“The LORD has sworn and will not change his mind: ‘You are a priest forever, in the order of Melchizedek.’”
I know that I’m posting this on the eleventh hour and will soon have to get the next one out to you, but today has been tough. I have spent all day trying to come up with some great commentary or a master thought to bring everything together, as if it was somehow on my shoulders to make it profound or worthy of your eyes and minds. I found myself looking forward to tomorrow’s topic, which is so much a part of me that it was hard to focus on today’s, and indeed I didn’t. It’s a good thing I finished my research on this on Thursday or I’d probably have nothing. Somewhere along the way, I forgot that God is articulate enough on His own; He doesn’t need my help. So then, I will simply give you my raw research and let you do what you’re supposed to do with this all along.
A priest was the office that was the mediator between God and man. He performed the rituals and sacrifices of the religion and represented the people to God. In the Bible, there are two orders of priesthood, the Levitical priesthood and one according to the order of Melchizedek. Jesus was to be that Priest, indeed a High Priest forever after the order of Melchizedek, and perform those duties before God. Hebrews is an epistle tasked primarily with discussing Jesus as that High Priest. I will enumerate some of the truths proclaimed about Jesus in Hebrews in list form and hope that you look to see the similarities and contrasts with the Levitical priesthood. For context, I’d recommend reading the first 10 chapters of Hebrews, but I’ll try to walk you through the basics.
Jesus was tempted as we are, to sympathize- Heb 2:17-18; 4:15
Jesus as the compassionate priest- Heb 5:2-4
Gifts and sacrifices- Heb 5:1; 7:26-28; 8:3-5
He enters behind the veil- Heb 6:19-20
Priest continually- Heb 7:1-3
Priest not according to Levitical Law or fleshly commandment but according to the power of endless life- Heb 7:11-17
Priest of oath- Heb 7:20-22
Blameless High Priest- Heb 7:26-28
Priest of better covenant- Heb 8:1-13
Serves in Heavenly tabernacle- Heb 9:1-15; 23-28
Old Testament an image of New Covenant- Heb 10:1-10