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Bible Commentaries

Spurgeon's Verse Expositions of the Bible

Hebrews 7



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Verses 1-14

Hebrews 7:1-2. For this Melchisedec, king of Salem, priest of the most high God, who met Abraham returning from the slaughter of the kings, and blessed him; To whom also Abraham gave a tenth part of all; first being by interpretation King of righteousness, and after that also King of Salem, which is, King of peace.

His very names being instructive, Righteousness first, and Peace afterwards, as it is with our divine Lord, who has brought in everlasting righteousness, and speaks peace to guilty men.

Hebrews 7:3. Without father, without mother, without descent, having neither beginning of days, nor end of life; but made like unto the Son of God; abideth a priest continually.

Melchisedec just passed across the page; he has no predecessor, he has no successor. We see him in Scripture, and we know nothing of his descent we know nothing of his death; we only know that he was a priest of the Most High God; and this very silence about him is highly significant and instructive, far in this he is “like unto the Son of God, who abideth a priest continually.” Now consider who this great man was, unto whom even “the patriarch Abraham gave the tenth part of his spoil.” If Abraham, the father of the faithful, the friend of God, paid tribute to him, how great must he have been, how high his office!

Hebrews 7:5-7. And verily they that are of the sons of Levi, who receive the office of the priesthood, have a commandment to take tithes of the people according to the law, that is, of their brethren, though they come out of the loins of Abraham: But he whose descent is not counted from them received tithes of Abraham, and blessed him that had the promises. And without all contradiction the less is blessed of the better.

Therefore, Abraham was less than Melchisedec: he could not bless Melchisedec, but Melchisedec could bless him. How great, then, was he! How far greater still is that Lord of ours of whom Melchisedec was but a type

Hebrews 7:8-10. And here men that die receive tithes; but there he receiveth them, of whom it is witnessed that he liveth. And as I may so say, Levi also, who receiveth tithes, payed tithes in Abraham. For he was yet in the loins of his father, when Melchisedec met him.

Thus the old priesthood, the Levitical and Aaronic priesthood, did homage unto the Melchisedec priesthood, which is greater still.

Hebrews 7:11. If therefore perfection were by the Levitical priesthood, (for under it the people received the law), what further need was there that another priest should rise after the order of Melchisedec, and not be called after the order of Aaron?

We read in the psalm just now, “Thou art a priest for ever after the order of Melchisedec,” which proves that the priests of the order of Levi were not sufficient: there was need of a still greater priesthood.

Hebrews 7:12. For the priesthood being changed, there is made of necessity a change also of the law.

The law of the priesthood alters since the person of the priest, the character of the priest, and the very office of the priest had altered too.

Hebrews 7:13. For he of whom these things are spoken pertaineth to another tribe, of which no man gave attendance at the altar

According to the belief of the Jewish people, the Messiah was to come of the tribe of Judah, yet none of the house of David or of the tribe of Judah ever presumed to present themselves as priests of the order of God.

Hebrews 7:14. For it is evident that our Lord sprang out of Judah; of which tribe Moses spake nothing concerning priesthood.

So there was an entire change of the priesthood, and of the law of priests.

This exposition consisted of readings from Psalms 110:1-7; Hebrews 7:1-14.

Verses 15-28

Hebrews 7:15-18. And it is yet far more evident: for that after the similitude of Melchisedec there ariseth another priest, Who is made, not after the law of a carnal commandment, but after the power of an endless life. For he testifieth, Thou art a priest for ever after the order of Melchisedec. For there is verily a disannulling of the commandment going before for the weakness and unprofitableness thereof.

The old Levitical law is disannulled; it became weak and unprofitable; and now a higher and better dispensation is ushered in with a greater and undying priesthood.

Hebrews 7:19. For the law made nothing perfect, but the bringing in of a better hope did; by the which we draw nigh unto God.

That is all it did: it was a stepping-stone towards something better. “by which we draw near unto God.” “The Lord hath sworn and will not repent.”

Hebrews 7:20-24. And inasmuch as not without an oath he was made priest. (For those priests were made without an oath; but this with an oath by him that said unto him, the Lord sware and will not repent, Thou art a priest for ever after the order of Melchisedec:) By so much was Jesus made a surety of a better Testament. And they truly were many priests, because they were not suffered to continue by reason of death; But this man, because he continueth ever, hath an unchangeable priesthood.

I think they reckoned that there were eighty-three high priests in regular succession from Aaron to the death of Phineas, the last high priest at the siege of Jerusalem. One succeeded another, but this one goes on continually, for ever hath an untransferable priesthood. That word “untransferable” is nearer to the meaning than this “unchangeable.” If any of you have old Bibles with the margin, you will see “hath a priesthood which cannot be passed from one hand to another,” and the margin happens in this case to have the true rendering, “This man hath an untransferable priesthood.”

Hebrews 7:25. Wherefore he is able also to save them to the uttermost that come unto God by him, seeing he ever liveth to make intercession for them. For such an high priest became us,

We want just that high priest who would live on throughout all the ages for ever to sustain his people, and do for them all they should need to have done for them, until time should have been no more.

Hebrews 7:26-28. For such an high priest became us, who is holy, harmless, undefiled, separate from sinners, and made higher than the heavens; Who needeth not daily, as those high priests, to offer up sacrifice, first for his own sins, and then for the people’s: For this he did once, when he offered up himself. For the law maketh men high priests which have infirmity; but the word of the oath, which was since the law, maketh the Son, who is consecrated for evermore.

There is our joy.

This exposition consisted of readings from Haggai 1:1 to Haggai 2:9; Hebrews 7:15-28.


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Bibliography Information
Spurgeon, Charle Haddon. "Commentary on Hebrews 7:4". "Spurgeon's Verse Expositions of the Bible". 2011.

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