He is without father or mother or genealogy

For this Melchizedek, king of Salem, priest of the Most High God, met Abraham returning from the slaughter of the kings and blessed him, and to him Abraham apportioned a tenth part of everything. He is first, by translation of his name, king of righteousness, and then he is also king of Salem, that is, king of peace. He is without father or mother or genealogy, having neither beginning of days nor end of life, but resembling the Son of God he continues a priest forever. Hebrews 7:1-3

In chapter seven of Hebrews the writer moves from warning believers about what can happen when we look back to old traditions rather than forward to what Christ has done for us to again looking at the priesthood of Jesus. We once again turn to our old friend Melchizedek. We are given the translation of Melchizedek’s name as king of righteousness. We are also told that his title king of Salem means king of peace. Both names are also descriptive of Jesus. Just a little history Melchizedek’s name. In the Masoretic Hebrew text the name is written in as two words malkin, the king, and  zedek, of righteousness, but in the Septuagint, New Testament, Latin Vulgate and modern translations it appears as one word, Melchizedek.

The writer of Hebrews makes the point that we have no genealogy of Melchizedek, no father and no mother is mentions as well as no offspring. He compares this with the fact that the Son of God also has no beginning, no parents and no end, no offspring. Jesus is eternal. Yes, Jesus has an earthly genealogy that the Bible gives us from Adam down to Mary and Joseph. However Jesus, the Son of God, predated each person in the earthly genealogy. In the Gospel of John, John begins with “In the beginning was the Word, and the Word was with God, and the Word was God” and then in John 8:58 Jesus tells us Himself that “Truly, truly, I say to you, before Abraham was, I am.”  The earthly incarnation gave Jesus an earthly mother and father but He existed before all time.

So what about Melchizedek? Is he immortal? Let me once again call on The Bible Knowledge Commentary for some enlightenment. The fact that God chose not to give us a genealogy for Melchizedek does not in itself mean Melchizedek was immortal. We can be on shaky ground using an argument from silence. One thing the writer could be referring to is the priesthood as being forever. The writer says that Melchizedek remains a priest forever. The Bible Knowledge Commentary tells us that “The word “forever” translates a phrase (eis to diēnekes) that occurs only in Hebrews (here and in 10:12, 14) and means “continuously” or “uninterruptedly.”” This would indicate that Melchizedek is still the priest of the Most High God.

Just because Melchizedek has no earthly beginning does not make him eternal. He beginning could well be before time existed, that is before God created the universe. Melchizedek could well be an angel. In fact there is evidence from Qumran that the Essenes believed Melchizedek to be an angel. Each angel is a created being. This would put Melchizedek slightly above us for the moment but below and subservient to  Christ.  Christ is our High priest. Melchizedek is simple a priest.

Have a blessed day,



About dwwork

The name of this blog is taken from 1 Peter 3:13 - “always be prepared to give an answer to everyone who asks you to give the reason for the hope that you have. But do this with gentleness and respect, keeping a clear conscience. This verse became special to me over ten years ago when I was asked to teach an adult Sunday school class on Christian apologetics. This interest grew over the years to the point that I took some graduate level classes in apologetics. I think the best way to be prepared to give and answer to everyone who asks is to know scripture. It is my hope that through these short devotionals the reader will become more familiar with each verse. I have tried when possible to make them personal hoping in some small way to show that God’s word written over two thousand years ago is still relevant today. In the writing of these short devotionals I have been able to better understand how God’s word impacts my life. It is my hope that you too will come closer to our Lord Jesus and develop a closer relationship with Him. Finally, if the reader finds anything in conflict with scripture please let me know. God’s word is the final authority always overrules anything I might write. David
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