May 10, 2011

Wednesday after the Second Sunday after Easter


Lectionary

Morning – Ps. 63, Ex. 18:13, Heb. 7:1-11
Evening – Ps. 65, Is 44:6-8, 21-23, 1 Pet. 4:7-11

Commentary

Hebrews, chapter 6 closed with a quote from Psalm 110:4 and a reference to Genesis 14:18-20.  Our reading in Hebrews 7 explains how Christ is a Priest of the order of Melchisidec.  The identity of Melchisidec is a topic of much discussion among students of Scripture.  He is noted as the King of Salem, which means King of Peace, and the inference in the book of Hebrews is that he is an appearance of Christ in the Old Testament.  Thus, verse 2 calls Him the King of Righteousness to whom Abraham offered a tithe.  He is also noted as being without parents and without descent.  Christ is eternally God, so God the Father is not His parent in the same sense that our human fathers and mothers are ours.  He has no “beginning of days nor end of life; but made like unto the Son of God; abideth a priest continually” (7:3).

Melchisidec is a greater priest than the Levitical priests of the Old Testament because they paid tithes to Him through Abraham (7:5).  Note also that Melchisidec predates the Levitical priesthood (7:6) and that His office did not pass to another at His death.  Finally, His priesthood brings His people to perfection, which the Levitical priesthood could never do.