i.e., praise him, or in which an inferior prays that God will prosper some superior. But the word is not used in such a way here. It is rather the official pronouncement given by an authorized person. When that happens, there is no denying that it proceeds from a superior: "The lesser person is blessed by the greater."

In the Genesis account Melchizedek makes no claims nor does Abraham concede anything in words. But the patriarch gave up a tenth of the spoils, thus implicitly acknowledging the superior place of Melchizedek. And Melchizedek proceeded to bless Abraham, accepting the implied superiority. The situation is clear to all parties. There is no need to spell it out. And the author is simply drawing attention to what the narrative clearly implies when he brings out the superior status of Melchizedek. Even when Abraham is seen as the one "who had the promises," Melchizedek is superior.'''

(Heb 7:8 NASB) "In this case mortal men receive tithes, but in that case one receives them, of whom it is witnessed that he lives on."

'''8 NIV is a trifle free in this verse. Rather, it reads, "And, here, mortal ['dying'] men receive tithes, but, there, one of whom it is testified that he lives." Those who receive tithes are not merely capable of dying; they do die. They are seen to die. (The present tenses of both dying and receiving coupled with the "here" at the beginning may be held to indicate that the temple system was still in operation at the time the words were written. Thus they support a date before A.D. 70 for the writing of the epistle.) "There" puts Melchizedek in strong contrast to the Aaronic priests. He is remote from this scene. The writer does not say that Melchizedek lives on but that the testimony about him is that he lives. Once more he is emphasizing the silences of Scripture to bring out his point. Scripture records nothing about the death of Melchizedek. This must be borne in mind when estimating the significance of the incident and the way the priest-king prefigures Christ." ''''

[BSM The words of Heb 7:8 "In this case mortal men receive tithes, but in that case one receives them, of whom it is witnessed that he lives on" make an emphatic contrast between mortal men and Melchizedek who it is stipulated "lives on," to continue to make the point that the one who lives on is not mortal but immortal. It does not say or indicate that there is no record of his death - whether or not there is. It is in the present tense, "he lives on" to imply that he will never die. For Melchizedek existed in Abram's time - a very long time ago. There is no reason to indicate that the priesthood of Melchizedek continues on, but not Melchizedek himself because he has died.

HEB 7:9 "One might even say that Levi, who collects the tenth, paid the tenth through Abraham,

HEB 7:10 because when Melchizedek met Abraham, Levi was still in the body of his ancestor."

'''9-10 "One might even say" translates hos epos eipein, an unusual expression (not found elsewhere in the NT or LXX) that "serves to introduce a statement which may startle a reader, and which requires to be guarded from misinterpretation" (Westcott, in loc). The characteristic of Levi (and his descendants) was not that of paying but of receiving tithes. Of course, there is something of the "in-a-manner-of-speaking" about Levi's collecting of tithes just as there is in his paying of them, because he collects them not in person but through his descendants. But the startling thing is that he should be said to pay tithes at all.

When Abraham paid Melchizedek a tithe, the author sees Levi as paying it, for "Levi was still in the body of his ancestor." This is a way of speaking we find here and there in the Bible when the ancestor includes the descendants. So it was said to Rebekah, not two children but "two nations are in your womb" (Gen 25:23). Again, Paul can say, "In Adam all die" (1 Cor 15:22). Levi was thus included in the payment of the tithe (and, of course, all the priests who descended from him and whom the Hebrews esteemed so highly). The author wants his readers to be in no doubt about the superiority of Christ to any other priests and sees the mysterious figure of Melchizedek as powerfully illustrating this superiority.

[BSM: In the same way that Christ is superior to any other priests, so the person of and the priesthood order of Melchizedek is in like manner superior to any other priesthood in order to be a suitable priesthood for Jesus Christ; and Melchizedek is superior to the person and priesthood order of Aaron - the former -Melchizedek - is perfect and eternal, the latter - Aaronic - is flawed and finite. There can only be one conclusion drawn: Melchizedek is Christ]

B. The Royal Priesthood of Melchizedek and of Christ (7:11-14)

(Heb 7:11 NASB) "Now if perfection was through the Levitical priesthood (for on the basis of it the people received the Law), what further need was there for another priest to arise according to the order of Melchizedek, and not be designated according to the order of Aaron?

(Heb 7:12 NASB) For when the priesthood is changed, of necessity there takes place a change of law also.

(Heb 7:13 NASB) For the one concerning whom these things are spoken belongs to another tribe, from which no one has officiated at the altar.

(Heb 7:14 NASB) For it is evident that our Lord was descended from Judah, a tribe with reference to which Moses spoke nothing concerning priests.

"For the Jew there was an air of finality about the law; it was God's definitive word to men. Also, there was for the Jew the presumption that the Aaronic priesthood was superior to that of Melchizedek, for the law came later than Melchizedek and could be thought to be God's way of replacing all previous priesthoods. But the author points out that the priesthood of Melchizedek was spoken of in Psalm 110, well after the giving of the law.

[BSM: Ps 110:4: "The LORD has sworn and will not change his mind: "You are a priest forever, in the order of Melchizedek."]

That God spoke through David about the Melchizedekian priesthood, while the Aaronic priesthood was a going concern, shows that the priests of the line of Aaron could not accomplish what a priesthood aimed at. And because the priesthood and the law went together, that meant a change in the law as well. The author sees it as significant that Jesus did not come from the priestly tribe of Levi but from the royal tribe of Judah. This fits in with the fact that Jesus' priesthood is of the order of Melchizedek and that he was king as well as priest."

(Heb 7:11 NASB) "Now if perfection was through the Levitical priesthood (for on the basis of it the people received the Law), what further need was there for another priest to arise according to the order of Melchizedek, and not be designated according to the order of Aaron?"

'''11 Here "perfection" means the condition in which men are acceptable to God. The work of the priests of the line of Levi aimed at bringing about this acceptability, but our author tells us that they failed. That the psalmist speaks of another priest shows that the Levitical priests had not accomplished what they aimed at. The words in parenthesis show that the law and the priesthood were closely connected. Moffatt translates, "It was on the basis of that priesthood that the Law was enacted for the People."

We ought not think of the law and the priesthood as two quite separate things that happened to be operative at the same time among the same people. The priesthood is the very basis of the law. Without that priesthood it would be impossible for the law to operate in its fullness. Thus the declaration by the psalmist (v. 17) that there would be another priest was devastating. He looked for a priest "in the order of Melchizedek, not in the order of Aaron." The Aaronic priesthood was not succeeding and thus had to be replaced by a more effective priesthood.'''

(Heb 7:12 NASB) "For when the priesthood is changed, of necessity there takes place a change of law also."

"12 The connection between the priesthood and the law means that a change in the one involves a change in the other. The author is speaking of more than a transference of the office of priest from one person to another. He is speaking of a change from one kind of priesthood to another. Priesthood like that of Melchizedek differs fundamentally from that after the order of Aaron. Christ is not another Aaron; he replaces Aaron with a priesthood that is both different and better. And with the Aaronic priesthood went the law that had been erected with that priesthood as its basis. Lacking that priesthood, that law had to give way. It had lost its basis. So the author says there must be a change of law.

(Heb 7:13 NASB) "For the one concerning whom these things are spoken belongs to another tribe, from which no one has officiated at the altar."

"13 The change in the law is seen in that Jesus did not belong to the tribe recognized by the law as the priestly tribe. His tribe was "different," which may mean no more than that it was another than the priestly tribe or that that tribe was of a different nature. It was a nonpriestly tribe. In fact, it was a royal tribe. From this tribe no one "has ever served at the altar." There is a change of tense from the perfect in the word translated "belonged" to an aorist in that rendered "served." Zuntz comments, "The differentiation is excellent; it intimates that no one of the tribe of Judah had ever attended to the altar (prosesche) and that Jesus 'has permanently a share in' (met escheke, 'belongs to') that tribe" (cited by Bruce, in loc.).

David and Solomon, who were of the tribe of Judah, are said to have offered sacrifice (2 Sam 6:12-13, 17-18; 24:25; 1 Kings 3:4; 8:62ff.). But two things should be said about this. In the first place, it is possible that these kings did not do the actual ceremonial. (It is unlikely that Solomon personally offered 22,000 oxen and 120,000 sheep.) David and Solomon may have "offered" in the sense that they provided the sacrificial victims, leaving priests to perform the liturgical function. And in the second place, even if these kings did sometimes perform the actual offering, this was occasional and not their regular function. The author is speaking of the regular ministrations of a priest at the altar, and this none but the sons of Aaron did in the OT period."

(Heb 7:14 NASB) "For it is evident that our Lord was descended from Judah, a tribe with reference to which Moses spoke nothing concerning priests."

'''14 "For" introduces the explanation of the preceding. The author calls Jesus "our Lord" again only in 13:20. Mostly his use of the term "Lord" (kyrios) is for the Father, but there is no doubt as to whom he means here. His verb "descended" (anatetalken) is unusual in this sense; and Buchanan can go as far as to say, "In none of the Old Testament usages of the verb anatellein was it employed to mean a 'descendant' of a certain tribe or family" (in loc.). Anatellein means "rise," "spring up" and may be used of the rising of a star or of the springing up of a shoot from the roots of a plant. The author may have in mind the rising of a star or, more likely, the OT prophecies about the Messiah being a shoot from the root of David (Jer 23:5 uses the cognate noun for this purpose). Here in v. 14 Jesus is said to come "from Judah," this and Revelation 5:5 being the only places outside the nativity stories to say explicitly that this was his tribe. And to this tribe Moses had nothing to say about priests, the law did not envisage priests from any tribe other than Levi. That is what made the priesthood like that of Melchizedek so unusual.'''

(Heb 7:15 NASB) "And this is clearer still, if another priest arises according to the likeness of Melchizedek,

(Heb 7:16 NASB) who has become such not on the basis of a law of physical requirement, but according to the power of an indestructible life.

(Heb 7:17 NASB) For it is attested of Him, "YOU ARE A PRIEST FOREVER ACCORDING TO THE ORDER OF MELCHIZEDEK."

(Heb 7:18 NASB) For, on the one hand, there is a setting aside of a former commandment because of its weakness and uselessness

(Heb 7:19 NASB) (for the Law made nothing perfect), and on the other hand there is a bringing in of a better hope, through which we draw near to God."

C. Christ's Priesthood Superior Because of:

1. His life (7:15-19)

The author pursues his theme of the superiority of Christ. He sees him as superior because of his life, the divine oath, the permanence of his priesthood, and his sacrifice. First, he indicates the importance of the fact that Christ is not limited by death as the Levitical priests were.

(Heb 7:15 NASB) "And this is clearer still, if another priest arises according to the likeness of Melchizedek,

"15 What it is that is "even more clear" is not said (there is nothing in the Gr. equivalent to NIV's "what we have said"). Westcott thinks it is the ineffectiveness of the Levitical priesthood; Moffatt, that it is the abrogation of the law. More likely the expression is general and is meant to include both—possibly also that Jesus came not from Levi but from Judah. It is the appearance of a priest "like Melchizedek" that is the decisive factor.

[BSM: So here is a clear declaration that Jesus is a priest "like Melchizedek." Since Jesus is God, and since Jesus is a priest "like Melchizedek" then Melchizedek is God, the preinarnate Jesus Christ.]

(Heb 7:16 NASB) "Who has become such not on the basis of a law of physical requirement, but according to the power of an indestructible life."

16 This priest is distinguished by the quality of his life. "A regulation as to his ancestry" renders an expression that is literally "a law of a fleshly commandment." This includes his ancestry, but it may well be wider. It includes all that is "fleshly" about the law. As Robinson puts it, the command "is one which belongs to the realm of man's physical nature, and bears only indirectly on his spiritual being" (in loc.). By contrast, Christ's priesthood depends on "the power" (which means more than "authority") "of an indestructible life." There is a special quality about the life of Christ. Neither does it end nor can it end (cf. the description of him as "the prince" or "author of life," Acts 3:15).

(Heb 7:17 NASB) "For it is attested of Him, "YOU ARE A PRIEST FOREVER ACCORDING TO THE ORDER OF MELCHIZEDEK."

17 "For" introduces the clinching testimony of Scripture. The passage cited gives the reason for the foregoing. It is quoted verbatim as in 5:6 (where see commentary). It establishes the special character of Christ's priesthood because of no other priest could it be said that his life was "indestructible." Though it could be said that the Aaronic priesthood was "a priesthood that will continue for all generations" (Exod 40:15), no individual priest is "forever."

(Heb 7:18 NASB) "For, on the one hand, there is a setting aside of a former commandment because of its weakness and uselessness"

"18 The opening words might more literally be rendered "For there is an annulling of a foregoing commandment," where "annulling" is a legal term that points to the complete cancellation of the commandment in question. "Regulation" refers as in v. 16, to the whole law. The Levitical system in its entirety is set aside by the coming and the work of Christ. At the same time, "former" (proagouses) implies a connection. The Levitical system was not simply earlier in time; it also prepared the way for the coming of Christ. But it had to give way because it was weak and unprofitable. It could not give men strength to meet all the needs of life. It could not bring men salvation."

(Heb 7:19 NASB) "(for the Law made nothing perfect), and on the other hand there is a bringing in of a better hope, through which we draw near to God."

"19 The parenthesis underlines the defects of the law. The writer does not explain what he means by "made perfect" (see comments on 2:10), but clearly he has in mind something like "made fit for God." The law did not give people complete and lasting access to the presence of God. It had its merits, but it did not satisfy their deep needs. For the writer's use of "better," see comments on 1:4; and for his use of "hope," see comments on 3:6; 6:11. The thought of what is better is characteristic of Hebrews, and hope is central to the Christian way. Notice that the hope is said to be better than the regulation or commandment, not better than the hope associated with the commandment. Law and gospel stand in contrast. The gospel is "better" because it enables people to "draw near to God." It was this that the old way could not bring about, but the new way can."

(Heb 7:20 NASB) "And inasmuch as it was not without an oath

(Heb 7:21 NASB) (for they indeed became priests without an oath, but He with an oath through the One who said to Him, "THE LORD HAS SWORN AND WILL NOT CHANGE HIS MIND, 'YOU ARE A PRIEST FOREVER'");

(Heb 7:22 NASB) so much the more also Jesus has become the guarantee of a better covenant.

"2. The divine oath [which God swore that Christ was high priest of the order of Melchizedek] (7:20-22)

The argument is now developed with reference to the oath [which God swore that Christ was high priest of the order of Melchizedek] that established the priesthood after the order of Melchizedek. There was no such oath when the Aaronic priesthood was set up, which means that this priesthood lacks the permanence so characteristic of the priesthood after the order of Melchizedek. There was always something conditional about Aaron's priesthood."

(Heb 7:20 NASB) "And inasmuch as it was not without an oath

(Heb 7:21 NASB) (for they indeed became priests without an oath, but He with an oath through the One who said to Him, "THE LORD HAS SWORN AND WILL NOT CHANGE HIS MIND, 'YOU ARE A PRIEST FOREVER'");"

"20-21 The oath [which God swore that Christ was high priest of the order of Melchizedek] declares the purpose of God in an absolute fashion. It allows of no qualification on account of human weakness or sinfulness or anything else. So the writer contrasts the priesthood that has the security of the divine oath [which God swore that Christ was high priest of the order of Melchizedek] to that which lacked it. Christ is contrasted with the Levitical priests, and the importance of the oath [which God swore that Christ was high priest of the order of Melchizedek] is stressed. It was not simply that an oath [which God swore that Christ was high priest of the order of Melchizedek] was sworn at the same time he was made priest but that the oath [which God swore that Christ was high priest of the order of Melchizedek] was the very essence of what was done. That is the point of the argument. The psalm is quoted once more, this time beginning a little earlier to include the reference to the swearing of the oath [which God swore that Christ was high priest of the order of Melchizedek] and the assurance that the Lord will not change his mind. The new priesthood is permanent. There is no question of its ever being done away.

(Heb 7:22 NASB) "so much the more also Jesus has become the guarantee of a better covenant."

'''22 "Guarantee" translates a word found only here in the NT (engyos) and it brings before us an unusual idea. The old covenant was established, as Bruce (in loc.) points out, with a mediator (Gal 3:19) but with no one to guarantee that the people would fulfill their undertaking. But Jesus stands as a continuing guarantor and that in two directions. He guarantees to men that God will fulfill his covenant of forgiveness, and he guarantees to God that those who are in him are acceptable.

This is the writer's first use of the term "covenant" (diatheke), a word whose importance for him may be gauged from the fact that he uses it no fewer than seventeen times, whereas in no other NT book is it found more than three times. In nonbiblical Greek it denotes a last will and testament, but in the LXX it is the normal rendering of the Hebrew berit ("covenant"). It is agreed that in NT diatheke mostly means "covenant." It also seems, however, that now and then the meaning "testament" is not out of mind (e.g., 9:16). The author may have chosen this word rather than syntheke, the usual word for "covenant," because the latter might suggest an agreement made on more or less equal terms. By contrast, there is something absolute about a will. One cannot dicker with the testator. And in like manner man cannot bargain with God. God lays down the terms. (See further my Apostolic Preaching of the Cross 3rd ed. [Grand Rapids: Eerdmans, 1965] ch.2).

[BSM: Christ's sacrifice for the sins of the whole world on the cross establishes the New Covenant which replaced the Old Covenant, the Mosaic Law.]


(Heb 7:23 NASB) "The former priests, on the one hand, existed in greater numbers because they were prevented by death from continuing,

(Heb 7:24 NASB) but Jesus, on the other hand, because He continues forever, holds His priesthood permanently.

(Heb 7:25 NASB) Therefore He is able also to save forever those who draw near to God through Him, since He always lives to make intercession for them."

"3. Its permanence (7:23-25)

It matters to the author that Christ's life was different in quality from other lives. He has emphasized this in vv. 15ff. and he comes back to it with the thought that the permanence of Christ's priesthood makes it superior to the Levitical priesthood. His life is such that there is no need and no place for a successor.

(Heb 7:23 NASB) "The former priests, on the one hand, existed in greater numbers because they were prevented by death from continuing,

(Heb 7:24 NASB) but Jesus, on the other hand, because He continues forever, holds His priesthood permanently."

"23-24 Once more the Levitical priests are set in contrast to Christ. They had to be numerous because like all men they died, and successors were needed to keep the priesthood functioning. Josephus says that there were eighty-three high priests from Aaron to the destruction of the temple in A.D. 70 (Antiq. XX, 227 [x. 1]; the Tal says there were eighteen during the first temple and more than three hundred during the second, Yoma 9a).

Death was inevitable for the Aaronic priests and it meant the cessation of their exercise of the high priesthood. But with Christ it is different. He remains forever and thus his priesthood never has to be continued by another. The word rendered "permanent" (aparabatos) is found nowhere else in the NT. It is often understood to mean "without a successor," but this meaning does not seem to be demonstrated. The word means "that cannot be transgressed," or, as Abbott-Smith puts it, "inviolable, and so unchangeable" (s.v.). Christ lives through eternity, and his priesthood lives with him. The quality of his life means a quality of priesthood that cannot be matched by the Levitical priests.

(Heb 7:25 NASB) "Therefore He is able also to save forever those who draw near to God through Him, since He always lives to make intercession for them."

"25 From Christ's unchanging priesthood the author draws an important conclusion about the salvation Christ accomplishes. The verb "to save" (sozo) is used absolutely, which means that Christ will save in the most comprehensive sense; he saves from all that humanity needs saving from. The expression rendered "completely" (eis to panteles) is an unusual one, used again in the NT only in Luke 13:11 of the woman who could not straighten herself "completely" ("at all," NIV). This may well be the sense of it here, too. Christ's salvation is a complete deliverance no matter what the need of the sinner. Some take the word panteles in a temporal sense and see it as scarcely differing from "forever" or "always." There is more to be said for the former meaning, though the latter is not impossible. The verb "is able" (dynatai) refers to power. Christ's inviolable priesthood, a priesthood that can never be put away, means that he has the capacity (as others have not) of bringing a complete salvation to all who approach God through him.

At the end of the verse we find that Christ intercedes for those who come to him (cf. Rom 8:34). This is sometimes made the vehicle of strange theories, such as the one that says that Christ is always pleading his sacrifice in heaven while worshipers on earth do the same thing in the Holy Communion. It must be stressed that there is no thought of Christ as a humble suppliant. Rather, he is supreme and his very presence in heaven in his character as the one who died for mankind and rose again is itself an intercession. As Snell puts it, "We must be careful not to infer from this verse, or from the last phrase of 9:24, that the author thought of our Lord as having to maintain a kind of continuous liturgical action in heaven for our benefit... the meaning is that our Lord's presence in heaven, seated at God's right hand, and awaiting the full manifestation of his already achieved victory, itself constitutes his effective intercession for us" (in loc.)."

(Heb 7:26 NASB) "For it was fitting for us to have such a high priest, holy, innocent, undefiled, separated from sinners and exalted above the heavens;

(Heb 7:27 NASB) "Who does not need daily, like those high priests, to offer up sacrifices, first for His own sins and then for the sins of the people, because this He did once for all when He offered up Himself.

(Heb 7:28 NASB) For the Law appoints men as high priests who are weak, but the word of the oath, which came after the Law, appoints a Son, made perfect forever.

4. His better sacrifice (7:26-28)

This section of the study is rounded off with a glowing description of Christ as our High Priest, better qualified than the Levitical priests, and one who offered a better sacrifice than they did.

(Heb 7:26 NASB) "For it was fitting for us to have such a high priest, holy, innocent, undefiled, separated from sinners and exalted above the heavens;"

"26 NIV omits the important word "for" (gar) that links this proposition to the preceding one. It is because Christ is what he is hat he intercedes as he does. "Meets our need" is literally "is fitting for us" (hemin eprepen). Even our human sense of the fitness of things is able to recognize Christ's suitability for his saving work.

There are two Greek words for "holy," one (hagios) refers to the quality of separateness of belonging to God, and the other (hosios) signifies rather the character involved in that separation. Hosios is used here. He is also "blameless" (akakos, "without evil," "innocent") and "pure" (amiantos). "Pure" contains the thought of being undefiled, and there may be a contrast between the ritual purity the Levitical high priest must be careful to maintain and the complete moral purity of Jesus.

There is probably another contrast in the words "set apart from sinners," for the Levitical high priest was required to leave his home seven days before the Day of Atonement and live in such a manner as to ensure that he avoided ritual defilement (M Yoma 1.1). But Jesus' separation was not ritual. Some think the words refer to his spotless character and think he is being contrasted with sinful men. It is more likely that we should take the words closely with the following. His work on earth is done. He has accomplished his sacrifice. He has been "exalted above the heavens." This makes him the perfect intercessor.

(Heb 7:27 NASB) "Who does not need daily, like those high priests, to offer up sacrifices, first for His own sins and then for the sins of the people, because this He did once for all when He offered up Himself."

"27 There is a problem in the reference to offering sacrifices "day after day" for, while there were daily sacrifices in the temple, the high priest was not required to offer them personally; and the sacrifices that did demand his personal action, those on the Day of Atonement, took place once a year not once a day, a fact the author well knows (9:7, 25, 10:1). Some have thought that we should understand the words to mean not that the high priest offered every day but that he felt the need to offer every day. Others think that Christ's high priestly office, unlike that of the Levitical high priests which involved repeated offerings, is fulfilled daily by his one sacrifice. Such solutions have their attraction. Yet it is not easy to reconcile them with the actual words used. Bruce (in loc.) reminds us that it was always possible for the high priest, as for other people, to commit inadvertent sin, which required the offering of a sin offering (Lev 4:2-3) and that thus the high priest needed to offer daily (to ensure his fitness for ministry). We should also bear in mind that Leviticus requires the high priest to offer the cereal offering each day (Lev 6:19-23; notice that it is "the son [not all the priests] who is to succeed him [Aaron] as anointed priest" who is required to offer this offering [v. 22]). This was regarded as expiatory (Lev R 3:3).

Jesus stands in contrast to the earthly priests. He has no need to offer for his own sins because he has none (4:15). And he has no need to keep offering for the sins of the people, for his one sacrifice has perfectly accomplished this. They were sinful men and had to provide for the putting away of their own sin before they were in a fit condition to do anything about the sins of the people. What they did for themselves, they then proceeded to do for others. But Christ's offering is different. There is none for himself. And for others, he offered "once for all" (ephapax). There is an air of utter finality about this expression. It is characteristic of the author that he introduces the thought of Christ's sacrifice but does not elaborate. He will return to the thought later and develop it."

(Heb 7:28 NASB) "For the Law appoints men as high priests who are weak, but the word of the oath, which came after the Law, appoints a Son, made perfect forever."

"28 Here the contrast between men with all their infirmities and the Son with his eternal perfection is further brought out. "The law" brings us back to the law of Moses, the law of divine origin indeed, but the law that necessarily operates among men with all their weakness. And when the law appoints high priests, they must be limited as all men are limited. There is no other possibility. The "weakness" (astheneia) refers to "the frailty to which all human flesh is heir" (BAG, s.v.). Priests are not made from some super race but from ordinary men, with all the frailty that characterizes ordinary men.

"But" introduces the contrast: the oath [which God swore that Christ was high priest of the order of Melchizedek] makes the difference. This, we are reminded, "came after the law" and so cannot be thought of as superseded by it. The oath [which God swore that Christ was high priest of the order of Melchizedek] has the last word, not the law. And the oath [which God swore that Christ was high priest of the order of Melchizedek] appointed the Son. Actually Psalm 110 which speaks of the oath [which God swore that Christ was high priest of the order of Melchizedek], does not mention the Son, who is referred to in Psalm 2. But the author sees both psalms as referring to Jesus; so he has no difficulty in applying terminology taken from the one to a situation relating to the other. And the Son "has been made perfect forever." He has been made perfect through those sufferings (2:10) that bring people to God."

FOLLOWING IS A POINT COUNTER POINT DISCUSSION ON WHETHER OR NOT MELCHIZEDEK IS A TYPE OF CHRIST OR CHRIST HIMSELF IN A PREINCARNATE APPEARANCE TO ABRAHAM

I was reading your article on Melchizedek and I disagreed with your conclusion that he was Jesus Christ preincarnate. If you would patiently permit me, I would like to explain.

According to what I have, this view was a minority one in the early Congregation, and most rejected it as unscriptural.

[This reasoning cannot be accepted as it is subjective and irrelevant. The gospel itself was often a minority view, even in the early Congregation. Reasoning must be based on a proper interpretation of Scripture. It has not been established that the preincarnate view was a minority one anyway. Taking what evidence we have of early church leaders via their writings some of whom were not even believers is not sufficient to establish a majority or minority view. In either case it is not the majority that establishes doctrine but the proper interpretation of the bible itself: the responsibility of each individual to determine himself]

Those who believed it were considered on the verge of being heretics (why I do not know

[I am often branded a heretic but without Scriptural basis]

Even those who held to this view admitted that it was not the orthodox view.

[Orthodox views are more often unscriptural than scriptural]

The early Congregation instead believed that Melchizedek was simply a type of Christ.

[Which does not affect the major doctrines of the faith. But what early Congregations belived may or not be correct. Scripture determines that. Besides that, no one really has a handle on what early congregations believed and did not believe due to lack of sufficient testimony as to such. So so far, if I were to take your reasoning, I would have to abandon the gospel because it was by some counts not the majority view of the early church]

But beyond this, I would like to post an article from another writer.

The serious Bible student will find that there are a

HIS IDENTITY REVEALED: REVEALED IN GENESIS 14

Actually four proposals to the identity of Melchizedek. The first proposal is that Melchizedek was a theophany of the preincarnate Christ. Carver writes: This is based on the belief that Hebrews 7:3 teaches that Melchizedek did not have human parents, that he came to earth without fleshly ancestors, that he possessed eternal life and a perpetual priesthood, and that he was literally formed like unto the Son of God." According to this proposal, it was actually the Son of God, the preincarnate Christ appearing as a man . . . . The city of Salem" over which Melchizedek ruled and in which he served as a perpetual priest, was actually a spiritual city. Abraham was visited by God in the person of the Son.

The second proposal identifies Melchizedek as a historical man who was an actual type of Christ. According to this proposal, Melchizedek was made similar to the son of God so that he can stand as a type of His perpetual priesthood.

The third proposal is that Melchizedek was a Canaanite priest who worshiped a Canaanite god. Carver observes: This is based on the belief that the ancient site of Jerusalem was occupied in Abrahams day by the Jebusites, a tribe of the Canaanites. Since Melchizedek came from Salem" or Jerusalem," he would be the ruling king and appointed priest over that tribe.

The fourth proposal identifies Melchizedek as Shem. This proposal gives identity to Melchizedek historically, and reveals the source of his priesthood and kingship. Shem would have outlived Abraham if the genealogical records of Genesis 11 are taken as an exhaustive record of the passage of time between the flood and the days of Abraham. If this proposal is true, the name Melchizedek would be a title rather than an actual name.

Of the two proposals mentioned, two are definitely impossible: the third and the fourth proposals. The third proposal identifying Melchizedek as a Canaanite priest is impossible because the Jebusites were idolators who worshiped Canaanite gods. Melchizedek could not have worshiped a heathen god because of the titles he used for the true God. Most High God separates the true God from the weak Canaanite gods. Possessor of heaven and earth is used by the prophet Daniel in the fourth chapter of his book.

In addition, archaeological records reveal that the Jebusites were preceded by that of a Shemite group of uncertain genealogy.

The fourth proposal identifying Melchizedek as Shem is impossible because Abrahams birth probably came about 1,200 years after the Flood. According to this, Shem would have been dead approximately 800 years before the birth of Abraham. Shem himself would have to have been resurrected in order to have been the Melchizedek of Genesis 14.

[None of the above reasoning is acceptable because it does not present the particular passages that are relevant and examine them in detail to see what they are saying. Conclusions drawn are unwarranted since they are not compared to the context and text of Scripture at all. They are in fact largely speculative and certainly not thorough. ]

Having observed the four proposals, it seems that there are only two possible answers concerning the identity of Melchizedek, which are: (1) He was a theophany of the preincarnate Christ,

or (2) He was a historical person who typified Christ. The true answer must be observed from the Scriptures.

It is very difficult to find any books or publications, current or past, that hold the view that Melchizedek was a Christophany of the preincarnate Christ. The author has also experienced this difficulty. However, the teaching can be traced by observing the few sources that are available.

William T. Bullock points out: Epiphanius says some (Haer. IXVII. 3 & IV.

5) in the church held the false view that Melchizedek was the Son of God.

Bullock further states that Ambrose was included among them.

[It is circular reasoning to conclude that either view is false in order to determine that either is false. You cannot conclude something is true in the process of investigating whether or not it is true.]

Dean Henry Alford writes concerning Jerome: Marcus Eremite (about 400), who wrote a treatise on Melchizedek, mentions heretics who believed him to be God the Word, before He took flesh, or was born of Mary.

However, it can be observed from other sources that Melchizedek was regarded by the early church to be a mere type of Christ and not a theophany. Alford states further that Ambrose, who apparently at first held the view that Melchizedek was a theophany, later Sexpressly states him to have been merely a holy man, a type of Christ. This last view was ever the prevalent one in the Church.

[Prevalence does not make doctrine - certainly not since the gospel has always been a minority in the church even today]

Further, F. W. Farrar writes: The notion that Melchizedek was . . . God the Word, previous to Incarnation, . . . Is on all sound hermeneutical principles, not only almost but quite childish.

[Sound hermeneutical principles actually support the preincarnate Christ as Melchisedek it will be shown. Not a good idea to call something you disagree with childish either]

. . . No Hebrew, reading these words, would have been led to these idle and fantastic conclusions about the super-human dignity of the Canaanite prince.

[Nothing in Scripture indicates that Melchizedek was a Canaanite prince. That's an eisegetical conclusion which is used to reach the conclusion that Melchizedek could not have been the preincarnate Christ]

Genesis 14 reveals several important facts concerning the identity of Melchizedek. First, although Abraham regarded Melchizedek as a person of great spiritual superiority, he did not in the context of Genesis 14 regard him as God manifested in the person of the Son.

[This cannot be concluded either way from an examination of Gen 14. Take another look. What is not stipulated there cannot be read into the passage. It does not address whether or not Abraham regarded Melchizedek as a person of great spiritual superiority nor as God manifested in the person of the Son. Therefore you cannot draw a conclusion about this either way. When the bible is silent about something one has to remain silent.

[Gen 14:17-20]:

(v. 17) '''Then after his return from the defeat of Chedorlaomer and the kings who were with him, the king of Sodom went out to meet him at the valley of Shaveh (that is, the King's Valley.

(v. 18) And Melchizedek king of Salem brought out bread and wine; now he was a priest of God Most High.

(v. 19) He blessed him and said, "Blessed be Abram of God Most High , Possessor of heaven and earth;

(v. 20) And blessed be God Most High , Who has delivered your enemies into your hand." He gave him a tenth of all.'''

Notice above what is not addressed: what Abraham thought of Melchizekek except for the actions which indicated Melchizedek was King of Salem who was a priest of God Most High. Scripture here does not indicate Who he is either except to say that he is king of Salem and priest of the most Holy God – it is silent on the matter. ]

This is very important for us to consider, since God the Son did appear and communicate with Abraham on several other occasions. Having become familiar with these appearances of God, it would seem that Abraham would have recognized Melchizedek as God the Son had he been so.

[The angel of the Lord speaks as God, identifies Himself with God, and exercises the responsibilities of God (Gen. 16:7-12; 21: 17-18; 22:11-18; Ex. 3:2; Jud. 2:1-4; 5:23; 6:11-24; 13:3-22; II Sam. 24:16; Zech. 1:12; 3:1; 12:8).

Men and women to whom the Angel of the LORD appeared did not recognize the preincarnate Son of God as Angel of the LORD. More often than not the passage tells us that the appearance was the LORD with some passages indicating that the person being addressed by the LORD knew it was the LORD and some not. Some times the Angel of the LORD appeared as a convincing messenger of God with no particular stipulation in Scripture that the human being understood that the individual speaking to him/her was indeed the preincarnate Son of God of the LORD. Gen 16:13 is one place that Hagar acknowledges the Angel as the Angel of the LORD, Gen 17:1 God appears before Abraham in some fashion and announces Who He is. The Bible tells us Who He is, but this is not the same thing as saying that the man/women the Angel was speaking to understood that. In the absence of such explanation, one cannot assume anything on this matter. Where the bible is silent, one must be silent. A number of times God had His Word come in their consciousness to Abraham and others rather than through the Angel of the LORD in an appearance with voiced communication. Hence God works in a number of ways that are not all in a consistent and predictable pattern wherein we can make conclusions that God always works this way or that. And one circumstance in how God operates and one reaction when He does, does not dictate how every time such a similar occurrence must happen. Certainly we must not box God in to the way we think He should operate. The key is simply to take Scripture at what it says, drawing conclusions on the basis of the normative use of language, context and logic and nothing more – being silent on matters that the bible is silent on. Certainly the unique appearance of Melchizedek is different from the appearances and communications to Abraham and others of the Angel of the LORD or the LORD in sufficient aspects not to demand that Scripture establish some kind of rule by which the unique appearance of Melchizedek must be governed which context is different from all the others ]

Each time God the Son appears to Abraham, the Scriptures are very careful to declare the true identity of the appearance.

[There is not a hard and fast pattern by which we can override the context of a passage with some unwritten, non-established rule. Majority text hermeneutics is more often wrong than right – especially when it is coupled with arguments from silence and is imposed on a context that is not identical; as is the case here. ]

In Genesis 15:1-2 we read:

After these things the word of the Lord came unto Abram in a vision, saying, Fear not, Abram: I am thy shield, and thy exceeding great reward.

And Abram said, Lord God, what wilt thou give me, seeing I go childless, and the steward of my house is this Eliezer of Damascus?

The context reveals clearly that Abraham was addressing God Himself, Who appeared to Abraham in the vision.

[Note that this was a vision and Melchizedek was an actual appearance – a unique one at that, dissimilar from the Angel of the LORD and LORD appearances and visions and communications in that it was not a point of communicating something from God to an individual but a priestly ceremony and tithing. The many examples of the Angel of the LORD’s appearances, visions, communications were purposed as a direct communication with God. The unique appearance of Melchizedek featured Abraham’s voluntary offer of tithes to a king and priest of the spoils of war and a ceremony re: bread and wine which significance is not stipulated. Can we say absolutely that this vision is an applicable parallel to dictate the context of Genesis 14:18 – the latter which was not a vision but an actual appearance/existence by a combination of an majority rules all contexts coupled with argument of silence even when the contexts of the majorities don’t all match??? ]

Certainly, it makes one wonder why Melchizedek, if he were actually an appearance of God the Son, did not tell Abraham these words in Genesis 14 when he appeared to him. Is God absent-minded? Certainly not!

[Is Genesis 14:18 a complete account? Obviously not. It is very sketchy. It does not address this issue of Who Melchizedek was except that he was a king and a priest of the most High God. Can we say from an argument of silence here that Melchizedek is not the Son of God preincarnate on the basis of a vision in Gen 15:1-2 that indicates that the vision was from the LORD God???? Isn't that bad hermeneutics??? ]

Further, Genesis 18 records another visit by the Son of God to Abraham on the Plains of Mamre. Abraham recognized Him as God, calling Him my Lord, and not Melchizedek. If Melchizedek were actually a theophany, Abraham certainly would have recognized him as such.

[There is not a single passage in Scripture that supports this rule that all theophanies must be recognized by the one being appeared to! ]

Secondly, theophanies in human form were always temporary. Borland writes: Since theophanies in human form were always quite temporary and fleeting, it would be unusual for God to have visited Abram while posing as the king of a Canaanite city. Besides, in none of the identifiable Christophanies was the one who appeared connected in any permanent way with life on this earth. (Christ in the Old Testament, James A. Borland, Moody Press, 1978). Again, it is very important to note that Christ in the human-form theophanies never performed a religious or related ceremony

[The passages about Melchizedek do not address how long he was on the earth. Nor does the Bible restrict how theophanies must operate or their length of operation. Furthermore, there is no such hard and fast rule that says theophanies must only be temporary whatever that means: 1 day, 1 hour, 1 year, 20 years???? There is also nothing to say that Melchizedek was only there temporarily]

Borland writes again: . . . Melchizedek was titled priest of the most high God and brought bread and wine, the elements of a completed sacrifice, while he pronounced a blessing upon Abraham. These facts clearly reveal that the Melchizedek of Gene- sis 14 was not an actual appearance of Jesus Christ in human form.

[The bread and wine were not so stipulated as the elements of a completed sacrifice. The bible is silent on the significance of the bread and wine in this particular passage. On the other hand, had it been a symbol of our Lord’s sacrifice in His humanity, it would not have prevented Jesus Christ in His humanity from performing such sacrifice, would it? That is reading that into the text. No such conclusion can be made that because of Melchizedek’s bringing bread and wine that excludes him from being Jesus Christ in preincarnate human form performing the sacrifice at Calvary for the sins of the whole world. There is no such rule in Scripture]

HIS IDENTITY REVEALED: REVEALED IN HEBREWS 7

Since the New Testament supplements or completes the Old Testament, a great deal of light can be gleaned from Hebrews chapters six and seven. There are several important facts in Hebrews six and seven which prove that Melchizedek was not a preincarnate appearance of Christ in human form.

Preceding the short description of Melchizedek in Hebrews seven, there is a brief introduction to the mysterious person in the last four verses of chapter six, which read as follows:

Wherein God, willing more abundantly to shew unto the heirs of promise the immutability of his counsel, confirmed it by an oath: that by two immutable things, in which it was impossible for God to lie, we might have a strong consolation, who have fled for refuge to lay hold upon the hope set before us: Which hope we have as an anchor of the soul, both sure and stedfast, and which entereth into that within the veil; whither the forerunner is for us entered, even Jesus, made an high priest for ever after the order of Melchizedek.

Carver writes about this verse: The statement says Jesus entered into the veil under the authority of His work of the cross, through this work having become forever a High Priest according to the order of Melchizedek. The statement is that our Lord Jesus became a High Priest forever after the order of Melchezedek through His sacrificial death on the cross. If He were the Melchizedek of history, then He would not have become a High Priest through the work of the cross. He would have already been a High Priest forever after His own order. In the endless ages of eternity past, Christ was already prophet, priest, and king. However, as far as the salvation of the believer is concerned, Christ became our great High Priest when He offered Himself upon the cross as our sacrifice for sin. In doing this, He was both priest and sacrifice. If Christ were the Melchizedek of Genesis 14, this principle would not be true.

[The preincarnate appearances and actions of the LORD before He added to Himself humanity do not conflict with His appearance on the earth when He added to Himself humanity. None of the passages that have Melchizedek in them address his work as priest would have something directly or symbolic to do with the sacrifice on the cross at Calvary although that may have been the case symbolically. But the bible is silent on this so we must be silent, drawing no definitive conclusions. Note that our LORD in His alleged appearance as Melchizedek was not yet in His humanity. The priestly rituals could also be symbolic of Calvary and not effect our Lord’s actual work on the cross! Our LORD’s alleged appearance as Melchizedek is not the same thing as His incarnate appearance as the One to go to the cross at Calvary in His humanity. ]

The second thing to notice is the word Sorder used several times in Hebrews 5-7 (5:6, 10; 7:11, 17, 21). The word translated order is taxis, meaning arrangement, office, rank, or group. The fact that Christ is a priest after the order of Melchizedek clearly makes a distinction between the two. How could Christ be a priest after the order of Melchizedek if He were Melchizedek?

[Yes. The difference is between His preincarnate appearance as LORD and His appearances on the earth after He added to Himself humanity. ]

The third thing to notice is the word order of king and Priest in Hebrews 7:1. Melchizedek is King-Priest, whereas the chronological order for Christ is Priest-King. Christ has not been crowned king of any earthly domain as yet. This is to be a fulfilment of prophecy.

[I wouldn’t read too much into the order of these two words. Scripture is silent on the significance of the order in which these two words appear. One cannot take the king then priest order in Heb 7:1 as a chronological fulfillment of prophecy. For one refers allegedly to the preincarnate Christ and the other which is prophesized to Christ’s incarnation. Two different contexts. ]

Fourth, the words made like unto are very important for us to notice (7:3). Of course, these words mean similar to or a type of. Borland says that ‚¨Sit would be foolish to say Melchizedek was made like Christ, if indeed he were Christ.

[Why not? BTW, the word ‘foolish’ here is out of line. That’s a legitimate use of the Word. If Melchizedek is the pre incarnate Son of God on the earth certainly He is like the Son of God, because He is the Son of God. Notice it is declaring something about the priesthood: it consists of One who is like the Son of God. If He is the Son of God this would certainly be true and a legitimate way of expressing it! ]

Fifth, the argument that Melchizedek had no genealogy is denied in the context of Scripture. Verse six clearly declares that Melchizedek did have a genealogy when it speaks of he whose descent (genealogy).

[Let's take a look at the words]:

[Heb 7:1-3]:

(v. 1) This Melchizedek was king of Salem and priest of God Most High. He met Abraham returning from the defeat of the kings and blessed him, 2

(v. 2) and Abraham gave him a tenth of everything. First, his name means "king of righteousness"; then also, "king of Salem" means "king of peace."

(v. 3) Without father or mother, without genealogy, without beginning of days or end of life, like the Son of God he remains a priest forever.”

Verse 3 in the Greek stipulates that Melchizedek is “without father, without mother, without genealogy, neither beginning of days nor of end of life, like the Son of God remains a priest forever:

(Greek/English Interlinear (tr) NT) Hebrews 7:3 apatwr <540> {WITHOUT FATHER,} amhtwr <282> {WITHOUT MOTHER,} agenealoghtoV <35> {WITHOUT GENEALOGY;} mhte <3383> {NEITHER} archn <746> {BEGINNING} hmerwn <2250> {OF DAYS} mhte <3383> {NOR} zwhV <2222> {OF LIFE} teloV <5056> {END} ecwn <2192> (5723) {HAVING,} afwmoiwmenoV <871> (5772) de <1161> {BUT ASSIMILATED} tw <3588> {TO THE} uiw <5207> tou <3588> {SON} qeou <2316> {OF GOD,} menei <3306> (5719) {ABIDES} iereuV <2409> {A PRIEST} eiV <1519> to <3588> dihnekeV <1336> {IN PERPETUITY.}]

Furthermore, Christ does have a recorded genealogy and a human mother, which would disqualify Him from being the Melchizedek of Genesis 14.

[Not so. We are looking at Melchizedek as Christ’s preincarnate appearance in His eternal existence like the Son of God Who is eternal without beginning or end without genealogy vs the incarnate man like the Son of God who has a genealogy. So God the Son has no genealogy in His diety but in His humanity He does. ]

Melchizedek is said to be without father, without mother. Without genealogy simply means that Melchizedeks genealogy is not given.

[Melchizedek is said to be without father, without mother, without genealogy simply means He is without father, without mother, without genealogy. There is no way one could say this means his genealogy is not given which conveys the idea that he has a genealogy but it is not given here in the passage???? The verse says he is without genealogy. You cannot say then that he has one which then would say that he has a mother and a father. ]

Sixth, Melchizedek did have a father and a mother because verse four says that he was a man. Melchizedek was a temporal man.

[A preincarnate appearance as a man does not demand a father and a mother. It does not say he was a temporal man either. It says he is without beginning of days or end of life. That is hardly temporal.]

Seventh, Christ could not have been Melchizedek and still been better than Melchizedek (7:22). Certainly, Christ could not be better than Himself. Part of the argument of Hebrews would be destroyed if such were the case.

[Christ in His humanity completed His mission which Melchizedek – Christ in His preincarnate appearance symbolically represented. In this sense the former is greater than the latter just as the reality is greater than the symbol. ]

Eighth, verses 15-16 say that after the similitude of Melchizedek there ariseth another priest, who is made, not after the law of a carnal commandment, but after the power of an endless life. There is a one word in particular that we need to notice: the word similitude. This word declares that Christ is similar to or a type of Melchizedek. Christ is the another priest. . . after the power of an endless life. Such would not be the case if he were Melchizedek.

[Heb 7:15-17]:

(Heb 7:15) "And what we have said is even more clear if another priest like Melchizedek appears,

(Heb 7:16) 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

(Heb 7:17) For it is declared: "You are a priest forever, in the order of Melchizedek."

Notice that Christ in His preincarnate appearance could certainly appear as Mechizedek Who is stipulated as without beginning or end like the Son of God – eternal and indestructible and then another priest of the order of Melchizedek: Christ in His Humanity appears “on the basis of the power of an indestructible life”, i.e., His resurrection Life in His Humanity.]

Thus, Melchizedek was not a Christophany. All the evidence points to the fact that he was a mere man who was a perfect type of the Lord Jesus Christ in His priesthood. Carver writes: We conclude that Melchizedek was not a theophany of the preincarnate Christ. He was not a supernatural being at all. He was a man; and because of the absence of any genealogical records concerning him, God has made him a marvelous type of our Lord Jesus Christ, both in his kingship and in his priesthood.

[Not so. It is indeed plausible that Melchizedek was the preincarnate Christ and is the resurrected Christ. One who is without beginning and without end, without genealogy, a priest and king of an order beyond the capacity of finite man, like the Son of God, priest forever = only God can be all those things: The Son of God preincarnate and the Son of God incarnate]