The Priest-King and His God

Read: Hebrews 7:1-3

For this Melchizedek, king of Salem, priest of the Most High God, met Abraham returning from the slaughter of the kings and blessed him. (v. 1)

“I give this land to you,” said God to Abraham in Genesis 13. Since he had the power to give it, the land obviously belonged to him; then it belonged to Abraham, too. So how do the various kings of Genesis 14 fit into the picture? Did not the land also belong to them?

If we were to read that chapter as well as our verses from Hebrews, we would find that one of these kings is powerful and aggressive, and Abraham has to fight against him. Another king reckons that on account of this he and Abraham must be allies.

But a third king, the mysterious Melchizedek, introduces Abraham to a further name for God beyond the ones he knows already. El Elyon means “God Most High,” ranking not only above all other so-called gods but also far above all the powers of this world. Abraham bows before this God and his representative priest-king Melchizedek (a wonderful Old Testament picture of our heavenly Father and his Son Jesus Christ). Because he binds himself to them, Abraham is free to take a stand for godly principles in a world of conflicting values. That is the highest duty that Christians owe to those who govern their countries. —Michael Wilcock

As you pray, ask God to guide you as a citizen in your own country and community.

About the Author

Rev. Michael Wilcock was formerly director of pastoral studies at Trinity College, Bristol, and vicar of St. Nicholas' Church, Durham. He is now based in Eastbourne, England, as a writer and speaker.