The Letter to the Hebrews – Overview

From Peter Kreeft’s You Can Understand the Bible:

No one but God knows who wrote Hebrews, or to whom.

As Romans is the world’s first systematic theology, Hebrews is the first apologetic for the Christian faith.

Hebrews argues for the superiority of Christ in every way to pre-Christian Judaism.

The author emphasizes Christ’s threefold office as prophet, priest, and king – the three Old Testament offices that foreshadowed Him. It emphasizes both His divinity and His humanity.

Judaism is not wrong but fulfilled and completed in Christ has the Church, through whom God has spoken a new Word.

The whole point of the Old Testament Word, according to Hebrews, is to point to Christ.

Christ is shown to be superior in every way:

[1] He is superior to the angels, for they worship Him (1:4-2:18).

[2] He is superior to Moses and Joshua, for they are creatures, while He is the Creator (3:1-4:13).

[3] He is a better priest than the human priest Aaron, for His sacrifice was once for all (8:1-10:18).

[4] He is superior to the Old Law, or Old Covenant, for His Blood takes away our sins (8:1-10:39).

The most famous chapter in Hebrews is 11 – the great roll call of the heroes of faith, the Christian hall of fame.

The faith-works controversy is solved by seeing faith as a thing that works, that acts.

Hope is faith directed to the future.

Chapter 12:5-12 contains one of the greatest exhortations on suffering and its meaning ever written.

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