The World Tomorrow

Melchizedek - Part 4

by Herbert W Armstrong


Well greetings friends. This is Herbert W Armstrong with the Good News of the World Tomorrow.

And my friends, a great deal of that good news is contained in one portion of the Bible that is almost totally neglected. Very few people ever look at it, just like that entire third of your Bible, or almost a third of the Bible, that is revealing to you the conditions in this world today. The conditions that you are living in, the conditions you read about in your newspaper headlines, that you hear about in all of the telecasts on both radio and television continually, the things that are going on in the world and affecting your life today. And the events that are going to take place, that are going to affect you and yours in the very next few years.

About a third of the Bible devoted to that. Why don't you hear more about it? Why don't you read something about it? Why don't you know the meaning of these conditions on this earth today? You can't know it unless you can understand what that third of the Bible is revealing. That's the third that is almost never preached about. That's the third you never hear anyone talk about. That's the third most of you never study or read about.

Then this other portion telling you where and what Christ has been doing, where He's been. Of course we may know where He's been, but very few of us know what He's been doing for the last 1900 years. We hear a little preaching about what He did for three and a half years on the earth. We hear a lot of preaching about His person exalting Him and extolling Him and deifying Him, which is all very proper.

But usually He's presented as a dead Christ that was great but He died. They don't say very much about the fact He rose from the dead, that God Almighty the Father in heaven raised Him from the dead and that He is now very God and alive forevermore and that He's been on the job for 1900 years. Why don't we hear something about that?

Christ's Office Now (PLAY FROM 02:23)

One book in your Bible is devoted to the job, the office of Jesus Christ now and that office is there to help you and to give you the breaks when you need them and to deliver you out of your trials and troubles when you are in them, and you have them because everybody has. He's there to give you something you need that you have, most of you, not been getting.

Now we're up in the middle of the seventh chapter, but just so that you get the picture I want to go back again to the end of the sixth chapter to pick up the thought right in here. And beginning with the seventeenth verse:

"Wherein God, willing more abundantly to shew unto the heirs of promise…" (Hebrews 6:17)

Because this book reveals my friends, that you and I are the heirs of promise if, IF we have been completely conquered by God. If we have really repented, IF we have yielded ourselves to the government of God, the rule of God over our lives, totally and completely, which very few have. And IF we have living faith in Jesus Christ as our Lord and Savior and master and our ruler, our present High Priest which this book is telling us about, and as our coming King.

Very few people know anything about Jesus Christ as Lord and Master now, as our High Priest now and as our coming King. So I'm presenting Christ to you right now my friends, in that present office, not some ancient office of 1900 years ago but the present living office because Christ is living and He's the head of His church.

Now, we are then the very heirs of God, co-heirs with Christ. Christ is the heir of all things. Christ has all power. All power in heaven and on earth has been given to Him. That's what He has now, the living Christ that is alive now for you on His Father's throne in heaven where He is at work in a dynamic activity for you. But it's something you can have the benefit of only if you yield yourself to God, if you believe in living faith, and if you come to Him for it. You have to actually come and get it.

Now, "Wherein God, willing more abundantly to shew unto [that is to reveal so we shall understand] unto the heirs of promise [I hope that includes you my friends, because we are co-heirs with Christ if we are begotten of God as His children] the immutability of his counsel, confirmed it by an oath: That by two immutable things, in which it was impossible for God to lie, we might have a strong consolation, who have fled for refuge to lay hold upon the hope set before us:" (Hebrews 6:17-18)

What is that hope? The apostle Paul tells about that hope when he was on trial for his life. He mentioned that this whole thing had arisen because of what he was preaching of his great hope, the hope of the resurrection. Of being raised from the dead, of being changed from mortal to immortal, from human to divine, exactly, precisely as Jesus Christ was. Because Jesus Christ, born a Son of God and therefore very God by a resurrection from the dead, as you read in the very first chapter of the book of Romans, was merely the first born of many brethren (Romans 8:29).

Christ The Pioneer of Salvation (PLAY FROM 06:18)

He is the pioneer of our salvation as we've been reading here in this book of Hebrews, and we're supposed to follow Him. That is we will follow Him if we have completely yielded to Him. If we believe in living faith, and if we overcome and if we grow in grace and in the knowledge of Him, His knowledge and in spiritual things. In other words if we develop and grow in character more and more like Him until we really imbibe and receive within us so much of Him, so much of God, of God's thoughts, of God's character, of God's ways, of His power, of His Spirit, of His love.

All of His character and attributes which He will instill within us if we yield and if we want it and seek after it enough that we finally become holy because God Himself puts that holiness within us. Holiness can come only from God not from you. You can't originate it. You can't create it. There is nothing holy about you and yet you must become holy because without holiness none can see the Eternal (Hebrews 12:14 paraphrased). Now then, that is the hope that we shall be born like Him and be co-heirs with Christ who is the heir of everything.

"Which hope we have as an anchor of the soul, both sure and stedfast, and which entereth into that within the veil;" (Hebrews 6:19)

Now here it's speaking of course of the veil in the typical tabernacle that they had back in the wilderness in the days of Moses on this earth, way back when the children of Israel were on the way between Egypt and Palestine. And then in the temple as it was built by Solomon in Jerusalem later. And there was the Holy of Holies that was the picture, the symbol of God's throne in heaven. Just a picture to them.

But out was the holy place outside and there was a veil, or a great curtain, between. No-one but the high priest could ever go into the Holy of Holies and he only once a year on the Day of Atonement in the Fall every year. It was the tenth day of God's seventh month as God counts time, but that's not according to our calendar. It wasn't July, which is the seventh month of the calendar we're going by which is merely a Roman calendar, or it's really a pagan calendar, but the whole world uses it today.

Now then this, "…hope we have as an anchor of the soul, both sure and stedfast, and which entereth into that within the veil [in other words to the very throne of God]; Whither the forerunner is for us entered, even Jesus…" (Hebrews 6:19-20)

Now you see the high priest, entering into, behind the veil that is, into the Holy of Holies which was the type of entering into the very throne of God, which literally is up in heaven, was merely the type of Jesus Christ our High Priest after He arose from the dead, ascending to heaven to the very throne of God. And He ascended into the very intimate throne of God which was pictured by going into the most holy, or the Holy of Holies, the holy place by the tabernacle that they had in the temple in Jerusalem back in the Old Testament times. Christ has entered there at the very throne of God. Now notice it.

"Whither the forerunner is for us entered…" (Hebrews 6:20)

On our behalf to serve us. He is our servant. He is our helper. You know in God's kingdom my friends, in God's form of government, it's quite different from that that we know on this earth in our human civilization. Here, the one who rules is the master of the people and he lords it over them. It doesn't make any difference whether he's in a position of government or whether he's merely boss in a place of business or whatever. Or if it's a woman who employs servants in her household. Such a woman will give her servants orders and she's very stern and she expects them to obey her.

And she not only expects them to obey, she expects them to serve her and to wait on her. She doesn't serve them. She has to pay them wages because she isn't going to be able to hold them if she doesn't. And perhaps many of these stern women that have had servants in their homes would not have paid any wages at all if they could have gotten out of it. Such is human nature. We haven't had a chance to see human nature work in that way because competition and the fact that they could have gotten a job elsewhere has prevented it.

But that is human nature. A man in business who employs others usually expects them to serve him and wait on him and do his bidding, and do what he wants done. But it is not so in the kingdom of God. Jesus said, "He that will be greatest among you [in other words the ruler] shall be the servant of all" (Matthew 23:11 paraphrased). Now God Himself carries that out and Christ is now carrying it out. Christ Jesus is our LORD and MASTER but He also is our servant and He is there not only to rule us but to rule us for our good and to serve us as our greatest servant.

Now I'm speaking to you here from the radio studio at Ambassador College. It's in one of the, certainly one of the most beautiful sections of Pasadena, California. I don't know of any more beautiful city anywhere than Pasadena. It's a cultural city, it's a lovely city and here we are in this famous beautiful old South Orange Grove Avenue section. Beautiful grounds, everything is beautiful here. Some of these fine stately old millionaire mansions that are still standing and some of them are still in very fine shape up and down in South Orange Grove Avenue here in Pasadena.

Now practically every one of these homes has its servants' quarters. But my friends, you know they're finding it very difficult to get servants anymore. Wealthy people today aren't building these big eighteen and twenty and fifty room homes any more, these great mansions. They just don't build them like that anymore. And one of the primary reasons why you find the wealthy people of America, the people that have made their millions or have inherited them, one or the other; why they are not building these great mansions like they used to, at least not as much.

In fact I don't believe I know of any great mansions that have been built recently, although I know there have been some but I just don't happen to know where they are. But the reason my friends, is because they can't get servants any more, and they want a job where they're more independent and where they can make more money.

Christ Our Servant (PLAY FROM 13:29)

But the point I want to come to my friends is this, there is one servant of supernatural, divine power that everyone of you can have and you don't have to pay any wages, any salary, any anything. Well you do have a price to pay. The price you have to pay is the subjection of your own will and your own muley stubbornness. You'll have to give up a little bit of that and the wanting of your own way where your own way is wrong.

As a matter of fact if your own way is right then it's God's way too and you wouldn't have to give that part up. But it's that part of your way that we all seem to crave and want that is wrong and you'll have to give that up. And you'll have to let the Christ who is on this throne of God in high heaven rule you. But He's going to rule you for your good because He is your servant.

I don't believe that our minds can quite grasp what I am trying to get over. What I am trying to say is that He not only is the ruler and when He comes to rule this world He's going to rule it with a rod of iron. There isn't going to be any 'no' or 'yes' any way at all except just the way He says. And yet He's going to rule for the good of all the people and in love and in charity and in mercy and nothing else.

You know human nature is not like that and we humans don't rule that way do we? I wonder if we can realize how Christ is going to rule when He comes. Well that's the way He is ruling now in heaven on the very throne of God, ruling over those who will voluntarily submit themselves to that rule; who will really repent and who come to see how filthy and rotten and sinful and evil and wrong they have been and abhor themselves until they are willing to want to change and go the other way.

And they want to come to that Christ who is on that mercy seat, which is also the ruling seat of God the Father in heaven where He is our High Priest. Let Him be your ruler. But also as your Priest, He is there to intercede for you and He is there as your helper, and He is there as your servant and He is there to give you wisdom where you lack it. And wisdom is merely ability to make a right decision in the right way and that always means best for you.

Well, now Christ is, "…made an high priest for ever after the order of Melchisedec" (Hebrews 6:20). And then Melchizedek is introduced and we've been going through that. Melchizedek was, "Without father, without mother, without descent…" (Hebrews 7:3). He has always existed. He is immortal. He has an endless life, which means He is immortal. He will never die. He is a high priest continually. And yet during the time from Moses until Christ we had a nation Israel and they had a high priest, who was a human high priest, a son of Levi.

A Change in the Priesthood (PLAY FROM 16:38)

Now during that time there was a change made in the priesthood. Now since Melchizedek abides a priest continually He was the real High Priest over and above, but the people, well they didn't have the Spirit of God and they didn't have a spiritual contact except the prophets and except through the prophets. And so they had to have a human high priest they could see here on the earth even though Melchizedek when actual fact did continue to abide a high priest, there was a human high priest set over the physical, human nation of Israel.

The tithes went to that high priesthood. Prior the tithes had gone, by God's law, as Abraham had obeyed God's laws and paid tithes to Melchizedek. But now they went to this human priesthood that had a physical type of mission to perform. They didn't preach the gospel. They didn't have a spiritual ministry they had a physical ministry of killing lambs and goats and one thing and another for sacrifices of carrying on the various rituals, the carnal ordinances, the meat and drink offerings, the rituals of the law of Moses.

Those rituals my friends, were given as hard work to be performed and the priests did a good deal of that work. They were a constant round of duties morning, noon and night every day of the year with special things on every Sabbath. Other special duties and sacrifices and meat and drink offerings on every time there was a new moon up in the sky, and others on every annual Holy day that God gave to His people. And so it was a constant round of physical duties to instill in those Israelites the habit of obedience.

Now they had the Ten Commandments which is a spiritual law, but they were not able to keep that law in the spirit. All they could do was to keep it according to the letter and in order to help them to keep it according to the strictness of the letter, in a physical manner, they were given these physical duties. And the priesthood, the ministry, was not preaching spiritual sermons of salvation or anything of the kind. They didn't go to the world and preach the gospel, they were forbidden to go to other nations in the world, they merely ministered in this physical manner. And all of the patriarchs or the men who had large homes and Levites, or priests and ministers, right within their own estate in their own homes, ministering to that large family.

Priesthood Changes A Second Time (PLAY FROM 19:25)

Well, now from the time of Christ the priesthood has changed again. Jesus Christ brought the gospel. Jesus Christ said to His apostles, "…it is expedient for you that I go away …" (John 16:7). He foretold the fact that He would die to pay the penalty of our sins. And no-one could be reconciled to God, no-one could receive the Holy Spirit, except in some manner that is not explained how the prophets did, otherwise the Holy Spirit of God and salvation was not offered to, well whosoever will, [or] as it is today.

And Jesus Christ said, "…it is expedient for you that I go away [for]: if I go not away [meaning to His Father's throne in heaven] the [other] Comforter [the Holy Spirit would] not come…" (John 16:7). In other words, no-one could be converted. No-one could really become a Christian because no-one is a Christian until they have been changed, converted, received the Spirit of God and are now being led by the Spirit of God. That, in a sense, really literally comes within and possesses them and changes them totally, changes the mind, changes the whole direction of the mind and of their concepts and of their thinking in every way until they are not carnal but now are spiritual.

Well that was a complete change. That's the difference between the Old Testament Church and the New Testament church of which Jesus Christ is the Head. Christ said, "I will build my church" (Matthew 16:18). and it hadn't been built when He said it when He was on earth. That is a different church than the church of Israel, or the congregation of Israel as it is called in the Old Testament. Church of Israel, same thing. You might as well call it the church of Israel. But that was a flesh-born church. People were born into that church by a physical birth.

Now how did the priests come? They came by a physical birth. But now Christ, by a rebirth, being born from the dead by a resurrection, made a Son of God and is now elevated to the very rank of Melchizedek. Now since Melchizedek abides a high priest continually, actually Melchizedek is the one who was made flesh and dwelt among us, and who was God with us and was the Son of God in the fact that God was His only Father and Mary was His mother. He was human and yet He was of divine origin too. And He was the one by whom God made the worlds. And He gave His life for us and God raised Him from the dead.

A Change Also in the Law (PLAY FROM 21:53)

Now there you are. And it is just that simple and yet it seems quite complex too. Now:

"The Priesthood being changed [in verse twelve of chapter seven] there is also of necessity made a change in the law. For he of whom [continuing on now, For he of whom] these things are spoken pertaineth to another tribe, of which no man gave attendance at the altar [in other words not the tribe of Levi as it had been from Moses to Christ]. For it is evident that our Lord sprang out of Juda [He was of the tribe of Judah not the tribe of Levi]; of which tribe Moses spake nothing concerning priesthood [so this has nothing to do with the Mosaic dispensation, it supersedes it, it replaces it]. [for] it is yet far more evident: [for] that after the similitude of Melchisedec there ariseth another priest." (Hebrews 7:12-15 paraphrased)

Now notice, "after the similitude of Melchizedek." Back up here at the beginning it said that Melchizedek had "neither beginning of days nor end of life but made like unto the Son of God abideth a priest continually." That was verse three. So you see the similitude, or the likeness.

There ariseth another high priest after the rank or order, or similitude of Melchizedek, "Who is made, not after [the] law of a carnal commandment, but after the power of an endless life." (Hebrews 7:16)

Let me read that in the Moffatt Translation that fifteenth verse.

"This becomes all the more plain when another priest emerges resembling Melchizedek, one who has become priest by the power of an indissoluble Life and not by the law of an external command. For the witness to him is [now you see the Levites were made priests by the law of an external command and by a flesh birth, but Christ is not made a priest by that kind of a law. Now notice what law it is now speaking of. The witness to him is], Thou art a priest forever with the rank of Melchizedek. A previous command is set aside…" (Hebrews 7:15-18 Moffatt)

Now what command? Why that the high priest had to be made one by this command, or this law, that the priest would be a son of Levi because Christ is not of the tribe of Levi but of the tribe of Judah, so that previous command, the law of an external command as it is in verse 16 there, is set aside.

"…on account of its weakness and uselessness, (for the law [now referring to the whole law of Moses, the ritualistic law, the law of rituals and of sacrifices and meat and drink offerings, the physical law that was given to instill within them the habit of obedience, the law] made nothing perfect) [it was a schoolmaster to bring them to Christ], and there is introduced a better Hope, by means of which we can draw near to God." (Hebrews 7:18-19 Moffatt).

Our Hope is the Resurrection (PLAY FROM 25:03)

That hope is the hope of the resurrection. They had no hope of that my friends, under the Old Testament. But we have that hope now because we can repent and we can be reconciled to God because Christ has now died to pay the penalty of our sins in our stead. They didn't have a savior who had died to pay the penalty of their sins up until that time but, we have. We can be reconciled to God. We can receive His Spirit. We can be begotten as His children and we can have that high hope of being born into the very family of God.

That's a hope my friends, that was never extended to the people under the Levitical priesthood or in the times of Moses so that we can draw near to God. "A better Hope (verse twenty), because it was not promised apart from an oath. Previous priests became priests apart from any oath but he has an oath from Him who said to him, The Lord has sworn, and he will not change his mind, thou art a priest for ever [and, as it had said in proceeding verses here of the rank of Melchizedek]. And this makes Jesus surety for a superior covenant." (Hebrews 7:21-22 Moffatt).

The New Covenant which is so much superior to the Old because it has eternal promises, the promise of eternal life, the promise of salvation which they did not have under the Old Covenant. Now haven't you always heard the teaching that they were saved by works in the Old Covenant and we're saved by grace? Oh my friends, what poppycock! When will we wake up? When will we learn the truth? They had no salvation. They merely had physical material promises they would have become the greatest nation on earth if they had obeyed God. We have the promises of an endless life, eternal life and salvation.

Oh time is up. Listen my friends, so that you can understand a whole third of your Bible that tells about world conditions and about our United States, write in for our booklet 'The United States in Prophecy.' That'll tell you where we're mentioned. It's the key that will open up that third of your Bible. My friends, you can't understand Bible prophecy unless you have that key. That is a veritable key to an understanding of the prophecies. Why the prophecies of the Bible have been grievously misunderstood and no wonder, because this vital key that is needed to unlock prophetic doors to understanding, had become lost.

That key is a definite knowledge of the true identity of the American and the British peoples in biblical prophecy. Where is the United States mentioned? Where are WE in the prophecies? Here you have what you would get in a large book but it's condensed for quick and easy reading. Now you'll have to do a lot more reading in your Bible. Search your own scriptures. This shows you where to look. Find it in your Bible. Find it in the works of history if you care to go to the libraries.

But right here in this little booklet condensed in a nutshell is the most fascinating story that you have ever read. I don't care whether you're a skeptic, an atheist, a church member or a real spirit-filled Christian, you're going to find here an amazing truth that has been hidden through the centuries. There is no story of fiction that you ever read that is so strange, so absorbing, so packed with suspense as this gripping story of the Bible. It makes the Bible the most interesting book you ever picked up, when you come to understand it. And this will open it to your understanding.

Write in for that booklet, 'The United States in Prophecy.' 'The United States in Prophecy’. Study it in your own Bible and see with your own eyes in your own Bible in prophecy as well as in promises of God. Who we are and where we're mentioned in the Bible prophecies. If you haven't already gotten that booklet write in for it. There is no charge. Until tomorrow then, goodbye friends.