7 For this Melchizedek, king of Salem, priest of the Most High God, who met Abraham as he was returning from the slaughter of the kings and blessed him,2 to whom also Abraham apportioned a tenth part of all the spoils, was first of all, by the translation of his name, king of righteousness, and then also king of Salem, which is 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, he remains a priest perpetually.
4 Now observe how great this man was to whom Abraham, the patriarch, gave a tenth of the choicest spoils.5 And those indeed of the sons of Levi who receive the priest’s office have commandment [a]in the Law to collect [b]a tenth from the people, that is, from their brethren, although these [c]are descended from Abraham.6 But the one whose genealogy is not traced from them collected [d]a tenth from Abraham and [e]blessed the one who had the promises.7 But without any dispute the lesser is blessed by the greater.8 In this case mortal men receive tithes, but in that case one receives them, of whom it is witnessed that he lives on.9 And, so to speak, through Abraham even Levi, who received tithes, paid tithes,10 for he was still in the loins of his father when Melchizedek met him.
11 Now if perfection was through the Levitical priesthood (for on the basis of it the people received the Law), what further need was there for another priest to arise according to the order of Melchizedek, and not be designated according to the order of Aaron?12 For when the priesthood is changed, of necessity there takes place a change of law also.13 For the one concerning whom these things are spoken belongs to another tribe, from which no one has officiated at the altar.14 For it is evident that our Lord [f]was descended from Judah, a tribe with reference to which Moses spoke nothing concerning priests.15 And this is clearer still, if another priest arises according to the likeness of Melchizedek,16 who has become such not on the basis of a law of [g]physical requirement, but according to the power of an indestructible life.17 For it is attested of Him,
“You are a priest forever According to the order of Melchizedek.”
18 For, on the one hand, there is a setting aside of a former commandment because of its weakness and uselessness19 (for the Law made nothing perfect), and on the other hand there is a bringing in of a better hope, through which we draw near to God.
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