The Book of Genesis
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note: all scripture is from the NKJV unless noted otherwise
Ø Gen 14:17-18 17 And the king of Sodom went out to meet him at the Valley of Shaveh (that is, the King's Valley), after his return from the defeat of Chedorlaomer and the kings who were with him. 18 Then Melchizedek king of Salem brought out bread and wine; he was the priest of God Most High.
Salem = "peace"
1) the place of which Melchizedek was king
1a) most Jewish commentators affirm that it is the same as Jerusalem
Salem is only mentioned 4 times in the Bible
Once here in Genesis, once in Psalms and twice in Hebrews 7:1&2.
· Psalms 76:1-2 1 In Judah God is known; His name is great in Israel. 2 In Salem also is His tabernacle, And His dwelling place in Zion.
· Romans 11:26-27 26 And so all Israel will be saved, as it is written: "The Deliverer will come out of Zion, And He will turn away ungodliness from Jacob; 27 For this is My covenant with them, When I take away their sins
There are different ideas of who Melchizedek is.
Some think he is Shem the son of Noah and it is even a popular view amongst the Jewish people.
Then there are some that think he is a second Adam that God created, even going as far as saying that He is from another planet.
And even another idea is that he is Job from the book of Job in the Old Testament.
And the final (but I'm sure there may be other ideas) is that it is Jesus.
Melchizedek is only mentioned in three books of the bible. The first here in Genesis, Then in:
· Psalms 110:4 The LORD has sworn And will not relent, "You are a priest forever According to the order of Melchizedek."
And finally in Hebrews chapters 5,6 and 7 which we will look at.
· Heb 7:1-3 1 For this Melchizedek, king of Salem, priest of the Most High God, who met Abraham returning from the slaughter of the kings and blessed him, 2 to whom also Abraham gave a tenth part of all, first being translated "king of righteousness," and then also king of Salem, meaning "king of peace," 3 without father, without mother, without genealogy, having neither beginning of days nor end of life, but made like the Son of God, remains a priest continually.
So looking at verse 3 this would throw out Shem and Job since they did have genealogies or parents as we would say today.
A second Adam from another world the bible has the answer to that and for the question of life on other planets.
· Heb 9:28 so Christ was offered once to bear the sins of many. To those who eagerly wait for Him He will appear a second time, apart from sin, for salvation.
If Jesus was to die once and if there was life on other planets then they would be destined for hell, unless they are without sin, but the bible answers that question also.
· Romans 3:23 for all have sinned and fall short of the glory of God,
The Hebrew definition for all is all, and that's all, all means!
I personally lean towards the final identity of Melchizedek as Jesus.
But it is something you should study for yourself, pray about and ask the Lord to show you.
Something very interesting about this king, Melchizedek is that fact that He brought out bread and wine.
Does this sound familiar?
· Matt 26:26-29 (NLT) 26 As they were eating, Jesus took a loaf of bread and asked God's blessing on it. Then he broke it in pieces and gave it to the disciples, saying, "Take it and eat it, for this is my body." 27 And he took a cup of wine and gave thanks to God for it. He gave it to them and said, "Each of you drink from it, 28 for this is my blood, which seals the covenant between God and his people. It is poured out to forgive the sins of many. 29 Mark my words--I will not drink wine again until the day I drink it new with you in my Father's Kingdom."
Ø Gen 14:19-20 19 And he blessed him and said: "Blessed be Abram of God Most High, Possessor of heaven and earth;20 And blessed be God Most High, Who has delivered your enemies into your hand." And he gave him a tithe of all.
Abram gave a tenth to Melchizedek, just as he was giving it to God, in thanks for what God did by delivering him from his enemies. But not only delivering him from his enemies, but also for blessing him.
"Oh no, he's going to start preaching on tithing." You may be thinking.
Well, before you tune out this teaching, Yes I am, but then no I'm not.
We will look at the two different views of it and what the bible says, then you will have to determine in your own heart, which is right, or right for you.
The first view is that you must give ten percent of your earnings to the Lord.
I emphasis Lord and not the church, because all we do is unto the Lord and not to man!
This view is taken right from this verse that we are reading today.
Another one is in:
· Gen 28:20-22 20 Then Jacob made a vow, saying, "If God will be with me, and keep me in this way that I am going, and give me bread to eat and clothing to put on, 21 "so that I come back to my father's house in peace, then the LORD shall be my God. 22 "And this stone which I have set as a pillar shall be God's house, and of all that You give me I will surely give a tenth to You."
Simply put, the word tithe means: a tenth or a tenth part.
And God even commanded the children of Israel to tithe.
· Lev 27:30 'And all the tithe of the land, whether of the seed of the land or of the fruit of the tree, is the LORD s. It is holy to the LORD.
So should you tithe or give a tenth of your earnings to the Lord?
The bible says yes, but there are also conditions of your tithing, which is the other view.
· Hosea 6:6 For I desire mercy and not sacrifice, And the knowledge of God more than burnt offerings.
· Matt 12:7-8 7 "But if you had known what this means, 'I desire mercy and not sacrifice,' you would not have condemned the guiltless. 8 "For the Son of Man is Lord even of the Sabbath."
The question you need to ask yourself is why am I giving to the Lord? Or do you think of it as giving to the church?
· 2 Cor 9:6-8 6 But this I say: He who sows sparingly will also reap sparingly, and he who sows bountifully will also reap bountifully. 7 So let each one give as he purposes in his heart, not grudgingly or of necessity; for God loves a cheerful giver. 8 And God is able to make all grace abound toward you, that you, always having all sufficiency in all things, may have an abundance for every good work.
God doesn't need your money. He is not poor. He's not sitting in heaven and wondering how the bills will get paid in the church or how that poor child will eat.
God is the creator of the heavens and the earth. In heaven the streets are paved with gold. Do you really think God needs your money?
No, God wants your heart, and your thankfulness to Him.
God wants you to give cheerfully not out of spite or fear that God won't bless you.
This next verse is used a lot to get people to tithe, and I really think that it is really used improperly.
· Mal 3:10 Bring all the tithes into the storehouse, That there may be food in My house, And try Me now in this," Says the LORD of hosts, "If I will not open for you the windows of heaven And pour out for you such blessing That there will not be room enough to receive it.
We are promised blessing if we give to God, and I do believe that it's true because God says so, as we just read in His words.
But don't give because you desire to be blessed with riches on this earth.
Give because you love the Lord, and are thankful for all His provisions to you.
And don't allow tithing to weigh you down. Jesus even said:
· Matt 11:30 "For My yoke is easy and My burden is light."
If tithing is a real burden to you then the intent of your heart is not really there.
· Matt 23:23 "Woe to you, scribes and Pharisees, hypocrites! For you pay tithe of mint and anise and cummin, and have neglected the weightier matters of the law: justice and mercy and faith. These you ought to have done, without leaving the others undone.
One more answer to a question about tithing. People ask, "should I give before or after taxes?"
· Deut 18:4 "The firstfruits of your grain and your new wine and your oil, and the first of the fleece of your sheep, you shall give him.
Firstfruits, meaning before taxes!
So do you not give or give, and how much? I can't answer that question for you. If you are seeking what to do as far as tithing, or giving to the Lord, pray about it and ask God what He wants you to do.
Don't give Him excuses why you can't, but come to Him with a open heart ready to be filled with His wisdom on giving to Him!
Ø Gen 14:21-24 21 Now the king of Sodom said to Abram, "Give me the persons, and take the goods for yourself." 22 But Abram said to the king of Sodom, "I have raised my hand to the LORD, God Most High, the Possessor of heaven and earth, 23 "that I will take nothing, from a thread to a sandal strap, and that I will not take anything that is yours, lest you should say, 'I have made Abram rich'-- 24 "except only what the young men have eaten, and the portion of the men who went with me: Aner, Eshcol, and Mamre; let them take their portion."
One thing I noticed here is that the king of Sodom was there when Melchizedek was there and Abram was giving his tithe to the Lord.
So the king of Sodom was watching all that was going on and what did the king of Sodom want?
He wanted only the people and didn't care about the riches that were taken. It sounds like he was good king, doesn't it?
Well he's not a good king. You see he wanted the people for his own pleasure (so to speak) because remember that Sodom was an evil city that was full of sexual perversity, and the king wanted the people for this reason.
Also the people that were captured where just as perverse as the king of Sodom was. They sacrificed to other gods, and part of this sacrifice was sexual perversion, so the king of Sodom knew the people would willingly be a part of his perverse sacrifices to other gods, and would willingly give in to his physical desires.
But still Abram was a man of God and did not even want the possessions, because he knew that God would provide for him what he needed.
Do you know that today?
God will always provide for you what you need. If God wants you rich, He will bless you with riches. So why waste your money on the lottery?
Rather invest in the kingdom of God.
· Matt 6:19-21 (NLT) 19 "Don't store up treasures here on earth, where they can be eaten by moths and get rusty, and where thieves break in and steal. 20 Store your treasures in heaven, where they will never become moth-eaten or rusty and where they will be safe from thieves. 21 Wherever your treasure is, there your heart and thoughts will also be.
Matt 6:21 (NLT) Wherever your treasure is, there your heart and thoughts will also be.