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A Study Of The Apostle Paul’s Letter To The Hebrews

A Study Of The Apostle Paul’s Letter To The Hebrews

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A Study Of The Apostle Paul’s Letter To The Hebrews

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  1. Don’t fall away! Don’t Depart! Don’t neglect your salvation! Don’t cast away your confidence! Don’t harden your heart! Don’t drift away! AStudyOf TheApostlePaul’s LetterTo The Hebrews How can we neglect so greata salvation? ~ Hebrews 2:3

  2. Hebrews: Christ Is Superior! Superior Person (1:1—4:13) Superior to Prophets (1:1-3) Superior to Angels (1:4—2:18) Superior to Moses (3:1-19) Superior to Joshua (4:1-13) Superior Priest (4:14—7:28) Superior to Aaron (4:14—6:12) Superior to Melchizedek (6:13—7:10) Superior to Levi (7:11-28)

  3. Hebrews: Christ Is Superior! Superior Pact to Moses’ (8:1—10:18) Superior Promises (8:1-13) Superior Sanctuary (9:1-15) Superior Sacrifice (9:16-28) Superior Results (10:1-18) Superior Principle (Faith) to Moses’ (10:19—13:25) Superior Things (10:19-39) Superior Actions (11:1-40) Superior Relationship (12:1-29) Superior Way of Life (13:1-25)Today we’ll consider verses 9-17.

  4. As mentioned in the introduction of our studyonverses1-8,chapter13 demon-stratesthatTheFaith-PrincipleofChrist Is the Basis for a Superior Way of Life to that possible under Moses. And… As mentioned in the conclusion of that study, since God and Jesus are faithful to the faithful, Paul went on in verses 9-17 to tell these Hebrew brethren how they could remain faithful.

  5. Hebrews 13:9  Do not be carried aboutwithvarious and strange doc- trines.Forit’sgoodthattheheart be established by grace, not with foods which have not profited those whohavebeenoc-cupied with them.

  6. Thiscouldbeliterally translated as Stop being carried away. In other words…  Do not be carried aboutwithvarious and strange doc- trines.Forit’sgoodthattheheart be established by grace, not with foods which have not profited those whohavebeenoc-cupied with them.

  7. Many or all of those whohadalreadyfor-saken Christ did so by falling prey to different & foreign teachings. What teachings? Judaistic teachings. Do not be carried aboutwithvarious and strange doc- trines.Forit’sgoodthattheheart be established by grace, not with foods which have not profited those whohavebeenoc-cupied with them.

  8. These brethren needed to become those who were no longer children … carried about with every wind of doc-trine by the trickery of men (Eph. 4:14); remember, being children in their un-derstanding was partoftheirproblem (cf. 5:12—6:2). Do not be carried aboutwithvarious and strange doc- trines.Forit’sgoodthattheheart be established by grace, not with foods which have not profited those whohavebeenoc-cupied with them.

  9. This implies an ob-vious contrast: what isgood is that which purifies the heart & conscience—the New Covenant (9:14 & 10: 22), not that which never purified the heart and consci-ence—the Old Cove-nant (9:9-10). Do not be carried aboutwithvarious and strange doc- trines.Forit’sgoodthattheheart be established by grace, not with foods which have not profited those whohavebeenoc-cupied with them.

  10. Paul often wrote against eating (and even not eating) for religious reasons: Food does not com-mend us to God; for neither if we eat are we the better, nor if we don’t eat are we theworse(1Cor.8:8). Do not be carried aboutwithvarious and strange doc- trines.Forit’sgoodthattheheart be established by grace, not with foods which have not profited those whohavebeenoc-cupied with them.

  11. In order to compromise with the Jews who refused to let go of Judaistic rituals, many Christians allowed their beliefs into the church just as Paul predicted in First Timothy 4:1-5 where he even specifically mentioned that some would bind eating and/or not eating. But… Colossians 2:16 says, Let no one judge you in food or in drink, and Romans 14: 17 says that God’s kingdom is not food or drink, but righteousness, peace, and joy in [the] holy spirit.

  12. Hebrews 13:10-11    We have an altar from which they who serve the tab- ernacle have no righttoeat.Forthe bodies of those beasts, whose blood is brought into the sanctuary by the high priest for sin, are burned outside the camp.

  13. They refers to the OT priests, while we refers to NT priests (i.e. Christians, 1 Pet. 2:5 & 9). We have an altar from which theywho serve the tab- ernacle have no righttoeat.Forthe bodies of those beasts, whose blood is brought into the sanctuary by the high priest for sin, are burned outside the camp.

  14. An altar was that upon which a sacri-fice was made for sin and in worship to God; and, as we’ll soon see, the altar of this verse (based on typology) is a re-ference to Christ Himself(cf.Bullinger’s Figures of Speech). So…     We have an altar from which they who serve the tab- ernacle have no righttoeat.Forthe bodies of those beasts, whose blood is brought into the sanctuary by the high priest for sin, are burned outside the camp.

  15. The assertion Paul made here (and that he went on to validate) is simply that Chris-tians(like OT priests) have an exclusive altar; however (as has been the case throughout Hebrews), the difference is that instead of it be-ing a tangible altar, it’s an intangible one. Furthermore… We have an altar from which they who serve the tab- ernaclehave no righttoeat.Forthe bodies of those beasts, whose blood is brought into the sanctuary by the high priest for sin, are burned outside the camp.

  16. Being exclusive means that OT priests—yea all Jews represented by those priests—have no right to Christ and His blessings (e.g. salvation). Now why was/is this true? Well, before we con- sider the reason Paul presented here, let’s recall some other passages:    We have an altar from which they who serve the tab- ernacle have no righttoeat.Forthe bodies of those beasts, whose blood is brought into the sanctuary by the high priest for sin, are burned outside the camp.

  17. InJohn 6:53-56Jesus spoke figurative-ly, of course, of eating and drinking (i.e. assimilating) Him; and to do that they needed to have faith in Him (v. 64). So since to have faith in Him meant that theybelievedHisclaimtoMessiahship, then to continue worshipping at the altar of Judaism while claiming to be Christians was totally unacceptable. Why? Plainly because while things like Passover predicted the coming of the Messiah,the Lord’s supper proclaims that He has already come (cf. Col. 2:16f).

  18. Incidentally, while the Jews could not eat of sin-offerings because such would signify that they were forgiven when they were not forgiven, Christians can eat of Jesus because they have been forgiven(cf. Clarke’s on v. 11). Well… Let’s consider Paul’s reasoning in this specific text, reasoning he applied by means of typology:   

  19. In both verses 10 & 11,Paulwasalluding to Leviticus 6:30 & 16:27 where God said, concerning bloody sin-offerings (e.g. on The Day of Atonement), that…  We have an altar from which they who serve the tab- ernacle have no righttoeat.Forthe bodies of those beasts, whose blood is brought into the sanctuary by the high priest for sin, are burned outside the camp.

  20. 1. The priests were nottoeatofthose sacrifices,rather… 2. Those sacrifices were to be taken outside the camp ofIsrael&burned. Now with that in mind…    We have an altar from which they who serve the tab- ernacle have no righttoeat.Forthe bodiesof those beasts, whose blood is brought into the sanctuary by the high priest for sin, are burned outside the camp.

  21. I’m certain that what Paul went on to say here (i.e. how he went on to apply this) were fightin’ words to the Jews, especially to those who totally rejected Jesus as the Christ. Listen:    We have an altar from which they who serve the tab- ernacle have no righttoeat.Forthe bodies of those beasts, whose blood is brought into the sanctuary by the high priest for sin, are burned outside the camp.

  22. So… Hebrews 13:12-13    Therefore Jesus also, that He might sanctify the people withHisownblood, suffered outside thegate.Therefore let us go forth to Him, outside the camp, bearing His reproach.

  23. Here’s Paul’s point as well as the proof forhisassertionthat insistent temple-servants have no right to Christ and His blessings:   Therefore Jesus also, that He might sanctify the people withHisownblood, suffered outside thegate.Therefore let us go forth to Him, outside the camp, bearing His reproach.

  24. When the OT priests were submitting totheregulationoftakingthesacrificial sin-offering outside the camp, they ap-parentlyhadnoideathattheywerepic-turing how that one day they would likewise take their own Messiah and kill Him outside of Jerusalem and thus also outside the temple—the two main symbols of Judaism! So since the Mes-siah was killed outside of that which represented Judaism, that in itself was a sign that Judaism would cease and that God would ultimately accept, as His people, non-Jews as well as Jews.

  25. Here are two other points Paul made here:    Therefore Jesus also, that He might sanctify the people withHisownblood, suffered outside thegate.Therefore let us go forth to Him, outside the camp, bearing His reproach.

  26. 1. Christ’s blood was shed outside the temple instead of inside it as with the OT animal sacrifices, indicating that He gaveHimself voluntarily asoursacrifice reminiscent of John 2:19-21: The Jews asked Him, “What sign do You show to us…?” Jesus answered … “Destroy this temple, and in three days I will raise it up.” Then they said, “It has taken 46 years to build this temple, and will You raise it up in three days?” But He was speaking of the temple of His body— that which He willingly gave according to John 10:15-18. And…   

  27. 2. Those who claimed to be Christians, thosewhodesiredthebenefitsofJesus’ death, were to forsake Judaism by meeting Christ where He died—outside the camp (John 19:17-20); i.e., to eat & drinkChrist,onehad toleavethecamp of Israel, for to remain in that camp, to stay with Judaism, would be (as Paul said in 10:26) to forfeit the one and only sacrifice for salvation, for sacrifices made within the camp were no longer accepted. Now moving on…   

  28. What was Christ’s reproach?Itwasthe verdict of exclusion —an outcast, which is why He was cruci-fied outside the holy city and which also may be connected to why dying on a cross was considered shameful (Gal. 3:13). (Outside the city they’d let the bodies go un-buried for more than a day; cf. Deu. 21:23.) Therefore Jesus also, that He might sanctify the people withHisownblood, suffered outside thegate.Therefore let us go forth to Him, outside the camp, bearing His reproach.

  29. As those outside the camp carried a stig-ma because of un- cleanness(Lev.13:45-46) or excommuni-cation (Num. 15:30) or guilt demanding death (Lev. 24:14 & Num. 15:35), early Christians were ex-horted to remain faithfultoChristand accepta similarfate of disgrace. I.e….  Therefore Jesus also, that He might sanctify the people withHisownblood, suffered outside thegate.Thereforelet us go forth to Him, outside the camp, bearing His reproach.

  30. These brethren were expected to identifywith Moses who es- teemed the reproach ofChristgreaterrich- es than the treasures of Egypt (11:26); Pet-er wrote, blessed are you when you are re- proached for Christ (1 Pet. 4:14). By the way…   Therefore Jesus also, that He might sanctify the people withHisownblood, suffered outside thegate.Thereforelet us go forth to Him, outside the camp, bearing His reproach.

  31. While Paul was ob-viously telling them togoforth…outside the camp of Jerusa-lem figuratively, it wouldn’tbelongun-til they’d have to take this advice lit-erally. In fact…  Therefore Jesus also, that He might sanctify the people withHisownblood, suffered outside thegate.Thereforelet us go forth to Him, outside the camp, bearing His reproach.

  32. I like what A. Barnes wrote: The objectof thewriterseemstobetocomforttheHeb-rew Christians on the supposition that they would be driven by persecution from the city of Jerusalem, doomed to wander asexiles.Hetells themthattheirLordwas led from that city to be put to death, so they should be willing to go forth also, for theirpermanenthomewasnot Jerusalem, but Heaven. So in view of that blessing, they should be willing to be exiled from that city and be made wanderers on the earth.(Slightly Paraphrased) Moving on…   

  33. Why did Paul exhort these brethren to go forth outside the camp and bear Jesus’ reproach? Because…   Therefore Jesus also, that He might sanctify the people withHisownblood, suffered outside thegate.Thereforelet us go forth to Him, outside the camp, bearing His reproach.

  34. Hebrews 13:14  Here we have no continuing city, but we seek the one to come.

  35. This word obviously means in this situa-tion or under these circumstances. (cf. Thayer #5602). What situation or circum-stances? The state of Jewish govern-mental rule. I.e…  Here we have no continuing city, but we seek the one to come.

  36. Due to God’s plan from the very begin-ning that Judaism be temporary, under the Jewish admini-stration there never would’ve or could’ve existed a continuing city—a spiritual and eternal kingdom of God (cf. 12:26-28). Here we have no continuing city, but we seek the one to come.

  37. Now we come to the last time Paul used the termmello: to come=ontheverge of arriving. I.e…. Here we have no continuing city, but we seek the one to come. …soon the old, earthly, temporary Jerusa-lemwouldbesupplantedbythenew,heav-enly, eternal Jerusalem; and soon the old, temporary covenant of Moses from Sinai would be completely supplanted by the new, eternal covenant of Christ from Zion (cf. 12:18-19 & 22-24).

  38. Hebrews 13:15  Therefore by Him let us continually offer the sacrifice of praise to God, that is, the fruitof our lips, giving thankstoHisname.

  39. This word means throughorbymeans of. I.e….    Therefore by Him let us continually offer the sacrifice of praise to God, that is, the fruitof our lips, giving thankstoHisname.

  40. Instead of continu-ally offering unpro- fitable and unaccept-ableanimalsacrifices to Yahweh as OT priests did, Christi-ans (as NT priests) are expected to con-tinually offer praise … to His name by means of or through Christ—the once-for-all-time profit-able and acceptable physical sacrifice. Therefore by Him let us continually offer the sacrifice of praise to God, that is, the fruitof our lips, giving thankstoHisname.

  41. Peter agreed with Paul when he wrote to Christians, saying,you … are … a holy priesthood to offer spiritual sacrifices acceptable to God through Jesus Christ (1 Pet. 2:5). Therefore by Him let us continually offer the sacrifice of praise to God, that is, the fruitof our lips, giving thankstoHisname.

  42. Giving God praise is called a sacrifice here in order to re-tain the contextual parallelism; i.e., just audibly extolling God isn’t much of a sac-rifice, but by calling that action the fruit of our lips, Paul par-alleled it with thefruit of the field— the firstfruits and the fruit of animal-loins—the firstborn. Therefore by Him let us continually offer the sacrifice of praise to God, that is, the fruitof our lips, giving thankstoHisname.

  43. Thisphraseisfroma term found 23 times in the NT and which is always translated asconfessingorpro-fessing … except here. So…    Therefore by Him let us continually offer the sacrifice of praise to God, that is, the fruitof our lips, giving thankstoHisname.

  44. The idea Paul meant to express was con-fessing or professing His name, not giv-ingthankstoHisname.If givingthanks were the best rendering, then it should read as giving thanksto Him, not to His name. So… This statement isn’t about speaking to God, but about speaking about God … through Jesus. Yes… Thanksgiving in a prayer is a way in which to praise God; that just wasn’t Paul’s point here. But…   

  45. While we’re thinking about offerings of gratitude, it’s interesting to note that while the thank-offerings were only pre- sentedoncertainoccasions(Lev.7:11ff), the praise of Christians may be, yea is expected to be, offered continually.

  46. One other interesting point is that it’s quite evident that Paul was alluding to a quote from one of the Jews’ most re-spected rabbins (Rabbi Menachem) who wrote, In the time of the Messiah, all sacrifice shall cease except the sac-rifice of praise.

  47. Byquotingthis,Paulwasindicatingthat this verydeclaration wasbeingfulfilled, meaningthatnow(inthatgeneration)was the time of the Messiah. And, since this was true, then… 1.Jesus was the Messiah. 2.TheJewish sacrificial system was be- ing abolished. And… 3.No other sacrifice would be accepted by God, except the sacrifice of praise for thesacrifice HeHimself supplied. (Cf. Adam Clarke’s comments at this place.)

  48. Hebrews 13:16  But do not forget to do good and to share,forwithsuch sacrifices God is well pleased.

  49. This means on the otherhand;i.e.,they were cautioned to not allow their work ofpraisetoconsume their time to the ne-glect of the more physical things; yes, even the New Cove-nant requires a few things of a physical nature. This is con- firmed elsewhere: But do not forget to do good and to share,forwithsuch sacrifices God is well pleased.

  50. In Philippians 4:10-20 Paul referred to the physical aid that the Philippian breth-ren sent him as an acceptable sacrifice, well pleasing to God (v. 18). But do not forget to do good and to share,forwithsuch sacrifices God is well pleased.