Jesus held up the cup during the Last Supper. Then He said these words; “this cup is the new covenant between God and his people.” This new covenant would also require a new priesthood. The writer of Hebrews says this new priesthood was under the order of Melchizedek.
This change has been made very clear since a different priest, who is like Melchizedek, has appeared. Jesus became a priest, not by meeting the physical requirement of belonging to the tribe of Levi, but by the power of a life that cannot be destroyed. Hebrews 7:15-16
We know very little about Melchizedek and the order of his priesthood. We do know he held two titles, the first was his name itself and he was also a king.
The name Melchizedek means “king of justice,” and king of Salem means “king of peace.” Hebrews 7:2
Melchizedek lived at the same time as Abraham. The two met right after Abraham won a battle while rescuing his nephew Lot. After he fed him, Melchizedek blessed Abraham.
When Abraham was returning home after winning a great battle against the kings, Melchizedek met him and blessed him. Hebrews 7:1
At that point, Abraham gave Melchizedek a tithe of his spoils of the war.
Then Abraham took a tenth of all he had captured in battle and gave it to Melchizedek. Hebrews 7:2
Why the Order of Melchizedek?
We might ask why the Levitical Priesthood wasn’t sufficient? And why the order of Melchizedek was?
The order of Melchizedek preceded the Levitical Priesthood which operated under the bounds of the law.
Now the law of Moses required that the priests, who are descendants of Levi, must collect a tithe from the rest of the people of Israel, who are also descendants of Abraham. Hebrews 7:5
The life of Melchizedek is somewhat of a mystery to us. We have no genealogy pointing to him or from him.
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 7:3
The order of Melchizedek was not bound by the law which could never make anything perfect. The writer of Hebrews quoted Psalm 110 which speaks of the Messiah.
And the psalmist pointed this out when he prophesied, “You are a priest forever in the order of Melchizedek.” Yes, the old requirement about the priesthood was set aside because it was weak and useless. Hebrews 7:17-18
Jesus Made an Oath
Jesus promised a new covenant during the last supper. What we didn’t know was He took an oath about that covenant that will last forever.
This new system was established with a solemn oath. Aaron’s descendants became priests without such an oath, but there was an oath regarding Jesus. For God said to him, “The Lord has taken an oath and will not break his vow: ‘You are a priest forever.’” Hebrews 7:20-21
Through the years the priests under the old order would come and go. It was just one of the ways the system was flawed.
There were many priests under the old system, for death prevented them from remaining in office. Hebrews 7:23
Jesus on the other hand lives forever and his priesthood lasts forever.
Therefore he is able, once and forever, to save those who come to God through him. He lives forever to intercede with God on their behalf. Hebrews 7:25
He intercedes for each of us. Look what that verse says, He lives to intercede with God on our behalf.
Jesus is under the order of Melchizedek and He is better than the Levitical high priests. Check out His resume.
He is the kind of high priest we need because he is holy and blameless, unstained by sin. He has been set apart from sinners and has been given the highest place of honor in heaven. Hebrews 7:26
But the next verse you’ll want to read and then offer to God all your praise. Because Jesus is not only better than the high priests. He is better than all the sacrifices ever made.
But Jesus did this once for all when he offered himself as the sacrifice for the people’s sins. Hebrews 7:27
Lord, we worship and adore you! We thank you for the oath Jesus made which stands forever. We thank you that Jesus continued with the order of Melchizedek.
Check out these other posts related to the New Covenant.
Read all about the order of Melchizedek in Hebrews 7.
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