Consider if it said in the bible that only women can teach and be preachers and prophets and men must be silent in the church. Thanks for your opinion. Definitely, the message was more important than the writer—which means the writer was important, but the message more so. The message of Hebrews is most important, because it is part of the Bible. And if a woman wrote it, it must have been important to God to direct her. It is important to me, too, because I wanted other women to have this information, or I would not have written the article. Great read… enjoyed reading through the various other authors you cited as well.
Nicely done. Even though I am heavenly invested in this topic of conversation, I do think it amounts to a debate about how many angels can dance on the head of a pin. But again, I seriously considered writing an entire e-book on this topic… so I am speaking to myself here. Thank you for your nice comment to this article; it is appreciated. I try to show how Jesus treated women as equals as opposed to how they were treated later in church history, and to some extent, today. I have had many debates with my fellow pastors, over the years, that women should have equal opportunities in Christian leadership.
Even at best, they would only lean enough to let a woman lead a small Bible study for women or children. It was as if they would only give in enough to shut down the debate. It is better today, but many male pastors have a long way to go to emulate Jesus in respecting women and their abilities. You said you had considered writing a book on this topic; I think that is a great idea.
You do have the talent and the knowledge. I pray you find the time. Only God knows for certain who wrote this book. Unfortunately, questions about authorship and the ways some heretical groups misused the book of Hebrews, led some people during the patristic period to doubt if Hebrews should be included in the New Testament Canon. Of course, notable scholars like Clement of Rome, who died sometime around A. And Justin Martyr, who lived from A.
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But Hebrews was omitted from both the Marcionite Canon, written around A. By the end of the patristic period, however, the majority of influential interpreters in the eastern and western church came to recognize Hebrews as part of the Canon.
And they generally agreed that the apostle Paul was the author. Throughout the medieval period, most leading scholars continued to believe that Paul wrote Hebrews. But during the Reformation, Protestant Reformers questioned many ecclesiastical traditions, including the traditional view of Pauline authorship. Martin Luther suggested that Apollos was the author.
John Calvin didn't suggest an alternative, but he insisted that the book could not have come from Paul. Today, the majority of interpreters reject Pauline authorship. We'll touch on three reasons for this stance. First, as we've already mentioned, this book is anonymous, and it was Paul's practice to name himself in his epistles. In fact, as 2 Thessalonians makes clear, Paul was deeply concerned that forgeries had spread under his name. So, it seems unlikely that he would have failed to identify himself had he written Hebrews.
Second, the book of Hebrews emphasizes subjects that don't receive much, if any, attention in Paul's letters. For instance, the author of Hebrews mentioned Melchizedek three times. He drew attention to the Old Testament tabernacle. And he dealt at length with Christ as the high priest.
Taken together, these themes distinguish the book of Hebrews from books that we know were written by Paul. Third, the strongest reason for doubting Pauline authorship is the way the writer of Hebrews distanced himself from the first generation of Jesus' followers. Listen to the words of Hebrews This salvation, which was first announced by the Lord, was confirmed to us by those who heard him Hebrews Notice here that the author of Hebrews mentioned how salvation was "first announced by the Lord" — in other words, by Jesus himself — and "was confirmed to us by those who heard him.
The author's admission that he received his Christian faith secondarily contrasts with passages like Galatians , 11 and 12, and 1 Corinthians where Paul insisted that he received the gospel directly from Jesus. The short answer to the question, "Who wrote the book of Hebrews? We have some clues as to who he was. Down throughout church history there have been numerous answers as to that question. So, for many years the church thought Paul had written it. I think probably Paul didn't write it because there are differences between Hebrews and Paul's letters.
For instance, Paul often… will always identify himself and then speak to the addressees of the letter. Hebrews doesn't do that. There are themes in Hebrews like Christ as the High Priest that just don't feature very much in Paul's letters. So, Paul's probably not the writer. And yet, we just don't know. I think the most we can say is that the writer of Hebrews was a second-generation believer. In chapter 2 he refers to those who heard from Christ and then handed on what they had heard from Christ, so he seems to be putting himself in that second generation.
Stephen E. We've explored the authorship of the book of Hebrews and seen that the author's identity remains unknown. But we can still construct something of a profile for the author. For the sake of time, we'll point out just two rather obvious features of the author's life. Hellenistic Jew. In the first place, the author of Hebrews was a Hellenistic Jew. Most scholars today agree that Paul did not write Hebrews.
In the end, though, it's best to conclude with Origen that only God really knows. Hebrews' authorship has been debated throughout the years, but this shouldn't prevent us from learning as much as we can about the author and his character from clues found in the text. We can see from the text that both Jewish and Hellenistic influences shaped the author and his book. The author's strong Jewish heritage is evident in his knowledge of the Old Testament. In fact, he quoted the Old Testament at least 31 times in his 13 chapters. It would also appear that the author had a strong Hellenistic upbringing.
In the past, interpreters pointed to the author's use of the Septuagint, the Greek translation of the Old Testament, as evidence that he was a Hellenistic Jew. In the second half of the last century, however, research into the Dead Sea Scrolls has revealed that quotations initially assumed to be directly from the Septuagint, could have come from non-traditional Hebrew texts.
For this reason, we can't be certain that the author of Hebrews used the Septuagint. But despite this discovery, we can still be confident that the author of Hebrews was Hellenistic. His sophisticated Greek offers strong evidence of a Hellenistic upbringing.
And his vocabulary and style give evidence of a mastery of the language that even surpasses the writings of Luke. Passionate Intellectual.
Hebrews 1 NIRV - God Speaks His Final Word Through His - Bible Gateway
Not only was the author of Hebrews a Hellenistic Jew, but we can also add to our profile that he was a passionate intellectual. Interpreters widely acknowledge that the author of Hebrews was an intellectual. The theological arguments in Hebrews are more complex than many of those found in the rest of the New Testament.
In fact, the author himself noted the priority of sophisticated theological reflection in passages like Hebrews where he indicated that to distinguish good from evil, followers of Christ must become doctrinally mature. From the contents of the letter of Hebrews, there are a number of things we can say about the author. One is that he was brilliant. He knew the Septuagint, the Greek translation of the Old Testament, backward and forward. He knew how to link texts in ways that were very persuasive to traditional Jewish audiences.
Probably he was a Hellenistic Jewish author, probably writing to a Hellenistic Jewish audience. When I say "Hellenistic Jewish," I mean Greek-speaking and probably in the diaspora, but very committed to their Jewish traditions and very knowledgeable in Scripture. Craig S. Even though the author of Hebrews should be considered an intellectual, he was not a cold, detached academic. He was deeply passionate about the Christian faith.
His devotion and passion for his fellow Christians is evident in his writing. Sometimes you were publicly exposed to insult and persecution; at other times you stood side by side with those who were so treated. You sympathized with those in prison and joyfully accepted the confiscation of your property, because you knew that you yourselves had better and lasting possessions Hebrews Let us throw off everything that hinders and the sin that so easily entangles, and let us run with perseverance the race marked out for us.
Let us fix our eyes on Jesus, the author and perfecter of our faith, who for the joy set before him endured the cross, scorning its shame, and sat down at the right hand of the throne of God Hebrews It's difficult to read these and similar passages without realizing that this author was hardly an impersonal scholar. He was passionate about his audience and Christ.
If we miss this passion, we miss one of the book's most prominent features. What we also learn about the author is that he was really concerned about the people he was preaching to and writing for. He was concerned about their spiritual apathy, and so he comes back again and again to the danger of becoming weak or tired, or even apostasized. And so, he was certainly a superb theologian and interpreter of Scripture, but at the same time he was a person who knew his audience very well, evidently personally very well.
He really cared about them and was marshaling everything that he could in terms of theology, interpretation of Scripture and application to help them in their spiritual pilgrimage. Eckhard Schnabel]. So far in our discussion of the background of the book of Hebrews we've focused on the book's authorship. Now we should turn to our second issue: Hebrews' original audience. The book of Hebrews doesn't clearly identify its audience by name, city or region.
Still, in general terms, we can be confident that the author wrote to a specific audience with whom he was personally familiar. In , the author assured his audience of his intent to visit them again.
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He spoke of Timothy, whom he called "our brother," and he also mentioned a group of people from Italy that his audience apparently knew. We'll look at five important factors about this original audience that we should consider as we study the book of Hebrews. First, there's reason to think that at least a good portion of the original audience was Jewish. Hebrews makes this clear:. In the past God spoke to our forefathers through the prophets at many times and in various ways Hebrews Here, the author referred to how God had revealed himself to Israel in the Old Testament.
But notice how he called Old Testament Israelites "our forefathers" — the ancestors of the author and his audience. It's no wonder, that from as early as the time of Tertullian, who lived from about A. Second, it's also likely that the audience was in large part Hellenistic. The content of Hebrews indicates that the audience was familiar with theological teachings that were more common among Jews living outside of Palestine than among more traditional Jewish circles within Palestine.
A number of interpreters have tried to determine where the audience may have lived outside of Palestine. The fact that the first epistle of Clement of Rome referred to the book as early as A. Hebrews has been used to support this point of view because it mentions "those from Italy. Third, the original audience of Hebrews was immature. Listen to the way the author described them in Hebrews Though by this time you ought to be teachers, you need someone to teach you the elementary truths of God's word all over again Hebrews Notice that the audience had been believers long enough for the author to say "by this time you ought to be teachers.
But as the author noted, they needed to be taught "the elementary truths of God's word all over again. Interestingly enough, even though the audience was theologically immature, the book of Hebrews contains some of the most advanced, sophisticated theological teachings in the entire New Testament. How do these features of the book fit with the immaturity of the audience? The best way to make sense of this situation is to keep in mind that early Christians adopted a common practice used in first century synagogues.
We learn from passages like Luke , Acts , and 1 Timothy that leaders of synagogues and Christian churches supervised the reading and explanation of Scriptures to their congregations. So, the author of Hebrews wrote some of the most theologically sophisticated New Testament writings because he expected church leaders to teach his book to their congregants. Now, in Hebrews , the writer of Hebrews reprimanded his audience for being "slow to learn. Obey your leaders and submit to their authority. They keep watch over you as men who must give an account.
Obey them so that their work will be a joy, not a burden, for that would be of no advantage to you Hebrews Fourth, the original audience of Hebrews was persecuted. There were two well-known times of persecution for Christians during the first century A. And around A.
Hebrews & You: A Reader's Companion to the Book of Hebrews
As we read through the book of Hebrews, it becomes evident that the original audience had already faced persecution in the past, some of them were suffering in the present, and the author's expectation was that more of them would suffer, perhaps even more severely, in the future.
In , the author drew attention to the suffering that at least some in the audience had experienced in the past:. Remember those earlier days after you had received the light, when you stood your ground in a great contest in the face of suffering… So do not throw away your confidence; it will be richly rewarded Hebrews Here we see that the author praised his audience for their strength when they were persecuted in "those earlier days after [they] had [first] received the light.
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This word choice suggests that the audience was facing public or official persecution of some sort, and they were tempted to lose their boldness. Remember those in prison as if you were their fellow prisoners, and those who are mistreated as if you yourselves were suffering Hebrews We can see from this verse that the author exhorted his audience to "remember those in prison as if [they] were their fellow prisoners.
In addition to persecution in the past and in the present, the author of Hebrews acknowledged in that his audience was facing the threat of more persecution in the future. Listen to this exhortation:. Consider Christ who endured such opposition from sinful men, so that you will not grow weary and lose heart. In your struggle against sin, you have not yet resisted to the point of shedding your blood Hebrews As this passage indicates, the author expected more persecutions to come against his audience, and he was deeply concerned with this feature of their experience.
The original audience of Hebrews faced a number of issues… as the author mentions in chapter 10, they had faced various forms of suffering; some of them had lost property, some of them had been imprisoned, they'd been subjected to public ridicule of some sort. And he still is urging the readers at this point, as he writes, to be willing to bear the reproach of Christ to face exclusion from the camp, which he's describing in Old Testament terms but probably means to be excluded from the synagogue, and if they were to go to Jerusalem, to be excluded from the temple, which I believe was still standing as he wrote.
So there are those forms of persecution they were facing. He says in chapter 12 that their sufferings had not escalated to the point of shedding blood, and yet he seems to be aware of their need to be assured that they have been set free from the fear of death, as he says in chapter 2, by the victory of Jesus Christ.
So, it may be that even a more intense, violent persecution is on the horizon. Dennis E. Fifth, as the audience of Hebrews faced persecution, at least some of them were near apostasy. Rather than simply being discouraged or weakened by sufferings, they were in danger of turning away from Christ entirely. For instance, in Hebrews we read this warning:. If we deliberately keep on sinning after we have received the knowledge of the truth, no sacrifice for sins is left, but only a fearful expectation of judgment and of raging fire that will consume the enemies of God Hebrews When God brings him into the world, he says,.
He makes those who serve him to be like flashes of lightning. Your throne will last for ever and ever. Your kingdom will be ruled by justice. So your God has placed you above your companions. He has filled you with joy by pouring the sacred oil on your head. You placed it on its foundations. The heavens are the work of your hands.
But you remain. They will all wear out like a piece of clothing. They will be changed as a person changes clothes.
But you remain the same. Your years will never end. God sends them to serve those who will receive salvation. Used by permission. All rights reserved worldwide. You'll get this book and many others when you join Bible Gateway Plus. Learn more. Starting your free trial of Bible Gateway Plus is easy.