Christ and Melchizedek…
The author of Hebrews continues by comparing Christ and Melchizedek:
This “Melchizedek, king of Salem and priest of God Most High,” “met Abraham as he returned from his defeat of the kings” and “blessed him.” And Abraham apportioned to him “a tenth of everything.” His name first means righteous king, and he was also “king of Salem,” that is, king of peace. Without father, mother, or ancestry, without beginning of days or end of life, thus made to resemble the Son of God, he remains a priest forever. -Hebrews 7:1-3, NAB
Melchizedek, the High Priest from Genesis 14, was only briefly mentioned in the Old Testament, but to the Jewish people, he was still an important figure. Abraham, the father of the Jewish nation, sought a blessing from Melchizedek and offered him tithes. This gave Melchizedek a special role in history as the High Priest to one of the most important figures in the Old Testament.
The whole point of the book of Hebrews was to teach the first century Jewish people about Christianity’s role in their journey. The goal was to tie together the old and new covenants, and by becoming the new High Priest, Christ did exactly that.
Some may feel that Christianity was a major break from the Jewish tradition, but in reality, it is a continuation of it. The Christian faith is the next logical step in God’s plan for salvation. What began with Abraham and Melchizedek is made complete through Christ.
In the coming verses, we will see more ways that Christ and Melcizedek filled the same role as High Priest, and how the Catholic Church embodies the continuation of that order through our priests today.
Christianity did not come out of nowhere; you can find its roots deep in the pages of the Old Testament, and you can continue to see its growth today. We are members of a timeless Church that will still be here long after we are gone.