Rev. Luke Zimmerman, pastor at Calvary Evangelical Lutheran Church in Mechanicsburg, PA, joins host Rev. Timothy Appel to study Hebrews 7:1-10.
The author of Hebrews begins to expound more fully upon the importance that Jesus is a priest in the order of Melchizedek. Melchizedek is mentioned in the Biblical narrative in Genesis 14 as both king and priest, though neither his genealogy nor his death is recorded. Abraham gave a tenth of his spoils of war to Melchizedek, and Melchizedek blessed Abraham. From this account, the author of Hebrews sets the stage to proclaim that Christ’s priesthood in the order of Melchizedek is superior to the Levitical priesthood.
“The New Covenant in Christ” is a series on Sharper Iron that goes through the book of Hebrews. The book of Hebrews is best understood as a sermon preached to those who have gathered for the Divine Service, exhorting them to continued faithfulness to Jesus. As the Son of God and our Brother, Jesus is both our exalted King and faithful High Priest who is truly present with us so that we might fix our eyes on Him.
Sharper Iron, hosted by Rev. Timothy Appel, looks at the text of Holy Scripture both in its broad context and its narrow detail, all for the sake of proclaiming Christ crucified and risen for sinners. Two pastors engage with God’s Word to sharpen not only their own faith and knowledge, but the faith and knowledge of all who listen.
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The Priestly Order of Melchizedek
7 For this Melchizedek, king of Salem, priest of the Most High God, met Abraham returning from the slaughter of the kings and blessed him, 2 and to him Abraham apportioned a tenth part of everything. He is first, by translation of his name, king of righteousness, and then he is also king of Salem, that is, king of peace. 3 He is without father or mother or genealogy, having neither beginning of days nor end of life, but resembling the Son of God he continues a priest forever.
4 See how great this man was to whom Abraham the patriarch gave a tenth of the spoils! 5 And those descendants of Levi who receive the priestly office have a commandment in the law to take tithes from the people, that is, from their brothers,[a] though these also are descended from Abraham. 6 But this man who does not have his descent from them received tithes from Abraham and blessed him who had the promises. 7 It is beyond dispute that the inferior is blessed by the superior. 8 In the one case tithes are received by mortal men, but in the other case, by one of whom it is testified that he lives. 9 One might even say that Levi himself, who receives tithes, paid tithes through Abraham, 10 for he was still in the loins of his ancestor when Melchizedek met him.
- Hebrews 7:5 Or brothers and sisters
English Standard Version (ESV) The Holy Bible, English Standard Version. ESV® Text Edition: 2016. Copyright © 2001 by Crossway Bibles, a publishing ministry of Good News Publishers. esv.org