(taken from 2006)
i continued further in hebrews since 2 sundays ago, i taught on hebrews 5, spiritual maturity. i wanted to finish hebrews since i only know it for that topic as well as its chapter on faith (ch.11). those are the only two chapters i’m familiar with so i read ahead to chapters 6-10.
although the crux of the chapters led to Jesus being the ultimate High Priest and sacrifice, it alluded to a character in the old testament- Melchizedek, a king and priest of God who had blessed Abraham during his wars described in Genesis 14. This was still before the tribe of Levi was called by God as the ordinated priesthood to be set apart as the holy bearers of the Arc of the Covenant, and who performed strict sacrificial duties in the Tabernacle. Although i’ve heard of Melchizedek, this was the first time i researched who he was in the old testament and to what purpose he served as a mention and function to the New Testament. Who knew that a minor character of the old testament would resurface as a type for Jesus? i know there’s still debate going on as to whether he was a representation of Jesus or if he was the actual Jesus of the Old Testament since it was sited that he had no lineage or death, and he was named ‘king of peace’ as Jesus is the ‘prince of peace,’ but despite all the debates, his function was to show that the law made way and was therefore afterwards obsolete when Jesus came to earth.
Jesus was not from the Levitical priesthood, because he was a decendant of Judah, yet he was the final and ultimate High Priest who made the final and ultimate sacrifice. And since there is no remission of sins but through blood, Jesus made the old way of purification for all obsolete, and through his death, with his own blood became sacrifice. The reason they brought up Melchizedek was because he himself, still at the time of Abraham, the father of all nations, who had still to father Isaac- to Jacob- to the tribes of Israel- was not a part of the Aaronic priesthood, yet he was still a high priest who gave such blessing to Abraham that Abraham and his tribe gave tithes to him. Melchizedek was outside of the law, away from Judaic conventions, and therefore was a resounding figure of what was to come through Jesus, who himself was not from the line of Levite priests, yet He was the High Priest. Through Jesus, God made the Judaic law inoperative. what does this mean? why did he do it? it was to stress that salvation was through Jesus and not by the law. The law was fallable because its standards could not have been met by mere human deeds, and we continuously failed to measure up to the law. i’m not saying that God was fallable, but humanity could not gain eternity through mere sacrifices as they’ve done in the old testament.
Jesus paid that price and became the final sacrifice so that all could be forgiven and made holy. Only through the blood of the Lamb. Not by human priests, not by the law, but through Jesus. heb:10:10 “And what God wants is for us to be made holy by the sacrifice of the body of Jesus Christ once for all time.”
this goes to show that it is not by good deeds, it is not by your merit or demerits, it’s not by regaining favor through regulatory offerings, and it is not even by the old law- salvation is through Jesus alone- the High Priest who is our advocate, who enters God’s Holy presence in behalf of us. the old law was only a copy of the greater things to come, a shadow of what was genuine salvation. the earthly tabernacle was only a likeness to the real presence of God, and when Jesus had finished God’s will for him on earth, the curtain to the Holy of Holies was torn, because all the old external regulations had no more function.
now i know the analagous relationship between old testament melchizedek to new testament jesus.
this is amazing: (hebrews 8:8-13, the remix of the prophetic paragraph taken from jeremaiah 31:31-34)
“The day will come, says the Lord,
when I will make a new covenant
with the people of Israel and Judah.
This covenant will not be like the one
I made with their ancestors
when I took them by the hand
and led them out of the land of Egypt.
They did not remain faithful to my covenant,
so I turned my back on them, says the Lord.
But this is the new covenant I will make
with the people of Israel on that day, says the Lord:
I will put my laws in their minds
so they will understand them,
and I will write them on their hearts
so they will obey them.
I will be their God,
and they will be my people.
And they will not need to teach their neighbors,
nor will they need to teach their family,
saying, `You should know the Lord.’
For everyone, from the least to the greatest,
will already know me.
And I will forgive their wrongdoings,
and I will never again remember their sins.”[b]
13When God speaks of a new covenant, it means he has made the first one obsolete. It is now out of date and ready to be put aside.