The King of Righteousness
1For this #Gen. 14:18–20; Heb. 7:6Melchizedek, king of Salem, priest of the Most High God, who met Abraham returning from the slaughter of the kings and blessed him, 2to whom also Abraham gave a tenth part of all, first being translated “king of righteousness,” and then also king of Salem, meaning “king of peace,” 3without father, without mother, without genealogy, having neither beginning of days nor end of life, but made like the Son of God, remains a priest continually.
4Now consider how great this man was, to whom even the patriarch Abraham gave a tenth of the spoils. 5And indeed #Num. 18:21–26; 2 Chr. 31:4those who are of the sons of Levi, who receive the priesthood, have a commandment to receive tithes from the people according to the law, that is, from their brethren, though they have come from the loins of Abraham; 6but he whose genealogy is not derived from them received tithes from Abraham #Gen. 14:19, 20and blessed #(Rom. 4:13)him who had the promises. 7Now beyond all contradiction the lesser is blessed by the better. 8Here mortal men receive tithes, but there he receives them, #Heb. 5:6; 6:20; (Rev. 1:18)of whom it is witnessed that he lives. 9Even Levi, who receives tithes, paid tithes through Abraham, so to speak, 10for he was still in the loins of his father when Melchizedek met him.
Need for a New Priesthood
11#(Rom. 7:7–14); Gal. 2:21; Heb. 7:18; 8:7Therefore, if perfection were through the Levitical priesthood (for under it the people received the law), what further need was there that another priest should rise according to the order of Melchizedek, and not be called according to the order of Aaron? 12For the priesthood being changed, of necessity there is also a change of the law. 13For He of whom these things are spoken belongs to another tribe, from which no man has officiated at the altar.
14For it is evident that #Gen. 49:8–10; Num. 24:17; Is. 1:1; Mic. 5:2; Matt. 1:3; 2:6; Rev. 5:5our Lord arose from #Matt. 1:2Judah, of which tribe Moses spoke nothing concerning priesthood. 15And it is yet far more evident if, in the likeness of Melchizedek, there arises another priest 16who has come, not according to the law of a fleshly commandment, but according to the power of an endless life. 17For He testifies:
#Ps. 110:4; Heb. 5:6; 6:20; 7:21“You are a priest forever
According to the order of Melchizedek.”
18For on the one hand there is an annulling of the former commandment because of #(Rom. 8:3); Gal. 3:21; Heb. 7:11its weakness and unprofitableness, 19for #(Acts 13:39); Rom. 3:20; 7:7; Gal. 2:16; 3:21; Heb. 9:9; 10:1the law made nothing perfect; on the other hand, there is the bringing in of #Heb. 6:18, 19a better hope, through which #Lam. 3:57; Rom. 5:2; (Eph. 2:18); Heb. 4:16; James 4:8we draw near to God.
Greatness of the New Priest
20And inasmuch as He was not made priest without an oath 21(for they have become priests without an oath, but He with an oath by Him who said to Him:
#Ps. 110:4; Heb. 5:6; 7:17“The Lord has sworn
And will not relent,
‘You are a priest forever
According to the order of Melchizedek’ ”),
22by so much more Jesus has become a surety of a #Heb. 8:6better covenant.
23Also there were many priests, because they were prevented by death from continuing. 24But He, because He continues forever, has an unchangeable priesthood. 25Therefore He is also #Jude 24able to save to the uttermost those who come to God through Him, since He always lives #Rom. 8:34; 1 Tim. 2:5; Heb. 9:24; 1 John 2:1to make intercession for them.
26For such a High Priest was fitting for us, #(2 Cor. 5:21); Heb. 4:15who is holy, harmless, undefiled, separate from sinners, #Eph. 1:20and has become higher than the heavens; 27who does not need daily, as those high priests, to offer up sacrifices, first for His #Lev. 9:7; 16:6; Heb. 5:3own sins and then for the people’s, for this He did once for all when He offered up Himself. 28For the law appoints as high priests men who have weakness, but the word of the oath, which came after the law, appoints the Son who has been perfected forever.