Перейти к основному содержимому

Academic Periodical

The Quarterly Journal of St. Philaret’s Institute

ISSN: 2658-7599 (print)
2713-3141 (online)

The Image of Melchizedek in the Epistle to the Hebrews and in the Jewish Texts of the Second Temple Period

Alexey Somov, Ph.D. in Theology, Associate Professor, Department of Holy Scripture and Biblical Studies, St Philaret’s Institute; Translation Projects Consultant, Institute for Bible Translation; Senior Research Fellow, Research Laboratory for Oriental and 
Comparative Literature Studies, School of Public Policy, Russian Presidential Academy of National Economy and Public Administration (Moscow)
pp. 230–248
DOI: 10.25803/SFI.2020.36.4.010
Jesus’ high priesthood and its superiority over the Levite priesthood is a unique and important theme of Hebrews. The central argument in the discussion about the superiority of Jesus’ high priesthood is the Melchizedekian argument of chapter 7. In this chapter the author uses Gen 14:18–20, Ps 110, and some Jewish traditions about Melchizedek. Some of these texts portray him as a historical figure, while others depict him as an eschatological image. This article investigates the Jewish traditions about Melchizedek from the Second Temple period and explores how they are used in Hebrews. Then, the article shows how Melchizedek’s figure works in the author’s argument about the superiority of Jesus’ high priesthood. It demonstrates that the author of Hebrews is interested in Melchizedek’s figure not only as a real person of the past or the future, but rather more as the likeness of Christ and the unique biblical image of a person who is simultaneously both a king and a high priest. Such a typology plays an important role in the author’s theological chain, which also includes other Old Testament images and characters, working metaphorically and shaping a multifaceted image of Christ as both God and human, priest and sacrifice, messianic king and perfect high priest. Further study of these metaphors in the context of modern metaphor theories can be a productive continuation of this research and can help us better understand the interpretive method of the author of Hebrews.
Keywords: Bible, Hebrews, Melchizedek, Second Temple, Philo, Josephus, Enoch, Qumran typology.

Last Issue2024. Volume 16. Issue 1 (49)

Поиск по номерам

All Issues