Ezekiel 12:1-14:11; Hebrews 7:1-17; Psalms 105:37-45; Proverbs 27:3
Today is the 5th day of November. Welcome to the Daily Audio Bible. I am Brian and it’s great to be here with you at the threshold of a brand-new, shiny, sparkly week. And this will be our first full week in the month of November, the 11th month of our year together. And this week we’ll read from the New Living Translation. Of course, we will pick up where we left off yesterday. So, for our Old Testament reading today, Ezekiel chapter 12 verse 1 through 14:11.
Okay. So, yesterday we started talking about Melchizedek because his name showed up at the end of our reading yesterday. And, obviously, today we spent a good deal of time referring to him in the book of Hebrews. So, we looked at the two references were Melchizedek is named by name in the Old Testament and learned that he was a priestly king who ruled the Canaanite city, at the time, of Jerusalem, in Abraham’s time, in the book of Genesis. And then we saw him show up again in the Psalms at the time of David, who happened to be the king of Jerusalem, the king of Israel, during the time of the united monarchy - a priestly king that was not from the tribe of Levi, but was rather in the order of Melchizedek. So, in the book of Hebrews we see the parallel being made and we can see why - Jesus is equated with all of this as a priestly king. We can leave it right there all nice and tidy and say that’s pretty cool, but it’s a little bit more complicated than that. And this is where some context helps us, although we won’t be able to tie this off in a nice little gift box, but we will have the lay of the land. So, Melchizedek is mentioned in the book of Genesis and then not mentioned again until the book of Psalms, but because he shows up in those two places, quite a ways away from each other in history, and then he shows up again in the book of Hebrews, quite a bit away from the book of Psalms, we see that, somehow, he captures the imagination of the Hebrew people and that continued on for thousands of years even though there is no further material about him in the Bible. And the writer of Hebrews tells us things about Melchizedek that are not found in the references to Melchizedek in the Old Testament. So, we can safely deduce that something happened along the way and it’s from what’s written in Hebrews that the plethora of things have been said and thought and written about Melchizedek. And it’s here that we begin to see how extra-biblical thoughts find their way into the biblical text. So, let me show you what I mean. So, we’re reading from Hebrews chapter 7 today and chapter 7 verse 3 reads, there is no record of Melchizedek’s father or mother or of any of his ancestors, no record of his birth or of his death, he is like the son of God, he remains a priest forever. Okay. So, in the Old Testament, it’s true, he shows up out of nowhere and then he kind of disappears just as fast as he came. So, it’s true. Like, there is no lineage for how Melchizedek found himself to be the king of Salem nor for how he became the priest of the most high God. And the interpretation of that is found in Hebrews. He is like the son of God. He remains a priest forever. In other words, he didn’t die, which is an interpretation of the Scriptures. But those details are not found in the Old Testament mentions of Melchizedek. Or are they? How did they come to this? The idea comes from Psalms – you are a priest forever in the order of Melchizedek. Ok? You are priest forever in the order of Melchizedek, which becomes a little bit of a quandary because, at face value, Psalm 110 is referring to the reign of David. And David died. And that’s explicitly stated in the Bible. Unless, Psalm 110 isn’t about David, but is more of a messianic prophecy, a foretelling, a foreshadowing of Jesus, or at least of a coming priestly king in the order of Melchizedek who will be a priest forever. So, it’s hard to think that David, king of Israel, raining from Jerusalem, writing Psalm 110 thought that that’s what he was writing about. Which certainly doesn’t discount the fact that he may have been writing a prophetic song. And in no way am I trying to diminish that idea because Matthew, Mark, and Luke all refer back to this Psalm, not necessarily about Melchizedek, but they definitely tie it to Jesus. I say what I say about David because David’s got a united monarchy. He’s the king of Israel. He’s bringing Israel to its apex. So, at this point in history things are going great. Like, they’re not thinking about needing a Messiah, a deliver. At David’s time they’re kind of basking in all that God has done. He gave them the land that he promised that he would and they have their own country and they have their own king and they have their own military and they have their own economy. Things are going well. So, this is kind of an instance where things become more clear and revealed over time. Alright, so, here’s where we jump into the deep end of the pool. It’s pretty clear that Melchizedek captures the imagination of the Hebrew people and that that lasts for a long time. With the discovery of the Dead Sea Scrolls at Qumran in Israel some of that thought came to light. There are documents that would describe Melchizedek in terms of angelic or even divine, even godlike. In one of the documents Melchizedek is depicted as the leader, like, the main angel in a war in heaven against the angels of darkness, which caused many people to wonder if Melchizedek was actually the Archangel Michael because Michael/Melchizedek are similar sounding names and on and on it goes. You can see there’s just so many jumping off places to follow trails and come up with stuff because it’s interesting. But what we can say is that Melchizedek, although mentioned very little in the Bible, was carried down through culture and history as something unique, something different or representing something unique and different and that this was carried down through the generations. And we see this as showing up in the material found in Qumran, known as the Dead Sea Scrolls. So, I’m not saying, like, so there you go, it’s found in some of the Dead Sea Scrolls, so it’s as good as the Bible. I’m not saying that at all. I’m just saying this is how we see that this person’s uniqueness or what he represents, that uniqueness, carried forward and wound its way into messianic thought, because by the time we get to Jesus, where not in the time of David anymore, things haven’t been going so well. These people have been through the ringer. They’ve been in exile, 10 of their tribes are lost, the territory has changed hands several times, and they need somebody, they need someone to deliver them. And the writer of Hebrews, who is speaking, by the way, to Hebrews, is speaking of Melchizedek in a way that these people understand and is showing them in every conceivable way, Jesus is that person. And I’ll leave that explanation for tomorrow, not so much in things that I might say, but the book of Hebrews will unpack it for us. And, hopefully, this little bit of context over the last couple of days helps with that, helps us understand that. Now, I’ve got to tell you, like, there’s a lot to this you can go as far as you want. There are brilliant scholars that can go much deeper and wider and are more articulate than me. And, I do not, and have never claimed to know everything there is to know about the Bible. That would be God. So, my taking us through some of this isn’t me trying to make a theological statement about anything. It’s just one of these pieces of the Bible that we come to, and we read through, and we’re like, okay, it’s the Bible, it’s true, I believe it, but we don’t really even know what’s being said or the gravity of it. And getting a little context around it lets us see, okay, this, what’s being said here, is a pretty big deal, which only makes it richer and truer and deeper as we sew it into our own lives.
Father, we invite Your Holy Spirit to come into all of this and do the tilling and sewing. What we want is the fruit of the Spirit in our lives to flourish and reproduce itself all around us. And we believe this is possible because You sent your Son to die for us and gave us the gift of Your Holy Spirit to lead us and the gift of the Scriptures that continually jar us and shake us and make us pay attention and contemplate. They keep us from falling asleep in our own lives. They keep us oriented to Your kingdom in this world. So, come Holy Spirit. We pray in Jesus’ name. Amen.
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And that’s it for today. I’m Brian I love you and I’ll be waiting for you here tomorrow.
Community Prayers and Praise Reports:
Good morning Daily Audio Bible family. This is Lee from New Jersey. Today is November 1st. The first day of the 11th month and I’m calling in from a very cold New Jersey. It’s cold for us. It’s below 40°. It’s 37° right now. So, that means that we’ve got to bundle up a little bit more. And we’ve been pretty spoiled up here anyway because we’ve been blessed with a lot of great weather. So, just wanted to call and thank Byron down in Florida and of course thank all of you that have been praying. I know all of you have been praying, even the ones that don’t call in. So, Byron did call in and he shared some very, very wonderful, spiritual wisdom – some words of spiritual wisdom, obviously. So, I am, word for word, verbatim, I listened to all of that Byron. And thank you very much and I will definitely take that to heart. So, you probably heard that I called back since then and things have gotten a little better. Actually, things have gotten a lot better. So, the next person to work on is just my daughter, the relationship between my daughter and me. And that’s got to be worked on. But by God’s grace, again, I am thankful for my family and thankful for the things that I’m getting that I don’t deserve. That’s so true. So now, Byron, I want to pray for you and your family. Heavenly Father, I want to pray for my brother Byron down in Florida, who is a faithful servant of the Lord. He is faithful in many ways and does his very best to be there for all brothers and sisters in this community, Lord. Continue to bless him and his family. Continue to bless him with that open heart and open mine Lord. When I say open heart and open mind, that he is open to receiving Your wisdom and Your love - Your wisdom is his mind and Your love my in his heart. And how he passes that forward onto people in this community, people within his community, down there in Florida…
Good morning all you DABbers. This is Darrell from Depue. I’ve got a praise report and I want to thank everybody for praying for me. Last week or two weeks ago I called in asking for prayers for my business and hallelujah, God is so good. I received check after check after check this past week to get caught up with all my bills. And, so, hallelujah God is so good. But I want prayer sent out to my brother Dan. My brother Dan has stage four lung cancer. Three years ago he was diagnosed with bladder cancer and now he has lung cancer. So, can everybody please pray for Dan to get through this second batch of cancer that he’s going through. Have the good Lord watch over him, protect him. We know that our God is Jehovah Rapha, the Almighty Healer. So, God in heaven, please watch over Daniel and may the good Lord bless him. And all you DABbers, I love you and I want to thank you so much for your help. God bless each and every one of you. Thank you. Love you all.
Hi Daily Audio Bible family. This is Mimi in Atlanta. I’m just asking today for prayers for the Lord’s insight and wisdom on my financial status. As a hair stylist, it fluctuates and coming in towards the end of the year I want to focus on Thanksgiving and Christmas and just time spent with family and friends. But the heaviness of all this is just starting already way on my Spirit. So, it’s November 1st. I’m just going to pray and ask the Lord to please help me and everyone else that is hearing this prayer request that is struggling financially. Let’s just pray. Daddy, we just love You so much. And we know Jesus, when You were here on earth, every time we came with facts, a few loaves and a few fishes, and thousands needed to be filled. Father, you just lifted up those minimal provisions, that’s all we have, it’s just minimal provisions. Lord, I just pray a miracle, a miracle of blessing. It didn’t happen instomatically, all the loaves and fishes didn’t just appear once You lifted them up to be blessed. But Father as the disciples were about their business distributing them they became plenty and then there were left overs. So, Lord, I just pray for all of us, to get our eyes fixed on You and Father, just to remove, in Jesus’ name, the spirit of worry or fear, depression, anxiety, all those things, Lord, because we’re coming into Thanksgiving and then onto Christmas. Father, I just pray November 1, 2017, that the words we hear Brian speak and read are alive and they’re changing us from the inside out. So, I’m just asking for everyone to just…let’s just join up with each other around this campfire, hedge it up and just…
Hey family. It’s Jordan from Michigan. It’s great to be back. I’ve missed you guys. Sorry I haven’t been calling so much. This new teaching job I got in Michigan has been a lot like last year. For those of you who remember, it was like hell for me last year. The Detroit school that I was working at and this school is no different in a lot of ways. It’s really been beating me up and I have really, really bad anxiety and some depression. It’s been really hard. It feels like just mentally beat all the time. I have a hard time just sitting down and writing my lesson plan and doing my work that I’m supposed to be doing because I have so much anxiety all the time. So, please pray for me. I really need it. And pray for my students, that I will be able to reach them and fulfill my purpose.