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Hebrews 7:2

    Hebrews 7:2 Translations

    King James Version (KJV)

    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;

    American King James Version (AKJV)

    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;

    American Standard Version (ASV)

    to whom also Abraham divided a tenth part of all (being first, by interpretation, King of righteousness, and then also King of Salem, which is King of peace;

    Basic English Translation (BBE)

    And to whom Abraham gave a tenth part of everything which he had, being first named King of righteousness, and then in addition, King of Salem, that is to say, King of peace;

    Webster's Revision

    to whom also Abraham divided a tenth part of all (being first, by interpretation, King of righteousness, and then also King of Salem, which is King of peace;

    World English Bible

    to whom also Abraham divided a tenth part of all (being first, by interpretation, king of righteousness, and then also king of Salem, which is king of peace;

    English Revised Version (ERV)

    to whom also Abraham divided a tenth part of all (being first, by interpretation, King of righteousness, and then also King of Salem, which is, King of peace;

    Clarke's Commentary on Hebrews 7:2

    Gave a tenth part of all - It was an ancient custom, among all the nations of the earth, to consecrate a part or tenth of the spoils taken in war to the objects of their worship. Many examples of this kind occur. This however was not according to any provision in law, but merely ad libitum, and as a eucharistic offering to those to whom they imagined they owed the victory. But neither Abraham's decimation, nor theirs, had any thing to do, either with tithes as prescribed under the Mosaic dispensation, or as claimed under the Christian.

    Barnes' Notes on Hebrews 7:2

    To whom also Abraham gave a tenth part of all - That is, a tenth part of all the spoils which he had taken Genesis 14:20, thus acknowledging that in dignity of office Melchizedek was greatly his superior; Hebrews 7:4, Hebrews 7:6, Hebrews 7:8. This does not appear to have been on the part of Abraham so much designed as a present to Melchizedek personally, as an act of pious thankfulness to God. He doubtless recognized in Melchizedek one who was a minister of God, and to him as such he devoted the tenth of all which he had taken, as a proper acknowledgment of the goodness of God and of his claims. From this it is evident that the propriety of devoting a tenth part of what was possessed to God, was regarded as a duty before the appointment of the Levitical law. "Some" expression of this kind is obviously demanded, and piety seems early to have fixed on the "tenth" part as being no more than a proper proportion to consecrate to the service of religion. For the propriety of the use which the apostle makes of this fact, see the notes on Hebrews 7:4, Hebrews 7:6, Hebrews 7:8.

    First being - The "first" idea in the interpretation of his name and office, etc. First being mentioned as king of righteousness, and then as king of peace.

    King of righteousness - The literal translation of the name Melchizedek; see the notes on ver. 1. The "argument" implied in this by the remarks of the apostle is, that he bore a name which made him a proper emblem of the Messiah. There was a propriety that one in whose "order" the Messiah was to be found, should have such a name. It would be exactly descriptive of him, and it was "worthy of observation" that he of whose "order" it was said the Messiah would be, should have had such a name. Paul does not say that this name was given to him with any such reference; or that it was "designed" to be symbolical of what the Messiah would be, but that there was a "remarkable coincidence;" that it was a fact which was worth at least "a passing thought." This is a kind of remark that might occur to anyone to make, and where the slight use which Paul makes of it would not be improper anywhere; but it cannot be denied that to one accustomed to the Jewish mode of reasoning - accustomed to dwell much on hidden meanings, and to trace out concealed analogies, it would be much more obvious and striking than it is with us.

    We are to place ourselves in the situation of those to whom Paul wrote - trained up with Jewish feelings, and Jewish modes of thought, and to ask how this would strike "their" minds. And this is no more unreasonable than it would be in interpreting a Greek classic, or a work of a Hindu philosopher, that we should endeavor to place ourselves in the situation of the writer and of those for whom he wrote, and ascertain what ideas would be conveyed to them by certain expressions. It is not meant by these observations that there was really no intrinsic force in what Paul here said respecting the import of the "name." There was force; and all the use which he makes of it is proper. His meaning appears to be merely that it was a fact worthy of remark, that the "name" had a meaning which corresponded so entirely with the character of him who was to be a high priest of the same "order." "And after that." He is mentioned after that with another appellation equally significant.

    King of peace - A literal translation of the appellation "king of Salem;" Hebrews 7:1. The idea of Paul is, that it was "worthy of remark" that the appellation which he bore was appropriate to one whose ministry it was said the priesthood of the Messiah would resemble.

    Wesley's Notes on Hebrews 7:2

    7:2 Being first - According to the meaning of his own name. King of righteousness, then - According to the name of his city. King of peace - So in him, as in Christ, righteousness and peace were joined. And so they are in all that believe in him.