In Chapter 4 verse 4:15, as well as Lev 4 and Numbers 15:27-19 we are essentially given the qualifications of becoming a High Priest. They are to be sympathetic, gentle and patient with those who go spiritually astray through unintentional sin or ignorance. He also must be appointed by God. Jesus is more than qualified to be the ultimate High Priest.
6 In another place he said, "You are a priest forever, just like Melchizedek." (Psalm 110:4)
Melchizedek is a mysterious figure in the OT. He is either the High Priest or King of Salem (believed to become known later as Jerusalem). This was before the time that the priesthood was actually established according to God's law, through the Israelite tribe of Levi. Christ Priesthood is the same as Melchizedek in the way that he represents God to man and man to God and his priesthood has no end. The Bible does not say that Melchizedek inherited his priesthood or passed it on. This could be symbolic of how there has never been a priest before like Jesus and will never be another like Jesus. He is the only mediator we will ever need with the Father. (this information is taken directly from the Fire Bible study notes)
7 Jesus prayed while he lived on earth. He made his appeal with loud cries and tears. He prayed to the One who could save him from death. God heard him because he truly honored God.
The above verses really portray the passion and agony that Jesus felt, knowing he was going to become our sacrifice. Jesus was so intense that we are even told in Matt 26:31-46 that he sweat drops of blood. God heard Jesus' pray but still did not remove all of his pain and anguish but he did receive God's grace. This symbolized our own trials and difficulties, God may not remove all of our pain but we can count on him to be there with his grace and mercy. God will give us enough endurance to overcome anything just has he did with his own Son. We have to allow him to do so.
8 Jesus was God's Son. But by suffering he learned what it means to obey.
I would never have thought that Jesus would have to learn to obey, but it is clearly stated that he obeyed while facing intense suffering and temptations. He never had to learn through trial and error because he never failed. So it isn't a matter of just being obedient to the Lord, it is being obedient regardless of our circumstances.
9 In that way he was made perfect. Eternal salvation comes from him. He saves all those who obey him.
Here we are reassured that when we follow this obedience, no matter what, that we will have eternal salvation. What an amazing promise. We are taught to be Christ like and that will transform us and our relationship with God the Father.
10 God appointed him to be the high priest, just like Melchizedek.
This is a reaffirmation that Christ is our High Priest, before any others and long after any others. He alone, is the one who can forgive our sins and become a sacrifice for us.
A Warning Against Falling Away
11 We have a lot to say about that. But it is hard to explain it to you. You learn too slowly. 12 By this time you should be teachers. But in fact, you need someone to teach you all over again. You need even the simple truths of God's word. You need milk, not solid food.
The people receiving this letter and many Christians today are being admonished here. We have seen all that Jesus has done for us, we have read the word, we know God's truths but we are not taking it to the next level. We aren't teaching others what we know about the Priesthood of Jesus himself and the sacrifices he made for us. Ask yourself, when is the last time I presented the Gospel to someone and if you haven't, ask yourself why not. Do you need to be taught all over again. What a great question.
13 Anyone who lives on milk is still a baby. That person does not want to learn about living a godly life. 14 Solid food is for those who are grown up. They have trained themselves with a lot of practice. They can tell the difference between good and evil.
If you are immature in your Christian walk it is hard to know the difference between good and evil. But as you mature in your Christian walk you will have been trained and have discernment about such things. Through obedience and practice of God's word and the renewing of your mind in Christ you can know the difference between good and evil. You can begin to disciple others. You are getting solid food from God's word.