GOD PAUSE DAILY DEVOTIONS

Looking for spiritual refreshment? God Pause email devotions are short, meaningful reflections on the following Sunday's lessons and gospel delivered directly to your email box. By Sunday, you'll be ready for an extra meaningful worship experience. 

Our devotion writers are Luther Seminary alumni. Their reflections are a gift to you and to the church.

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Wednesday, October 17, 2012

Last year, a participant in my Adult Sunday School class asked if I could teach one lesson on Melchizedek. "Sure," I quickly responded. When I returned to my office, I asked myself, "Who is Melchizedek?"

He's mentioned just once in the book of Genesis. Abraham was in the middle of multiple difficulties with his nephew Lot, and then found himself fighting a war among many kings. Not such a heroic moment for Abraham.

Into this scene enters Melchizedek, whose name means "King of Righteousness." He is identified as the "King of Salem" or "King of peace." He offers Abraham bread and wine, and then disappears. This seems eerily familiar.

Melchizedek was a Messiah-like presence in the Hebrew Scriptures. It's no wonder that the early Christians identified their Savior Jesus with Melchizedek. So who is Melchizedek? He is a message to us that God always has been and always will be present in the lives of his people.

Lord God, make me attentive to the ways that you are working in and around me. Keep me always ready and willing to offer the gift of Godly presence to someone in need. Amen.

Sara Spohr
Southwood Lutheran Church, Lincoln, Neb.
Master of Divinity , 2005

Hebrews 5:1-10 (NRSV)

1 Every high priest chosen from among mortals is put in charge of things pertaining to God on their behalf, to offer gifts and sacrifices for sins.

2 He is able to deal gently with the ignorant and wayward, since he himself is subject to weakness;

3 and because of this he must offer sacrifice for his own sins as well as for those of the people.

4 And one does not presume to take this honor, but takes it only when called by God, just as Aaron was.

5 So also Christ did not glorify himself in becoming a high priest, but was appointed by the one who said to him, "You are my Son, today I have begotten you";

6 as he says also in another place, "You are a priest forever, according to the order of Melchizedek."

7 In the days of his flesh, Jesus offered up prayers and supplications, with loud cries and tears, to the one who was able to save him from death, and he was heard because of his reverent submission.

8 Although he was a Son, he learned obedience through what he suffered;

9 and having been made perfect, he became the source of eternal salvation for all who obey him,

10 having been designated by God a high priest according to the order of Melchizedek.

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This week's devotions are offered by a Luther Seminary alumnus from the graduating class of 1998.