A Meal With Melchizedek

Communion September 2022 - Part 1


Rev. Cory Brock

Sept. 24, 2022


Disclaimer: this is an automatically generated machine transcription - there may be small errors or mistranscriptions. Please refer to the original audio if you are in any doubt.

[0:00] It's great to be with all of you. Really happy to be in Lewis for the first time. And tonight and tomorrow we're going to look at three different passages together that are all about the feast, the supper, the meal, which we see not only in the New Testament but also in the Old Testament.

[0:19] And so we're going to look at one from the Old Testament this evening, another one in the morning, and then look at Christ's meal with the disciples after the resurrection tomorrow evening.

[0:29] So Thomas just read for us from Genesis 14, and that is the story of Abrams in Calaner with Melchizedek. And there is a very famous Old Testament scholar, and he says that Melchizedek is the most complicated subject in all of the Bible.

[0:48] So let's figure it out together in the next 30 minutes, that's what we're going to do. Of course that means we can only just highlight and step, dip our toe in the water here.

[1:02] But there are five chapters that Melchizedek shows up in the Bible, that Genesis 14, Psalm 110, Hebrews 5, 6, and 7. That's it, those are the only mentions we have of Melchizedek in all the Bible.

[1:16] And it's no secret at all that when you get to Hebrews, Hebrews connects Melchizedek directly to Jesus Christ and says that Jesus Christ comes to us in the order of Melchizedek, or the succession of Melchizedek.

[1:33] And so that means that when you read about Melchizedek in Genesis 14 or Psalm 110, just like reading Isaiah 53 after you've read the New Testament, you can come back to Isaiah 53 and learn new things because you've read about Jesus and you realize that Isaiah 53, the servant song of Christ was all about him.

[1:57] And the same comes with Melchizedek and actually the New Testament tells us that that's exactly what we have to do in Hebrews 5, 6, and 7, that Jesus Christ comes after the succession of this figure here, the shadow in Genesis 14.

[2:13] So let's look at it together, we're going to briefly think about three things, the king, the feast, and the foil. Okay, so first the king.

[2:24] Now we only read the very last piece of this chapter, but really to understand this encounter with Melchizedek you've got to have a little bit of what's happened already in Genesis 14.

[2:36] Abram, remember back in Genesis 12 was called out of Chaldea to go to the Promised Land. And Genesis 12 and 13 really focus on Abram directly as this man of God that God has called out of Babylon.

[2:53] But then all of a sudden when you get to Genesis 14 there is a complete genre change and it becomes about a military campaign and a conquest. It's not about Abram at all at the beginning of Genesis 14.

[3:05] And what happens is that you have these four kings in Babylon and we read the name of the mightiest of them, Keredor Leomir, if that's the right pronunciation, who knows.

[3:18] And there were three other kings that served alongside with this king and there were regional kings around the area of Shinar. And you'll remember Shinar, Shinar shows up in Genesis 12, it's where the Tower of Babel was built, where these are regional kings all serving under this Babylonian king.

[3:37] And these guys were early colonializers, they had colonies that they had gone and conquered all around the Dead Sea area, one of them being Sodom and Gomorrah.

[3:49] And what happened was these vassal servant kings that they had conquered rise up in revolution against the Babylonian kings. And at the beginning of Genesis 14 the four Babylonian kings come together and say, we're going to put this down, we're going to stamp out this revolution.

[4:06] And they go and they go to war with the five kings from the Dead Sea region and the Babylonian kings easily defeat them. Now in the midst of that there was one city, Sodom.

[4:20] And in Sodom there was a man and his name was Lot and he was Abrams nephew and he gets captured in the midst of this war and exiled and taken away.

[4:33] And that's why Abram comes into the scene. Now look, before we figure out what Abrams, what, before we see what Abram's going to do here, it's very important to say that even now, you know, one of the common pieces of Jewish interpretation of the Old Testament that we see even before Jesus Christ was born is a line like this that the sons of the fathers in the Old Testament live the lives of the fathers.

[5:02] And if you think about Abram's story so far, this makes sense. Abram, Abram, just think about it, he was called from Babylon to the Promised Land.

[5:13] And then when he got to the Promised Land he quickly went down to Egypt and his wife was taken into slavery under Pharaoh. And then God plagued Pharaoh's house and they came up out of Egypt on an Exodus story.

[5:28] And then immediately after that they divide the Promised Land between the family and then immediately after that this great empire called Babylon starts a conquest. And then immediately after that the people of God, Abram's family get taken into exile by Babylon.

[5:43] Now have you heard that story? That's the entire story of the Old Testament. And Abram is living what Israel will one day live before Israel ever lives it.

[5:53] The sons of the fathers live the lives of the fathers. That redemptive history is in cycles. And we see it right here in the life of Abram. And here this moment, this moment, sorry my earpiece is a little messed up there we go, I think that's better.

[6:10] This moment is Abram's climax. It's his zenith. It's the pinnacle of his time as a patriarch. And here's why. It's because when Lot gets taken into exile into captivity the text tells us that Abram specifically takes 318 men to do battle against the four kings of Babylon.

[6:33] And he goes in and he defeats the four kings of Babylon. And let the reader understand that that is, that's preposterous. That a man could take 318 men and defeat the four kings of the greatest empire.

[6:49] And he does it. And immediately that picks up in our text in verse 17 it says after this he defeats Caterleom and he returns to the kings valley, the valley of Shave.

[7:03] And you see the point, do you see the point that the text is making? That Abram was this obscure pagan man in Babylon that got slept up by God, taken to the promised land and now by the time you get to Genesis 14 he is an international figure.

[7:19] Not only that he has defeated the four greatest kings in the world with 318 men and it's saying that Abraham, he's not just God's man, he is the king of the world.

[7:33] He's king. There are 11 kings that show up in Genesis 14 and Abram eclipses all of them. He's the greatest and that's where God has moved him from, from this pagan nobody in Babylon all the way to now where he's defeated the greatest military in history so far in the world and he is totally eclipsed in this passage.

[8:04] When Melchizedek shows up in verse 18 the king of the world Abram is nothing. He's a second player. He's not important anymore.

[8:17] The entire narrative of Genesis 14 is trying to establish the fact that Abram has reached the pinnacle in ancient Near Eastern history of what a man and a successful man can be but when he appears in the Kings Valley and Melchizedek shows up he fades away into the background.

[8:35] He becomes nothing but the second player. This is a highly organized text and let me show you this. If you look down you can see in verse 17 the logic of the text.

[8:47] It says that after the return from the defeat of the kings the king of Sodom went to meet Abram at the valley of Shavay, the Kings Valley and the section about Melchizedek is from verses 18 down to 20 and if you have a Bible you can see this really clearly.

[9:06] If you just skip 18 to 20 and go straight to 21 it says this at the end of 17 the king of Sodom went out to meet Abram in the valley of Shavay and the king of Sodom said to Abram.

[9:21] So verse 21 just says and the king of Sodom said and that means that from verse 17 to verse 21 that's where the logic of the story should pick up. The king of Sodom went out to meet Abram and the king of Sodom said to Abram but in the middle there are three verses that are shouting at you that they're so importantly placed right there that they almost don't fit and it's meant to say that there's something happening here that's strange.

[9:53] There's something happening here that's shadowy and it's this strange figure Abram, sorry Melchizedek. Now if you want a job in 2022 maybe you're out today looking for jobs at the moment.

[10:07] If you want a job in 2022 you've got to have marketable skills. You've got to have some training in the thing that you're trying to get a job in and you've got to get your CV together and you've got to go out and show people.

[10:20] Now the same thing was the case in the ancient Near East. There was no difference. In the ancient Near East there was something very important for if you wanted to be somebody, if you wanted to have a title and that was who your dad was.

[10:35] Who your father was was everything. Your bloodline, where you came from, how much land you owned, what land you did come from that was everything and that's everything in the book of Genesis.

[10:49] The entirety of the book of Genesis is organized according to ten genealogies and so bloodline and family name is incredibly important in the book of Genesis. When you come to Melchizedek Hebrews 7 picks it up.

[11:05] We see his CV. We see Melchizedek's CV very clearly. If you ask the question who is this man, Hebrews 7.3 says he had no beginning and no ending.

[11:18] He was without father and without mother. In other words Hebrews 7 is doing one of the more famous Sherlock Holmes story the dog barking in the night did.

[11:32] You remember how Sherlock figured out what was going on in the dog barking in the night story. It was that there was only one night where the dog didn't bark. It was an argument from silence.

[11:42] The one time the dog didn't bark he knew something was up. Hebrews 7 is saying when you get to Genesis 14 and you don't have a genealogy, you don't have anything about Melchizedek.

[11:56] Genesis never does that. Every time Genesis introduces a figure it gives you a history and a background and who their dad was and all sorts of things who their sons are. But with Melchizedek it's an argument from silence.

[12:07] Hebrews 7 picks up on it. He has no father. He has no mother. He has no beginning. He has no ending. That's who he is. And so John Calvin says this. This Melchizedek, whoever he was, is presented before us without origins as if he had dropped from the clouds and his name is buried without any mention of death.

[12:29] Who is he? From whom? Calvin says no one knows. All right, that's who. No, where does he live? Well, the text tells us where he lives. It says that he's from Salem.

[12:40] That he's the king of Salem. And there were, we know now, many salams, places called Salem in the ancient Near East. But when you get to Hebrews 7, Hebrews 7 too says he was from the city and Hebrews interprets it for us because it takes the Hebrew letters, S-L-M, and translates it and said that he's from the city of Shalom in Hebrew, which is the city of peace, which is another way to say Salem, peace.

[13:11] And the king's valley, the valley of Shavay in the ancient, in the geography of the Promised Land is only a couple of kilometers outside the hills of Mount Moriah, which is where one day the city of Jerusalem will be established.

[13:25] And so there's every indication from the text that this man who is without father and mother has no beginning and no ending is from the Salem that will later be called Jerusalem, the city of peace.

[13:39] And so that's where he's from, that's where he lives. And then finally, what is he? And we're told first that he is king of Salem, that he's the king here. That's actually, Hebrews makes it explicit, but here it's built into his name.

[13:53] Melchizedek in Hebrew means my king of righteousness or my king is righteous, one of the two. And so his name is that my king is righteousness.

[14:05] He's from Jerusalem. He has no beginning and no ending. No genealogy whatsoever. And he comes into the middle of a text that almost it doesn't even make sense how he can be there in the king's valley itself.

[14:18] And you say, who is this? Now this was a question that people brought up for century after century. Who is Melchizedek? And you can go read this question in Jewish interpretations of the Old Testament even before Jesus was ever born.

[14:35] And one of the most common things you'll see there is they'll say over and over again that Melchizedek, perhaps he's an archangel. That was one of the common guesses. But since the New Testament, Christian theologians over and over again throughout the century have said the same thing.

[14:53] Number one, the only right answer who is Melchizedek, I don't know. That's the first right answer because the author of Hebrews doesn't know.

[15:03] The author of Hebrews does not say explicitly. But the second thing that Christian theologians, that biblical commentators, that Christians for 2,000 years have said is this man is at least the shadow, the symbol.

[15:19] He's pointing to something that looks like the Son of God. And Hebrews 7 comes and says that Melchizedek was in the order, sorry, Christ was in the order of Melchizedek and that Melchizedek was one who looked like the Son of God.

[15:36] And then you've got David and Psalm 110 look up into the heavenly vision and say the Lord said to my Lord, God the Father said to God the Son. And then David said, and I saw one that looked like the Son of man after the order of Melchizedek.

[15:55] And to David, David had only read Genesis and he said when he saw the Son of God in the heavenly realm that he looked like one that would be like Melchizedek.

[16:06] And you see that means number one, you have to say I don't know, but number two, this looks like the Son of God entering into human history.

[16:16] The Son of God showing up in the middle of the Abraham story and condescending and coming down. And look, here's what it teaches. The first thing, remember point one is the King.

[16:27] It says in Hebrews that Jesus Christ, when he comes into the world, he comes in the succession or the order of Melchizedek. And there's so much to say about that.

[16:37] But the first thing we have to say is this, that it's saying that there is a King, there is a King who stands apart from all bloodlines, who doesn't come in the succession of the house of Windsor.

[16:55] There's a King who stands outside of all other monarchies and is before and for and through and unto and all the prepositions you can think of.

[17:06] There is a King in the order of Melchizedek, meaning a King that stands outside of space and time who has kingly reign. You see, that's what it's saying that Melchizedek's kingship has no beginning and no end.

[17:19] It doesn't have a genealogy. Every other kingship, every other monarchy of human history has a bloodline and it's the only institution we really still have that's completely based on blood.

[17:32] But this kingship, this order of Melchizedek is totally other. In other words, it's saying that when Jesus Christ shows up in the world, you can know that the King who stands apart from all other blood, stands outside of bloodline, has shown up in the middle of history.

[17:51] And that's the King of creation and that's the order of Melchizedek, the succession of Melchizedek, a monarchy that is from God himself.

[18:02] Now there's a reason I was reading recently from a Dutch theologian by the name of a Johann Herman Boving, who's a Missiologist at the Free University of Amsterdam.

[18:17] And he has a thesis, a book on the world religions. Boving went and studied the world religions all over the world, especially in Indonesia for many, many years in the middle of the 20th century.

[18:31] And he read this book where he talks about these magnetic points and they are these things that he talks about where the human heart everywhere he goes seems to be drawn to the same things.

[18:42] And he lists five or ten different magnetic points where every human no matter what culture they were raised in, no matter what they believe in, what religion they seem to long for.

[18:53] And one of the significant ones he mentions in his book is that every single place he goes there is always narratives, mythologies, stories and legends where everybody desires above all a good king, the lost king in fact.

[19:10] And there's a reason that when you open all the great fairy tales that they're almost always the same. And that's that there used to be a great king and then that king was lost.

[19:22] And if we could just bring him back to the throne and reestablish the one monarchy that we all remember then everything would be good. There would be peace in the land again. It would be like Jerusalem, the city of peace, the city of Shalom all over again.

[19:36] That's why the great completely fake but wonderful mythology of the United Kingdom, the Lord of the Rings. It's all about it. There's a man, you know that's what the story is really about.

[19:46] There's a king and he's been lost for centuries and he's hidden in the north. He's a ranger and if he could come back and be seated on the throne peace would come to the land again. There's a reason that every human wants a good king and it's because there is one.

[20:01] And he's a king after the order of Melchizedek he stands outside of all bloodline and he comes to us as the king of creation shown up in the middle of history to be the king of new creation.

[20:15] And we're about to see in just a moment that this king, Melchizedek, the king is going to give you a feast. And the very first thing we learn if we were to think about this purely through the lens of the Lord's Supper, which we'll see in just a moment, is that when you come and you meet the king after the order of Melchizedek and the king breaks bread for you, the king is, you see what the Lord's Supper says?

[20:41] It says the king of creation wants to feast with you. The king who made everything from nothing.

[20:52] He wants to break bread with you. He wants to dine with you. That's the proclamation of the Lord's Supper. Now secondly, the feast.

[21:02] And we see it right here, the feast. Here Melchizedek is called the priest of El Eleon in Hebrew. That's the king of the most high God, the king of Yah, the, sorry, the priest of the most high God, the priest of Yahweh himself, the God we know from the Bible.

[21:22] And the other thing we're told here is that he is a priest. He's not only a king, but he's also a priest. And we see him very quickly here when Melchizedek encounters Abram, he is, as one commentator puts it, he immediately starts preasting if we could make up a verb.

[21:41] And the way you see that is he, he first, he breaks bread and gives bread and wine to Abram. And then right after that he pronounces a benediction over Abram and says, blessed be Abram, by God most high.

[21:57] He speaks in the name of God most high. And then he tells Abram that he's delivered his enemies and then Abram responds by giving Melchizedek a tenth of everything that he has.

[22:10] And so there's a threefold process here. The priest breaks bread for Abram and gives him a feast. The priest pronounces the blessing upon Abram and then Abram responds by giving a tithe.

[22:27] Now there's two things that are very significant about that. One is that is the exact order of approaching the temple in the Old Testament that we're going to see when the book of Leviticus comes.

[22:43] Now this is long, long before the Levitical system will ever be instituted. Long before. But what you're going to find out in Leviticus is that when you come to make a sacrifice at the temple, after God instills the Levitical system at the temple, you will come and you will make the sacrifice.

[23:02] The priest will do it for you. But then the priest after the sacrifice will do what with you? He shares the meat or the grain with you.

[23:13] That was left over from the sacrifice and he sits down at the table and he eats with you. That was the normal process. So when you would come, if you were an ancient Israelite, you would bring your sacrifice and it would be offered up and the fumes would burn.

[23:28] But what was left over, the priest would actually share a meal with you. And then what would the priest do right after he shared a meal with you? He broke bread with you. He would stand up and put his hand up and he would pronounce a blessing in the name of God most high over you.

[23:44] And you would have given, you would give your portion to the temple, your tithe. And we see all three occurrences right here well before the Levitical system is ever instituted.

[23:54] Now that's very significant. Keep that in your mind. The second thing we see here, that's very significant and briefly, is that if you've read through the Old Testament carefully, one of the things you may have noticed is that the priest and the king are offices in the Old Testament that cannot be mixed.

[24:17] There are no priests and kings simultaneously in the Old Testament. The king cannot be the priest. The priest cannot be the king.

[24:27] And even Saul himself in 1 Samuel 13 was cursed by God. Why? Because the king went into the temple and made a sacrifice like a priest.

[24:38] And so he was cursed. Priests cannot be kings and kings cannot be priests. And the reason for that is really important. You see, what does a king do? The king is the judge in the ancient Near East of the land.

[24:51] He's the one that tries criminals. He brings people to court. He executes justice upon the land. He tries to keep the peace. But the priest represents the people to God.

[25:03] He stands between you and God, the sinner and God, and brings reconciliation through sacrifice. He prays for the people. The priest was also the public health official.

[25:17] He went out and checked on the sick. He marked down in his notebook who had leprosy and who didn't. He visited the poor. And God says that no one man can ever do both.

[25:33] No one man can be the judge of the land, the man who's supposed to bring justice to creation, and at the same time be the man who could make a sacrifice to reconcile God to creation.

[25:47] That no one person could do that. And as soon as Melchizedek shows up before Abram, you as the reader, you're supposed to be asking a question.

[25:59] And that's this. Is it possible, is it possible that there could be one man that could be both king and priest at the same time?

[26:12] Is it possible? A man who could bring justice to the land, who could bring in peace finally, the role of the king, and at the same time a man who could reconcile humanity with God in the very same moment.

[26:25] Is that possible? And you see the order of Melchizedek is saying, two things, is saying that the succession of Melchizedek is a kingly succession that's outside of space and time that's bigger than bloodline.

[26:38] But it's also saying the order of Melchizedek is that it is possible that there could be one, one that could be simultaneously priest and king in the very same moment, that there could be one.

[26:53] And Jesus Christ has come in the order of Melchizedek. The priest king has entered. The king of creation who is outside of all bloodline and the man who could be both priest and king, both offices simultaneously, he came and he entered in.

[27:09] And when you look at that Levitical sequence that Melchizedek breaks bread and offers wine, he pronounces benediction and then you respond by giving yourself to him.

[27:23] You know what that's saying? It's saying that every time you see the feast show up in the Bible that the priesting has already taken place. The priesting, you know, the sacrifice.

[27:34] When if bread is being broken and wine is being offered, that means sacrifice has already happened. And that's when Melchizedek shows up to Abram and he says, I've got bread and wine for you.

[27:47] He's saying, you have already been reconciled to God. You've already been. The priesting's already done. Abram, Christ, person in 2022, understand that when Jesus Christ says, I have a feast for you, it's his pronouncement that because I am both king and priest simultaneously, the work is finished.

[28:14] The priesting's over with. If I have bread for you, take it. There's nothing for you to do. It's already done. The priest came.

[28:25] He reconciled God to man. The king came. He established justice forever. He is the priest king who has done the priesting. And that means that you can come to the table on no condition, but his, his work alone.

[28:40] You know, do you know that it's not your faith even that saves you? Your faith, we say properly Westminster Confession is the instrument of your salvation. It is not your salvation.

[28:53] Faith is the path of receiving. But how are you saved? Everything that Jesus does. He did it all. He did the priesting for you.

[29:03] And so the table, the feast says, you know, when bread shows up and when wine shows up in the Bible, that is God saying, the work is finished.

[29:13] You can't do anything to add to it or just come and receive. Take and eat, eat my body and drink my blood because I have reconciled God to man.

[29:26] I've done this for you. Come and eat. He's the priest and the king. All right. Finally, finally, Abram here at the very end, we see him.

[29:38] He gives a tent to Melchizedek and he responds. You know, he, that's very important. It's very important. Did you notice the order?

[29:49] It wasn't that Abram gave a tent of all he owned so that he could get bread and wine. But it's exactly the reverse that God says, I've done the priesting for you.

[30:01] Reconciliation has been done by someone outside of you, Abram, a priest that you are looking forward to. And then bread and wine is offered and only then does Abram give the tent.

[30:12] In other words, you know, you don't, you don't give yourself, you don't give the tent in order to get the bread and wine. The bread and wine is God's gospel gift so that then you can respond.

[30:25] In other words, what it's saying here is that the feast serves, the Lord's supper serves here to actually strengthen us. It's a meal that, that says to you no matter where you are, if you just bow, if you just come in faith as a sinner, that you can have what Christ has offered and that then, then the supper strengthens you to go and serve, to go and be like him.

[30:49] And that's what we see here at the very last thing that we've seen the king, the feast, finally very briefly, the foil. Verse 21, after Abram gives his tent, then we have the king of Sodom show back up again.

[31:02] The king of Sodom says to Abram, give me the persons but take the goods for yourself. But Abram said, I've lifted my hand to the Lord, God must tie and I will not take a threat or sandal strap that is yours, lest you say I've made Abram rich.

[31:19] Look, Abram's just had an encounter with Melchizedek, the priest king, the king of Salem, the king of peace, the king of righteousness, the one who can offer God's reconciliation, the one who can keep the feast and can offer the feast.

[31:37] And now immediately understand that what Moses the writer wants you to see is when he turns and there's another king standing there, Sodom, the king of Sodom, that that's meant to be seen as a foil, as the exact opposite.

[31:52] He's got Melchizedek on his one side and then the king of Sodom on his other side. And the king, Melchizedek says, you can have the feast of God and let it strengthen your heart.

[32:04] And then he turns and the king of Sodom says, now give me a portion of your goods. Give me a tenth like you gave that guy. And Abram says, I have sworn to God, I will not give you anything.

[32:17] And look, understand what's happening here. When you read Old Testament commentators on this, they will point this out very clearly that it's no coincidence here that this is the king of Sodom.

[32:29] We all know, if you've read a little bit of Genesis, you know what's about to happen to Sodom. You know what's coming with Sodom. Sodom is the most heinous and wicked place after the Noeic flood.

[32:42] And that means that what Abram's, what's happening here is at moment like the Garden of Eden all over again. Abram's seen the Son of God show up and offer him the feast.

[32:54] And then all of a sudden, there's the serpent standing right next to him, another king, the king of this world. And the king of this world, the king of Sodom, the place in Genesis of wickedness says, now come and serve me.

[33:10] And it's happening all over again. Abram is being encountered right here just like the serpent encountered Adam and Eve. And he's being given a choice. And he's saying, Abram, you're a sinner.

[33:21] You were a pagan. I pulled you out of the land of Babylon. And today I've pronounced over you that because of your faith, you are righteous in the eyes of God.

[33:31] And here's the feast. Here's the bread and wine. I want to dine with you, God says. And then the serpent comes alongside him and says, no, no, no.

[33:41] Look, bow, you give me this and I'll give you all the lands. And in Matthew chapter four, the one in the order of Melchizedek, the priest king, he stands in the wilderness and he's got everything, but he's given it all away.

[33:59] And now the serpent stands before him and says, look, bow before me and I will give it all to you. Just give me a tenth even and you can have all the land. You can have the world back.

[34:10] And this Abram's in it. He's in the thick of it right here. He's in the temptation. It's right here. And the only thing I want to say about it, and there's lots we could say about it is this, the feast, the Lord's Supper, the Lord's Supper is the place where Jesus Christ comes in real presence by the Holy Spirit to feast with us.

[34:37] And when you take the Lord's Supper, it is God's gift to you and pronouncement over you that you are his child so that you can step back into the world and be exactly what he made you to be and have strength.

[34:53] And Abram faces the king of Sodom right here and he defeats him. He defeats the serpent. And I think it's only because he has had the feast. He's met with God.

[35:05] The real presence of God in the feast. And he's able to be strong. And look, what is it that God calls you to do? If you come and you take and eat, what are you?

[35:17] And we find out at the end of the Bible, Revelation 1.6 tells us that Jesus Christ and all he did has made us into the kingdom of priests.

[35:28] And so when you come and you eat from the hand of the priest king himself, you are a priest. And the world strengthened as a priest of the most high God, L.L.

[35:38] Leon, right here, in a way, in a way, after the order of Melchizedek. And you go and what does a priest do? A priest prays for the people.

[35:51] A priest prays for the world. A priest represents the world to God. A priest says, I go out into the world with my eyes wide open. My consciousness awake to serve the king.

[36:04] And a priest is the arm of compassion to the poor and the old time. A priest is the one who represents God to the world and the world to God. And you go forth in that manner after you keep the feast.

[36:18] The feast strengthens you. And so know that tomorrow morning that the Lord's supper is here, that you might hear God say to you that the king of creation wants to eat with you.

[36:33] He wants to sit at the table with you. Not just tomorrow, but forever. And that the priest king has already priested. He's already sacrificed. Jesus Christ has already gone to the cross.

[36:46] And so you bring nothing to the table but repentance, bowing before him, but faith and saying, I've got nothing. I just, I need God. And God shows up in the feast.

[36:58] The real presence by the Holy Spirit and he strengthens you and he sends you back forth to be the priests of the new creation. Let's pray together. Father, we ask tonight that as we prepare our hearts for tomorrow that you would help us to know your pronouncements in the Lord's Supper and that you've been doing it all the way from the beginning, from Genesis 14.

[37:22] So we give thanks for shadowy figures like Melchizedek. And we ask, Father, that you would teach us and strengthen our hearts tonight by the Holy Spirit so that we would know great strength tomorrow by the Holy Spirit as we keep the feast.

[37:38] And so we pray for these hearts in Christ's name. Amen.