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Sunday, January 22 2012

A History Of Jerusalem: Melchizedek's Salem

The complete series of studies for A History Of Jerusalem:
1. In The Beginning
5. The Glory Of Solomon
9. Greeks, Ptolemies, Seleucids
13. The Herodian Dynasty
17. Constantine and Muhammad
2. Melchizedek's Salem
6. The Temple Of The LORD
10. Abomination Of Desolation
14. The Coming Of The Messiah
18. The British Mandate
3. Jebus Of Canaan
7. The Capital Of Judah
11. The Hasmonean Kingdom
15. Titus And The Zealots
19. Zionism
4. The City Of David
8. Ezra And Nehemiah
12. Pompey And The Caesars
16. Hadrian and Simon bar Kokhba
20. War And Peace

The first specific Biblical mention (see also A Word Of God Reading Plan) of the city that became known as Jerusalem was when it was known by its earlier name, "Salem." The actual Hebrew word from which the English rendering is based is pronounced shaw-lame; it is from a Hebrew root word that means ready, or prepared, and so hence came to be used to mean peace, or peaceful (consider the difference in one's state of mind when one is getting ready to do something or to go somewhere, compared to when all has been done).

"Jerusalem," in Hebrew pronounced yer-oo-shaw-law-yim, verbally incorporated "Salem" in its name; in its root form, "Jerusalem" means founded peacefully - keeping in mind that the earliest meaning of the word for peace meant completed preparations, or a completed foundation (keep the "foundation" meaning of Salem in mind when you read our Fact Finder question below about the builder, or "carpenter," Who laid the Foundation of the world).

Salem is recorded in Bible History during the time of Abraham (then still know as Abram), an immigrant from Iraq (see The Journey From Ur Of The Chaldees; also 'Raghead' Racism) who was then living in Hebron, south of Jerusalem. The incident began when the Canaanite kings of the region went to war. Abraham's nephew Lot (see Lot's Choice) was taken captive from Sodom, in the time before the LORD incinerated it (see also Why Did Lot's Wife Look Back?).

Map Of Canaan

"14:1 And it came to pass in the days of Amraphel king of Shinar, Arioch king of Ellasar, Chedorlaomer king of Elam, and Tidal king of nations; 14:2 That these made war with Bera king of Sodom, and with Birsha king of Gomorrah, Shinab king of Admah, and Shemeber king of Zeboiim, and the king of Bela, which is Zoar. 14:3 All these were joined together in the vale of Siddim, which is the salt sea. 14:4 Twelve years they served Chedorlaomer, and in the thirteenth year they rebelled.

14:5 And in the fourteenth year came Chedorlaomer, and the kings that were with him, and smote the Rephaims in Ashteroth Karnaim, and the Zuzims in Ham, and the Emims in Shaveh Kiriathaim, 14:6 And the Horites in their mount Seir, unto Elparan, which is by the wilderness. 14:7 And they returned, and came to Enmishpat, which is Kadesh, and smote all the country of the Amalekites, and also the Amorites, that dwelt in Hazezontamar.

14:8 And there went out the king of Sodom, and the king of Gomorrah, and the king of Admah, and the king of Zeboiim, and the king of Bela (the same is Zoar;) and they joined battle with them in the vale of Siddim; 14:9 With Chedorlaomer the king of Elam, and with Tidal king of nations, and Amraphel king of Shinar, and Arioch king of Ellasar; four kings with five. 14:10 And the vale of Siddim was full of slimepits; and the kings of Sodom and Gomorrah fled, and fell there; and they that remained fled to the mountain. 14:11 And they took all the goods of Sodom and Gomorrah, and all their victuals, and went their way. 14:12 And they took Lot, Abram's brother's son, who dwelt in Sodom, and his goods, and departed." (Genesis 14:1-12 KJV)

Abraham was a peaceful man, but he knew how to fight, and win, if ever he was forced to do so.

"14:13 And there came one that had escaped, and told Abram the Hebrew; for he dwelt in the plain of Mamre the Amorite, brother of Eshcol, and brother of Aner: and these were confederate with Abram. 14:14 And when Abram heard that his brother was taken captive, he armed his trained servants, born in his own house, three hundred and eighteen, and pursued them unto Dan. 14:15 And he divided himself against them, he and his servants, by night, and smote them, and pursued them unto Hobah, which is on the left hand of Damascus. 14:16 And he brought back all the goods, and also brought again his brother Lot, and his goods, and the women also, and the people." (Genesis 14:13-16 KJV)

It was during Abraham's return journey from that battle, while passing Salem, that Abraham was blessed by Melchizedek, who was both the King of Salem and the High Priest of God (terms and appointments that are found fulfilled only in reference to Jesus Christ; see Melchizedek: A Portrayal Of Christ).

"14:17 And the king of Sodom went out to meet him after his return from the slaughter of Chedorlaomer, and of the kings that were with him, at the valley of Shaveh, which is the king's dale. 14:18 And Melchizedek king of Salem brought forth bread and wine: and he was the priest of the most high God. 14:19 And he blessed him, and said, Blessed be Abram of the most high God, possessor of heaven and earth: 14:20 And blessed be the most high God, which hath delivered thine enemies into thy hand. And he gave him tithes of all." (Genesis 14:17-20 KJV)

A few years later, Abraham became more intimately-familiar with Melchizadek's city of Salem - that would one day be the property of Abraham's Israelite descendants (there were no Israelites during Abraham's lifetime - they began from the children of Abraham's grandson Jacob, who the LORD renamed as "Israel"; see Are Levites 'Jews'?). It was at Mount Moriah (see Moriah: Separating The Wheat From The Chaff) that the LORD God sent Abraham to sacrifice his son Isaac - the very same place where God sent His Son to actually be Sacrificed centuries later.

Abraham and Isaac

"22:1 And it came to pass after these things, that God did tempt Abraham, and said unto him, Abraham: and he said, Behold, here I am.

22:2 And he said, Take now thy son, thine only son Isaac, whom thou lovest, and get thee into the land of Moriah; and offer him there for a burnt offering upon one of the mountains which I will tell thee of.

22:3 And Abraham rose up early in the morning, and saddled his ass, and took two of his young men with him, and Isaac his son, and clave the wood for the burnt offering, and rose up, and went unto the place of which God had told him. 22:4 Then on the third day Abraham lifted up his eyes, and saw the place afar off. 22:5 And Abraham said unto his young men, Abide ye here with the ass; and I and the lad will go yonder and worship, and come again to you.

22:6 And Abraham took the wood of the burnt offering, and laid it upon Isaac his son; and he took the fire in his hand, and a knife; and they went both of them together. 22:7 And Isaac spake unto Abraham his father, and said, My father: and he said, Here am I, my son.

And he said, Behold the fire and the wood: but where is the lamb for a burnt offering?

22:8 And Abraham said, My son, God will provide himself a lamb for a burnt offering: so they went both of them together.

22:9 And they came to the place which God had told him of; and Abraham built an altar there, and laid the wood in order, and bound Isaac his son, and laid him on the altar upon the wood. 22:10 And Abraham stretched forth his hand, and took the knife to slay his son. 22:11 And the angel of the LORD called unto him out of heaven, and said, Abraham, Abraham: and he said, Here am I.

22:12 And he said, Lay not thine hand upon the lad, neither do thou any thing unto him: for now I know that thou fearest God, seeing thou hast not withheld thy son, thine only son from me.

22:13 And Abraham lifted up his eyes, and looked, and behold behind him a ram caught in a thicket by his horns: and Abraham went and took the ram, and offered him up for a burnt offering in the stead of his son. 22:14 And Abraham called the name of that place Jehovahjireh: as it is said to this day, In the mount of the LORD it shall be seen.

22:15 And the angel of the LORD called unto Abraham out of heaven the second time, 22:16 And said, By myself have I sworn, saith the LORD, for because thou hast done this thing, and hast not withheld thy son, thine only son: 22:17 That in blessing I will bless thee, and in multiplying I will multiply thy seed as the stars of the heaven, and as the sand which is upon the sea shore; and thy seed shall possess the gate of his enemies; 22:18 And in thy seed shall all the nations of the earth be blessed; because thou hast obeyed my voice." (Genesis 22:1-18 KJV)

The two incidents between Melchizadek and Abraham, in Jerusalem, involving ceremonial bread and wine, and a sacrifice that Christ later Himself fulfilled, had directly-Christian significance - not only long before the time that many people think that "Christians" existed (but they did - see Abraham The Christian), but also long before any Israelites or Jews existed. The explanation of how a faithful and obediently righteous man was worthy to accept the Sacrifice of the only one Who was worthy to declare him righteous, is explained in the book of Hebrews.

Melchizadek and Abraham

"6:13 For when God made promise to Abraham, because he could swear by no greater, he sware by himself, 6:14 Saying, Surely blessing I will bless thee, and multiplying I will multiply thee. 6:15 And so, after he had patiently endured, he obtained the promise.

6:16 For men verily swear by the greater: and an oath for confirmation is to them an end of all strife. 6:17 Wherein God, willing more abundantly to show unto the heirs of promise the immutability of his counsel, confirmed it by an oath: 6:18 That by two immutable things, in which it was impossible for God to lie, we might have a strong consolation, who have fled for refuge to lay hold upon the hope set before us: 6:19 Which hope we have as an anchor of the soul, both sure and stedfast, and which entereth into that within the veil; 6:20 Whither the forerunner is for us entered, even Jesus, made an high priest for ever after the order of Melchisedec." (Hebrews 6:13-20 KJV)

"7:1 For this Melchisedec, king of Salem, priest of the most high God, who met Abraham returning from the slaughter of the kings, and blessed him; 7:2 To whom also Abraham gave a tenth part of all; first being by interpretation King of righteousness, and after that also King of Salem, which is, King of peace; 7:3 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.

7:4 Now consider how great this man was, unto whom even the patriarch Abraham gave the tenth of the spoils. 7:5 And verily they that are of the sons of Levi, who receive the office of the priesthood, have a commandment to take tithes of the people according to the law, that is, of their brethren, though they come out of the loins of Abraham: 7:6 But he whose descent is not counted from them received tithes of Abraham, and blessed him that had the promises. 7:7 And without all contradiction the less is blessed of the better. 7:8 And here men that die receive tithes; but there he receiveth them, of whom it is witnessed that he liveth. 7:9 And as I may so say, Levi also, who receiveth tithes, payed tithes in Abraham. 7:10 For he was yet in the loins of his father, when Melchisedec met him." (Hebrews 7:1-10 KJV)

King David also understood what the foundation of "Salem" meant, and Who it meant, as we will cover, in detail, in a subsequent study in this series.

"76:1 To the chief Musician on Neginoth, A Psalm or Song of Asaph. In Judah is God known: his name is great in Israel. 76:2 In Salem also is his tabernacle, and his dwelling place in Zion. 76:3 There brake he the arrows of the bow, the shield, and the sword, and the battle. Selah.

76:4 Thou art more glorious and excellent than the mountains of prey. 76:5 The stouthearted are spoiled, they have slept their sleep: and none of the men of might have found their hands. 76:6 At thy rebuke, O God of Jacob, both the chariot and horse are cast into a dead sleep. 76:7 Thou, even thou, art to be feared: and who may stand in thy sight when once thou art angry? 76:8 Thou didst cause judgment to be heard from heaven; the earth feared, and was still, 76:9 When God arose to judgment, to save all the meek of the earth. Selah.

76:10 Surely the wrath of man shall praise thee: the remainder of wrath shalt thou restrain. 76:11 Vow, and pay unto the LORD your God: let all that be round about him bring presents unto him that ought to be feared. 76:12 He shall cut off the spirit of princes: he is terrible to the kings of the earth." (Psalm 76:1-12 KJV)

Fact Finder: Who was and is the "foundation" of Salem / Jerusalem?
See From The Foundation Of The World and The Rock Of The Church


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This Day In History, January 22

871: The forces of Ethelred of Wessex fought the Danes at the Battle at Basing.

1371: King Robert II of Scotland ascended to the throne.

1506: The first contingent of 150 Swiss Guards arrived at the Vatican.

1517: The Battle of Raydaniyah near Cairo, Egypt. Ottoman Empire ruler Selim I defeated the Mamluk armies and invaded Cairo 7 days later, bringing Egypt under Ottoman rule (listen to our Sermon The Ottoman Empire).

1528: A declaration of war was made by England and France against Holy Roman Emperor Charles V (see The Holy Roman Empire).

1760: During the Seven Years War, the French under Lally-Tollendal were defeated by an Indian-British force at the Battle of Wandiwash in India.

1771: After a dispute that had gone on since the islands were discovered in 1592, Spain conceded that the Falkland Islands were British territory.

1775: The Jews of Warsaw, Poland were ordered expelled by Marshal Oscar von Lubomirski.

1840: The earliest British colonists arrived in New Zealand, at Port Nicholson.

1879: During the British-Zulu War, 830 British troops of the 24th Regiment were massacred at the Battle of Isandhlwana.

1901: After a reign of 64 years (1837 to 1901), Queen Victoria of Britain died at age 82.

1941: Tobruk was captured from Italian forces by Britain and Australia.

1944: During the Second World War, allied forced landed at Anzio.

1957: Israel's military withdrew from the Sinai Peninsula.

1973: The U.S. Supreme Court "legalized" (in their eyes, not in God's Eyes) the Satanic butchering of God's created children ("139:13 For thou didst form my inward parts, thou didst knit me together in my mother's womb" Psalm 139:13 RSV) during the first 6 months of pregnancy. It became known as "the Roe versus Wade decision." Come the true Judgment Day, the LORD's Decision will have another name for all of those, in all nations, that have committed those millions of atrocities against the unborn.

"8:44 Ye are of your father the devil, and the lusts of your father ye will do. He was a murderer from the beginning" (John 8:44 KJV)

1984: The Apple Macintosh, the first consumer computer to popularize the computer mouse and the graphical user interface, was introduced.


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