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Melchizedek, whose name means "king of righteousness," was a king of Salem (Jerusalem) and priest of the Most High God (Genesis 14:18-20; Psalm 110:4; Hebrews 5:6-11; 6:20-7:28). Melchizedek's sudd...
► Let us summarize who is Melchizedek: 1. King of "Salem", ancient Jerusalem city (Heb. 7:1; Gen. 14:18). 2. Priest of God in Abraham's day (Heb. 7:1; Gen. 14:18). 3. He met Abraham returning from his military victory (Heb. 7:1; Gen. 14:16- 18). 4. Abraham gave him one- tenth of the spoils (Heb. 7:2; Gen. 14:16- 24). 5. Melchizedek was called King of righteousness (Heb. 7:2). 6. He was called King of Salem, or King of Peace (Heb. 7:2; Gen. 14:18). 7. He had no descent (Greek:agenealogetos (G35), without genealogy); without recorded father or mother; and without recorded beginning of days or end of life (Heb. 7:3, 6). He had a father, mother, birth, and death, but these were not recorded, so that he could be a type of Christ who was an eternal being really without beginning and ending (Mic. 5:2; Isa. 9:6- 7 Jn. 1:1- 2 Heb. 1:8; Rev. 1:8- 11). 8. He made a type of Christ, so that Christ could be made a priest after his order (Heb. 7:3; 5:6, 10; 6:15- 20 7:1- 10, 15- 21). As God Christ was not begotten, was not God's Son, and had no birth or death. Only as man did the second person of the Divine Trinity have a begetting, a father, a mother, a birth and a death(Acts 13:33). 9. He was an ordinary man (Heb. 7:4). 10. He was greater than Abraham (Heb. 7:4- 7).
In Hebrews, Paul made comments about Melchizedek when discussing Jesus Christ’s role as a superior High Priest. Referring to Melchizedek as a type, or pattern, of Jesus in this priestly role, Paul said: “Jesus . . . has become a high priest according to the manner of Melchizedek.” (Hebrews 6:20) In what sense? Paul must have realized that the Bible record does not give details about Melchizedek’s family lineage—his ancestors or any possible descendants. That information is just not a matter of Biblical record. From the standpoint of what Paul knew or we know, therefore, Melchizedek could correctly be said to be “without genealogy” (New World Translation of the Holy Scriptures; American Standard Version), “without table of descent” (W. J. Conybeare), or with “no family tree.”—J. B. Phillips. In what way was Jesus like that? Granted, we know that Jesus’ Father was Jehovah God and that his human mother was Mary of the tribe of Judah. Still, there was a similarity between Melchizedek and Jesus. How so? Jesus was not born in the tribe of Levi, the tribe for priests in the nation of Israel. No, Jesus had not become a priest through human genealogy. Neither had Melchizedek, who had not become a priest “according to the law of a commandment depending upon the flesh,” that is, by being born into a priestly tribe and family. (Hebrews 7:15, 16) Rather than becoming a priest through a human father who had himself been a priest, Jesus had “been specifically called by God a high priest according to the manner of Melchizedek.”—Hebrews 5:10. Further, Jesus did not have any descendants or successors to his priesthood. In this sense too, he was without genealogy. He will eternally carry out his priestly service as a helpful instructor. Paul commented on this perpetual service, saying: “[Jesus] because of continuing alive forever has his priesthood without any successors. Consequently he is able also to save completely those who are approaching God through him, because he is always alive to plead for them.”—Hebrews 7:24, 25.
Melchizedek means “king of justice,” but Scripture is not clear, exactly who Melchizedek was. The EO church teaches he was a foretelling of Christ, being both priest and king, not sinning, yet sacrificing himself. This perfect priesthood is present in His Church and all Orthodox Christians are called members of the royal priesthood (Gen 14:22; Ps 18;:13; 110:4; Heb 6:20; 7:4-10).” The RC Church states this is a man and not Christ, just a foreshadowing. Various writers of the early church said he was anything from that to an angel, or Christ, himself. It appears, the ancient Hebrew manuscripts are pretty much in one accord. The Hagada, the Targums, the Babylonian Talmud and many of their commentaries identify Melchizedek as Shem. (The Targums present him as operating in a pre-flood priesthood passed on from Melchizedek, Enoch’s brother, prior to the flood. Hence, Melchizedek may be more of a title, such as Pharaoh or Ptolemy.) The Dead Sea Scroll texts of Jubilees and Jasher (Josh 10:13, II Sam 1:18) agree with the Shem identity. Jasher 16:11 identifies the king of Jerusalem as Shem, though the author refers to him, not as "Melchizedek, but as "Adonizedek" (Lord of Justice), hence, he was “King” and “Lord” of the city (Josh 10:1, Heb 7:1). Bishop Westcott’s Hebrews (144), regarding Gen 14, also identifies Melchizedek as Shem and explains the passage in this way: “we are seeing a passing of the old priesthood to the new. In Genesis from Noah and Shem to Abraham, and, in Hebrews, from Levi to Christ and the priesthood of the believer.” This makes perfect sense, as long as one follows the Masoretic text, and especially if one gives credence to the pseudo-pedigrapha, such as Jubilees and Jasher. According to Gen 10 (Masoretic t), Noah was born 1036 years after creation and died in 2006. Shem was born in 1558 and died in 2158, while Abraham was born in 1948 and died in 2123, clearly making Shem Abraham’s contemporary. The Book of Jubilees also says Arphaxad's son, Cainan, found ancient writings in stone. These contained the pre-flood teachings of the apostate, angelic Watchers, which brought great trouble upon mankind (Gen 6:1-9; Enoch ch 6-8). According to Clement, Cainan taught them to Nimrod, resulting in the great rebellion at Babel and the spread of post-flood idolatry, witchcraft, and warfare (Jub 8:2-5; Recol of Clement 4:26-29). In Pseudo-pedigrapha texts: Jasher and Jubilees, Abraham’s father, Tera, practiced idolatry and served as Chief over Nimrod’s princes, but his son, Abraham, grew up at Noah’s house. From age three, and for 39 years, Abraham was trained in righteousness by Noah and Shem (Jub 12 1-2; Jasher 7:41-9:6). Later Shem attended the weaning of Isaac, Sarah’s funeral, and personally mentored Isaac at home in Jerusalem (Jasher 21:4-7; 24:14). However, I think it is important to note that the pseudo-pedigrapha's stories regarding Abraham contradict each other in a number of places, as does the Masoretic OT text used by the Jews, probably since about 300 A.D., and utilized by the reformers to write our current Bibles. Put simply, it has drastic differences in the numbering of years for the lifetimes of many pre-and post-flood patriarchs, as opposed to the Septuagint and even the Syrian texts. Many argue, since the Septuagint is at least 900 years older than the Masoretic, and that it was accomplished by Jewish scholars under the authority of the high priest of Israel, and that it is the version most closely quoted by Jesus and the apostles, that it is the most reliable source. If they are correct, Shem could not possibly be Melchizedek, because the Septuagint's aging of the patriarchs would have Shem dying at least 500 years before Abraham's birth. Then, of course, there is always the description of Melchizedek, which seems to say no one knows who his father or mother were, or how old he was. None of this is true regarding Shem.
He probably was not pre-incarnate Christ. He was a priest and an example of who to be looking for in regards to the real Christ as a look forward to the real most high.
Melchizedek as interpreted for us means king of righteousness, who was the king of Salem which is translated " peace", meaning he is the king of peace. He was no regular mortal king as explained in Hebrews 7:3. Without father without mother without beginning of days or end of life but is like the Christ as he remains a priest forever. It speaks in this fashion "is like the Christ" because Jesus had not yet been born and appeared as God in the flesh upon the earth. The name itself "Melchizidek" means king of righteousness. No mortal King would be able to fIll that description as we read in Romans 3:10, There is none righteous, no, not one! This preincarnate form of Christ's appearing in the form of Melchizedek would explain John 8:56, where Jesus told the Pharisees that Abraham rejoice to see his day.
While the New Testament correctly calls Jesus a priest in the "order of Melchizedek," Jewish tradition says Melchizedek was actually Shem son of Noah.
There is more than one legend about Melchizedek in Jewish tradition. In the second book of Enoch (the last section, The Exaltation of Mechizedek) Melchizedek is recounted as being born miraculously to the wife of Nir, a younger brother of Noah, just before the Flood. He was subsequently translated to paradise to escape the Flood and came down again only later on as a fully grown man. Of course, all Jewish legends should be regarded with real suspicion (Titus 1:14) One thing to note is that Melchizedek was a priest of the Most High God, while the god of Shem was the LORD God (Gen 9:26). John the Baptist was a prophet of the Most High (Luke 1:76) and Christ was the son of the Most High (Luke 1:28).
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