I believe that God set the precedent in the story of Abram’s meeting with Melchizedek in Genesis 14. We must recognize that Melchizedek wasn’t his name, it was his title. His other title was King of Salem.
A question arises. Why did God choose Abram? What was so special about him? Why not his father or brothers?
God got Abram ready with the teaching he received from Noah and Shem.
Apocryphal literature tells us that Abram spent 39 years living with Noah and Shem. Josephus tells us that when Abram went to Egypt he taught them science, astronomy, etc. Where did Abram learn all that? The Book of Jasher fills in the details. Noah, Shem and Abram.
Almost the day Abram returned from Noah’s, he was contacted by God to get out of that country, leave EVERYTHING but his wife and his own servants. After a short detour of 25 years in Haran, Abram’s father died and Abram finally moved on the where God lead him.
There’s a war. Abram goes and beats up on the bad guys and brings everything and everyone back. As soon as he gets there, out of the blue, this guy Melchizedek shows up. King of (Melchi) Righteousness(zedek). He’s also described as the king of Salem, which has to be Jerusalem. It’s some sixty miles from Jerusalem to the Valley of the Kings, where Abram met Melchizedek. Josephus tells us that he brought much more than bread and wine, as it says in the Bible. Melchizedek brought lots of foodstuffs to feed Abram’s little army.
With such a close connection to God, being a “priest of the most high God,” it is reasonable to assume that God told Melchizedek about what was going on with Abram.God told Melchizedek to bring Abram some food. Why? Abram had all the food he needed. He was rich. He didn’t take a penny from the kings to which he returned all the things and people.
Only three things happen at the meeting; recognition of God’s hand in beating the enemies, bread and wine and tithing.
Those are the three most important principles of the Walk with God.
Why did God send Melchizedek to meet Abram? What important principles can we glean from this meeting? God chose to include only the bread and wine being brought by Melchizedek, He must have been teaching us something.
This encounter is obviously the first type of Communion in the Bible. I’m sure that many Christians have either thought of this or been taught it. What about the tithes that Abram paid to Melchizedek? It would definitely imply that Melchizedek was Abram’s teacher in God things. It would also imply that this was not their first meeting. This conclusion can be reached by only applying these three Principles of God’s Walk. God is real… faithing and pay the teacher.
Who was Abram’s teacher? The Bible doesn’t say. But Jasher says that Melchizedek of the Bible is “Adonizedek”. I’m sure you’ve heard the word Adoni, Lord. It’s the pronunciation that the Jews adopted for God’s name, not wanting to say His name the way it’s spelled. So, Jasher calls this man “Lord” (Adoni) of Righteousness (zedek).
This narrative goes on to say he’s the King of Salem, just like in the Bible. But it then says, “the same was Shem.” Melchizedek is Shem. Abram wouldn’t tithe to a total stranger who just happened to show up, even if he was a priest of God. Melchizedek knew Abram and Abram knew Melchizedek. They weren’t ships passing in the night. Abram’s teacher would, of course, bring him communion. This is evident even without the book of Jasher’s account.
Abram tithing to his teacher sets the model for all the subsequent giving in the Bible. The tithes always went to the “keepers” of God’s word. Paul admonishes in all his letters but one that we are to support the teacher of God’s word.
Melchizedek was Shem.