It was interesting to day at work, we held a bible study or as I prefer Faith Exploration, that centered around the letter to the Hebrews in the Christian Testament. Why is this interesting?

Simple, Hebrews is the Enigma letter in the Bible. All we know for sure in authorship is that it is not Paul, but it could be Luke, Apollos, Timothy, Barnabas or Priscilla, or some other unnamed writer. It may be the product of 1, 2 or 3rd Century CE Christianity. As for the community itself, it could be a generic term, it could be dispora Jewish converts, Romans or whatever, and as for their location ditto.

The purpose though could never be clearer or more relevant for the church of today. For you see, it was written to a community that was weary, tired, fed up if you will with religiousity and “Christendom“. Essentially church was burning out the membership over the ability to keep “church” going and not living out the simple Love of God, self and Neighbour that Christ guides us to.

Why had it become a burden? Simple, burdens are created by over legislating, legalism, and attempting to place the Holy Mystery within a box and the writer or preacher of this letter if you prefer decides to remind the community what it actually means to be a follower of the Living Christ. This isn’t about living in slavery, it is about freedom. Remember that the law on the page is not the law of love we are called to live. That the Word, is not the words on the page, but the life of Christ-Jesus of Nazareth that guides us to the Christ within, acknowledgement of the eminent Holy aspect of our character.

This was illustrated in the first chapter by the reflections on the fact that God created the angels not to subdue us, but to aid us, as such we are higher than the angels. That God called Christ (as with us) Son/Daughter…and as such we inherit the kingdom. This is not an inheritance that comes with death, but a successor being put in place and being guided by the former holder of the reign. This is the promise of Christ, if we release ourselves from the self-imposed burdens of what “we believe Church to be” and live out what we are called to be…then there is true freedom, transformational love that releases the indivdiual and communal soul to create the new world.

Read for yourself Hebrews 1 (Holman Christian Standard Bible):

Hebrews 1

The Nature of the Son

 1 Long ago God spoke (A) to the fathers by the prophets (B) at different times and in different ways. (C) 2 In these last days, (D) He has spoken to us by [His] Son, whom He has appointed heir of all things and through whom He made the universe. (E) [a] 3 He is the radiance [b] of His glory, the exact expression [c] of His nature, and He sustains all things by His powerful word. After making purification for sins, [d] He sat down at the right hand of the Majesty on high. (F) [e] 4 So He became higher in rank than the angels, just as the name He inherited is superior to theirs. (G)

The Son Superior to Angels

 5 For to which of the angels did He ever say, You are My Son; today I have become Your Father, [f] (H) or again, I will be His Father, and He will be My Son ? (I) (J) 6 When He again brings His firstborn into the world, (K) [g] He says, And all God’s angels must worship Him. (L) (M) 7And about the angels He says:

    He makes His angels winds, [h]

    and His servants [i] a fiery flame; (N) (O)

    8but about the Son:

    Your throne, O God, is forever and ever,

    and the scepter of Your kingdom is a scepter of justice. (P)

    9You have loved righteousness and hated lawlessness;

    this is why God, Your God, has anointed You,

    rather than Your companions, [j] (Q) with the oil of joy. (R)

    10And:

    In the beginning, Lord, You established the earth,

    and the heavens are the works of Your hands; (S)

    11they will perish, but You remain.

    They will all wear out like clothing; (T)

    12 You will roll them up like a cloak, [k]

    and they will be changed like a robe.

    But You are the same,

    and Your years will never end. (U) (V)

    13Now to which of the angels has He ever said:

    Sit at My right hand

    until I make Your enemies Your footstool ? (W) [l] (X)

    14 Are they not all ministering spirits sent out to serve those who are going to inherit salvation? (Y)

Footnotes:

  1. Hebrews 1:2 Lit ages
  2. Hebrews 1:3 Or reflection
  3. Hebrews 1:3 Or representation, or copy, or reproduction
  4. Hebrews 1:3 Other mss read for our sins by Himself
  5. Hebrews 1:3 Or He sat down on high at the right hand of the Majesty
  6. Hebrews 1:5 Or have begotten You
  7. Hebrews 1:6 Or And again, when He brings His firstborn into the world
  8. Hebrews 1:7 Or spirits
  9. Hebrews 1:7 Or ministers
  10. Hebrews 1:9 Or associates
  11. Hebrews 1:12 Other mss omit like a cloak
  12. Hebrews 1:13 Or enemies a footstool for Your feet
Cross references:

  1. Hebrews 1:1 : Jn 9:29; Heb 2:2-3;
  2. Hebrews 1:1 : Ac 2:30; 3:21;
  3. Hebrews 1:1 : Num 12:6; 8; Jl 2:28;
  4. Hebrews 1:2 : 2Pt 3:3; Jude 18;
  5. Hebrews 1:2 : Ps 2:8; Jn 1:3;
  6. Hebrews 1:3 : Mk 16:19; Col 1:17;
  7. Hebrews 1:4 : Eph 1:21; Php 2:9;
  8. Hebrews 1:5 : Ps 2:7;
  9. Hebrews 1:5 : 2Sm 7:14; Ps 2:7; Ac 13:33;
  10. Hebrews 1:5 : 2 Sm 7:14; 1 Ch 17:13;
  11. Hebrews 1:6 : Rm 8:29; Heb 10:5;
  12. Hebrews 1:6 : Dt 32:43; Ps 97:7;
  13. Hebrews 1:6 : Dt 32:43; Ps 97:7;
  14. Hebrews 1:7 : Ps 104:4;
  15. Hebrews 1:7 : Ps 104:4;
  16. Hebrews 1:8 : Ps 45:6-7;
  17. Hebrews 1:9 : Ps 45:6-7;
  18. Hebrews 1:9 : Is 61:1;, 3; Php 2:9;
  19. Hebrews 1:10 : Ps 102:25;
  20. Hebrews 1:11 : Is 34:4;
  21. Hebrews 1:12 : Ps 102:26-27; Heb 13:8;
  22. Hebrews 1:12 : Ps 102:25-27;
  23. Hebrews 1:13 : Jos 10:24; Ps 110:1; Heb 10:13;
  24. Hebrews 1:13 : Ps 110:1;
  25. Hebrews 1:14 : Ps 103:20; Mt 18:10; Heb 5:9;
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