A Priest of God Most High

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Last week we saw that we should be pressing into a deeper understanding of Christ.

This week we will be taking that first plunge into deeper waters.

One of the things I learned from this passage is that there is a scriptural example showing exactly how to use the scripture to interpret scripture.

When we approach the study of the Bible the most important rule is that I do not under any circumstances approach the task with the idea that I can read into it what I want it to say.

In this passage the author of Hebrews examines Genesis 14:17-20 and Psalm 110:4

Genesis 14:17-20

17 Then after his return from the defeat of Chedorlaomer and the kings who were with him, the king of Sodom went out to meet him at the valley of Shaveh (that is, the King’s Valley). 18 And Melchizedek king of Salem brought out bread and wine; now he was a priest of God Most High. 19 He blessed him and said,

“Blessed be Abram of God Most High,

Possessor of heaven and earth;

20 And blessed be God Most High,

Who has delivered your enemies into your hand.”

He gave him a tenth of all.[1]

Psalm 110:4 New American Standard Bible (NASB)

4 The Lord has sworn and will not change His mind,

“You are a priest forever

According to the order of Melchizedek.”[2]

We are going to see many important truths about Jesus as our Great High Priest being explained in chapters 7 through 10.

Today we are looking at Hebrews Chapter 7 verses 1 to 10.

I am going to start reading at Hebrews 6:19.

Hebrews 6:19-7:3

19 This hope we have as an anchor of the soul, a hope both sure and steadfast and one which enters within the veil, 20 where Jesus has entered as a forerunner for us, having become a high priest forever according to the order of Melchizedek.

Chapter 7

1 For this Melchizedek, king of Salem, priest of the Most High God, who met Abraham as he was returning from the slaughter of the kings and blessed him,

2 to whom also Abraham apportioned a tenth part of all the spoils, was first of all, by the translation of his name, king of righteousness, and then also king of Salem, which is king of peace. 3 Without father, without mother, without genealogy, having neither beginning of days nor end of life, but made like the Son of God, he remains a priest perpetually.[3]


Before we go too far I wanted to look at the study of types of Christ so we can understand where these four chapters are going to be taking us.

I am reading this from The Christian Library website

What is a type? Literally speaking, the word type comes from the Greek word tuptein, to strike. In Webster's dictionary, type is defined as "to figure, to represent by a model or symbol beforehand. In the context of our study of the Bible we consider both the type and antitype. In our study of the Bible a type is a person, place, thing, or event that is a foreshadowing of a future person or event. The antitype or thing the type foreshadows is greater and clearer to understand. For example, a rubber stamp is a type. It is not clear and simple to understand. However, its antitype, that print that appears when the rubber stamp is pressed on paper, is much clearer than the type. The type was a shadow, or promise of the revealed antitype to come. There are dozens of types of Christ in the Old Testament.

We must never expect the type and antitype to be the same. We cannot therefore see a type-antitype relationship in every detail of a certain person, place, or thing. We should not seek types out of every verse in the Old Testament. The Scriptures must not be twisted just to bear out our desire to make a type out of a rather insignificant person or event in the Old Testament. On the other hand, we must not limit ourselves to only the types that are so denominated in God's word. Although we are always safe in those we can prudently use others, provided the context allows it. Remember too, that the antitype is always superior to the type. If it were not, there would be no need of the type. The antitype is always clearer and more revealing.

End Quote

I like to think of a type as a picture of something, and the antitype is that thing the picture represents.

A good example would be a picture of a cupcake.  It looks like the cupcake and it might even make me hungry for one, but I don’t think I would want to eat the picture.  It just wouldn’t taste like a cupcake.

I had a hard time wrapping my head around the term antitype so this morning I did a little extra digging and in the original greek the term comes from stamping as in how coins are minted.  In other words the image you see on the coin is an impression left by the die as it is pressed.  In every sense the image on the coin is the opposite of the die by design.

In the case of scriptural type / antitype relationships the image is not opposite but similar by design.

Another very important point is that types are by God’s design.  In other words He drew a diagram to help us better understand what it is He wants us to learn.

As we examine Hebrews 7:1-10 we will find a very good pattern to follow when we study types in the Bible.  In this case the type is Melchizedek and the antitype is Christ.

One thing we will see in this passage is that the author of Hebrews carefully examines Melchizedek and finds comparisons that foreshadow Christ.

George H. Guthrie in The NIV Application Commentary on Hebrews said this about some of the comparisons that were made.

"The writer finds what the Old Testament narrative does not say especially relevant for his argument. Following a common exegetical practice known as “argument from silence,” the author capitalizes on Genesis 14’ s lack of any reference to Melchizedek’s ancestry, birth, or death. His point is not that Melchizedek exists as some form of supernatural being. Rather, he focuses on the details of what the narrative does and does not say, anticipating a stark contrast between Melchizedek’s priesthood and the Levitical priesthood, which he will develop later in the chapter ."[4] 

In the bulletin you should have page which at the top says Melchizedek as a type of Christ.  If you could look the table with me.

I put this table together so we can follow how the author of Hebrews develops the picture.

The first 2 rows in the table examine verse 2  where it says “was first of all, by the translation of his name, king of righteousness, and then also king of Salem, which is king of peace.”  

Here we see that Melchizedek is the king of righteousness and the king of peace.  These 2 things point clearly to Christ as the one person who uniquely fulfills both of these roles in one person.

1 Corinthians 1:30 New American Standard Bible (NASB)

30 But by His doing you are in Christ Jesus, who became to us wisdom from God, and righteousness and sanctification, and redemption,[5]

Isaiah 9:6 New American Standard Bible (NASB)

6 For a child will be born to us, a son will be given to us;

And the government will rest on His shoulders;

And His name will be called Wonderful Counselor, Mighty God,

Eternal Father, Prince of Peace.[6]

I consider it to also be interesting to note that the righteousness of Christ imputed to me is what makes it so I can be at peace with God.  

The next 3 rows look at verse 3 which examines Christ’s eternality.

Without beginning of days speaks of Christ as existing before the world began.

John 1:1-3 New American Standard Bible (NASB)

1 In the beginning was the Word, and the Word was with God, and the Word was God. 2 He was in the beginning with God. 3 All things came into being through Him, and apart from Him nothing came into being that has come into being.[7]


John 8:58 New American Standard Bible (NASB)

58 Jesus said to them, “Truly, truly, I say to you, before Abraham was born, I am.”

Without end of life speaks of Christ’s resurrection and eternal life at His Father’s right hand.[8]

Mark 8:31 New American Standard Bible (NASB)

31 And He began to teach them that the Son of Man must suffer many things and be rejected by the elders and the chief priests and the scribes, and be killed, and after three days rise again.

John 20:24-30 New American Standard Bible (NASB)

24 But Thomas, one of the twelve, called Didymus, was not with them when Jesus came. 25 So the other disciples were saying to him, “We have seen the Lord!” But he said to them, “Unless I see in His hands the imprint of the nails, and put my finger into the place of the nails, and put my hand into His side, I will not believe.”

26 After eight days His disciples were again inside, and Thomas with them. Jesus *came, the doors having been shut, and stood in their midst and said, “Peace be with you.” 27 Then He *said to Thomas, “Reach here with your finger, and see My hands; and reach here your hand and put it into My side; and do not be unbelieving, but believing.” 28 Thomas answered and said to Him, “My Lord and my God!” 29 Jesus *said to him, “Because you have seen Me, have you believed? Blessed are they who did not see, and yet believed.”

30 Therefore many other signs Jesus also performed in the presence of the disciples, which are not written in this book;

He remains a priest perpetually looks at the fact that this is the only historical mention of Melchizedek.  So all we see is him as a priest.  This taken with Psalm 110:4 point to Christ as our eternal High Priest as the fulfillment of this picture.

Remember Melchizedek did not live forever but verse 3 is looking at Genesis 14 and noting that the way Abram’s encounter with Melchizedek is recorded in scripture was done in such a way that these inferences can be made to picture Christ.

In the last row we see that Abraham pays a tithe to Melchizedek which builds on the picture of Christ as our Great High Priest.

Hebrews 7:4-10

4 Now observe how great this man was to whom Abraham, the patriarch, gave a tenth of the choicest spoils. 5 And those indeed of the sons of Levi who receive the priest’s office have commandment in the Law to collect a tenth from the people, that is, from their brethren, although these are descended from Abraham. 6 But the one whose genealogy is not traced from them collected a tenth from Abraham and blessed the one who had the promises. 7 But without any dispute the lesser is blessed by the greater. 8 In this case mortal men receive tithes, but in that case one receives them, of whom it is witnessed that he lives on. 9 And, so to speak, through Abraham even Levi, who received tithes, paid tithes, 10 for he was still in the loins of his father when Melchizedek met him.[9]

There is a very important set of logical arguments in these verses laying out a comparison between Melchizedek as a priest of God Most High, and mortal high priests who descended from Levi.

These arguments lead us to the inescapable conclusion that the priesthood of Melchizedek is superior to the Levitical priesthood.

First Abraham pays tithe to Melchizedek and in so doing Levi also pays tithe to him in Abraham’s body.  

Second Melchizedek is greater than Abraham because he blesses Abraham.

Third Melchizedek is not a priest according to the law since he is not a descendent of Levi.

Fourth Melchizedek is greater than Abraham because he blesses Abraham.

You might ask why does the preacher spend so much time belaboring this point?

The answer is that he is building a foundation that cannot be argued with that the High Priesthood of Jesus is superior to the high priesthood of Aaron.

As we look forward we will see that every aspect of what Jesus did is superior to the law of Moss.

As I was studying this passage I kept seeing what may seem to be small details have been used to point out very important truths about Christ.

Some of these details are very easy to overlook,  some even needed to be deduced by logical reasoning because they were not explicitly stated in the text.

Here I am talking about how the preacher used what Genesis did not say about Melchizedek to demonstrate he was a type of Christ’s eternality.

This impressed on me the importance of being diligent when we study the scripture.

We must not just read the scripture.  Reading the Bible is important reading with purpose is more so.

Sometimes we need to go over it many times to get the point God is trying to make with us.

We must not be satisfied with reading a passage of scripture and say my job is done.  I’ve read my verse of the day.

We must earnestly seek for God to speak to us through our study.

As I was writing this I did not feel very comfortable because I know I do not study as I should.  This does not make what I am saying wrong.  It just means I need to work harder.

If you get serious about your studies be prepared to hear from God.

He wants to speak to you and it is up to you to listen.

Also be prepared because sometimes what you hear will not make you comfortable.

I was also very comforted by how much this shows that God is in control of all the details.

Everything from Abraham’s meeting with Melchizedek to David’s Prophecy, and Jesus fulfillment shows that God was in this from beginning to end.

He is also involved in our lives in every detail, and He plans everything to be for our good.

Romans 8:26-28

26 In the same way the Spirit also helps our weakness; for we do not know how to pray as we should, but the Spirit Himself intercedes for us with groanings too deep for words; 27 and He who searches the hearts knows what the mind of the Spirit is, because He intercedes for the saints according to the will of God.

28 And we know that God causes all things to work together for good to those who love God, to those who are called according to His purpose. [10]


Melchizedek As a Type of Christ

Type Melchizedek

Antitype Christ

His name means king of righteousness

Hebrews 7:2

He is our righteousness

1 Corinthians 1:30

He was the king of Salem which means peace.

Hebrews 7:2

He is the Prince of Peace

Isaiah 9:6 

Without beginning of days

Hebrews 7:3

He was in the beginning

John 1:1-3

John 8:58

Without end of life

Hebrews 7:3

Jesus was raised from the dead

Mark 8:31

John 20:24-30

John 3:16

He remains a priest perpetually

Hebrews 7:3

He is a priest forever after the order of Melchizadek.

Psalm 110:4

Abraham pays a tithe to Melchizedek who is not a levite

Hebrews 7:4-10

Jesus was not a levite.

Jesus is the Lion that is from the tribe of Judah

Revelation 5:5

1 Corinthians 1:30 New American Standard Bible (NASB)

30 But by His doing you are in Christ Jesus, who became to us wisdom from God, and righteousness and sanctification, and redemption,

Isaiah 9:6 New American Standard Bible (NASB)

6 For a child will be born to us, a son will be given to us;

And the government will rest on His shoulders;

And His name will be called Wonderful Counselor, Mighty God,

Eternal Father, Prince of Peace.

John 1:1-3 New American Standard Bible (NASB)

1 In the beginning was the Word, and the Word was with God, and the Word was God. 2 He was in the beginning with God. 3 All things came into being through Him, and apart from Him nothing came into being that has come into being.

John 8:58 New American Standard Bible (NASB)

58 Jesus said to them, “Truly, truly, I say to you, before Abraham was born, I am.”

Mark 8:31 New American Standard Bible (NASB)

31 And He began to teach them that the Son of Man must suffer many things and be rejected by the elders and the chief priests and the scribes, and be killed, and after three days rise again.

John 20:24-30 New American Standard Bible (NASB)

24 But Thomas, one of the twelve, called Didymus, was not with them when Jesus came. 25 So the other disciples were saying to him, “We have seen the Lord!” But he said to them, “Unless I see in His hands the imprint of the nails, and put my finger into the place of the nails, and put my hand into His side, I will not believe.”

26 After eight days His disciples were again inside, and Thomas with them. Jesus *came, the doors having been shut, and stood in their midst and said, “Peace be with you.” 27 Then He *said to Thomas, “Reach here with your finger, and see My hands; and reach here your hand and put it into My side; and do not be unbelieving, but believing.” 28 Thomas answered and said to Him, “My Lord and my God!” 29 Jesus *said to him, “Because you have seen Me, have you believed? Blessed are they who did not see, and yet believed.”

30 Therefore many other signs Jesus also performed in the presence of the disciples, which are not written in this book;

John 3:16 New American Standard Bible (NASB)

16 “For God so loved the world, that He gave His only begotten Son, that whoever believes in Him shall not perish, but have eternal life.

Psalm 110:4 New American Standard Bible (NASB)

4 The Lord has sworn and will not change His mind,

“You are a priest forever

According to the order of Melchizedek.”

Revelation 5:5 New American Standard Bible (NASB)

5 and one of the elders *said to me, “Stop weeping; behold, the Lion that is from the tribe of Judah, the Root of David, has overcome so as to open the book and its seven seals.”


[1] "Genesis 14:17-20 NASB - <https://www.biblegateway.com>

[2] "Psalm 110:4 NASB -  <https://www.biblegateway.com>

[3] "Hebrews 6:19-7:10 NASB  -  <https://www.biblegateway.com>

[4] Hebrews The NIV Application Commentary: Hebrews (Copyright © 1998 by George H. Guthrie)

[5] "1 Corinthians 1:30 NASB -  <https://www.biblegateway.com>

[6] "Isaiah 9:6 NASB - <https://www.biblegateway.com>

[7] "John 1:1-3 NASB - <https://www.biblegateway.com>

[8] "John 8:58 NASB - <https://www.biblegateway.com>

[9] "Hebrews 7:4-10 NASB - <https://www.biblegateway.com>

[10] "Romans 8:26-28 NASB - <https://www.biblegateway.com>