Oak Grove Methodist Church - This is the beautiful church where I met Jesus and gave my life to Him when I was thirteen years old. I met the High Priest, Jesus who gave me the best gift of all- Salvation!
We have two weeks before gathering with family to celebrate the birth of Jesus, our High Priest and Mediator before a Holy God.
Priests were chosen by God. However, they eventually passed away and new priests were appointed. Interestingly, not so with Melchizedek.
Melchizedek was a priest chosen by God, but there was something very special about Melchizedek. There is no record in the Bible of his birth, death or parental lineage.
His priesthood was a picture or “type” of Jesus, a priest forever.
Even so, only Jesus -
Son of God,
Prince of Peace,
is worthy to be our High Priest, interceding for us, his beloved children, until the day we meet him at the end of this age.
Today, I will share scriptures and what I have learned about the Priests of the Levi tribe, Melchizedek and the Superior Priest-Jesus who alone is worthy to save and intercede for us.
I have read through the Bible a few times and found it to be inexhaustible. I love learning new stories that point to God and His Rescue Plan. This past week, I have been in the book of Hebrews reading about the former priests and Jesus, our High Priest.
God appointed the priests within the chosen race, the Israelites. However, during Abraham’s lifetime, before the birth of the nation of Israel, there lived a priest named Melchizedek. He was not from the tribe of Levi because it was yet to be established. His name meant King of Righteousness and King of Peace because of where he reigned; i.e., Salem, which meant “peace.”
"The name Melchizedek means “king of justice,” and king of Salem means “king of peace.” 3 There is no record of his father or mother or any of his ancestors—no beginning or end to his life. He remains a priest forever, resembling the Son of God. " Hebrews 7:2b-3 NLT
After a war with other Kings, Abraham encountered Melchizedek, king of Salem, priest of the Most High God and blessed Abraham.. Then, Abraham gave all he had won in the battle with many kings and gave a tenth of it to Melchizedek.
"" The Jewish priests, though mortal, received tithes; but we are told that Melchizedek lives on. One might even say that Levi himself (the ancestor of all Jewish priests, of all who receive tithes), paid tithes to Melchizedek through Abraham. For although Levi wasn’t born yet, the seed from which he came was in Abraham when Abraham paid the tithes to Melchizedek. If the Jewish priests and their laws had been able to save us, why then did God need to send Christ as a priest with the rank of Melchizedek, instead of sending someone with the rank of Aaron—the same rank all other priests had?
"Hebrews 7:8-11 TLB
From reading this past week, I have gleaned that Melchizedek was a foreshadow of the true Priest that lives forever. God chose a new High Priest, Jesus, who did not come from the tribe of Levi, but the tribe of Judah. Jesus came with the rank of Melchizedek – a priest forever.
God replaced the old system of priesthood belonging to the tribe of Levi by giving us a Priest that would save us by His blood and live forever. The former priests of Levi had to confess their sins as well as intercede on behalf of others. They would eventually die and new priests would take their place.
I love these two scriptures... picture this is your mind:
“This certain hope of being saved is a strong and trustworthy anchor for our souls connecting us with God himself behind the sacred curtains of heaven where Christ has gone ahead to plead for us from His position as our High Priest, with the rank of Melchizedek.”
Hebrews 6: 19-20 TNL
“But, Jesus lives forever and continues to be a Priest so that no one else is needed. He is able to save completely all who come to God through him. Since he will live forever, he will always be there to remind God that he has paid for their sins with His blood.”
Hebrews 7:25 NLT
God chose Christ, a new system of priesthood, cancelling the old system of priesthood. Christ offers salvation and forgiveness forever. Our sins are nailed to the cross if we have confessed our sins to Him.
“Tetelestai” - a Greek word meaning “It is finished.”
Jesus is the bridge to a Holy God; the High Priest reminding God of the work He did for us. We confess our sins because of our love for Him, desiring that nothing stands between us and our relationship with Him. Our salvation is sealed. We are His forever once we put our trust in Him.
God has given us the best gift, Jesus, our High Priest. This gift of salvation is eternal and gives us a future and a hope. God gave us a king that paid all the debt in full on the cross. He became our High Priest taking our doubts and fears away. We can rejoice and know that, if our faith is in Jesus and we confess our sins, we are His forever. We have a High Priest who is always for us!
“Under the old system, even the high priests were weak and sinful men who could not keep from doing wrong, but later God appointed by his oath His son who is perfect forever.”
Hebrews 7:28 TLB
What was His oath:
“God took an oath that Christ would always be a Priest, although he never said that of other priests, only to Christ he said, ‘ the Lord has sown and will never change his mind: You are a Priest forever, with the rank of Melchizedek,’ because of God’s oath, Christ can guarantee forever the success of this new and better arrangement.” Hebrews 7:20-22 TLB
I put my trust in God’s oath. We have a High Priest who is our advocate forever! God made a way to restore His people back to Him. Only Jesus, the Superior Priest whose priesthood never ends, gave His life to offer salvation to sinful man. We have the best gift to celebrate this Christmas season and throughout the year.
My favorite Nativity given to me by my sweet mother-in-law, Sarah