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For every high priest taken from among men is appointed for men.... He can have compassion on those who are ignorant and going astray, since he himself is also subject to weakness.(Hebrews 5:1)

According to the scripture above, Melchizedek had to be human to serve as priest.

(Genesis:14.18) Then Melchizedek king of Salem brought out bread and wine; he was the priest of God Most High

Genesis 14 is a chapter dedicated to kings. Ten kings to be precise. The last of whom was Melchizedek. Since Melchizedek was king of Salem in Canaan;

QUESTIONS:

  1. Was Melchizedek, the king of Salem a Canaanite?

  2. As a king, who were his subjects in the land of Canaan?

  3. Did his priesthood serve any group of Canaanites at the time?

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  • I know that the writer of hebrews says that Melchizedek is "Without father or mother". – user20490 Nov 26 '17 at 0:50
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    But the absence of his genealogy has been accepted by some scholars as the reason he was described that way. Moreover only a Man can stand as priest on behalf of men according to Hebrews. Hence Melchizedek's priesthood would have been impossible without Adamic descent. – user20490 Nov 26 '17 at 0:51
  • This question is important to me because the Canaanites are described as a morally depraved people. This was how they were described from the days of Abraham and Melchizedek. If Melchizedek was king and priest in Canaan then there must have been Canaanites who were worshipping the true God at that time. So that's why I want to know if Melchizedek was a Canaanite. Thanks – user20490 Nov 26 '17 at 0:54
  • The doctrine of "the perspicuity of scripture" tells us that all of scripture is understandable. That may be but I think it it should mean that "you won't understand any scripture without breaking a sweat!" – Ruminator Nov 26 '17 at 5:07
  • I believe that even the priesthood of Jesus is suspect in that his humanity was largely superficial. By this I mean, did he really experience the same temptations as we do given that he did not have indwelling sin? If indeed that is what is meant by "in the likeness of sinful flesh" (Romans 1:4). – Ruminator Nov 26 '17 at 15:32
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I believe the answers to your 3 good questions cannot be sourced. Our sources are the canons Jewish and Christian, Philo, Josephus, 2 Enoch, Qumran, Joseph Smith if one accepts Smith. And, obtusely, via a small early pseudo-Christian heretical group. None describe the people on whose behalf Melchizedek ministered. Melchizedek’s service is unto El... appropriate sacrifices and ministration unto his God. Priesthood is not dependent on a congregation, if you will. Michael Heiser has written and spoken fairly extensively on this; ie http://drmsh.com/naked-bible-podcast-episode-166-melchizedek-in-the-old-testament-part-1a/. Margaret Barker has innovative ideas about Melchizedek which find traction with LDS (She being Methodist)

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MelchizedeK (King of Right)High Priest served the most high God, El Elyon, El shaddai later the scriptures reveal this same God is Yahweh or Yehova. The canaanites are not as everyone would believe. Noah curses canaan because Ham was already blessed (God blessed noah shem ham and japheth Gen 9) God does not curse canaan nor are the descendants of Ham cursed. Canaanites like many hamitic people knew God. Remember Moses learned from Jethro a midianite a hamite. Remember Balaam the false prophet, not false because his gift was fraud but false because he used the gift for his own glory. Remember God removed the canaanites from dominating the land because they had committed abominations. (The Israelites did not commit genocide, they never removed all canaanites from the land). This implies God was holding them accountable for a knowledge and revelation they had of HIM. Melkizedek being not only the King of Salem (Shalom/Peace Jeru-Salem/ The city of Righteousness and Peace) But also being a priest of the most High definitely implies people of that land knew Yahweh and served Him. To be honest the first ever historical evidence of YHWH being mentioned is in ancient canaan. The people of the land knew Yah before Avram. Matter of fact God calls Abram to where He is, in the land of canaan. The scriptures say Melkizedek has no father or mother and that he abides a priest forever. Is Melkizedek fully human? I dont know seeing how He points so much to Jesus Christ. Christ the King of Jerusalem, He is the king of Right, He is God's High Priest. He brings in everlasting righteousness and peace His body and blood is the bread and wine. What i can say is that i believe His earthly appearance was that of canaanite people even as Jesus took on the flesh of the people of His nation. To answer the question again but plainly Melchizedek served God and the people of the land of canaan. Jebusites dwelt in Jerusalem so they were most likely worshippers of Yah. Jebusites in Jerusalem (Joshua 12, Samuel 5, 1 chronicles 11) canaanites also did service in the temple this is most likely because they worshipped and served Yah before the priesthood of aaron. Seeing how they most likely served in the days of melchizedek. In the book of Zechariah 14:21 the prophecy says, "and in that day there shall be no more the canaanite in the house of the Lord of Hosts. Even in His day nearly the end of the old testament canaanites were still worshipping in the temple where the jews worshipped.

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  • Hi Melkizedek, welcome. Thanks for serving here in this community and nice initial effort. It can help if you look at how other more experienced users answer too - you'll notice they give attention to the answer's format (making it easier to read - through usage of paragraphs for example) as well as citations from other sources to validate certain claims. – Tiago Martins Peres 李大仁 Nov 25 '20 at 5:22
  • Yes, this answer badly needs formatting with paragraphs. It could also do with some references to support the assertions. – Dottard Nov 28 '20 at 23:15
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We have extremely limited data about Melchizedek - even the book of Hebrews describes him as a man without mother and father (Heb 7:3), ie, without genealogy. What we do know about him is the following:

  • The name means "king of righteousness".
  • He was priest of God most High which the book of Hebrews confirms as priest of the the true God of heaven (Heb 7:1, compare Ps 57:2, 78:35, Gen 14:18, etc.)
  • Since "Salem" is the ancient name of Jerusalem (see Ps 76:2), we know that Melchizedek was king and priest in Jerusalem, at the time of Abraham, and well before the Israelite conquest of Canaan.
  • Melchizedek was one of several such people who were not Israelites but who served the true God of heaven. Another was Jethro, Moses' father-in-law (Ex 3:1), also called Reuel (Ex 2:18), who was also a priest of God in Midian, Ex 3:1, 18:1.

Hebrews uses Melchizedek as a type of Christ because both held the office of High Priest and King, Heb 7:1-3.

Therefore, Melchizedek lived, reigned and ministered in Jerusalem, and served the people of Jerusalem, a Canaanite city with Canaanite people at the time.

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  • Job was also a worshipper of the Most High. Job 1:1 says he lived in the land of Uz, which scholars associate with modern Arabia. – agarza Nov 25 '20 at 15:22
  • @agarza - that may be true and simply supports the idea that the worship of the true God of heaven was never (originally) confined just to the Israelites. – Dottard Nov 25 '20 at 20:00

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