And Melchizedek king of Salem brought forth bread and wine: and he was the priest of the most high God. And he blessed him, and said, Blessed be Abram of the most high God, possessor of heaven and earth: And blessed be the most high God, which hath delivered thine enemies into thy hand. And he gave him tithes of all. Genesis 14:18-20
In this section of the book of Genesis, a most interesting of Bible characters shows up; a man by the name of Melchizedek. He is mentioned in several other scriptures; most notably in Hebrews 7, where he is set forth as an obvious and wonderful type of Jesus Christ.
Now, isn't it great how the Bible gets bigger every time you read it? It's like someone puts something in that wasn't there last time. I've read this story dozens of times, but I've never noticed that Melchizedek brought bread and wine. And it was that part of the story that stuck out to me today.
Here's the application I believe we can make. In the context, Melchizedek came out and met Abram in celebration, in honor of his victory over the rebellion of Chedorlaomer. As part of that celebration, Melchizedek came with bread and wine.
What does that bread and wine remind you of as a NT Christian? The first thing that comes to my mind is the Lord's supper. Now, what is the purpose of our gathering together around the Lord's table? Is it not to remember our Savior and to show His death till He come (1 Corinthians 11:26)?
So what's the correlation? Herein lies the blessing; Jesus' death, the death we commemorate with bread and wine, was not a defeat. It was a victory. And just as Melchizedek celebrated Abraham's victory over Chedorlaomer with bread and wine, so we commemorate the Lord's victory over sin, death, hell, and the grave by partaking of bread and wine. Praise the Lord, our Savior lives!
Who appeared in glory, and spake of his [Jesus'] decease which he should accomplish at Jerusalem. Luke 9:31
Forasmuch then as the children are partakers of flesh and blood, he also himself likewise took part of the same; that through death he might destroy him that had the power of death, that is, the devil. Hebrews 2:14
But thanks be to God, which giveth us the victory through our Lord Jesus Christ. Therefore, my beloved brethren, be ye steadfast, unmovable, always abounding in the work of the Lord, forasmuch as ye know that your labor is not in vain in the Lord. 1 Corinthians 15:57-58