Who was Melchizedek?
All we know of him is recorded in
He is subsequently mentioned only
once in the Old Testament, in Psalms
The typical significance of his
history is set forth in detail in
the Epistle to the Hebrews, in
The apostle there points out the
superiority of his priesthood to
that of Aaron in these respects:
1. Even Abraham paid him tithes.
2. He blessed Abraham.
3. He is
the type of a priest who lives
4. Levi, yet unborn,
paid him tithes in the person of
5. The permanence of his
priesthood in Christ implied the the
6. He was made
priest not without an oath.
His priesthood can neither be
transmitted nor interrupted by
death: "This man, because he
continueth ever, hath an
The question as to just who this
mysterious personage was has given
rise to a great deal of modern
It is an old tradition among the
Jews that he was Shem, the son of
Noah, who may have survived to this
Melchizedek was a Canaanite
prince, a worshipper of the true
God, and in his peculiar history and
character, an instructive type of
our Lord, the great High Priest
(Hebrews 5:6,7; 6:20).
One of the Amarna tablets is from
Ebed-Tob, king of Jerusalem, the
successor of Melchizedek, in which
he claims the very attributes and
dignities given to Melchizedek in
the Epistle to the Hebrews.