Thursday, November 21, 2019

Hebrews Chapter 7: Melchizedek

I was ordained to the Melchizedek priesthood at the age of 19. I had to wait one year because of my various violations of the law of chastity. I am certainly not proud of my sins, but I have left that area of weakness behind, owing to the enabling power of CHRIST. I have many other weaknesses to work on now.

I tell people my punishment was a mission to Bolivia. Although I know now that I was promoting a church in a state of apostasy, it was still one of the greatest experiences of my life. I would have never met people like Mark Thomas, Stuart Christensen, and Susie Kochevar. There are dozens of other great people I met there, but I must move on with this post.

I now understand that I do not hold any Melchizedek priesthood. I know this because JESUS has not given it to me via his own voice. My noble father laid his hands on my head sometime in the spring of 1984 and said some nice things, but I have never possessed the higher priesthood. I know this because I have never brought someone back from the dead, healed anyone instantly. I have never spoken in a tongue I do not know so that someone who does not speak English or Spanish can understand my message. I have never controlled the weather or animals. I have done nothing miraculous.

I cannot be trusted with any real power yet, because I like all the other men on this planet would misuse it. If I truly repent and become a lot more like JESUS, then maybe someday I could. It will not come from the Bishop, or a relative, or even one of the 15 pretend apostles in Salt Lake. Not even a real apostle like John the Beloved or one of the 3 Nephites can give it to me. It must come directly from CHRIST.

All of this leads me to first 3 verses of Hebrews chapter 7.

The King James Bible has it this way:

1. For this Melchisedec, king of Salem, 

priest of the most high God,
who met with Abraham returning from the slaughter of the kings,
and blessed him.

2. To whom also Abraham gave a tenth part of all;

first being by interpretation King of righteous,
and after that also King of Salem,
which is, King of peace;

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.

Just in case someone thinks that the problem is just the mediocrity of the King James Bible, The has modernized the passage to read:

1. Now this Melchizedek, king of Salem,

priest of the most high God,
met Abraham as he was returning from defeating the kings
and blessed him.

2. To him also Abraham apportioned a tithe of everything.

His first name means king of righteousness, 
then king of Salem,
that is, king of peace.

3. Without father, without mother, without genealogy,

he has neither beginning of days nor an end of life
but is like the son of God,
and he remains a priest for all time.

99.9 percent of Bibles would like you to believe that Melchizedek is some kind of immortal being who has brought into this world without the need for parents. Now GOD can do whatever He wants, because He would never do anything sinful, but this seems like a bit of a stretch.

Joseph Smith and the Holy Spirit render the third verse this way:

3. For this Melchizedek was ordained a priest after the order  of the Son of God,
which order was without father, without mother, without descent,
having neither beginning of days, nor end of life.

And all those who are ordained unto this priesthood 

are made like unto the Son of God, 
abiding a priest continually.

Melchizedek had parents and lived and died like everyone else. It is the higher priesthood that does not require passage from father to son. Any man who follows CHRIST's example of service can receive this priesthood. GOD is no respecter of persons, meaning He plays no favorites. You can be any color, (sorry Brother Brigham even black) and if you emulate the Savior with your unselfish service while enduring above average amounts of suffering, then at some point you will receive some of GOD's power.

When GOD can trust you with power, you will get some, and not one minute before. Most men will never get it because we prize control and acclaim, more than our brothers and sisters. GOD's power can only be used to help your fellow human beings, and can never be used contrary to GOD's perfect will.