Old Testament

Hebrews 7
A Priest Forever
71This Melchizedek, king of Salem, priest of the Most High God, is the one who met Abraham as he was returning from the defeat of the kings and blessed him,[] 2and Abraham gave him a tenth of everything.[] First, Melchizedek means “king of righteousness,” and then “king of Salem,” which is “king of peace.” 3He is without father or mother, without genealogy, without beginning of days or end of life, and resembling the Son of God, he remains a priest forever.
4Consider how great this man was. Even Abraham, the patriarch, gave him a tenth from the best of the spoils. 5According to the law, those sons of Levi who received the priesthood have a command to collect a tenth from the people, that is, from their brother Israelites, even though they also came from Abraham's body. 6But here the one who was not descended from them collected a tenth from Abraham and blessed the one who had the promises. 7And without any question, it is the lesser who is blessed by the greater.
8In the one case, those who are mortal collect the tenth; in the other case, the one who collects has testimony in Scripture[] that he lives. 9And, through Abraham, even Levi, who collects the tenth, has paid a tenth, so to speak, 10because he was still in the body of his forefather when Melchizedek met Abraham.
11So if everything could have been brought to its goal through the Levitical priesthood (for the people received the law on the basis of that priesthood), what further need was there for another priest to arise who was like Melchizedek, yet not said to be like Aaron? 12For when the priesthood is changed, by necessity a change in the law also happens. 13Yet these things are said about the one who belonged to another tribe, from which no one had served at the altar. 14It is certainly clear that our Lord is descended from Judah. Moses said nothing about priests in connection with that tribe.
15And this becomes even clearer if another priest arises like Melchizedek, 16who became a priest, not on the basis of a legal requirement about physical descent, but on the basis of the power of an endless[] life. 17For it has been testified in Scripture about him:
You are a priest forever, like Melchizedek.[]
18To be sure, the former requirement is annulled, because it was weak and useless— 19for the law did not bring anything to its goal—but now a better hope is introduced, by which we approach God.
20And something like this did not happen without an oath. Indeed, others who became priests did so without an oath, 21but this one became a priest with an oath, through the one who said to him:
The Lord has sworn an oath
and will not change his mind:
“You are a priest forever.”[][]
22In this way, Jesus has become the guarantor[] of a better covenant.[]
23There were many who became priests because death prevented any of them from continuing to remain in office. 24But because this one endures forever, he has a permanent priesthood. 25So for this reason he is able to save forever those who come to God through him, because he always lives to plead on their behalf.
Jesus Is the High Priest We Need
26This is certainly the kind of high priest we needed: one who is holy, innocent, pure, separated from sinners, and exalted above the heavens. 27Unlike the other high priests, he does not need to offer sacrifices on a daily basis, first for his own sins and then for the sins of the people. In fact, he sacrificed for sins once and for all when he offered himself. 28For the law appoints as high priests men who have weaknesses. But the word of the oath, which came after the law, appointed the Son, who has been brought to his goal forever.


  • 7:1 Genesis 14:17-20
  • 7:2 Genesis 14:20
  • 7:8 The Greek term for has testimony appears six more times in this letter (Hebrews 7:17; 10:15; 11:2, 4, 5, 39). Each time it clearly implies by usage and context that it is referring to testimony in Scripture.
  • 7:16 Or indestructible
  • 7:17 Psalm 110:4
  • 7:21 Psalm 110:4
  • 7:21 Some witnesses to the text add like Melchizedek.
  • 7:22 A guarantor is someone who guarantees to pay for another person's debt.
  • 7:22 The Greek term translated covenant (diatheke) can also be translated testament or will, depending on the context.