OUR GREAT HIGH PRIEST
The Old Testament priesthood, the Levitical priesthood, was no perfect and served as a type of something far better in the future. Those priests offered animal sacrifices that had to be repeated over and over.
The New Testament written in the blood of Jesus Christ brought a far superior priesthood, that of the believer in Jesus Christ. Their High Priest is the man, Christ Jesus. He is called and qualified by God and superior to the Old Testament system.
I. HIS CALL.
A. Aaron was called of God to do service in the Tabernacle, Hebrews 5:4, “And no man taketh this honour unto himself, but he that is called of God, as was Aaron.”
1. He had the call of God to do the Lord’s service.
2. Others have tried to usurp that authority and call, but were withstood, 2 Chronicles 26:18, “And they withstood Uzziah the king, and said unto him, It appertaineth not unto thee, Uzziah, to burn incense unto the LORD, but to the priests the sons of Aaron, that are consecrated to burn incense: go out of the sanctuary; for thou hast trespassed; neither shall it be for thine honour from the LORD God.”
B. Jesus was called to his ministry from Heaven, John 3:27, “John answered and said, A man can receive nothing, except it be given him from heaven.”
1. Only Jesus Christ has the authority to fill the priesthood in the life of a man.
2. Only Jesus has the power and authority to forgive sin, Luke 5:20-21, “And when he saw their faith, he said unto him, Man, thy sins are forgiven thee. 21-And the scribes and the Pharisees began to reason, saying, Who is this which speaketh blasphemies? Who can forgive sins, but God alone?”
II. HIS QUALIFICATIONS.
A. Jesus had no sin of His own, Hebrews 4:15, “For we have not an high priest which cannot be touched with the feeling of our infirmities; but was in all points tempted like as we are, yet without sin.”
1. He experienced our life, Hebrews 2:17, “Wherefore in all things it behoved him to be made like unto his brethren, that he might be a merciful and faithful high priest in things pertaining to God, to make reconciliation for the sins of the people.”
2. Yet Jesus never committed sin, Hebrews 7:26, “For such an high priest became us, who is holy, harmless, undefiled, separate from sinners, and made higher than the heavens;” 1 Peter 2:22, “Who did no sin, neither was guile found in his mouth:
B. He was perfectly qualified because He was perfect, Hebrews 5:7, “And being made perfect, he became the author of eternal salvation unto all them that obey him;”
III. HIS SUPERIORITY TO MAN.
A. He is the Son of God, Hebrews 5:5, So also Christ glorified not himself to be made an high priest; but he that said unto him, Thou art my Son, to day have I begotten thee.”
1. To which of the angels called He “my Son”? Hebrews 1:5, “For unto which of the angels said he at any time, Thou art my Son, this day have I begotten thee? And again, I will be to him a Father, and he shall be to me a Son?”
2. John the Baptist heard God’s testimony about Jesus, Matthew 3:16-17, “And Jesus, when he was baptized, went up straightway out of the water: and, lo, the heavens were opened unto him, and he saw the Spirit of God descending like a dove, and lighting upon him: 17-And lo a voice from heaven, saying, This is my beloved Son, in whom I am well pleased.”
B. Though He was the Son of God, He learned obedience, Hebrews 5:8, “Though he were a Son, yet learned he obedience by the things which he suffered;”
1. God prepared Him a body, Hebrews 5:9, “Wherefore when he cometh into the world, he saith, Sacrifice and offering thou wouldest not, but a body hast thou prepared me:”
2. He learned obedience as a human being by what He suffered here on earth, Isaiah 50:5-6, “The Lord GOD hath opened mine ear, and I was not rebellious, neither turned away back. 6I gave my back to the smiters and my cheeks to them that plucked off the hair: I hid not my face from shame and spitting.”
3. Jesus was obedient to His Father, Philippians 2:8, “And being found in fashion as a man, he humbled himself, and became obedient unto death, even the death of the cross.”
C. Jesus is a priest after the order of Melchisedec, v. 6, “As he saith also in another place, Thou art a priest for ever after the order of Melchisedec.”
1. Who was Melchisedec? Genesis 14:18, “And Melchizedek king of Salem brought forth bread and wine: and he was the priest of the most high God.”
a. King of Salem (Jerusalem), Hebrews 7:1, “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;”
b. Priest of the most high God, Hebrews 7:2, “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;”
1) As the Priest of God Abraham paid him tithes.
2) As the Priest of God Abraham received his blessing.
c. Abraham recognized Melchisedec’s office, and position, the King of peace.
D. Melchisedec is a type of Christ in the Old Testament, 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.”
1. No father or mother mentioned.
2. No beginning or ending of life.
3. No end of his priesthood, a priest continually.
Jesus Christ is our Great High Priest. He was Called; He was Qualified for the office; He is Superior to all others. He is THE SINNLESS SAVIOR AND HIGH PRIEST.