THE ORDER OF MELCHIZEDEK (part 2)

Occasionally The Institute of Creation Research will publish an article by one of the better known scientists who have defended the Creationist view against the Evolutionists. The article below, about a specific Bible topic, was written by one such scholar, Henry Morris, author of The Genesis Flood.

“The LORD hath sworn, and will not repent, Thou art a priest for ever after the order of Melchizedek” (Psa. 110:4).

The importance of this intriguing verse is indicated both by the fact that it is the central verse of a great Messianic Psalm (quoted at least 12 times in the New Testament) and also because this one verse constitutes one of the main themes of chapters 5–7 of Hebrews, where it is quoted no fewer than five times (Hebrews 5:6, 10; 6:20; 7:17, 21), and where Melchizedek himself is mentioned nine times. It refers to the fascinating personage glimpsed briefly in Genesis 14:18-20. Melchizedek (meaning “King of Righteousness”) is said to have been “King of Salem” (or “Peace”), but there is no record, either in secular history or elsewhere in the Bible, that there ever was such a city or earthly king. He was also called the “priest of the most high God” (Heb. 7:1), and he suddenly appeared, then disappeared as suddenly as he had come.

Commentators mostly have assumed that Melchizedek was the chieftain of a small settlement of which we have no record, but this hardly does justice to the exalted descriptions of him in Scripture. He was obviously greater than Abraham (Hebrews 7:4), as well as Aaron, the founder of the Levitical priesthood. Furthermore, he was “without father, without mother, . . . having neither beginning of days, nor end of life; but made like unto the Son of God; abideth a priest continually” (Hebrews 7:3). Such language is hardly appropriate merely because no genealogy is recorded. (emphasis mine, B. J.)

If one takes the Bible literally, such statements could be true only of God Himself, appearing briefly in the preincarnate state of the Second Person, as King of all peace and righteousness. Now this same divine Person, “because he continueth ever, hath an unchangeable priesthood. Wherefore he is able also to save them to the uttermost that come unto God by him” (Hebrews 7:24-25). HMM [1]

The Scriptures Shed LightThe last paragraph in Morris’s article begs the question—actually it is based in a-priory assumption—because 1) men today have been taught not to take the Scriptures literally and 2) men believe that the only celestial beings are the Father, Son, Holy Spirit, and the angels who serve them. As modern day man reads these verses about Melchizedek, he cannot imagine any other possibility than that the scriptures are mistaken or that the language is somehow figurative or allegorical rather than literal. He cannot imagine that Melchizedek was a being who really had neither father nor mother nor beginning or end. Once that dam of doubt is opened, men can, without a conscience, assume other scriptures also are not literal or true.

Could there be, would there be another heavenly being with whom we are not familiar? Those who read carefully have read about the scenes in Daniel, chapters 10-12, where the angel Michael spoke in a vision, telling Daniel where he had been and what he had been doing. Notice how many different heavenly bodies were mentioned in those chapters. You may also like to read a recent blog article about more than one unusual being in Daniel. [2]

What about the angels? Are they not already greater than any man and do they not count in the total picture (Heb. 2:5-10; Heb. 2:17)? The Bible, the revealed Word of God (2 Tim. 3:16; 2 Pet. 1:21) actually speaks of only one archangel, Michael (Jude 1:9), though he is called “one of the chief princes” (Dan. 10:13). Only two angels are specifically named. Those are Michael and Gabriel. The Scriptures clearly describe fallen angels as those who chose to rebel with Satan against the only true and living God (Eze. 28:12-19; Matt. 25:41). What form do angels have?

Who Are the Angels? We all look at the world through colored glasses that affect how we view reality. Those glasses are called our worldview. The Bible—the divine revelation of God—informs us about the truths of our earth and the God who created it. A complete biblical worldview recognizes the reality of God, the Creator; and of angels, good and evil, …. As we will see, they are personal beings with intellect, emotions, and will, and they have a distinct nature (are in spiritual forms and are only seen if they take on a physical form B.J.). (Dickason)[3]

Who are the watchers? What or who are the beings described without names? Who are the cherubim in Ezekiel? We are told that the cherubim have wings, and not just two like the modern artists paint for angels. Who/what are the wheels and the wheels within wheels—each filled with eyes? (Eze. 1:15-16; Eze. 10:9-10, 13). Both Revelation and Isaiah (Isa. 6) describe the Seraphim. The Beasts in Revelation seem quite different even if they had 6 wings). Joshua didn’t describe what he saw and it may have been Christ (Joshua 5:13-15). An interesting side note: the beings we remember from Genesis 3:24 were not angels, but cherubim. Although some try to say cherubim are just angels with a fancy title, Scripture differentiates between the two types of celestial creatures.

Go back to Hebrews 7:4 for a minute. “Now consider how great this man was, unto whom even the patriarch Abraham gave the tenth of the spoils.” The word man is not in the original Greek text. The passage should read: “Now consider how great this ___ was, unto whom even the patriarch Abraham gave the tenth of the spoils.” The KJV translators obviously thought a noun needed to be supplied, so they supplied the word man. They could just as easily have supplied the word being or creature.

If we understand that there is more than one kind of spiritual being in heaven, more than one type or kind of what men call angels, then perhaps we could read Hebrews 7:4 with the understanding that “this being” was indeed a heavenly being. Try reading the verse with one of those nouns supplied and see if your understanding of these events broadens. Now consider how great this being was, unto whom even the patriarch Abraham gave the tenth of the spoils.

======================

[1] http://www.icr.org/articles/type/6/

[2] https://helpmeettohim.org/2014/05/17/stranger-than-fiction/

[3] Names of Angels 1997 by C. Fred Dickason.

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