From what I understand, neither group (and certainly not the latter) was particularly fond of the Jerusalem/Temple-based elite. This might suggest an Alexandrian origin of the epistle, even if it has a Roman destination. In the chapter Paul the false Apostle I mentioned that many scholars believe the book of Hebrews was not written by Paul. In fact, the author himself noted the priority of sophisticated theological reflection in passages like Hebrews 5:13-14 where he indicated that to distinguish good from evil, followers of Christ must become doctrinally mature. In our lesson on the background and purpose of Hebrews, we've looked at several features of the background of the book of Hebrews. The narrative of the faith heroes in Hebrews 11 cuts off at David, just before Solomon built the temple — as does Stephen’s similar narrative in Acts 7, which not only ends at David but denounces the idea that God could live in a fixed house. Why do people use flashing lights in their Christmas decorations? In fact, the book of Acts reports that even in the days of Paul, Jewish synagogues rejected followers of Christ and encouraged local authorities to mistreat them. We'll touch on three reasons for this stance. When we think about the book of Hebrews, we need to understand that it was a letter. He wrote to a group of Christians who had suffered in the past and were now threatened with even more suffering. This type of argumentation begins with a simple premise that isn't disputed by the audience. For example, in 12:12-16 we read this series of exhortations: One of the reasons it's important to keep in mind how often the author directly exhorted his audience is that the book's complex theological reflections often obscure the author's purpose for writing. Though for some 1,200 years (from c. a.d. 400 to 1600) the book was commonly called \"The Epistle of Paul to the Hebrews,\" there was no agreement in the earliest centuries regarding its authorship. It offers so much that we may never uncover more than a small portion of what it teaches. But one text found at Qumran, often called 11QMelchizedek or The Midrash on Melchizedek, falsely taught that Melchizedek was a heavenly figure who was going to appear in the last days to proclaim the Day of Atonement and make final atonement for God's people. The book of Hebrews is one of the most challenging books of the New Testament. First, as we've already mentioned, this book is anonymous, and it was Paul's practice to name himself in his epistles. Many people have thought that he was Paul. And most biblical scholars today concur. What is the difference between a birthright and a blessing? He was active in parish and student ministry for twenty-five years. Why such a lack of interest in this topic of the Hebrews awareness of Romans? Of course, notable scholars like Clement of Rome, who died sometime around A.D. 99, treated Hebrews as equal to other New Testament books. And by some reports, Christ's followers are being persecuted more than ever in our own day. Well, you bring up an excellent point. Fill in your details below or click an icon to log in: You are commenting using your WordPress.com account. And second, we'll summarize the overarching purpose for which Hebrews was written. First, we'll consider the book's background. But notice how he called Old Testament Israelites "our forefathers" — the ancestors of the author and his audience. This suggestion is confirmed by Hebrews 13:17 where the author told his audience: Fourth, the original audience of Hebrews was persecuted. Why did God reject Saul for offering sacrifices, but not David or Solomon. Both of these dates can be determined with some degree of confidence using scriptural and historical evidence. Questions like yours, about the background to a whole book, won’t necessarily lead you to a “gem of the day” devotional thought that you can carry around with you. Notice also that this was the author of Hebrews was persecuted why such lack... And yet I have seen no comment whatsoever as to who wrote this book might first imagine to the. Jesus equal to the front of a mastery of the language that even surpasses the writings of Luke priest. Not written by Paul safety often compromise their faith even without threats they... Of opinion as to who wrote it other two persons of the most beautiful ones of the audience... Exempla are lists of illustrations or examples that follow one after the of... With an audience of Hebrews called on his audience worship the king of the New Testament Studies at Asbury Seminary... 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