Was the Apostle Paul the Author of the Epistle to the Hebrews?

By Prof. R. D. C. Robbins, Middlebury College


Introductory Remarks

The Epistle to the Hebrews has met the fate of all anonymous productions in every age. We cannot wonder that its authorship has been much questioned in modern times, when even Shakspeare’s Plays have been accused of illegitimacy, and the Iliad and Odyssey, instead of being allowed to claim the honor of descent from the blind old bard of Scio’s rocky isle, have been compelled to be content with an origin from wandering minstrels or cyclic poets. If Junius still wanders like “Japhet in search of a Father,” or, with less success than Electra in the play, is yet unable to discern a brother’s locks among all its contemporaries, we cannot wonder that an anonymous writing of the first century of the Christian era, whose real or supposed author is not mentioned for a hundred years at least after it first appeared, has given occasion to some discussion in these latter ages, in which, if a doubt should arise in reference to the foundation of the most costly structure, some hand would be found ruthless enough to undermine it in order to solve the doubt.

In tracing the history of the treatment of this Epistle in ages past, the greatest wonder is, that it should have been, with so little opposition, attributed to one author. The number who have fully denied its Pauline origin is certainly very few. And still fewer have been able to satisfy themselves who the author was, if not the apostle Paul. One has conjectured that Barnabas, another that the evangelist Luke, another that Apollos or Silvanus, wrote the Epistle to the Hebrews; but the arguments that have been adduced have been few and of little weight. The canonical authority of the Epistle does not necessarily depend upon the Pauline authorship, although the proof of both is, to a considerable extent, the same; hence some have doubtless felt that it was of comparatively little importance to determine who its author was. Still it cannot be denied that it lends additional interest to the book, if we can feel that it is the production of the great apostle; and especially do the arguments for the superiority of the Christian to the Jewish dispensation gain additional force in the words of him who was a Hebrew of the Hebrews, and had been educated in all the strictness of the Jewish schools, and in the centre of Jewish influence.

It will not, we hope, be deemed inappropriate to ask the attention of the readers of the Bibliotheca once more to the arguments that may have a bearing upon the authorship of this epistle. Most of them have often been brought forward previously, and may be quite familiar to those who have paid special attention to the literature of the epistle; but still they must be repeated, at some length, in order to present the combined influence of the whole proof, which seems to us quite conclusive in favor of its Pauline authorship.

We shall naturally first give the external testimony in reference to the author of the epistle, and then the internal proofs, with such an examination of the objections which have been adduced as the limits of a Review Article will allow.

The Epistle In The Apostolic Age

During the apostolic age there is no positive testimony in reference to the author of the Epistle to the Hebrews. Many, indeed, maintain that 2 Pet. 3:15-16, is conclusive: “And account that the long-suffering of our Lord is salvation; even as our beloved brother Paul also, according to the wisdom given unto him, hath written unto you; as also in all his epistles, speaking in them of these things; in which are some things hard to be understood,” etc. It cannot be doubted that there is a similarity of language and sentiment in the first clause of verse 16 to some passages in Hebrews; as 6:12; 4:15-16; 2:17-18,12:24, and we find, also, in Heb. 5:11-12, a passage on which verse 16 may be based. Besides, Forster contends that Peter, in both his epistles, “is under great obligations to the Epistle to the Hebrews for peculiarities of thought and language.” He uses “several remarkable words, peculiar to Hebrews and his own two epistles,”1 and also uses them in connection with “other peculiar words belonging to St. Paul’s unquestioned epistles,”2 while “these verbal coincidences will be found to open out into coincidences of sentiment and reasoning on a more extended scale.”3 Still there does not seem to be anything positive and distinguishing enough to warrant the confidence which Forster expresses upon this point. It merely amounts to a probability, not to a certainty.

Forster (p. 567) also finds incidental proof of the Pauline origin of the Hebrews in Barnabas, Clemens Romanus, Ignatius, and especially in Polycarp. The argument in the latter Father in favor of the Epistle of the Hebrews, he thus sums up: “His whole epistle [to the Philippians] consists of phrases and sentiments taken from the New Testament. The existence, it follows, of marks of reference in this epistle, to the Epistle to the Hebrews, is, in other words, so far as it goes, the existence of testimony to the canonical authority of this epistle, as valid as that to the canonical authority of any other part of the New Testament. But the marks in St. Polycarp, of reference to the Epistle to the Hebrews, are (his reference to the epistles of Peter not excepted) more numerous than his marks of reference to any other book of the New Testament. The shortness of the latter will enable the reader, without trouble or difficulty, to judge for himself as to the correctness of this statement; while the statement itself will admit of being materially lowered without affecting in the least degree the validity of the proof arising from the series of coincidences here submitted. In the last place, the whole body of references, possible, probable, and undoubted, are, in argumentative fairness, to be taken in connection with the fact that there exists, in this letter of Polycarp to the Philippians, one passage which, tried by the received tests of criticism, amounts to an undoubted quotation, as a precept of apostolical authority, or rather as a precept of Saint Paul, of Heb. 12:28.

In weighing the testimony of the Apostolic Fathers, we should not forget that the question had not apparently yet arisen in reference to the author and authority of the Epistle to the Hebrews, and that the testimony in reference to it is “as strongly marked as most of the testimonies of an equally early date bearing upon the canonical authority of the other books of the New Testament. At the commencement of the second century of the Christian era, the Epistle to the Hebrews consequently stood on the same footing, in point of historical evidences, with by far the greater part of the New Testament.”4 There is certainly a greater number of allusions, in Clemens Romanus, to the Epistle of the Hebrews than to any other epistle of the New Testament.5 Still he nowhere mentions the name of the title or author. Neither does he, in his allusions to the Epistles to the Thes-salonians, Ephesians, Romans, Galatians, Colossians, Timothy, only in chap. 47, where he cites the first Epistle to the Corinthians, he reminds the Corinthians most naturally, having special occasion to do so, of that which Paul had already written to them.6

The Testimony Of The Eastern Church

The first testimony is that of Pantaenus, the head of the celebrated school at Alexandria, about a. d. 180, “the most learned Christian of the age in which he lived, and one whose weight and authority in the churches was very great.” It is found in an extract from his successor, Clement’s work “Hypotyposes,” preserved by Eusebius,7 and is as follow: “Now, as our blessed presbyter [Pantaenus] has said, since the Lord himself was sent by the Almighty as an apostle to the Hebrews, Paul being an apostle to the Gentiles, on account of modesty does not subscribe himself as the apostle to the Hebrews, both out of reverence for his Lord, and because, being a preacher and an apostle to the Gentiles, by a kind of supererogation he wrote to the Hebrews.”8

This view of Pantaenus is referred to by Clement in proof of his own belief, that Paul was the original author of the Epistle to the Hebrews. For immediately preceding the above quotation from Herodotus, he says: “In the work called Hypotyposes, he [Clement] asserts that Paul is the author of the Epistle to the Hebrews, and that as it was addressed to the Hebrews, it was written in the Hebrew language; but that Luke, carefully translating it, gave it to the Greeks. Whence the same coloring of style is found as in the Acts of the Apostles. The inscription: ‘Paul the apostle,’ is not probably added, because writing to the Hebrews, who were prejudiced against him and suspected him, he very prudently would not deter them from reading it by prefixing his name.”9

It is a matter of no importance, as far as our present purpose, the authorship of the epistle, is concerned, whether the reason given for the omission of the name is the real one or not. The fact that he was at least the original author, seems to be unquestioned. But we have still further proof in the writings of Clement still extant, that Paul was the author, without any reference to the Hebrew original. i.e., “Stromata ii. p. 362, where, in the midst of a literal quotation from Heb. 11:1, 2, 6, Clement adds: κατὰ τὸν θεῖον ἀπόστολον, according to the divine apostle, i.e. Paul. Cf. also p. 364. In p. 420, he cites Heb. 6:11, 20 in connection with Gal. 5:6, and both as declarations of Paul. Ibid. iv. p. 514 sq., he cites Heb. 10:32–39 and 11:36–39, expressly calling them the declarations of the same apostle who wrote Phil. 4:11–13, which he had just cited. In p. 525, he attributes Heb. 12:11–16; 13:4 to the same apostle who wrote Titus 2:3, which he had just cited. In p. 577 he cites Heb. 5:12; 6:1 expressly as the words of Paul; and again, in p. 645, he cites a part of the same passage in the same manner.”10

The testimony of Clement is specially valuable, since he had not passed his whole life shut up in the school of Alexandria, but “had travelled in Greece, Italy, the East, and Egypt, in quest of knowledge, and employed masters in these countries.” He may then be considered as giving substantially the general sentiment of the churches, both in the East and West, at the close of the second century. For it is hardly supposable that he would so often and positively speak of Paul as the author of the Hebrews, if he had known of any considerable opposition to this view, without making some allusion to it.

Origen, who flourished about a. d. 220, was the successor of Clement at Alexandria, and spent most of his life in the study and explanation of the scriptures, is the next witness for our epistle. That he often cites it as Pauline in origin cannot be questioned. In his Comm. in Joh. (Opp. iv. p. 60), he says: “And in the Epistle to the Hebrews, the same Paul says: God, who in ancient times, etc., Heb. 1:1-2; ”11 and again, p. 162:“Paul, in the Epistle to the Hebrews.”12 In his book against Celsus, he says: “For it is written by Paul, in his letter to the Corinthians.....and the same apostle says, ye have need,13 etc., Heb. 5:12.” In his treatise on prayer, he quotes the Epistle to the Hebrews as an epistle of the same apostle who wrote the Epistle to the Ephesians (De Oratione, i. p. 250). In a homily preserved in a Latin translation, he says: “Paul himself, the greatest of the apostles, writing to the Hebrews, says,” and then quotes Heb. 12:18, 22-23.14 In addition to numerous references similar to the above, he (in Homil. vii. in Jos.) ascribes fourteen epistles to Paul, including of course our epistle to make out the number. It is true that he sometimes speaks of it as if its authorship were questioned, as in his Comm. on Matt. 22:27, where, after quoting the Hebrews he says: “But suppose that some one rejects the Epistle to the Hebrews as not Paul’s,”15 and, a little after: “Yet if any receives the Hebrews as Paul’s.”16 There is also a passage in a letter to African us, in which he speaks of the inclination of those who reject the epistle as not being Paul’s, and adds: “With one who does thus, other reasons must be privately employed, in order to show that Paul was the author of the epistle.”17

The whole testimony of Origen is perhaps best preserved by Herodotus, in an extract from one of Origen’s homilies on the Hebrews, which were published when he was more than sixty years old; and though long, ought perhaps to be quoted entire here. “The style of the Epistle to the Hebrews has not the negligence in diction of the apostle who confesses himself to be rude in speech, i.e., phraseology. But the Epistle is written in purer Greek, as every one must confess who is able to discern differences in style.” Again, he says: “The thoughts in this epistle are admirable, and not inferior to the acknowledged writings of the apostle. This every one will grant who is familiar with his productions.” Afterwards he adds: “I should say that my belief is that the sentiments are the apostle’s, but the phraseology and diction belong to some one who expresses in words the thoughts of the apostle, and as it were commented on the words of his master. If then [however] any church receives this epistle as Paul’s, let it even receive commendation for this; for not without reason have the ancients handed it down as Paul’s. Who penned the epistle, God only certainly knows; but a report has come to us from certain ones, who say that Clement, bishop of Rome, and from others that Luke, the author of the Acts, wrote this epistle.”18

From this testimony of Origen several points should be noticed.

1. It is indisputable that he had an unquestioning belief that the Epistle to the Hebrews was in substance the production of Paul. The numerous instances of direct quotation from it as the apostle’s, just as he quoted his unquestioned epistles, and his unhesitating ascription of fourteen epistles to him, put the matter beyond legitimate question.

2. He held this belief with the feeling that the style differed from Paul’s in his other epistles, and with the knowledge that it had been controverted, but with the confidence that there were arguments sufficient to convince the disbeliever; “for with such a one,” he says, “other reasons must be privately employed in order to show that Paul was the author.

3. We have proof from these quotations that the authority of tradition, as he estimated it, was in favor of the direct Pauline origin of the epistle. For what else can he mean by the declaration: “The ancients (οἱ ἀρχαῖοι ἄνσρες)19 have, not without reason, handed it down as Paul’s; i.e., as his in opposition to Origen’s view, that the thoughts were his, while the language was another’s?

4. There is no proof, from Origen, that there was a tradition that either Clement or Luke was the author of the Hebrews, only that an opinion to that effect had been expressed in his own time; for nothing more can safely be made out from the phrase ἡ δὲ εἰς ἡμᾶς φθάσασα,20 a report has come to our ears, especially when taken in connection with the words ὑπό τινων μὲν λεγόντων, κ. τ. λ. from those who say, etc.

5. The meaning of the declaration “Who wrote the epistle,” etc., is not who is the author of it, but who committed it to writing, who penned it. Otherwise there would be a direct contradiction to what he says in this same passage: the sentiment, or thoughts, are the apostle’s, as well as to his frequent and unequivocal designation of Paul as the author in numerous other passages.

6. Although Origen, from the style merely, attributed the penning of the epistle, perhaps from Paul’s dictation, to some other hand than the apostle’s, yet he was not able to designate the person, and did not give his assent to the report that Clement or Luke wrote it, and did not allow this notion in reference to the style to weaken his confidence in it as the real production of the great apostle.21

After the time of Origen, for two centuries at least, the testimony of the church and school at Alexandria is unhesitating and unvaried. Dyonisius, his disciple, who flourished about a. d. 247, says in an epistle to Fabius of Antioch: “Paul also says, ‘They also, like those to whom Paul bore testimony (Hebrews 10:34), took with joy the spoiling of their goods.’”22 Theophrastus (about a. d. 282) is equally explicit: “Paul also says, For it is impossible for those who have been once enlightened,” etc. (Heb. 6:4–6.)23 So Hie-rax, Peter, Alexander, Athanasius, Theophilus, Serapion, Cyril of Alexandria, down to Euthalius (a. d. 460), who, although he recognizes the fact that objections have been made to it, yet sets them aside and declares it to be Paul’s.24 Other persons in Egypt, though not Alexandrians, might also be quoted, but it is deemed unnecessary.25

We should not neglect to notice that its position in the canon was different in these early ages from the one it now occupies. Ebrard says its Pauline origin “is confirmed by the remarkable circumstance that the Epistle to the Hebrews, as is still evident from the numbering of the Kephalaia in the Cod. B., originally stood between the Ep. to the Galatians and that to the Ephesians, and was not till a later period in the fourth century placed after the Epistle to the Thessalonians (as in Cod. A and C), and still later after the pastoral epistles.”26

In Syria, Palestine, and Greece, the tradition was uniformly in favor of the Pauline authorship, until the time of the Arian controversy. About the middle of the third century the council at Antioch, in its official capacity, definitely designates it as Paul’s, and ranks it with the epistles to the Corinthians: now the Lord is that Spirit, according to the apostle (2 Cor. 3:17). And, according to the same, For they drank of the spiritual rock, etc. (1 Cor. 10:4).....And of Moses the apostle writes: Esteeming the reproaches of Christ greater riches, etc. (Heb. 11:26).27 Methodius, bishop of Olympus in Syria and of Tyre, probably refers to 10:1 and 12 of this epistle of Paul, though it is not absolutely certain.28 Gregory Thaumaturgus, Jacob of Nisibis (a. d. 325), and Ephrem Syrus, in numerous passages, ascribe this epistle to Paul.

But still more important confirmation of the Pauline origin of the epistle is found in the ecclesiastical historian Eusebius of Cesarea, who was the first who made the enumeration of the books of the canon of scripture the object of his special attention. In his commentary on the Psalms, he refers to and quotes the epistle very frequently, attributing it to the apostle Paul without the least hint of any doubt about its authorship.”29 Thus, in his Commentary on the Second Psalm, he writes: “The Hebrew said that the right reading was ἔτεκον, which also Aquila had; but the apostle, being acquainted with the law, in the Epistle to the Hebrews made use of the word in the LXX. (Heb. 1:5).” So in his History he says: “Fourteen epistles are clearly and certainly Paul’s, but yet it is proper to say that some, with the church at Rome, reject that to the Hebrews, alleging that it is denied to be Paul’s.”30 And in another passage (Eccl. Hist. ii. 25) he plainly reckons the Hebrews among the acknowledged (ὁμολογούμενοι) epistles, while James, Jude, 2 Peter and 2 and 3 John are among those which are disputed (ἀντιλεγόμενοι). In one passage, while he maintains the Pauline authorship of the epistle, he has been supposed to give his sanction to the theory of Origen, of a Hebrew original. After saying that Clement often quoted the Epistle to the Hebrews, he adds: “Wherefore not without reason this epistle is reckoned among the writings of Paul. For when Paul had written to the Hebrews, in their vernacular language, some say that Luke the evangelist, and others that this same Clement, translated the letter, which latter appears more like the truth, since there is a resemblance between the style and sentiments of Clement’s Epistle and the Epistle to the Hebrews.”31 This passage, standing as it does by itself, affords no very decided proof that Eusebius meant anything more than to defend the epistle upon the ground of those who stumbled at the supposed dissimilarity of style between the Hebrews and the other epistles of Paul. This is the more probable, not to say almost certain, when we compare this passage with that quoted above from his Commentary on Ps. II., where the phrase: The apostle,.....in the Epistle to the Hebrews, made use of the word in the LXX., plainly implies a Greek original.

It is true that one passage is found which seems, at first, contradictory to the above representation, where Eusebius appears to rank the Epistle to the Hebrews among the ἀντιλεγόμεναι γραφαί in the time of Clement of Alexandria; since he speaks of Clement as making use, in his Stromata, of testimonies from the Wisdom of Solomon, the Book of Jesus the Son of Sirach, the Epistle to the Hebrews, and those of Barnabas, Clement, and Jude.32 But, taken in connection with his abundant and unqualified testimony33 to the authorship of our epistle, it cannot so much as intimate a passing doubt in his own mind, but merely a declaration that Clement quoted from writings that all did not receive without question.

The extent to which the denial of the Pauline authorship of the Hebrews went in the time of Eusebius, is plainly indicated by another passage of the Eccl. Hist. vi. 20, where he says that Caius, in a dispute against Proclus, held “at Rome in the time of Zephyrinus, blames the temerity and audacity of his opponents in composing new writings, and mentions only thirteen epistles of Paul, not numbering that which is inscribed to the Hebrews. Moreover, even to the present time this epistle is reckoned by some of the Romans as not belonging to Paul.”34 The natural inference would be, that all the opposition to the epistle which the historian deemed of any account was by some of the Romans.

That Eusebius was understood to give his sanction to the Pauline authority of the epistle, would seem to be evident from the uniformity of that belief in the Eastern church after his time.35 Among others, Cyril of Jerusalem (about a. d. 348), the council of Laodicea (363), in its sixtieth canon, Epiphanius (368), Basil the Great and Gregory Nazianzen (370), Gregory of Nyssa (371), Titus, bishop of Bostra (371), Theodore of Mopsuesta (392), and Chrysostom (398), all give testimony in favor of the Pauline origin of the Hebrews.36 Jerome also remarks, in an epistle to Evagrius, that all the Greeks receive this epistle.37 We might proceed to quote authorities in the fifth century also, but it is needless, as no one denies that, at this time, it was received in all the Eastern churches.38

The Testimony Of The Western Church

In the Western church there is no direct evidence either for or against the Pauline origin of the Hebrews, until near the end of the second century; and that adduced as belonging to that time is very doubtful. It is found in Photius, a writer of the ninth century, who says that Stephen Gobar (a writer of the sixth century) says that Irenaeus (of the close of the second century) and Hippolytus declare the Epistle to the Hebrews not to be Paul’s.39 In the writings of Irenaeus extant, no such testimony can be found, nor indeed any entirely certain evidences40 of quotation from the Hebrews. From this last fact many have, with some reason, supposed that Gobar drew the inference that Irenaeus did not receive the epistle as Paul’s. Eusebius says nothing that would indicate the rejection of this epistle by Irenaeus, although he must have had his writings in a more perfect state than Gobar, and was accustomed to refer to the doubts, when any were expressed, by those from whom he quotes or to whom he refers. He testifies that Irenaeus did quote the Epistle to the Hebrews, but gives no positive indication whether as authorized scripture, or not. He says: “He wrote a book of various disputations, in which he mentions the Epistle to the Hebrews and the book called the Wisdom of Solomon, quoting some expressions from them.”41 The circumstance that it is mentioned in connection with the Book of the Wisdom of Solomon, does not by any means necessarily imply that he placed them in the same category, as Davidson claims, but merely that he found sentiments in both that were apposite to the purpose of his writing. On the whole, very little reliance can be placed upon the opinion of Irenaeus, whether in favor of or in opposition to the Pauline origin of the Epistle to the Hebrews.42

The evidence that Hippolytus denied that Paul was the author of the Hebrews depends entirely upon the quotation from Photius above, and needs no further comment. The opinion of Cams, a presbyter at Rome at the close of the second century, is against the Pauline origin of our epistle, as appears from the quotation above (p. 482, note). Muratorius has published a fragment of an unknown author (a. d. 190), perhaps the Caius mentioned above, in which the number of Paul’s epistles is said to be but thirteen.

Tertullian (about a. d. 200) plainly ascribes the epistle to the Hebrews to Barnabas: “For there is extant,” he says, “an epistle of Barnabas inscribed to the Hebrews, written by a man of such authority, that Paul has placed him in the same rank with himself in respect to abstinence,” etc.43 This statement is more positive against the reception of the Hebrews by this Father and some of those about him, since it was to his purpose to make use of it as authoritative. But all he claims for it is, that it was written by the companion of Paul, and better received by the churches than the “Shepherd of Hennas.”44

Cyprian is supposed to reject the Epistle to the Hebrews from the list of Paul’s writings, since he says: “The apostle Paul who has mentioned this legitimate and certain number [seven], writes to the seven churches,”45 thus omitting our epistle. But it is by no means certain that he does not include it in this numeration, because it has no address to any church, although Davidson maintains that Jerome gives the commentary upon Cyprian’s words: “The apostle Paul writes to seven churches; for the eighth, to which the Hebrews was written, is put by very many out of the number.”46 But it is unnecessary to allude to other authors, as it is not questioned that the Pauline authorship of the Hebrews was denied, in the Western church, until some time early in the fourth century.

We have already seen that in the time of Eusebius (fl. in the first half of the fourth century), a part of the Roman church only rejected the Hebrews. Hilary (about a. d. 350) quoted Hebrews 1:447 as the words of Paul. So Lucifer, bishop of Cagliari (354); Victorinus, a rhetorician of Rome (360);48 Ambrose of Milan, Philaster, bishop of Brescia,Gaudentius his successor, Rufinus and others in the latter half of the fourth century. Others, as Victorinus, Zeno, and Ambrosiaster, still doubted.49

But the testimony of Jerome and Augustine, which shows that the opinion had been previously divided, and whose influence settled the question for succeeding centuries, is of special importance here. Jerome often quotes the Hebrews, without question or modification, as Paul’s, or, which is the same thing, the apostle’s. So in his Epistle 26 ad Pammach. (Opp. Tom. I. 168, Ed. Par. 1643); also Ep. 61; Adv. Jovin. I. 3. p. 323; II. 1. p. 361; Ep. 34 ad Jul.; Epist. 3 ad Heliod., Coram, in Esaiam, Tom. IV. p. 21; also 28.50 In his Commentary on Matt. 26. he says: “Paul, in his Epistle to the Hebrews, although many of the Latins doubt concerning it, says,” etc.51 So in Comm. on Isa. c. 6, he says: “Hence Paul the apostle, in the Epistle to the Hebrews, which the Latins do not generally receive,” etc.52 In his Epistle to Dardanus, he says: “It must be maintained that this epistle, which is inscribed to the Hebrews, is received as the apostle Paul’s, not only by the churches of the East, but by all the ecclesiastical Greek writers of former times, though most [of the Latins] ascribe it to Barnabas or Clement;” and he also remarks that “it makes no difference whose it is, since it belongs to an ecclesiastical man, and is daily read in the churches. But if the Latins do not commonly receive it as canonical, the Greek churches use the same liberty in reference to the Apocalypse of John. We, however, receive both, not regarding the custom of the present time, but the authority of ancient authors, who for the most part avail themselves of the authority of both as canonical, not as they are wont to employ apocryphal writings.”53 The proof is abundant and incontrovertible that Jerome himself received the Hebrews as Paul’s, although he often, out of regard to those who rejected it, referred to it in a hypothetical manner.54

One passage in Jerome’s Catalogue of Ecclesiastical Writers deserves attention, as showing the opinion of those of his time who rejected it from the number of Paul’s writings: “But the Epistle ‘to the Hebrews’ is believed not to be his [Paul’s], on account of the difference of the style, but either Barnabas’s, according to Tertullian, or Luke the evangelist’s, according to others, or Clement’s, afterward bishop of Rome, who, they say, arranged and adorned the sentiments of Paul in his own language; or, indeed, because Paul was writing to the Hebrews, and on account of the prejudice against him among them he had omitted his name in the inscription. But he had written as a Hebrew to Hebrews, in Hebrew, his native language, most eloquently, so that those things which were eloquently written in Hebrew, are translated into more eloquent Greek than his other epistles, and accordingly this seems to differ from the rest of the epistles of Paul.”55

In reference to the opinion of Augustine, there would seem to be little question, although Bleek and some others think they find evidence of vacillation, if not of unbelief, in some of his writings. In his Book De Doctrina Christiana (2. 8) there are fourteen epistles of Paul,56 among which he particularizes the one “ad Hebraeos.” He also often refers to and quotes the Hebrews as unquestionably Paul’s, in several instances, as: “You have heard the apostle exhorting,” etc.,57 quoting Heb. 12:7 sq.; “Hear, therefore, what the apostle says,”58 quoting Heb. 13:4; and so in many other instances.59 In his commentary on “Romans,” he not only attributes the Epistle to the Hebrews to Paul, but refers to a reason for the omission of his name in the inscription, and speaks of some who reject the epistle in consequence of this omission: “Except the epistle which he wrote to the Hebrews, where he is said to have omitted the usual salutation at the beginning, designedly, lest the Jews who so perseveringly railed at him, taking offence at his name, should read it with a prejudiced mind, or refuse to read at all what he had written for their salvation. Hence, therefore, some have feared to receive that epistle into the canon of scripture,”60 etc.

A very strong confirmation of the opinion of Augustine, if any were needed, is found in the decrees of several councils at which Augustine was present and exerted a somewhat controlling influence. In that at Hippo, a. d. 393 (can. 36), and in the third at Carthage, a. d. 397 (can. 47), it is mentioned separately61 from Paul’s other epistles, as his; and in the fifth at Carthage, a. d. 419 (can. 29), his epistles are reckoned as fourteen.62

Neither is it any valid objection to his confidence in this epistle that he frequently refers to it, without naming the author, as “the epistle which is written to the Hebrews,” “the epistle to the Hebrews,” “the epistle inscribed to the Hebrews.”63 Nothing would be more natural than to refer to it in that way, as we now often do; but he was doubtless influenced by the feeling that some for whom he wrote did not receive it as Paul’s. Hence he sometimes adds, after naming it, “which the majority say is the writing of the apostle Paul, but some deny to be his.”64

After the time of Augustine, almost every writer of importance received the Hebrews as the apostle’s, though some few still abstained from quoting it.65 “Thus,” says Davidson, “from the beginning of the fifth century the Pauline authorship was generally acknowledged and believed in the Latin church.” Innocent I., near the beginning of the century, writing to Exsuperius, bishop of Toulouse, and giving a catalogue of canonical books, mentions among the others fourteen epistles of Paul. Near the end of this century, pope

Galasius, at Rome, with a council of seventy bishops, included in a catalogue of canonical books which they made, fourteen epistles of Paul, to whom epistola una, ad Hebraeos is attributed. Even the most sceptical must, with Bleek (p. 234), acknowledge that this is sufficient testimony to show that the churches of the West, at this time, received the Hebrews as the apostle’s.


1. In the apostolic age the Epistle to the Hebrews stands in the same category with nearly all of Paul’s other epistles, as far as authorship is concerned, and has as good a claim, at least, to a Pauline origin as most of the books of the New Testament have, of being the productions of their respective authors.

2. In the Western church there is no directly reliable testimony, either for or against the Pauline authorship of the Hebrews, until about the close of the second century. Still the testimony of Clement of Alexandria, who had travelled extensively both in the East and the West, would decidedly imply that no considerable opposition had been made to it there, previously to the time of his writing.

3. It is acknowledged that the testimony of the Latin church Fathers, from the end of the second or beginning of the third, until some time in the first half of the fourth century, was generally against the Pauline origin of our epistle, although but little positive testimony to that effect can be adduced. During the middle and latter part of the fourth century the testimony is not uniform, but gradually increasing, in favor of Paul as the author. From the time of Jerome and Augustine, who both favored the Pauline authorship, there were few dissentient voices even in the Latin church. Popes and councils almost uniformly, until a late period, when doctrinal questions exerted an influence, attribute fourteen epistles to Paul.

4. In the Eastern church, including Greece, Egypt, Syria, and Palestine, the testimony is continuous and decided in favor of Paul as the author of the Hebrews. This is not a mere unquestioned assent, such as might be handed down from one to another without inquiry, but it is a positive testimony, given with the full consciousness that its authorship had been disputed, and in some cases, as that of Origen, with a persuasion, from the internal characteristics, that it must have been a translation or transcription by another hand.

5. It is scarcely necessary to add a word further, since the preponderance of testimony is so decidedly in favor of the Pauline origin of the epistle. Yet two or three additional considerations seem to place the matter almost beyond question in a historical point of view. It is not merely to the number of witnesses that we are able to appeal. Davidson well says: “The value of the evidence furnished by the early Latin church cannot be put into comparison with the early Alexandrian. The former church was uncritical in comparison with the latter. It cannot be placed on an equal footing with the Alexandrian, either in learning or critical skill.”66 Besides, the authority of Jerome, who, although later in point of time, yet was “learned” and “extensively read,” and one “who made use of the library of Caesarea, and therewith of the entire Christian literature of the first centuries,”67 would go far to annul the negative testimony of his predecessors, were they far more numerous and learned than they can be claimed to be. Another consideration has still more weight in favor of the Eastern belief. It is natural to suppose that there would be more, and more accurate knowledge among those to whom the epistle was sent, than among those with whom the author was temporarily residing. Ebrard says: “In Jerusalem [and Palestine], whither the epistle had been sent, it must have been known and learned who the author was; for although he does not name himself in the inscription, the bearer of the epistle would certainly not deliver it with the words: ‘Here I bring you an epistle out of Italy from somebody; who that somebody is, you must not know,’ — for then had the authority of the epistle been but ill cared for.”68 In some way it was doubtless indicated who the author was; and as this “divinely authenticated document for the loosing of the bond between Christianity and Judaism gradually came to have a high significance for the whole of oriental Christendom, the knowledge of its author, too, must have spread first and most surely to Lesser Asia, Syria, Egypt, and Greece.”69 In Italy the knowledge of the existence of such an epistle was doubtless but slowly spread abroad, and slowly received; and hence some negative testimony against it was almost unavoidable. The entire change in the West as soon as the communication with the East became more frequent and intimate, shows that the arguments in favor of Paul as the author were such as could not well be resisted. It may be added, in conclusion, that those who questioned the Pauline authorship of the epistle, in the Latin church, are not at all agreed who the author is, so that we have the testimony of all early ecclesiastical writers of any value in favor of Paul’s, except a few in the Latin church, for two or three centuries, who would almost necessarily have little knowledge of the epistle, and little comparative interest in it, against one or two who have attributed it respectively to Barnabas, or Luke, or Clement of Rome, or Apollos, as author.

Internal Evidence That The Apostle Paul Is The Author Of The Hebrews

The arguments from the characteristic peculiarities of style, and subjects treated of in the epistle have been many and various, and some of them claimed, with about equal right, by both the defenders and impugners of the Pauline authorship. The uncertainty of arguments from the different degree of finish of particular pieces of writing, the casual use of particular words or even phrases, the omission of a particular formal manner of commencing or closing or even conducting a course of reasoning or sentiment or feeling, might be easily and clearly shown by a reference to different productions of any of our English authors. But it is unnecessary to take time to show a thing that is patent to every careful observer. Who can doubt that the peculiarities of a subject, the different circumstances of the writer, mental or physical moods, the real or supposed character and position of the persons to be influenced, and various other causes, will operate to produce a very different style in different writings of the same individual?

Who can say what causes operated upon the writer of the Epistle to the Hebrews? We may naturally suppose that this letter, although sent to a particular church, was intended to exert an influence upon the Jews generally in Palestine. Now, although Paul was specifically the apostle to the Gentiles, yet the deep interest that he felt in his own brethren is often shown in his writings. “I could wish,” he says, “that myself were accursed from Christ, for my brethren, my kinsmen according to the flesh.” “Brethren, my heart’s desire and prayer to God for Israel is that they might be saved.” With this strong feeling for those of his own nation, whom he had forsaken for the far-off Gentiles at Rome, while not improbably discouraging accounts were reaching him of the defection or little progress in Christian knowledge of those who had given hopes of better things, what improbability that the apostle was impelled to an effort of a higher literary character than ordinary? The very theme itself—the superiority of our Lord Jesus Christ — would also have genially stirred the apostle as he could hardly have been, in writing any of his other epistles. It seems to me that the surprise would be more natural if, in these circumstances, he had not risen to an unusual rhetorical effort.

Even those who consider the style of the epistle as being at variance with its Pauline origin, when they speak of the style of the apostle without any reference to the Hebrews, recognize the difficulty of bringing all of the acknowledged epistles into one category in respect to characteristics. Thus Davidson says: “The style and diction usually constitute an index of the mental and moral features, particularly in such individuals as are of transparent character. In the present case there is a great variety, as might be expected from the many-sided man who stands before us. The epistles addressed to individuals and communities, under different circumstances, are wonderfully adapted, in tone and contents, to the parties in question; while at the same time they represent different states of mind and feeling in the writer. In like manner, the speeches delivered by Paul before various audiences, evince a philosophic spirit or an unpolished aspect, in conformity with the minds he had to deal with. Hence the philosophical Athenians, and the rude Lycaonians, were addressed in a very different style. Every reader has felt the difficulty of obtaining a comprehensive and discriminating view of Paul’s general diction. One letter exhibits phrases and forms of expression which serve to characterize itself; but analogous expressions do not run through all his epistles, so commonly and clearly as to evince at once their common source. Similarities of diction are more within the circle of one, than the wider sphere of all. Hence it is much easier to characterize the apostle as a writer, from one or several epistles, than from the entire collection.”

It must be confessed that many of the arguments from internal characteristics, standing by themselves, are at least somewhat uncertain; and that there is nothing in them that is so palpable as to leave no room for doubt. But so much has been made of this kind of argumentation, that it is necessary to draw out, at some length, the particulars that have been adduced upon both sides, in order to come to a satisfactory conclusion. And in this way, it appears to us, that we can make it appear, not only that we are not forced to yield to those who oppose the Pauline authorship; but that, taken in connection with the strong external evidence, we need not doubt that it is Paul who gives his words of encouragement, exhortation, and admonition to his Jewish brethren.

The Allusions In The Epistle To The Hebrews That Are Indicative Of Authorship

Not unfrequently a single allusion, in a piece of composition, may be such as unequivocally to designate its author. But no such designation is found in the Epistle to the Hebrews. There are, however, allusions which have been referred to, by both those who defend and those who impugn its Pauline authorship, which deserve a brief notice here.

1. Ch. 2:3, “How shall we escape if we neglect so great salvation, which at the first began to be spoken by the Lord, and was confirmed unto us by them that heard him.” The author of the Hebrews, it is said, here classes himself with those whom he addressed, as having heard the facts pertaining to Christ’s life and mission from those who were eye-witnesses, and thus distinguishes himself from Christ’s immediate disciples, and implies that he could not have been an apostle, instead of laying stress upon his apostolical authority, as Paul is accustomed to do; e. g., Gal. ch. 1. and 2 Cor. 11-12.

In the first place, the passage does not necessarily derogate at all from the apostolical authority of the writer of the Hebrews. He might, as the chiefest of the apostles, thus by a kind of courtesy rank himself with those whom he addresses. So Paul does often, as in 1 Cor. 10:8, 9; 2 Cor. 7:1; Rom. 13:11–13. We might, with as much propriety, consider Paul in the latter passage as implying that he had previously lived “in rioting and drunkenness,” “in chambering and wantonness, “in strife and envying,” as charge upon the author of the Hebrews any deficiency in respect to apostolical authority in the passage under discussion. The figure of speech here employed is common in all languages and ages.70

But, furthermore, apostolical authority is not here at all brought into the account. “The author is not,” it has been well said, “addressing those who cast doubts on his authority; and the question in the Epistle to the Hebrews is not, whether Paul derives his office as immediately as the twelve from Christ; but the antithesis is between the word of the law which was spoken by angels on Sinai, and the word of the New Testament salvation which has been made known ‘to us,’ first by the Lord himself and then by ear-witnesses (therefore is perfectly sure — ἐβεβαιώθη).”71 The pronoun ἡμεῖς is used here for Christians generally, as opposed to those under the Old Testament dispensation.

Finally, the omission of the name of the author in the introduction of this epistle, shows that he did not propose to lay any stress upon his individual authority in this letter, and it would certainly have indicated a want of tact unworthy of the great apostle, if he had laid any claim to special authority on the ground of his divine commission. Even if his apostolical authority were questioned by the churches to which the epistle was directed, of which we have no proof, yet “circumstances of which we are now ignorant may have determined him not to insist on his apostleship”72 in writing to them.

2. It is very strongly implied, in verses 18 and 19, taken with verse 23d, that the author of the Epistle to the Hebrews was in bondage when he wrote it, or at least had been so, and was yet in some way restrained, but with a strong probability of soon being in a situation to make them a visit with Timothy, who was also then in bondage (ἀπολελυμένον), or better, had been sent away on business.73

“Pray for us,” he says,….. “and I request you the more earnestly to do this, in order that I may speedily be restored to you;” and, “know ye that our brother Timothy is sent away, with whom, if he return speedily, I shall visit you.” Compare this with Phil. 2:9, “But I trust in the Lord Jesus to send Timotheus to you shortly, that I also may be of good comfort when I know your state,” and verses 23 and 24: “Him therefore I hope to send presently, so soon as I shall see how it will go with me. But I trust in the Lord that I also myself shall come shortly.” If we may interpret ἀπολελυμένον sent away, as above, there is at least a probable allusion to the same circumstances in the condition of the writer of the two epistles. Paul, when he writes to the Philippians, was evidently in bondage, and in danger of death at the hand of his enemies, and yet not without hope that he should escape from his persecutors, and be permitted to visit his former friends before a very long time. But even before that, as soon as he could foresee his fate, he would send to them the faithful Timothy, who, he says, “as a son with the father, hath served with me in the gospel.” Nothing is more natural than to suppose that when the Epistle to the Hebrews was written, the circumstances of the writer were just what would be implied in the expectation of Paul when he wrote to the Philippians, i.e., that Timothy had been sent away to them and his own circumstances were such as induced him to express full confidence that he should soon be enabled to revisit the scenes of his former labors. It should be noticed here that the manner in which the author of the Hebrews speaks of Timothy in the passage above quoted, as compared not only with Phil. 2:18 sq., but with Col. 1:1, Παῦλος ἀπόστολος…. καὶ Τιμόθεος ὁ ἀδελφός, and Philem. 1:1, Παῦλος…. καὶ Τιμόθεος ὁ ἀδελφός, is certainly Pauline, and, taken in connection with the attending circumstances, not without weight in determining who was the author of our epistle.

Even if we give the meaning of released from bondage to ἀπολελυμένον, it is no valid objection to Paul, as the author of the epistle, that we have no mention in his other epistles of the incarceration of Timothy, since Paul in none of his letters professes to give an account of the doings of his fellow-laborers, and if at all, only incidentally mentions them.

3. The salutation in 13:24, “They of Italy salute you,” has been adduced both in proof and refutation of Paul as the author of the Hebrews. While nothing is more certain than that it is no argument against the Pauline authorship, I cannot feel that, by itself, it can have much force in favor of it. That οἱ ἀπὸ τῆς ᾿Λταλίας means simply here those of Italy, i.e., the Italian brethren, and is equivalent to the article with the partitive Genitive, ought not, it seems to us, to be questioned. See Stuart’s Introduction; Kühner’s Grammar, § 300 (a); Tholuck’s Comm. upon that passage, and Introd.; and various other authorities. We can hardly suppose that there were not those at Rome, at least occasionally, from other parts of Italy, whom Paul might wish to include with those belonging to Rome itself, in Christian salutations to the Hebrew Christians addressed in this epistle; and no phrase could have been found more brief and appropriate to include all, than the one here employed, οἱ ἀπὸ τῆς ᾿Λταλίας. The passages quoted by Davidson, such as 2 Tim. 1:15, 16, 17; 2 Tim. 4:11, 16, we cannot think have the least weight against this supposition; for, in close connection with the complaint that of all his fellow-laborers only Luke remained (1 Tim. 4:11), and that in his first answer no man stood with him, but all forsook him, he says (verse 21st), “Eubulus greeteth thee, and Pudens, and Linus, and Claudia, and all the brethren.” While, then, this salutation is a perfectly natural one for Paul to make in the conclusion of a letter written at Rome during his stay there, it is also not denied that another similarly situated might have penned it.

4. The description of the tabernacle and its utensils, in 9:2 sq., is alleged to be erroneous. In 1 Kings 8:9 and 2 Chron. 5:10 it is said that “there was nothing in the ark save the two tables which Moses put therein at Horeb, while the author of the Hebrews includes with the tables of the covenant “the golden pot that had manna, and Aaron’s rod that budded.” In answer to this objection, we need only say, that the author of the Hebrews naturally refers, not to Solomon’s temple or to the temple as subsequently rebuilt, but to the tabernacle made by Moses, and patterned after that which he “had seen upon the mount,” and built with special divine aid and direction; and consequently considered by Jews as the most perfect material structure for divine worship. Now, we read in Ex. 16:32 sq. that the Lord commanded Moses to “fill an omer of manna to be kept for future generations;” “and Moses said to Aaron, Take a pot and put an omer full of manna therein, and lay it up.” “As the Lord commanded Moses, so Aaron laid it up before the testimony, to be kept.” And in Num. 17:10 (25) “the Lord said unto Moses, Bring Aaron’s rod again before the testimony to be kept for a token against the rebels;”… “and Moses did so.” It is plain from these passages that both the pot of manna and Aaron’s rod were preserved either in the ark before the tables of stone,74 or in some depository affixed to the ark,75 and that the whole was placed for safe keeping in the holy of holies. In either case, the language in our passage is entirely appropriate.

But still more objection has been made to this passage from the fact that the θυμιατήριον is included within the holy of holies, and is designated as χρυσοῦν, golden. There is much doubt in reference to the import of the word θυμιατήριον. It may with equal propriety, as far as derivation is concerned, designate the altar of incense and the censer. Usage, too, about equally favors both interpretations; for while in the Seventy this word is never used for the altar of incense, but always θυσιατήριον θυμιάματος; yet in Josephus, Philo, Clemens Alex., and Origen, it is often so used.

As we should naturally suppose, in these circumstances, there has always been a difference of opinion in reference to the meaning. The Itala, Calvin, Gerhard, Mynster, Bleek, De Wette, Olshausen, Ebrard, and many others, translate by altar of incense; while the Syriac and Vulgate, Thaophylact, Luther, Boehme, Kuinoel, Stier, Stuart, Tholuck, Davidson, etc., defend the meaning censer. As the only argument against the latter interpretation is an argumentum e silentio, i.e., from the fact that such a censer is omitted in the enumeration of the articles belonging to the tabernacle, it seems to us quite probable that this should be the translation in this place, for it was not incumbent on the writer to specify every particular. Davidson refers to a similar omission in Josephus, which is not supposed to invalidate his authority as a writer, or imply that he was not the author of the “Antiquities of the Jews.”76 It need only be said in respect to the epithet golden, that there can be little question that, if there was a censer belonging to the holy of holies, it would be constructed of gold; still, if any prefer the other rendering it is very easily explained without an imputation of ignorance upon the writer of the epistle. “The altar of incense stood, indeed, in the holy place, but referred to the holy of holies.” The smoke of the altar of incense was not intended to penetrate backwards into the holy place, but into the holy of holies as a symbol of worship near to the veil of which it stood, just before the ark of the covenant. So it is said in 1 Kings that the altar is at or before the holy of holies, where the preposition לְ is used: לַדְּבִיר, for which the Greek participle ἔχουσα is substituted. Thus, says Ebrard, in his commentary, we render the words: “the holy of holies to which the golden altar of incense belonged.” The author had the less reason to shrink from this use of the ἔχειν, as he might well take it for granted that the local position of those vessels was familiar to all his readers; and moreover, verse 7th showed that it was not unknown to himself. It need only be remarked, further, that the imputation of mistake, if it could be proved, has to do with Paul as the author of our epistle, rather than some other person, only on the supposition that he would be less liable to mistake on such a point than one dwelling at Alexandria for example, and that our epistle is unworthy of his high character for accuracy and consistency of statement. Hence it only incidentally comes into our argument for the Pauline authorship of the Epistle to the Hebrews.

5. Hebrews 10:34, καὶ γὰρ τοῖς δεσμοῖς μοῦ συνεπαθήσστε, has sometimes been claimed as a proof of Pauline authorship; but as δεσμοῖς, upon which the argument depends, is a questionable reading, we will not stop here to discuss it. We will only say, in conclusion of this part of the argument, while there is nothing in itself decisive, yet there is nothing that is at all at variance with the condition of Paul at Rome in circumstances alluded to in this letter; but, taken with other arguments, the allusions are corroborative of the proof of Paul as its author.

Similarity Of Sentiment Or Doctrine In The Hebrews And Acknowledged Epistles Of Paul

The argument from the similarity of sentiment and doctrine is perhaps the most valuable of the internal evidences for the Pauline authorship of the Epistle to the Hebrews; and on this account we shall dwell at some length upon it. In order fully to appreciate this evidence, it should constantly be borne in mind that the object of the epistle is quite different from any of the acknowledged epistles of Paul, and addressed to an entirely different class of readers. The author of the Hebrews writes to converted Jews, those who had been educated in the Jewish ritual, and been all their lives conversant with all the imposing ceremonies connected with priestly offerings, sacrifices, and temple worship; with its holy of holies, its golden altars and censers, its courts, its embroidered hangings, and its cherubim, which appeal so strongly to the eye, and through that to the taste and feelings. It is no wonder that the great apostle felt it incumbent upon him, who understood all of these matters so well, and felt the force of them so much, to prepare an argument for the superiority of the Christian worship, which, as it was so simple with its one sacrifice, one altar, and one mediator, was in danger of losing its influence over those so differently educated, so that defection and apostasy would be the result. So Neander justly says: “The author of this epistle directs his argumentation especially against those who were still captivated by the pomp of the temple worship, the priesthood and the sacrifices, and were in danger of being entirely seduced from Christianity by the impression these objects made upon them; this gave its peculiar direction to his reasoning, and it aimed at showing that by all this ritual their religious wants could not be satisfied, but that its only use was to direct them to the sole true means of satisfaction.”77

1. Our first argument under this head is its similarity to the acknowledged epistles of Paul, in expressions indicating the superiority of Christianity to Judaism. It would of course be unreasonable, on the one hand, to look for extended arguments of this kind in the other epistles; and on the other, not to expect that all the epistles of other writers would contain indications of their preference for Christianity over Judaism. Our argument only requires that it be shown that special emphasis is laid upon this thoughts in the epistles of Paul.

(1) First: the Jewish was only a type of the Christian dispensation, and, as such, temporary and comparatively imperfect. Compare Heb. 10:1, “For the law having a shadow of good things to come, and not the very image of the things,” etc., with Col. 2:17, “which [i.e., ceremonial observances enumerated in ver. 16] are a shadow of things to come, but the body is of Christ.” The similarity of language as well as sentiment should be noticed in this connection: σκιὰν …. ἔχων ὁ νόμος τῶν μελλόντων κ. τ. λ., and ἅ ἐστι σκιὰ τῶν μελλόντων. This use of a σκιά (shadow) as opposed to εἰκών (exact image) and σῶμα (substance), is found in no other New Testament writer; and not only so, but in the 5th verse of the same chapter we find σῶμα used with the same substantial significance as in the verse quoted from the Colossians: σῶμα δὲ κατηρτίσω μοι.In Heb. 8:5 we have a similar use of σκιά: “who [i.e., the priests under the Mosaic law] serve unto the example and shadow of heavenly things,” etc.

(2) The Jewish rites and ordinances, the temple and its appurtenances, are only a symbol or type (παραβολή), a pattern or example (ὑπόδειγμα), of the blessings under the gospel, and, as such, are temporary and introductory, not eternal and perfect; not such as can satisfy the spiritual nature of man, to which they owe their origin. So in Heb. 7:15-16 , “there ariseth another priest, who is made not after the law of the carnal commandment, but after the power of an endless life;” ver. 19, “for the law made nothing perfect, but the bringing in of a better hope did,” etc. The preparatory and introductory office of the Mosaic rites and ceremonies is more plainly indicated in ch. 9:9 sq., “which was a figure for the time then present, in which were offered both gifts and sacrifices that could not make him that did the service perfect as pertaining to the conscience, . . but Christ having come an high priest of good things to come by a greater and more perfect tabernacle, etc., entered in once into the holy place, having obtained eternal redemption for us,” etc. See the whole passage to the end of the chapter, and also 8:1–9. Now, compare what the apostle Paul says in Gal. 3:23 sq.: “But before faith came, we were kept under the law, shut up unto the faith which should afterwards be revealed. Wherefore the law was our schoolmaster,” etc.; but after that faith is come, we are no longer under a school-master. In Gal. 4:3 sq., where Paul calls Judaism τὰ στοιχεῖα τοῦ κόσμου, and especially in the expostulation in verse 9th, are we emphatically reminded of the same hand that penned the Epistle to the Hebrews: “But now after that ye have known God, or rather are known of God, how turn ye to the weak and beggarly elements whereunto ye desire again to be in bondage.” Compare also ver. 3 of the same chapter, and also Gal. 5:1, ” stand fast therefore in the liberty wherewith Christ hath made us free, and be not entangled again with the yoke of bondage.” Numerous other passages might be quoted did our limits allow it. But enough have been adduced to serve as examples, and to indicate the nature of the argument which a careful inquirer may find for himself, if he compare the Hebrews with the acknowledged epistles of Paul, and then with the other epistles of the canon. “Where can such coincidences in reference to the relations and comparative value of the old and new dispensations be found in the epistles of Peter or James or John, as those above referred to? Also 2 Cor. 3:10 sq., especially verses 15 and 16, “But even unto this day when Moses is read the veil is upon their heart; nevertheless when it shall turn to the Lord, the veil shall be taken away.” The insufficiency of the law is plainly declared, also, in Rom. 8:3, ” For what the law could not do in that it was weak through the flesh, God sending his own Son in the likeness of sinful flesh, and for sin condemned sin in the flesh.”

2. The views and statements in reference to Christ’s person, offices, humiliation, and final exaltation, are similar in the Hebrews and acknowledged epistles of Paul.

(1) His person. He is represented in Heb. 1:3 as the “brightness of [the Father’s] glory, and the express image of his person” (ἀπαύγασμα τῆς δόξης καὶ χαρακτὴρ τῆς ὑποστάσεως αὐτοῦ); and in Col. 1:15 as the image of the invisible God (εἰκὼν τοῦ θεοῦ τοῦ ἀοράτου); in 2 Cor. 4:4 as the image of God; in Phil. 2:6 as in the form of God (ἐν μορφῇ θεοῦ).

(2) The work of creation is imputed to him: “By him and for him are all things made.” Heb. 1:2, “whom he appointed heir of all things; by whom he also made the worlds;” ver. 3, “upholding all things by the word of his power;” ver. 10, “thou Lord in the beginning hast laid the foundation of the earth,” etc. Col. 1:16-17, , “for by him were all things created that are in heaven and that are in earth, visible and invisible,… all things were created by him and for him; . . by him all things consist.” Eph. 3:9, “God, who created all things by Jesus Christ” 1 Cor. 8:6, “One Lord Jesus Christ, by whom are all things,”

(3) His humiliation and exaltation are spoken of in a similar manner, and as having the same relation to each other. Heb. 2:9, “But we see Jesus, who was made a little lower than the angels for the suffering of death, crowned with glory and honor;” 12:2, “who, for the joy that was set before him, endured the cross, despising the shame, and is set down at the right hand of the throne of God.” Phil. 2:8-9, “And being found in fashion as a man, he humbled himself and became obedient unto death, even the death of the cross. Wherefore God hath also exalted him and given him a name above every name,” etc. Davidson well says that this idea, “that Jesus not only passed, through suffering obedience, to an exalted state, but obtained it as a reward for obedience unto death,” is found in no epistle of the New Testament except those of Paul.78 The connected thoughts that through the humiliation and suffering of death our Lord Jesus Christ destroyed the power of death, and the influence of him who had the power of death, the devil, is Pauline, and is found in Heb. 2:14, “He also himself likewise took pas of the same [flesh and blood], that through death he might destroy him that had the power of death, that is the devil,” etc.; and in 1 Cor. 15:26, “The last enemy that shall be destroyed is death;” and verses 56-57, and the context,” The sting of death is sin,… but thanks be to God which giveth us the victory through our Lord Jesus Christ;” and 2 Tim. 1:10, “By the appearing of our Saviour Jesus Christ, who hath abolished death,” etc. He should not escape notice that the same figure of speech, introduced in a similar way, is used in the account of the subjection of all things to Christ, taken from the Old Testament, and nowhere else employed, as in 1 Cor. 15:25, 28; Eph. 1:22; Phil. 3:21; and Heb. 2:8 and 10:13 sq.

(4) The one sacrifice of Christ, and its effects, are conspicuously and similarly spoken of in the Hebrews and Paul’s acknowledged epistles. The general fact of the expiatory nature of Christ’s death is an ever recurring theme,79 and in this Paul differs from the other New Testament writers only in the prominence which he gives to this topic, which indeed makes up a large part of the Epistle to the Hebrews, from the end of ch. iv. to ch. xi. The particular representation of the one death for the sins of all, and the subsequent exaltation above the possibility of suffering and death, is peculiar to the Hebrews and Pauline epistles. Heb. 9:26, 28, “Now once, in the end of the world, hath he appeared, to put away sin by the sacrifice of himself… . So Christ was once offered to bear the sins of many; and unto them that look for him shall he appear the second time without sin unto salvation;” 10:12, “But this man, after he had offered one sacrifice for sins, forever sat down on the right hand of God.” Compare Rom. 6:9, 10, “Knowing that Christ, being raised from the dead, dieth no more; death hath no more dominion over him. For in that he died, he died unto sin once; but in that he liveth, he liveth unto God.”80 In this connection, the office of Christ as a redeemer should not be passed over as exhibited in many passages, i.e., in Heb. 9:15, “For this cause he is the mediator of the new testament, that by means of death for the redemption of the transgressions that were under the first testament, they which are called might receive the promise of eternal inheritance; “and Rom. 3:25, “Whom God hath set forth to be a propitiation through faith in his blood, to declare his righteousness for the remission of sins that are past,” etc. His power of redeeming from death is indicated by the same peculiarly Pauline word81 as in Heb. 2:14, ἵνα διὰ τοῦ θανάτου καταργήσῃ τὸν τὸ κράτος ἔχοντα τοῦ θανάτου, κ. τ. ν. and 2 Tim. 1:10, διὰ τῆς ἐπιφανείας τοῦ σωτῆρος ἡμῶν ᾿Λησοῦ Χριστοῦ καταργήσαντος μὲν τὸν θάνατον, κ. τ. λ.

(5) Christ in his exaltation is spoken of in the same manner in the Hebrews and other Pauline epistles. He was “made higher than the heavens,” Heb. 7:26; “is passed into the heavens,” 4:14; he “ascended up far above the heavens,” Eph. 4:10; “he is seated at the right hand of God;” he “sat down on the right hand of majesty on high;” Heb. 1:3, “Forever sat down on the right hand of God.” So in Rom. 8:34; Eph. 1:20; Col. 3:1. All things are subject to him, except him who put all things under him. Compare Heb. 2:8 with 1 Cor. 15:27. He intercedes with the Father, Heb. 7:25, “seeing he ever liveth to make intercession for them,” and Rom. 8:34, “who also maketh intercession for us.”

(6) Access to the Father is obtained only through Christ, Heb. 10:19-20, “Having therefore, brethren, boldness to enter into the holiest by the blood of Jesus,” etc. Rom. 5:2, “By whom we also have access by faith,” etc., and Eph. 2:18, “For through him we both have access, by one Spirit, unto the Father.” His office as mediator, μεσίτης, by which this access is obtained, especially as mediator of a new covenant, is found in Heb. 8:6; 9:15; 12:24; and in 1 Tim. 2:5. The word μεσίτης is used also by Paul, in reference to Moses, in Gal. 3:19-20,, but not elsewhere found in the New Test. It should not escape notice, that the same word, ἐντυγχάνειν, is used to denote the intercession of Christ, both in the Hebrews and Romans: εἰς τὸ ἐντυγχάνειν ὑπὲρ αὐτῶν, Heb. 7:25; ὃς καὶ ἐντυγχάνει ὑπὲρ ἡμῶν, Rom. 8:34.

3. The writer of the Epistle to the Hebrews speaks of faith (πίστις), and illustrates it in a way, and attaches an importance to it, which no other New Test, writer has done except Paul in the Epistle to the Corinthians and Galatians. Compare Heb. 3:5; 10:38–11:40 with Rom. 4:3 and Gal. 3:6–14. But especially Pauline is the use of the triad faith (πίστις), hope (ἐλπίς), and charity (ἀγάπη). See Heb. 10:22, 23-24, and 1 Cor. 13:13; also Heb. 6:10–12, as compared with 1 Thess. 1:3 and 2 Thess. 1:4.

These are some of the more conspicuous examples of similarity of sentiment and doctrine in the Hebrews and acknowledged epistles of Paul; others may be found referred to in Stuart, Davidson, and others; but these are “clear and unmistakable.” “Unquestionably,” says Davidson, “the same type of doctrine is exhibited here as appears in the authentic writings of the apostle. The agreement is palpable. It cannot fail to arrest the observation of every reader.”82

Objections have been adduced from discrepancy of sentiment between the Hebrews and the undoubted epistles of Paul.

1. Christ’s resurrection is not made prominent in the Hebrews as in the Epistles to the Corinthians and Thessalonians. Neither is it in the Romans or Galatians; and if it is an objection to Paul as the author, so is it in those epistles. There was special reason for the prominence given to this doctrine in the epistles above named, inasmuch as it was doubted by the Corinthians and wrongly understood by the Thessalonians. This objection would be valid only on condition that the non-existence of the resurrection would be inferred. But so far is this from the fact, that its existence is everywhere implied, and indeed “lies at the basis of this epistle.” Christ’s exaltation to heaven, which is made so prominent in contrast with the entrance of the Jewish priest into the holy of holies, is a most natural implication of the resurrection, and all that this theme requires. Thus Nean-der has said, for substance, that the exaltation of Christ to heaven is more frequently adverted to than his antecedent resurrection in this epistle, may be traced to the prevailing form of the representation, which gave less occasion to make prominent the former doctrine than that to which it forms an introduction and transition.’ Still the resurrection is more directly implied in such passages as 12:2, “Endured the cross and is set down at the right hand of the throne of God;” 5:7, “Who offered up prayers and supplications unto him that was able to save him from death, and was heard in that he feared,” i.e., was delivered from the grave; 13:20, “That brought again from the dead our Lord Jesus.” “In these words,” says Neander, “it is implied that Christ, by his resurrection, became the leader from death to life of the church of God, formed by him as the Redeemer, and laid the foundation for its salvation; and therefore God, in raising him from the dead, proved himself to be the God of salvation.” 83 But we will not dwell longer upon a point so palpable to the careful reader.

2. It is maintained that the opposition between faith and the works of the law is not exhibited in the Hebrews. But is it so exhibited in the Epistle to the Thessalonians? Besides, such an exhibition as is made in the Romans and Galatians, where the question whether the law is to be observed by the Gentiles, is discussed, would be entirely out of place in the Hebrews; since he addresses those who are in danger of being led away from the simplicity of Christian worship by the ceremonies of the temple, and the more imposing Jewish ritual, which, as he shows, are not sufficient to make satisfaction for sin, but merely point to the real source of justification. Nothing is plainer than that the same faith, under different forms, is implied in both. Only in the one case the representation is, that it cannot be attained by the observance of law; and in the other, by the Jewish rites and sacrifices. Ebrard well says: “Those to whom the Hebrews was addressed, were not work-righteous” as the Galatians and their false teachers were; on the contrary, they were earnestly desiring atonement (the necessity of which they did not doubt), but they could not believe that the one sacrifice was sufficient. Thus in their case the opposition could not be between ἔργα νόμου and πιστις, but only that between the σκιὰ νόμου and the τελείωοις. In dealing with such readers, Paul also could certainly not write otherwise than is written in the Epistle to the Hebrews. For no one will fail to perceive that the difference between the doctrinal system of the Epistle to the Hebrews and that of the Epistle to the Romans is only a formal one.”84

3. The author of the Hebrews is accused of an allegorical interpretation of the Old Testament. If this is to be understood literally, all the answer we need to make is to deny the accusation. Allegory is no more found in the Hebrews than in the acknowledged Paulina epistles. So Ebrard, Davidson, and all other modern critics, except those who are especially desirous of disproving the Pauline authorship of the Hebrews. But if it is meant merely that typology, i.e., a giving of a greater prominence to the types of the Old Testament is more conspicuous in the Hebrews than in the Pauline epistles, it is not only granted, but claimed as an indirect proof of Paul as the author. It could be no objection unless it could be shown that it was not only not found in the writings of Paul, but not found where it would be naturally expected. But so far is this from the reality, that we find, as has been said, “not only just such, but a bolder” instance of this typology in Gal. 4:22 sq. Now, in the Hebrews, the typical character of the Hebrew worship is the basis of the whole writing. It was the main object of the epistle to show that the Jewish ceremonies point forward to something more perfect; that this perfection, τελείωσις, was found in Christ and his worship; that is, that they were mere types. How could the gifted, the learned apostle have attained his object more directly and naturally than it is done in the Hebrews? A candid examination of the use made of the Old Testament types shows, not that Paul did not write the epistle, certainly; nor, directly, that he did; but that it is worthy of him as author.

Some few other objections have been adduced under this head: such as, that nothing is said in the Hebrews of “the kingdom of God,” of “Satan’s kingdom,” or that the author is the “apostle to the Gentiles;” but they are so palpably without support, after an examination of the object and aim of the Hebrews, and a comparison of the other epistles, against which the same accusation might be made, that one cannot find the excuse of a man, or even a skeleton of straw, to beat down.

General Characteristics Of Form In The Hebrews And Acknowledged Epistles Of Paul

The general characteristics of form are the same in the Hebrews and in the acknowledged epistles of Paul. This is not so positive and direct as, by itself, to compel us to attribute it to the great apostle; much less is it such as would indicate the hand of an imitator. Still it is sufficient to remind the careful reader of relationship to the most characteristic of all the Pauline epistles, the Romans, and next to that, the Galatians.

1. The general arrangement of materials is the same. In the Hebrews, from ch. 1–10:19, the argument and doctrine of the epistle is contained, with occasional bursts of emotion or strains of exhortation, which the strength of the writer’s feelings in the consideration of his subject forces from him. From 10:20 to the end comes the hortatory and practical part of the epistle, with an expression of the author’s longing for intercourse with those whom he addresses, 13:19, 23; his desire for their prayers, 13:18; and his fervent commendation of them to the “God of peace,” with a concluding “Amen,” before the final salutations. In like manner, in the Romans, ch. 1–10 are doctrinal, and the remainder practical, salutatory, etc. Towards the close, his desire to see those to whom he writes appears in 15:22 sq., 32; the same petition for prayer in his behalf in 15:30; the same commendation to the God of peace, strictly Pauline, with the concluding Amen in 15:33; and finally, salutations to the brethren, more individual and specific than in the Hebrews, as addressed to a particular church, where were particular individuals known to him. The same thing in general may be said of the Epistle to the Galatians, and of other epistles, though in a less marked and definite manner.

There is one point of difference, however, that should here be noticed, namely, less of personal allusion, in the beginning of the Epistle to the Hebrews, than in the other epistles. In the Romans, for example, several verses are taken up in indicating the author’s claims to apostleship, his interest in those to whom he writes, his desire to see them, in order to “impart some spiritual gift,” or himself be “comforted together with” them. Nothing of this kind is found in the Hebrews. The author enters almost at once upon the proofs of the superiority of Christ to angels, the first head of his argument. Now, can this be tortured into an indication that Paul was not the author of the Hebrews?

Let us attempt to learn from the epistle itself with what feelings the author of the Hebrews seated himself for his work. He had become impressed with the feeling that his brethren who had been converted from Judaism were not making that progress in the knowledge of Christianity which the length of time since their conversion, and their opportunities, might have enabled them to do (5:12); he also knew the danger of apostasy (6:1 sq.) to those who constantly fed upon the milk of the word, and who consequently were unskilful in the word of righteousness (5:13); he was sensible, too, of the attractions to them of the Jewish ritual, and the persecutions that assailed them (12:1 sq.); and with all this he strongly felt the ruin that apostasy would bring upon those thus situated; for it is impossible for those who were once enlightened, and have tasted the heavenly gift, etc., if they shall fall away, to renew them to repentance (6:4–6). Now, imagine the apostle, imbued with these feelings, sitting down to write a general letter to these Hebrews, would it be natural for him to dwell at once upon his personal feelings, his relation to those addressed, and things of that kind? The man of argument would have recourse to that And what more fitting to the occasion and to the character of Paul than a presentation of the glory of the person and character of our Lord Jesus Christ, “the heir of all things,” “the brightness of the Father’s glory,” “the express image of his person,” “the Creator of all things,” who had now sat down at the right hand of the Majesty on high, the Son of God, and hence superior to angels, who are his servants, “ministering spirits sent forth to minister for them who shall be heirs of salvation?”

2. Clearly connected with what precedes, the absence of the name of the writer has been often adduced as against the Pauline authorship of the Hebrews. The early Fathers, as Pantaenus and Clement, recognize the fact that even in their time this had been made an objection to the Pauline authorship, but as not influencing their opinion. They accordingly give reasons for the omission, as the modesty of the apostle in writing to the Jews since he was the apostle to the Gentiles, or to avoid influence from prejudice against him, or for some such reason. These considerations may or may not have influenced him; and there may have been numerous reasons, which are not and cannot be known to us, for this suppression. It was unquestionably the practice of the age to incorporate the name in the address at the beginning of an epistle; and whether Paul or Luke or Clement wrote it, we should expect the name to be inserted, if it were commenced in the ordinary way. But who can doubt that Paul, as well as another, might omit this inscription? And if what has been said in the preceding paragraph has probability, we should certainly not expect a writer of tact to insert his name. As he begins, not with personal allusions, but with argumentation, only one who felt it necessary to adhere to the usual formulary of letter-writing would foist this in as a preface to his letter. Not so, certainly, should we suppose the apostle Paul would do.

The Manner Of Quoting from the Old Testament in the Hebrews

The manner of quoting the Old Testament is the same in the Hebrews and the acknowledged Pauline epistles. A frequent reference to the Old Testament on such a subject as the Epistle to the Hebrews discusses, would be natural, whoever was the author; hence we at present have to do only with the manner of the quotation and employment of scripture language.

1. The author of the Hebrews, as well as of the authorized epistles of Paul, quotes often without any formula of quotation; e. g., Heb. 3:2, 5; 10:37; 11:21; 12:6; 13:6. Rom. 9:7, 21; 10:6–8, 13, 18; 11:34. 1 Cor. 2:16; 10:26; 15:25, 27, 32; 2 Cor. 9:7; 13:1. Gal. 3:11-12. Eph. 5:31. 2 Tim. 2:19.

2. There are forms of quotation that are strikingly similar in the Hebrews and acknowledged Pauline epistles. In Heb. 4:7 it is said, “Again he limited a certain day saying in David” (ἐν Δαβίδ λέγων); in Rom. 9:25, “As he saith also in Osee” (ἐν τῷ ῾Ωσηὲ λέγει); and 11:2, ἐν ᾿Ηλίᾳ τί λέγει. Notice, also, the use of τὸ δέ in Heb. 12:27, and τὸ γάρ in Rom. 13:9, and ἐν τῷ λέγεσθαι in Heb. 3:15, and ἐν τῷ in Gal. 3:11.

On the other hand, it cannot be denied that the formulas of quotation generally used in the Hebrews differ from those used in the acknowledged epistles, but still not more than these differ among themselves. For in the Romans, in the forty-eight instances, we find a great variety of quotation — γράφω, λέγω, εἴπω, and ῥέω— used either impersonally or with the author of the quotation, or γραφή, or some kindred word as subject. In two cases only is θεός to be supplied: 9:15, 25. In the first Epistle to the Corinthians, only γέγραπται is used in the eleven formal instances of quotation, except in 6:16, where (φγσί (sc. ἡ γραφή) is used. In 2 Cor. again, there is more variety: in 8:15; 9:9, καθὼς γέγραπται is used; in 4:13, κατὰ τὸ γεγραμμένον; in 6:17, λέγει κύριος; 6:18, λέγει κύριος παντοκράτωρ; in 6:16, καθὼς εἶπεν ὁ θεός; 6:2, λέγει (sc. θεός). In Gal. γράφω is employed in 3:10, 13; 4:22, 27; λέγει with θεός implied, in 3:16, and with ἡ γραφή in 4:30. Not to specify further, in several of Paul’s epistles no forms of quotation are found.

In the Hebrews there is also some variety in the manner of quotations, though the most common method is with some form of the verb εἴπω, λέγω, φήμι and μαρτύρεω, with θεός, κύριος, Χριστός or Λησοῦς implied. So in eighteen instances—1:5; 6:7; 2:12; 4:3; 5:5-6,7:17, 21; 8:5, 8; 9:20; 10:5, 8, 9, 30; 12:26; 13:5. In seven additional cases, both a form of one of the preceding verbs and nominatives are to be supplied—1:5, 8, 10; 2:13 bis, 14; and 10:30. The nom. τις (sc. Δαβίδ) is expressed in 2:6; τὸ πνεῦμα τὸ ἅγιον, in 3:7; 10:15; and θεός, or a pronoun referring directly to θεός in 6:14. It is plain from the above that, if we draw an argument against the Pauline origin of the Hebrews from the manner of quotation, we must also, as far as this argument goes, exclude the first Epistle to the Corinthians, and several other of Paul’s epistles, from the catalogue of the writings of the author of the Romans. But who does not know that any person writing at different times, and for different objects, without even being sensible of it, varies his style in such particulars as forms of reference to other authors? Indeed, if the forms of quotation had been precisely the same in the Hebrews as the Romans, we should rather be reminded of the hand of an imitator than of the same author. Neither should it seem to be any objection to the epistle, that God is represented as speaking, in the Old Testament, and that too in the third person, while Paul elsewhere only introduces God as speaking in the first person, when the words are properly his own. For not only is God introduced as speaking in the third person in the Old Testament, but he often speaks of himself as a third person in the same way that another would speak of him. Besides, there are peculiar reasons for the writer of the Hebrews introducing God as speaking, in his quotations. He addresses those who acknowledged the authority of the scripture as the word of God, and his argument receives additional weight when it can be prefaced by “thus saith the Lord.”

One need only examine the quotations in the first chapter, to be convinced of the naturalness and force of the manner of quotation. In the fifth verse, what other form could have been properly used than the simple εἶπε, with θεός to be supplied from the preceding context? “God, who at sundry times and in divers manners spake” etc. Who, in such a connection as this, where the authority of God is to be made especially prominent, would have introduced: Thou art my Son, etc., by “it is said,” “some one has said,” “as it has been written,” or some such phrase? No one, plainly, who did not either himself question the inspiration of the words quoted, or expect they would be questioned by those to whom he wrote, neither of which can be supposed here. The whole point of the argument would have been lost. In the sixth verse, if θεός is the subject of εἰσαγάγῃ, what could emasculate the quotation more than to give it an impersonal construction? Similar remarks might be made upon the quotations in the seventh and eighth verses; and so of many of those following. But it is needless. We can hardly conceive that the manner of the introduction of the quotations in the Hebrews would have been used against the Pauline authorship, unless for the sake of substantiating an opinion or confirming a doubt previously existing.

3. Closely connected with the introductory forms of quotation we adduce, as a peculiarity of the acknowledged epistles of Paul and the Hebrews, the custom of accumulating passages from the Old Testament in confirmation of the argument in hand, and connecting them together by teal πάλιν. In both these respects these writings differ fiom all the other books of the New Testament. Instances of cumulative quotation are found, for example, in Rom. 3:10–18; 9:7–33; 11.; and in Heb. 1:5–14; 3.; 10:5–17; the use of καὶ πάλιν in Rom. 15:9–12; 1 Cor. 3:19, 20; Heb. 1:5; 2:12, 13; 4:4; 10:30.85

4. The same passages are quoted from the Old Testament with peculiarities which mark the same hand.

(1) In Heb. 2:8 we find the words Πάντα ὑπέταξας ὑποκάτω τῶν ποδῶν ἀυτοῦ, taken from Ps. 8:6, and the same passage in 1 Cor. 15:27, and again in Eph. 1:22. We have here not merely the same quotation, but in Hebrews and Corinthians the same digression upon a word (ὑποτάσσω), which is so marked a characteristic of Paul. In Hebrews the words follow: For in that he put all in subjection (τῷ ὑποτάξαι), he left nothing not put under him (ἀνυπότακτον). Bat now we see not yet all things put under (ὑποτεταγμένα) him; and Cor.: But when he saith all things are put under him (ὑποτέτακται), it is manifest that he is excepted which did put all things under (ὑποτάξαντος) him. And when all things shall be put under (ὑποταγῇ) him, then shall the Son also himself be subject (ὑποταγήσεται) to him who put all things under (ὑποτάξαντι) him, etc.

There is still another circumstance to be noted here. In the preceding context (in Heb. 1:13), Ps. 110:1, “Sit on my right hand until I make thine enemies thy footstool,” is quoted. In connection with the previous quotation in Eph. 5:20, we find the first part of the quotation from Ps, ex. in an altered form: and “set him at his right hand;” and in 1 Cor. 15:25, the latter part of it: “till he hath put all enemies under his feet.” Furthermore, the same mode of quotation as in Ephesians is adopted in Heb. 8:1 and 12:2. “Nor is this all. It remains to be noticed, as a concluding indication of the same mind and pen, that the substance of the entire quotation, Heb. 1:13, is repeated Heb. 10:12, nearly in the words of its disjecta membra, Eph. 1:20 and 1 Cor. 15:25 … ἐκάθισεν ἐν δεξιᾷ τοῦ Θεοῦ τὸ λοιπὸν ἐκδεχόμενος, ἕως τεθῶσιν οἱ ἐχθροὶ αὐτοῦ ὑπόδιον τῶν ποδῶν αὐτοῦ.”86

(2) In ch. 8:10 and 2 Cor. 6:16, in connection with a similar train of reasoning, and “as a part of a tissera of Old Test quotations,” Ezek. 37:26 is cited, with a very slight variation in the phraseology, both from the LXX. and from each other, such’ as one would naturally make in quoting from memory, while the Hebrews conforms exactly to the Hebrew original.87

(3) In Heb. 10:38, Rom. 1:17, and Gal. 3:11, there is a common quotation from Habak. 2:4; and, what is specially significant for identity of authorship, in Romans and Hebrews the quotations are exactly the same, even to the connecting particle; and in Galatians ὅτι is introduced instead of δέ, merely because the connection in which it stands requires it, while in other respects it is identical with Romans and Hebrews; but in Hebrew, instead of the simple — “the just shall live by faith,” as in the quotations, the reading is, “the just shall live by his faith,” and the LXX: “the just shall live by my faith.” Is it probable that two authors would make just this same departure from the original Hebrew and Septuagint? It should not be forgotten that this passage is found nowhere else in the New Testament but in the passages quoted above from Paul and the Hebrews.

(4) In Heb. 6:14 and Gal. 3:8, different parts of the same promise found in Gen. 22:17-18, are quoted in such a manner as to indicate “the natural recurrence of the same writer to the same passage of scripture, but also that discriminative appropriateness in its distribution so peculiarly indicative of the manner of St. Paul; the part of the promise most offensive to the Jews, and most encouraging to the Gentiles, being omitted in the Epistle to the Hebrews, but introduced in that to the Galatians.”88

(5) One more passage must be referred to, and we have done with this branch of our argument. In Heb. 10:30 and Rom. 12:19 we find the same identical words: ᾿Εμοὶ ἐκδίκησις ἐγὼ ἀνταποδώσω quoted from Deut. 32:35, where there is a material departure from the LXX. and in substantial accordance with the Hebrew, though with the omission of the connecting וְ (and). This Forster calls “the most remarkable coincidence in quotation, in respect to choice and mode, throughout the New Testament,” and the most plausible explanation that can be given of it in consistency with a denial of Paul as author of the Hebrews, is that of Michaelis, that “it is very possible that in the first century there were MSS. of this reading in Deut. 32:35, from which Paul might have copied in Rom. 12:19, and the translator of this epistle, in Heb. 10:30. How probable this is, we need not stop to say.89

5. The conformity of the quotations in the Hebrews to the Septuagint has often been made an objection to its Pauline origin. But so little can be made of this argument, even by those most desirous to impugn the Pauline authorship, that it is unnecessary to delay long upon it.90 Even Davidson, who denies, without refuting, many of Stuart’s positions, and is inclined to give the objection its full weight, is obliged, in looking at the “entire argument,” to confess that “on comparing the Epistle to the Hebrews with the thirteen epistles of Paul, it makes out no clear case of difference between their quotations. A general rule is said to characterize those quotations. One exception to that rule in the one epistle is of greater weight than three similar exceptions in the thirteen, when we take their respective contents into account. It so happens that more important departures from the Hebrew, on the part of the LXX. are found in the citations made by the writer of our epistle than any equal number that could be selected out of Paul’s acknowledged letters. But there are a goodly number of passages in the apostle’s writings where he follows the LXX.’s departures from the Hebrew. When we consider, also, that all the quotations in the present epistle which follow the Septuagint against the Hebrew give the sense of the latter, the unavoidable conclusion is, that Bleek’s position wants a proper foundation. And if such be the case, nothing can be built on it in proof of diversity of authorship.”91

“The general rule “referred to above, which even Bleek is obliged to recognize,92 is, that “Paul usually cites the Old Testament according’ to the LXX.” This he does naturally, not only from his own familiarity with it, but because it was better understood than the original by those to whom he wrote, and everywhere acknowledged as authoritative. Still in his acknowledged epistles there are cases, as appears from the references above, where the Hebrew is followed when it differs from the Septuagint; and in the Hebrews there are also as striking individual cases of reference to the Hebrew where it does not agree with the LXX. So that all that can be justly claimed is, that it so chances, perhaps, that a larger number, in proportion, of passages in the Hebrews conform to the Septuagint than in some of the other epistles of Paul; and Stuart is not far from right when he says: “Yet after all, as the facts above show, actual changes are here little, if any, less frequent than in the other epistles of Paul. They are certainly more frequent, in proportion, than in the second Epistle to the Corinthians.”93 Who that is unprejudiced can feel that there is here any ground for an argument against the Pauline origin of our epistle?94

Superiority Of Style In The Hebrews

Much has been made of the general superiority of style in the Hebrews to the undisputed epistles of Paul. It cannot be denied that under this head there is large extent of debatable ground. One person, with a previous feeling of different authorship, will find almost innumerable beauties in the Hebrews, which are not to be found in the acknowledged epistles of Paul; another will scarcely discover faint shades of superiority. As far as identity of authorship can be made out from the use of particular phrases in similar connections, from peculiar words, from a similar manner of quoting and applying the Old Testament scriptures, very few of the acknowledged epistles are so plainly and peculiarly Pauline as the Hebrews. But, notwithstanding all this, we are told “that the Epistle to the Hebrews is written in a more select style than the Pauline epistles;”95 also that “it is oratorical” in style.” The periods are regular, and are rounded; the rhythm smooth. The construction of sentences is more exact and complete. There is less abruptness and liveliness. Hence it abounds with full-toned expressions, with words of a poetical complexion. The tone is calm, solemn, dignified, unlike the apostle’s fiery energy and irresistible excitement. We miss his dialectic method, and have in its stead the periodic, stately, polished eloquence of one who builds up his sentences with regularity and rhythm. This oratorical character has had some influence on the choice of simple words and phrases. It has led to the adoption of fuller terms and of finer rhythm. But it is not seen in them so much as in the conformation and succession of periods in their flow and construction.”96

Now, grant all that is claimed above for that superiority of the style of the Epistle to the Hebrews, — and more, certainly, cannot be asked, — is it any real objection, laying aside for the moment all the other numerous and incontrovertible arguments, to the Pauline authorship? Is there anything in all this that we cannot suppose Paul capable of writing? For this should be shown in order to make this argument valid. The style is “more select,” it is said. Can you doubt that Paul was capable of writing in a more select style than appears in the familiar letters written to those among whom he had often labored, and in the midst of journeyings and toils, and interruptions innumerable? It may be supposed that he had leisure in his confinement at Rome to use selection in writing, and for the construction of exact and. complete and rounded sentences. It is “oratorical.” Is no oratory exhibited in Paul’s address from Mars Hill, before the imperial tribunal at Caesarea, or in any passages in Romans and Corinthians? It has sometimes “words of a poetical complexion.” Was Paul capable of no poetical inspiration, when his theme called to mind and into use some of the loftiest predictions of the psalmist and the prophets? Was there no poetic inspiration in the description of the ministration of angels, in the contemplation of the “mount that might be touched,” and that “burned with fire,” and especially in the vision granted him of “Mount Zion, the city of the living God,” “the holy places not made with hands,” into which Christ had entered, of “an innumerable company of angels,” “the general assembly and church of the first-born,” and of “God the judge of all? “

It has less of abruptness and liveliness.” Should we expect that an encyclical letter, discussing a particular subject, would have the same life and variety as one written familiarly in order to express the writer’s varied feelings in calling to mind the peculiar phases of character in a little church or band of brethren? Could the author of the Hebrews, be he Paul or Silas or Luke, or even John, in treating of the dignity of the angelic world, the authority of the Jewish priesthood and temple worship, and especially when representing our Lord Jesus Christ as superior to all these as the Maker of this world, the Son of the Most High, who had already passed into the heavens and was seated at his right hand in majesty and glory, use any other than “a calm, solemn, and dignified tone? “The answer cannot be doubtful.

It may not be inapposite to examine briefly the characteristics of the style of Paul, as exhibited by those who argue against the Pauline authorship of the Hebrews on this ground, in order to see how great the discrepancy is, when we leave out of the account general assertions, and come to the actual comparison. Davidson has comprised these general characteristics under four heads: “First, his style is the expression of a didactic, logical, reflecting mind. It images forth a mental conformation which is didactic and syllogistic— a mode of thinking analytical in its cast. Hence it is periodic and antithetic in structure.”97 Before proceeding to his exemplification of this general enunciation, which we venture nothing in saying applies far better to the Hebrews than to several of the acknowledged epistles of Paul, and as well as to most, if not all the others; it should be noticed that the very characteristics here attributed to Paul are brought as objections against the Pauline authorship of the Hebrews. Davidson himself says98 : “We miss his dialectic method, and have in its stead the periodic, stately, polished eloquence.” And Ebrard says99 : “In the Epistle to the Hebrews we find everywhere a strictly syllogistic arrangement.” Eichhorn maintains that “the manner of it [the Hebrews] is more tranquil and logical than that in which Paul with his strong feelings could write.”

But in particular, Davidson says: Paul “often employs abstract terms in conformity with the reflective habit of mind he possessed.” Are not abstract terms employed in the Hebrews, when required by the subject discussed? See, for example, 1:9; 4:15; 6:1, et al.

“Again, he proves his statements. Seldom does he advance any general position, or make an assertion, without subjoining some such particle as γάρ or ὅτι.”100 Of the Epistle to the Hebrews, the same author says: “It is remarkable how often γάρ is used, even where,” according to his opinion, “other conjunctions might have been more appropriate.”101 Schulz says: “The use of γάρ in our epistle is excessive.” To whom Stuart replies that he finds on comparison that in the Romans yap is used, on an average, a little more than ten times, and in the Hebrews a little more than nine times to a page.102 To show that ὅτι is not unknown to or unused by the writer of the Hebrews, we need only refer to its use in 2:6 bis; 3:19; 7 14, 17; in four consecutive verses, ch. 8:9,10; in 11:8; 12:17, 13, 18 et al. “Conjunctions which mark the end, purpose, or cause for which something is done,” are frequent in Paul. See the use of ἵνα also, i.e., in Heb. 2:17; 3:13; 4:11, 16; 5:1; 6:12, 18; —12:3, 13, 27; 13:12, 17, 19; of ὅπως in 2:9. For the use of eh to with the Infin., claimed as Pauline, Stuart says: “In Rom. I find fifteen cases; in 1 Cor. five; in 2 Cor. four; in Gal. one; in Eph. three; in Col. not one;” and, to omit the other epistles, “in Heb. seven times, and two others of the same nature.”103

2. “The vigor and fire of his [Paul’s] mind are expressed in the vigor and fervency of his style.” The vigor of the style in the Hebrews has, we believe, scarcely been questioned; and if there is any want of fire, as compared with the acknowledged epistles of Paul, it is because fire is less demanded in a piece of consecutive reasoning than in writings of a more hortatory or polemic character. For the same reason, irregularities of construction are of course fewer and less marked than in some of the Pauline epistles, but yet not-enough so to mark diversity of authorship. To our own mind, a frequency of such irregularities in such a piece of writing, and for such an object, would be far more un-Pauline than a sparing use of them. But as examples of suspended sentences, digressions, and anacolutha, see Heb. 5:6; 7:1; 9:7, 11-12, 104 et al.; and for interrogations and exclamations, for which the apostle’s style is distinguished, compare, e. g., Heb. 1:5, 13, 14; 2:3, 6, 17, 18; 9:14; 10:2, 29; 11:32; 12:7, 9, et al.

3. “The apostle’s style is distinguished by fulness and copiousness. He had abundance of good Greek words at his command,”105 etc. As the only objection of any weight ever alleged against the Epistle to the Hebrews is that first started by Origen, that the author wrote too good Greek, it is hardly worth while to say a word under this head. But two or three particulars may be noticed. “The great variety of particles which the writer [Paul] uses, is seen from a few passages, such as Gal. 2:12; 1 Thess. 1:8 to the end; Rom. 3:25, 26, ” et al.106 “Besides, they are varied at pleasure, so as to express distinctions and shades of signification.” According to the opinion of the same writer, the only difference in the Hebrews is that the same characteristic is carried a little further, since the Greek particles are there used “with greater copiousness and variety than in any of Paul’s epistles of equal length,”107 as, it may be added, is entirely natural in a writing which has so many characteristics of a systematic treatise.

“The rich fulness of the writer’s [Paul’s] mind … may also be seen in his copious use of synonymes and rich participial constructions.”108 Set over against this Seyffarth’s objection against the Pauline authorship of the Hebrews: “Our author [i.e., of the Hebrews] is partial to the use of participles and of the Genitive Absolute. He employs eighty-four active participles and a hundred and seven passive and middle ones, and seven cases of the Genitive Absolute; while in the Epistle to the Romans there are only ninety active participles and forty-two passive, and no case of the Genitive Absolute” (p. 81). But, lest this make a wrong impression, Stuart puts the principle to test in some of the other epistles. “If,” he says, “I have rightly counted, the Epistle to the Colossians has Act. Participles thirty-four; passive, forty; pages, three; average number to a page, twenty-four. Ephesians has Act. Part, sixty; Pass., twenty-four; pages, four and a half; average to a page, twenty-three. If nineteen participles on a page proves one epistle spurious, what shall we say of these epistles which have twenty-three and twenty-four to a page?”109

4. “Tenderness, delicacy, disinclination to severity, are conspicuous features in his [Paul’s] mental character.”110 These qualities are certainly as prominent in the Hebrews, considering the subject-matter and the more general destination of the epistle. The author, in his exhortations, includes himself with those addressed; as, for example, in 2:1, 3, “How shall we escape,” etc., and so passim. One of the most pointed rebukes in the epistle, in the end of ch.5 and beginning of ch.6, is followed by: “Beloved, we are persuaded better things of you, and things that accompany salvation, though we thus speak. For God is not unrighteous to forget your work and labor of love,” etc. So in the latter part of the 10th chapter, 19 sq., the most faithful and pointed admonitions are accompanied by words of encouragement, and a most delicate reference to previous acts of kindness toward himself and others, in the midst of persecution and reproach and worldly loss. And how could the delicacy or tenderness be better exhibited than in ch.12? as, for example, in the 3d and following verses: “For consider him that endured such contradiction of sinners against himself, lest ye be weary and faint in your minds,” etc. See, also, 13:1–3. There is also a peculiar delicacy shown in this epistle, on the supposition that Paul is the author, in not referring to his apostolic calling to the Gentiles, and his success in labor among them.

We have enumerated the principal points in the characteristics of Paul as presented by Davidson, and we know of no one who has exhibited them more at length and more clearly, and it is certainly not a little remarkable that they should be so distinctly illustrated in one epistle, to a particular class of readers, on a specific subject. We can hardly refrain from quoting one further passage from the same author, in reference to the character of Paul, so well would it be established from the Epistle to the Hebrews alone. “Thus there is a refined perception of propriety, an avoidance of the distasteful in the view of his readers, along with as much fidelity as the most direct language could convey. It is therefore impossible to resist the idea that his feelings were always under control, else such phenomena could not have happened. He is never borne away by mere enthusiasm. Infallibly guided as he was, there are minute distinctions which show that discretion never forsook him, even in moments of the highest emotion. The reasoning faculty was quick and powerful, so that his enlarged feelings could find expression as well in the finer and less perceptible streams of propriety, as in the full channel of Christian love.”111

Similarity Of Thought And Expression In The Hebrews And Acknowledged Epistles Of Paul

The passages where the same or synonymous words are used, or there is a similarity of thought, or peculiarity either in thought or expression, are many, and this argument would be deficient without an enumeration of some of them.

Heb. 1:2. Δι᾿ οὑ [᾿Λησοῦ Χριστοῦ] καὶ τοὺς. αἰῶνας [ὁ θεὸς] ἐποίησε.

Eph. 3:9. Τῷ [θεῷ] τὰ πάντα κτίσαντι διὰ ᾿Λησοῦ Χριστοῦ.

Heb. 1:3. ὃς ὢν ἀπαύγασμα τῆς δόξης καὶ χαρακτὴρ τῆς ὑποστάσεως αὐτοῦ.

Col. 1:15. Ὅ ἐστιν εἰκὼν τοῦ θεοῦ τοῦ ἀοράτου.

Phil. 2:6. ῝Ος ἐν μορφῇ ὑπάρχων.

2 Cor. 4:4.Ὅς ἐστιν είκὼν τοῦ θεοῦ.

Heb. 1:3. Φέρων τε τὰ τάντα τῷ ῥήματι τῆς δυνάμεως αὐτοῦ.

Col. 1:17. Τὰ πάντα ἐν αὐτῷ συνέστηκε.

Heb. 1:4. Τοσούτῳ κρείττων γενόμενος τῶν ἀγγέλων ὅσῳ διαφορώτερον παρ᾿ αὐτοὺς κεκληρονόμηκεν ὄνομα.

Eph. 1:21. ῾Υπεράνω … . παντὸς ὀνόματος ὀνομαζομένου οὐ μόνον ἐν τῷ αἰῶνι τούτῳ, ἀλλὰ καὶ ἐν τῷ μέλλοντι.

Phil. 2:9. Ὁ θεὸς … . ἐχαρίσατο αὐτῷ ὄνομα τὸ ὑπὲρ πᾶν ὄνομα: ἵνα ἐν τῷ τῷ ὀνόματι ᾿Λησοῦ πᾶν γόνυ κάμψῃ ἐπουρανίων, κ. τ. λ.

Heb. 1:3. ᾿Εκάθισεν ἐν δεξιᾷ τῆς μεγαλωσύνης ἐν ὑψηλοῖς.

Eph. 1:20. ᾿Εκάθισεν ἐν δεξιᾷ αὑτοῦ ἐν τοῖς ἐπουρανίοις.

The similarity of sentiment and language between Heb. 1:2, 3, and Eph. 1:18–21 is highly significant.

Heb. 1:5. Υἱός μου εἷ σύ, ἐγὼ σήμερον γεγέννηκά σε.

Acts 13:33. Υἱός μου εἷ σύ, ἐγὼ σήμερον γεγέννηκά σε.

Heb. 1:5. Εγὼ ἔσομαι αὐτῷ εἰς πατέρα, καὶ αὐτὸς ἔσται μοι εἰς υἱόν.

2 Cor. 6:18. ῎Εσομαι ὑμῖν εἰς πατέρα, καὶ ὑμεῖς ἔσεσθέ μοι εἰς υἱοὺς κ. τ. λ. There is plainly, in both these passages, an allusion to 2 Sam. 7:14, but with a different application.

Heb. 1:6. Τόν πρωτότοκον … .

Rom. 8:29. Εἰς τὸ εἶναι αὐτὸν τὸν πρωτότοκον.

Col. 1:15. Πρωτότοκος πάσης κτίσεως. Ver.18 Πρωτότοκος.

It should be noticed that the appellative in these last quotations is nowhere else applied to Christ in the New Testament except Rev. 1:5. And the common literal quotation from Ps. 2., in ver. 5, not elsewhere applied to Christ in the New Testament, points more emphatically to the same author from the similarity of sentiment in the preceding context, directed also to the same individuals, the Jews.

Heb. 1:1. Πολυμερῶς καὶ πολυτρόπως112 πύλαι ὁ Θεὸς λαλήσας τοῖς πατράσιν ἐν τοῖς προφήταις, ἐπ̓ ἐσχάτων τῶν ἡμερῶν τούτων, ἐλάλησεν ἡμῖν ἐν υἱῷ.

Acts 13:32. Καὶ ἡμεῖς ὑμᾶς εὐαγγελιζόμεθα τὴν πρὸς τοὺς πατέρας ἐπαγγελίαν γενομένην, ὅτι ταύτην ὁ Θεὸς ἐκπεπλήρωκε τοῖς τέκνοις αὐτῶν ἡμῖν, ἀναστήσας ᾿Λησοῦν. With Heb. 1:1, as quoted above, Eph. 3:4-5, > should be compared, where, as Forster says, “we meet fresh marks of the same hand.” Who can doubt, on a careful examination of all the preceding passages, that Forster is not far wrong when he says: “The result is, that every quotation, every thought, and nearly every word of Heb. 1:1–5 [6] are the thoughts, the words, and the quotations of St. Paul.”113

Our limits allow us merely to refer to such passages as Heb. 2:2 and Gal. 3:19, where the law as dispensed by angels is spoken of in a similar manner; Heb. 2:4; 1 Cor. 12:4, 11; Rom. 12:6, in which the varied “miraculous gifts of the Holy Spirit” are characterized by the same shade of thought; Heb. 2:8; 1 Cor. 15:27; Eph. 1:22; Phil. 3:21, where phraseology from the Old Testament designating the sovereignty conferred upon Christ, is found nowhere else in the New Testament, and Heb. 2:10; Rom. 11:36; Col. 1:16; 1 Cor. 8:6, where God is designated in the same manner as Lord of all things.

Heb. 2:14 deserves a little more extended notice ῞Λνα καταργήσῃ τὸν τὸ κράτος ἔχοντα τοῦ θανάτου, τοῦτ᾿ ἔστι τὸν διάβολον.

1 Cor. 15:26. ῎Εσχατος ἐχθρὸς καταργεῖται ὁ θάνατος.

2 Tim. 1:10. Καταργήσαντος μὲν τὸν θάνατον. There is here not only a similarity of idea and language, in a more extended passage of like characteristics,114 but the word καταργέω is employed in Hebrews, which is a very rare word in any author but the apostle Paul, only once found in the New Testament except in Paul, viz., in Luke 13:7; and then in a sense different from that given to it by Paul in the twenty-six instances in which he uses it. There could scarcely be a use of a word more indicative of identity of authorship than that furnished by this passage with this peculiarly Pauline word.

In Heb. 2:16 we find the phrase seed or posterity of Abraham, to designate Christians; which is found elsewhere only in the writings of Paul, as in Gal. 3:29, with which compare Gal. 3:7 and Rom. 4:16, where the phraseology is parallel. The same is true of the heavenly or divine calling, Heb. 3:1; Phil. 3:14; Rom. 2:29. Passing several parallelisms adduced and commented upon by Forster,115 we place side by side Heb. 4:12. Ζῶν γὰρ ὁ λόγος τοῦ θεοῦ καὶ τομώτερος ὑπὲρ πᾶσαν μάχαιραν δίστομὀν.

Eph. 6:17. Τὴν μάχαιρα τοῦ πνεύματος, ὅ ἐστι ῥῆμα θεοῦ. Compare, also, Rom. 11:22 and an extension of the sentiment and expression in Heb. 4:12-13, in 1 Cor. 2:10, 11; 4:4-5, and 2 Cor. 10:4-5.116

In the fifth and sixth chapters there are several passages where words and connections of words peculiar to the apostle Paul are used. We can only refer to the following: Heb. 5:8 and Phil. 2:8; Heb. 5:13 and 1 Cor. 3:1; Eph. 4:14, Rom. 2:20, Gal. 4:3; Heb. 5:14 and 1 Cor. 14:2; Heb. 6:1 and Col. 3:14; Heb. 6:3 and 1 Cor. 16:7; Heb. 6:10 and 2 Cor. 8:24.117 It is needless to go through with the remaining chapters. Any one who will consult Davidson’s Introduction or Stuart’s Commentary, will see that the parallelisms with Paul’s acknowledged epistles are scarcely, if at all, less striking in the latter than in the former part of the Hebrews; and that the more closely these points of similarity are examined in their connections and dependencies, the more convincing will be the argument for identity of authorship.

Similarity Of Leading Passages In The Hebrews And Acknowledged Epistles Of Paul

Forster has a separate section of thirty-five or forty pages upon “some leading parallel passages from the Epistle to the Hebrews and the undisputed epistles of St. Paul.” The limits of a Review Article allow a separate examination of but two or three of the more important passages. Heb. 3:7–19, 1 Cor. 10:1–12, “are parallel in the following respects: 1. Both passages relate to the exode of the Israelites from Egypt and their temptations of Jehovah in the wilderness. 2. The verbal agreements between the quotation of Ps. 95. in Hebrews and the apostle’s own composition in first Corinthians, are precisely such as might be looked for in the case before us, … that of the original composition being from the same hand which had employed the quotation. 3. In both contexts, the Divine person in question is Christ: Heb. 3:6-7, the quotation from the Psalms is applied to Christ; and 1 Cor. 10:9, Christ is the person tempted. Heb. 3:6, the Hebrew Christians are styled the house of Christ; 1 Cor. 10:4, Christ is termed the rock of the Israelites; the similarity of the vein of thought thus indicating, throughout, sameness of mind and pen.”118

The similarity between Heb. 6:10 sq. and 1 Thess. 1:3 and 2 Thess. 1:4 is pointed out at length by Forster. “In all three contexts,” he says, “we have the same subject, and this the favorite subject of St. Paul’s, ‘faith, hope, and charity,’ treated in the same order.” The similarity is more striking from the use of two of St. Paul’s most peculiar words, πληροφορία and μιμητής, in common in the passage in Heb. and 1 Thess,; and in Heb. and 2 Thess. the words ἐνδείκνυμι and ἔνδειγμι, which are also peculiarly Pauline. It should be noticed that there is a much closer verbal parallelism between Heb. and 1 Thess. than between the two passages from the 1st and 2d Thess.; and yet there is a “most significant agreement between the place of 2 Thess. and that of the Heb.,” without a parallel in the passage from 1 Thess., namely, the common definition of ἀγάπη, as “love manifested in acts of benevolence toward the saints.”119 The same idea is implied merely in τοῦ κόπου τῆς ἀγάπης; which the 2d Thess. has in common with Heb.,120 whilst we find in Col., where St. Paul is treating of the same subjects, faith, hope, and charity, almost the identical words of the Heb.: τὴν ἀγάπην, τήν εἰς πάντας τοὺς ἁγίους.

In Heb. 6:13-14, we meet one part of a quotation from Gen. 22:17, while the other part is found in Galatians. In Heb. 6:18–20 and Phil. 3:12–14, there is the same imagery borrowed from the Grecian games. Compare also Heb. 9:15 and Gal. 3:18–20; Heb. 9:16–20 and 1 Cor. 11:25, 26; Heb. 10:25 and 2 Thess. 2:1, 2; Heb. 10:16–31 and 2 Tim. 3:7-8, and 2:25, and various other passages.

Words Peculiar To The Hebrews And Acknowledged Epistles

We find, also, a large number of separate words that are peculiar to the Hebrews and the acknowledged epistles of Paul, i.e., are not used in other parts of the New Testament, nor in the LXX. or the Apocrypha;121 others that are found in no other part of the New Testament, but are found occasionally in the LXX. and the Apocryhpa;122 and still others, that occur occasionally in the other parts of the New Testament, but in manner and frequency belong to the Hebrews and undisputed epistles of Paul.123 On the other hand, there are words used in the Epistle to the Hebrews not elsewhere found in the writings of Paul; so are there also in the other epistles; and Davidson acknowledges “that an immense array of ἅπαξ λεγόμεα is not insisted upon now by the opponents of the Pauline authorship, and there are no less than one hundred and eighteen in the Epistle to the Hebrews: but it has been shown, by Stuart, that there are two hundred and thirty in the first Epistle to the Corinthians; so that the argument goes to prove too much.”124 He claims, however, that there are ἅπαξ λεγόμεα which indicate another author; but these have been sufficiently discussed by Stuart, and at best can have little influence either for or against identity of authorship with the acknowledged Pauline epistles.

The argument from similarity or dissimilarity of words, without reference to their connections, we deem of little importance either for or against the Pauline authorship of the Hebrews. But it seems to us that a candid critic will find more that favors than that opposes Paul as author, even in the use of individual words. The least that can be said is, in the language of Davidson, that “were we to give an opinion as to the respective claims of the conflicting arguments before us, we should assign the preference to those founded on similarity, because they are more numerous and striking than the opposite. Taking them by themselves they outweigh the diversities.”125

Recapitulation And Conclusion

In conclusion little need be said. The amount and value of the external evidence is, to say the least, strongly in favor of Paul as the author of the Hebrews.126 Internal evidence, though not perhaps, in any one point taken by itself, so clear as not to admit of question; yet, in almost every particular, sufficient to render the composition by the apostle Paul probable. Circumstances alluded to in the epistle, if they do not point to the apostle to the Gentiles as author, do not, certainly, any more clearly suggest any other author. The sentiment and doctrines of the epistle, when its object and aim are taken into view, seem to us strikingly Pauline. So Davidson acknowledges them to be,127 and Ebrard says that while they do not “necessitate our coming to the conclusion that Paul was the author, yet at all events [the author] must be sought for among the disciples and helpers of the apostle Paul; our epistle must have emanated from this circle; only thus can the recurrence of Pauline ideas and combinations of ideas, even in the minutest particulars, be accounted for.”128

The general characteristics of form are the same in the Hebrews and acknowledged Pauline epistles, with however many differences, such as we should expect in any encyclical letter purposely anonymous. While some of the formulas of quotation are unlike those most commonly used in some of the acknowledged epistles of Paul, as those epistles differ among themselves; still, there are forms of reference to the Old Testament strikingly indicative of the same hand; and passages quoted with peculiarities which scarcely admit the supposition of diversity of authorship from the Pauline epistles.

The superiority of style so generally attributed to the Hebrews, when brought to the test of a critical comparison, does not only not seem to demand diversity of authorship, but indicates a higher and more studied effort of (he same mind and pen. Similarity rather than diversity in the Hebrews and acknowledged epistles of Paul, in the use of particular words and phrases, is now generally acknowledged.

We cannot, then, give our assent to those who exclude the Epistle to the Hebrews entirely from the circle of Pauline teachings; neither can we, with Origen, in ancient times, and Davidson, in our own age, “come to the conclusion that though Paul was the author of the Epistle to the Hebrews, he did not put it into the phraseology and style it now bears.” We believe that the apostle was entirely competent to write as good Greek as that found in the Hebrews; and instead of accepting the conclusion of Ebrard: “By how much the spirit and doctrine of the epistle is Pauline, by so little can it be supposed that this diction should have come from the hand of the apostle;” we should say: By how much the spirit and doctrine of the epistle is Pauline, by so much may it be believed that the diction is entirely the apostle’s.


1) Ἅοαξ, for example, applied to the death of Christ, once for all (1 Pet. 3:18; Heb. 9:26, 28); εἴσοδος, understood of the entrance of the faithful into Christ’s kingdom and glory (2 Pet. 1:11; Heb. 10:19); ἀμίαντος, applied to designate Christ and Christ’s inheritance (1 Pet. 1:4; Heb. 7:26); ἄμωμος, employed in the same peculiar sense and application (I Pet. 1:19; Heb. 9:14). This decisive coincidence is unexampled elsewhere, throughout the New Testament; συμπαθής (1 Pet. 3:8); συμπαθέω (Heb. 4:15; 10:34); fapTifffi6s (I Pet. 1:2; Heb. 12:24; cf. also, 9:13, 19, 21; 10:22); παρεπίδημος (I Pet. 1:1; 2:11; Heb. 11:13). Forster’s Apostolical Authority of the Epistle to the Hebrews. Sec. 14. p. 628.

2) e. g., ἄμωμος, 1 Pet. 1:19, is coupled with ἄσπιλος (a word borrowed also by James), 1 Tim. 6:14; ἀμίντος, again, 1 Pet. 1:4 is conjoined with the Pauline term ἄφθαρτος (1 Cor. 9:25); παρεπίδημος (1 Pet. 2:11), with πάροικος (Eph. 2:19); while ῥαντισμός stands in connection (I Pet. 1:2) with the Pauline word ἁγιασμός and with ὑπακοή, the keystone of Romans, p. 628, 9.

3) On this point cf. 1 Pet. 1:1; 2:11, with Heb. 11:13, and Eph. 2:19; 1 Pet. 1:2, with Heb. 12:14, 24, and Heb. 9:13, 19, 20-21; and 10:19, 22; 1 Pet. 1:9, 19–20, with Heb. 10:36, and Heb. 1:1; and 9:14, and various other passages quoted and commented upon by Forster, p. 629, sq.

4) Forster, p. 613, 614.

5) See Kirchhofer’s Quellensammlung zur Gesch. d. N. Test. Kanons, p. 2.03 seq; Ebrard App. to Comm. Ch. 4 (A), and Forster, p. 575 seq.

6) Ebrard, App. p. 395. Davidson’s Introd. Vol. III. p. 262.

7) Hist. Eccl. Lib. VI. Ch. 14.

8) ̔́Ηση δὲ ὡς ὁ μακάριος ἔλεγε πρεσβύτερος, ἐπεὶ ὁ Κύριος ἀπόστολος ὤν, τοῦ παντοκράτορος ἀπεστάλη πρὸς ῾Εβραίους, δια μετρώτητα ὁ Παῦλος ὡς ἄν εἰς τὰ ἔθνη ἀπεσταλμένος οὐκ ἐγγράφει ἑαυτὸν ῾Εβραίων ἀπόστολον, διά τε τὴν πρὸς τὸν κύριον τιμήν, διά τε τὸ ἐκ περιουσίας, καὶ τοῖς ῾Εβραίοις ἐπιστέλλειν, ἐθνῶν κήρυκα ὄντα καὶ ἀπόστολον.

9) ᾿Εν δὲ ταῖς ῾Υποτυπώσεσι τὴν πρὸς ῾Εβραὶους ἐπιστολὴν Παύλου μὲν είναι φησὶ: γεγράφθαι δὲ ῾Εβραίοις ῾ΕΒραικῇ φωνῇ: Δουκᾶν δὲ φιλοτίμως μεθερμηνεύαντα ἐκδοῦναι τοῖς ̔́Ελλησιν. Ὅθεν τὸν αὐτὸν χρῶτα εὑρίσκεσθαι κατὰ τὴν ἑρμηνείαν ταύτης τῆς ἐπιστολῆς καὶ τῶν πράξεων.Μὴ προγεγρὰφθαι δὲ τὸ, Παῦλος ἀπόστολος, εἰκότως: ῾Εβραίοις γάρ φησιν ἐπιστέλλων πρόληφιν εἰληφόσι κατ᾿ αὐτοῦ, καὶ ὑποπτεύουσιν αὐτὸν, συνετῶς πάνυ οὐκ ἐν ἀρχῇ ἀπέστρεψεν αὐτοὺς τὸ ὄνομα θείς. Lib. VI. 14.

10) See Stuart’s Introd. to Comm. on Heb. § 7. p. 88, 9. Ebrard, App. ch. 4 (A); Davidson’s Introd. Vol. III. p. 187; Bleek Einl. p. 99 seq. et alii.

11) καὶ ἐν τῇ πρὸς ῾Εβραίους, ὁ αὐτὸς Παῦλός φησι, κ.τ.λ.

12) Ὁ δὲ Παῦλος, ἐν τῇ πρὸς ῾Εβραίους, κ.τ.λ.

13) Γέγραπται γὰρ παρὰ τῷ Παύλῳ ἡμῶν Κορινθίοις ἐπιστέλλοντι ὁ δὲ αὐτὸς φησὶ, καὶ γεγόνατε χρείαν ἔχοντες, κ.τ.λ.

14) Ipse ergo apostolorum maximus Paulus dicit, ad Hebraeos, scribens, etc. See, also, numerous other references to the same effect as the above, in Stuart’s Heb., Tntrod. § 7, Bleek Einl. et alii.

15) “Sed pone aliquem abdicare epistolam ad Haebraeos quasi non Pauli,” etc. Ebrard says that Origen in this and the following passages presupposes an absolute denial of the Pauline authorship as possible, but only as possible.....He distinctly takes it for granted that some might feel themselves compelled to doubt the authority on internal grounds, etc. Ap. IV. (A). Tamen siquis suscipit ad Haeb. quasi epistolam Pauli, etc. See Davidson’s Introd. Vol. III. p. 187.

16) Thus Ebrard says: “The question treated of in the context of this passage (εἴ τις οὖν ἐκκλησία ἔχει ταύτην ἐπιστολὴν ὡς Παύλου), is not at all, whether the epistle was written by Paul or came into existence without Paul having anything to do with it. That the ancient tradition imputed it to Paul was a settled point, and only the certainty of this tradition would induce Clement and Origen to form these two conjectures, by which the un-Pauline style at variance with the tradition might be explained. The question with Origen is rather, whether the epistle, precisely as we have it in Greek, can have come directly from Paul. The old tradition called it Pauline; the un-Pauline style had, however, justly (?) struck the Alexandrians; it had become the settled opinion among them that the epistle in its present form could not be directly from Paul; either it is a translation of an Aramaic original (as Clement wrongly supposed), or, according to the preferable conjecture of Origen, Paul did not dictate the words of it, but gave only the νοήματα for it. These views, under the influence of the catechist school in Alexandria and the neighborhood, may have been generally spread; hence Origen carelessly mentions them; but then it may have struck him that this hypothesis might give offence, that there might possibly be churches which would zealously maintain the immediately Pauline origin. Against these, he says, we cannot take any steps, as the ancient tradition names the epistle simply as one of Paul’s. That the words ἔχει ἀυτὴν ὡς Παύλου, according to the context, forms the antitheses only to the view of Origen, and not to an opinion according to which the authorship of Paul would be absolutely denied, is indeed clear as the sun,” App. IV. p. 398.

17) Stuart’s Comm. Introd. § 7.

18) Ὁ χαρακτὴρ τῆς λέξεως τῆς πρὸς ῾Εβραίους ἐπιγεγραμμένης ἐπιστολῆς, οὐκ ἔχει τὸ ἐν λόγῳ ἰδιωτικὸν τοῦ ἀποστόλου, ὁμολογήσαντος ἑαυτὸν ἰδιώτην εἶναι τῷ λόγῳ, τουτέστι τῇ φράσει. ᾿Αλλὰ ἐστὶν ἡ ἐπιστολὴ συνθέσει τῆς λέξεως ῾Ελληνικωτέρα, πᾶς ὁ ἐπιστάμενος κρίνειν φράσεων διαφορὰς, ὁμολογήσαι ἄν. Πάλιν τε αὖ ὅτι τὰ νοήματα τῆς ἐπιστολῆς θαυμάσιά ἐστι, καὶ οὐ δεύτερα τῶν ἀποστολικῶν ὁμολογουμένων γραμμάτων. Καὶ τοῦτο ἂν συμφήσαι εἶναι ἀληθὲς πᾶς ὁ προσέχων τῇ ἀναγνώσει τῇ ἀποστολικῇ.

19) The reference of οἱ ἀρχαῖοι, exclusively to Clement and Pantaenus is absurd, since they were Origen’s immediate predecessors and almost contemporaries. Thus Davidson well says: “If Origen does not intend all the ancients, including the Christians in the East and West, he must refer generally to the ancient men belonging to the Alexandrian church. And those who were ancient in relation to this father must have immediately succeeded the apostles. Thus Pantaenus and Clement may be numbered among the ancients, though it is an arbitrary and unnatural restriction to limit it to them.” Vol. III. p. 190.

20) We are aware that Davidson and others maintain that this phrase implies that “such accounts had existed before his time,” but it seems to us without good reason. See Davidson’s Introd. Vol. III. p. 190.

21) Thus Forster says: “Origen, at the commencement of the third century, following out, apparently, an obscure hint of his master, Clement of Alexandria, first started a doubt as to the Greek of the Epistle to the Hebrews being the composition of Saint Paul; the style, in his opinion, being ἐλληνικωτέρα, purer Greek than that of St. Paul in his other writings. This doubt, however, regarded not in the least degree the question of authorship. For both Origen and Clement, agreeably to the tradition of the church in their time, constantly held the epistle to be the production of St. Paul The opinion, therefore, pronounced by the former, amounts only to this,— the private judgment of a very eminent, but very fanciful scholar, on the character of St. Paul’s Greek style.” Apostol. Auth. of Hebr. Introd. p. 5.

22) Καὶ τὴν ἁρπαλὴν τῶν ὑπαρχόντων ὁμοίως ἐκείνοις οἷς καὶ Παῦλος ἐμαρτύρησε (Heb. 10:34), μετὰ χαρᾶς προσεδέξαντο. Herod. Hist. Eccl. VI. 41.

23) Apud Athan. Opp. Kp. ad Serap., quoted by Davidson; καὶ ὁ Παῦλος δέ φησιν: ἀδύνατον γὰρ τοῖς ἅπαξ φωτισθέντας, κ. τ. λ.

24) See for the references in these authors, Stuart’s Com. Introd. § 7, and Davidson, III. p. 191.

25) See Stuart, as above.

26) App. to Comm. Ch. IV. (A).

27) Ὁ δε κύριος τὸ πνεῦμα, κατὰ τὸν ἀπόστολον: κατὰ δὲ τὸν αὐτόν. ἔπινον γὰρ ἐκ πνευματικῆς πέτρας, κ. τ. λ…. Καὶ περὶ Μωῢσέως: μείζονα πλοῦτον ἡγησάμενος, κ. τ. λ. Mansi Collect. Concil. Tom. I. p. 1036.

28) See Stuart, Davidson, and Bleek.

29) See Davidson, III. p. 192, where he quotes as follows: ὁ μέν τοιγε ῾Εβραῖος ἐλέγετο κύριον εἶναι τῆς λέξεως ἔτεκον, ὅπερ καὶ ᾿Ακύλας πεποίηκεν: ὁ δὲ ἀπόστολος, νομομαθὴς ὑπάρχων, ἐν τῇ πρὸς ῾Εβραίους τῇ τῶν ὁ ἐχρήσατο, κ. τ. λ.

30) Τοῦ δὲ Παύλου πρόδηλοι καὶ σαφεῖς αἱ δεκατέσσερες: ὅτι γε μήν τινες, ἠθετήκασι τὴν πρὸς ῾Εβραίους, πρὸς τῆς Ρωμαίων ἐκκλησίας, ὡς μὴ Παύλου οὖσαν αὐτὴν ἀντιλέγεσθαι φήσαντες οὐ δίκαιον ἀγνοεῖν . Hist. Eccl. III. 3.

31) Ὅθεν εἰκότως ἔδοξεν αὐτὸ τοῖς λοιποῖς ἐγκαταλεχθῆναι γράμμασι τοῦ ἀποστόλου. ῾Εβραίοις γὰρ διὰ τῆς πατρίου γλώττης ἐγγράψας ὡμιληκότος τοῦ Παύλου οἱ μὲν τὸν εν̓αγγελιστὴν Λουκᾶμ, οἱ δὲ τὸν Κλήμεντα τοῦτον αὐτὸν ἑρμενεῦσαι λέγουσι τὴν γραφήν: ὁ καὶ μᾶλλον εἴη ἂν αληθὲς τῷ: τὸν ὅμοιον τῆς φρὰσεως χαρακτῆρα τήν τε τοῦ Κλήμεντος ἐπιστολὴν, καὶ τὴν πρὸς ῾Εβραίους ἀποσώζειν, καὶ τῷ μὴ πόῤῥω τὰ ἐν ἑκατέροις τοῖς συγγράμμασι νοήματα καθεστάναι. Hist. Eccl. III. 38.

32) Hist. Eccl. VI. 13.

33) Stuart refers to the following passages in addition to those already referred to: In Comm. or Ps. II. Montfauc. Nov. Coll. Tom. I. p. 15, he says, περὶ οὗ φησιν ὁ Παῦλος, quoting Heb. 12:22, and Gal. 4:26. The same passages are also referred to as the language of Paul on pp. 191, 201, 313, 360, 388, 431.481, 539, and several other parts of his works. Heb. 12:22, is also often referred to by itself. i.e., pp. 49, 50, etc. In p. 57, Heb. 11:1, and 1 Cor. 13:13, are cited as words of the same apostle; so p. 175, Heb. 8:1-2; p. 248, Heb. 11:38; p. 175, Heb. 6:18; p. 615, Heb. 2:14. Vol. II. (Montf.) p. 437, Heb. 11:37; De Eccl. Theol. 1 :19 § 10, Heb. 11:24; ibid. § 12, Heb. 4:14. In Praep. Evang. (Paris, 1628), p. 171, Heb. 7:7; 6:17, 18; 7:20—25. In Hist. Eccl. II. 17, he says: ὁποίας ἥ τεπρὸς ῾Εβραίους, καὶ ἄλλαι πλείους τοῦ Παύλου παρέχουσιν ἐπιστολαί , i.e., such as the Epistle to the Hebrews, and several other of the epistles of Paul contain. See Stuart’s Comm. Introd. § 7.

34) Τῶν τοῦ ἱεροῦ ἀποστόλου δεκατριῶν μόνων ἐπιστολῶν μνημονεύει, τὴν πρὸς ῾Εβραίους μὴ σὺν ἀριθμήσας ταῖς λοιπαῖς. ᾿Επεὶ καὶ εἰς δεῦρο παρὰ Ῥωμαίων τίσιν, οὐ μομίζεται τοῦ ἀποστόλου τυνχάνειν. Lib. VI. 20.

35) Archelaus bishop of Mesopotamia, as well as the author of the Synopsis of Scripture (Athanasius), who were nearly contemporary with Eusebius, unhesitatingly received the epistle as Paul’s.

36) See Stuart’s Comm. Introd. § 7.

37) Omnes Graeci recipiunt.

38) See references in Davidson, III. p. 194.

39) ̔́Οτι ῾Λππόλυτος καὶ Εἰρηναῖος τὴν πρὸς ῾Εβραίους ἐπιστολὴν Παύλου, οὐκ ἐκείνου εἶναὶ φασιν.

40) Ebrard says: “That he knew the epistle is certainly confirmed in some measure by allusions in the writing Adv. Haereses.” After speaking of apparent allusions to Heb. 1:3, and 11:5, he says: “On the other hand, in a third passage (IV. 11, 4), Quae (mundities exteriores), in figuram futurorum traditae erant, velut umbrae cujusdam descriptionem faciente lege, atque delineante de temporalibus aeterna, terrenis coelestia, it would be difficult not to see a recollection of passages in the Epistle to the Hebrews (10:1, σκιὰν γὰρ ἔχων ὁ νόμος τῶν μελλόντων ἀγαθῶν; cf. 8:5, σκιᾷ τῶν ἐπουρανίων; 9:23, τὰ ὑποδείγματα τῶν ἐν τοῖς οὐρανοῖς”). Comm. App. p. 401.

41) The whole passage is as follows: ᾿Αλλὰ γὰρ πρὸς τοῖς ἀποδοθεῖσιν Εἰρηναίου συγγράμμασι καὶ ταῖς ἐπιστολαῖς φέρεται καὶ βιβλίον τι διαλέξεων διαφόρων, ἐν ᾦ τῆς πρὸς ῾Εβραίους ἐπιστολῆς καὶ τῆς λεγομένης σοφίας Σολομῶντος, μνημονεύει, ῥητά τινα ἐξ αὐτῶν παραθέμενος. B. V. 25.

42) Ebrard says that if there had been positive statements of denial of the Pauline origin of the Hebrews in the writings of Irenaeus, “Eusebius would assuredly have adduced the substance of these statements in the passage (v. 8) in which he brings together all that Irenaeus had expressed respecting the biblical books.” … . “It is certainly not impossible that Irenaeus held our epistle to be un-Pauline; but it is quite as possible that he had brought with him from Asia Minor to Lyons the tradition respecting the Pauline origin, but that he was unwilling to urge this upon the Western church.”

43) De Pudicitia c. 20:Exstat enim et Barnabae titulus ad Hebraeos, adeo satis auctoritatis viro ut quem Paulus juxta se constituent in abstinentia (1 Cor. 9:6).

44) Et utique receptior apud ecclesias epistola Barnabae, illo apocrypho Pastore [Hermas] moechorum, etc.

45) Et apostolus Paulus, qui hujus numeri legitimi et certi meminit, ad septem ecclesias scribit.

46) Paulus apostolus ad septem ecclesias scribit (octava enim ad Hebraeos a plerisque extra numerum ponitur).

47) De Trinitate, 4:11; Paulus ad Hebraeos dixit; tanto melior factus est augelis, etc.

48) Stuart’s Introd. § 7.

49) Davidson, III. p. 179.

50) See numerous other passages (referred to by Davidson Vol. III. p. 179, 80 note), in his Comm. on various books of both the Old and New Testaments, and also in his work De nominibus Hebraicis.

51) Paulus, in epistola sua quae scribitur ad Hebraeos, licet de ea multi Latinorum dubitent, etc.

52) Illud nostris dicendum est, hanc epistolam quae inscribitur ad Hebraeos, non solum ab ecclesiis orientis, sed. ab omnibus retro ecelesiasticis Graeci sermonis scriptoribus quasi Pauli apostoli suscipi, licet plerique earn vel Barnabae vel dementis arbitrentur; et nihil interesse, cujus sit, cum ecclesiastici viri sit et quotidie ecclesiarum lectione celebretur. Quod si eam Latinorum consuetudo non recipit inter scripturas canonicas nec Graecarum quidem ecclesiae Apocalypsin Joannis eadem libertatae suscipiunt; et tamen nos utraque suscipimus, nequaquam hujus temporis consuetudinem; sed veterum scriptorium auctoritatem sequentes, qui plerumque utriusque abutuntur testimoniis non ut interdum de apocryphis facere solent, sed quasi canonicis. Quoted in Davidson, III. p. 181-2.

53) Unde et Paulus apostolus in epistola ad Hebraeos, quam Latina consuetudo non recepit, etc. See also passage quoted above from Comm. on Matt. 26.

54) Comm. on Tit. Cap. 1. Si quis vult recipere earn epistolam quae sub nomine Pauli ad Hebraeos scripta est; so in Ezech. c. 28., Amos 8. and some other passages.

55) Epistola autem quae fertur ad Hebraeos non ejus creditur propter stili ser-monisque distantiam, sed vel Barnabae juxta Tertullianum, vel Lucae evangelistae, juxta quosdam, vel Clementis, Romanae postea ecclesiae episcopi quem aiunt sententias Pauli proprio ordinasse et ornasse sermone; vel certe, quia Paulus scribebat ad Hebraeos et propter invidiam sui apud eos nominis titulum in principio salutationis amputaverat, scripserat autem ut Hebraeis Hebraice, id est suo eloquio dissertissime, ut ea quae eloquenter scripta fuerant in Hebraeo eloquentius verterentur in Graecum, et hanc causam esse, quod a ceteris Pauli epistolis discrepare videatur. Davidson, III. p. 180.

56) Quatuordecim epistolas Pauli apostoli.

57) Audisti apostolum exhortantem, etc. Serm. 55, 5.

58) Audi ergo quid dicit apostolus, etc.

59) See Serm. 159, 1:ad Hebraeos dicit Apostolus, etc., quoting Heb. 12:4; in Serm. 177, c. 11, after 2 Cor. 8:13; Heb. 13:5 is quoted as words of the same apostle.

60) Excepta epistola quam ad Hebraeos scripsit, ubi principium salutatorium de industria dicitur omississe, ne Judaei, qui adversus eum pertinaciter oblatrabant, nomine ejus offensi vel inimico animo legerent vel omnino legere non curarent quod ad eorum salutem scripserat. Unde nonnulli eam in canonem scripturarum recipere timuerunt, etc.

61) Pauli apostoli epistolae tredecim; ejusdem ad Hebraeos una.

62) Epistolarum Pauli apostoli numero quatuordecem.

63) “Epistola quae scribitur ad Hebraeos,” “Epistola ad Hebraeos,” “Epistola quae inscribitur ad Hebraeos, etc.

64) Quam plures apostoli Pauli esse dicunt, quidum vero negant. De Civitate Dei. XVI. 22.

65) No reference is found to it, according to Davidson, in Leo the Great, or Orosius of Spain. And Isidore of Seville, speaking doubtless in reference to earlier ages, says: Ad Hebraeos autem epistola plurisque Latinis ejus (Pauli) esse incerta est, propter dissonantiam sermonis eandemque alii Barnabam conscripsisse, alii a Clemente scriptam fuisse suspicuntur.

66) Vol. III. p. 196.

67) Ebrard’s Comm. App. p. 399.

68) Comm. App. 405.

69) Comm. App. 405.

70) Stuart, in his commentary on this passage, appositely inquires, whether, because it is said in one of Cicero’s orations, nos perdimus rempublicam, we are to conclude that he did not write the oration, because he did not himself destroy the republic.

71) Ebrard’s Comm. App. p. 408.

72) Davidson’s Introd. III. p. 207.

73) Even Davidson acknowledges that the meaning sent away given to ἀπολελυμένον, is authorized by its use in such passages as Acts 13:3; 15:30, and others; and his reasoning, that in case this were the meaning here, “it is most likely that something would have been added to indicate the place from which he had been sent, as well as the direction and object of the journey,” is little less than absurd, as if in this incidental mention of his absence he would stop to detail all the attending circumstances. See Davidson, Vol. III. p. 200.

74) Ebrard maintains, with very strong probability, that this was their position; but we will not take the room here to quote his argumentation, which may be seen in Comm. on Heb. 9:4.

75) This view is favored by Davidson (Introd. III. p. 223), but the only argument in favor of it seems to be that Josephus and Philo say that the ark in Moses’s time contained only the two tables of stone.

76) In Antiquities, XIV. 4.4, he says that Pompey, entering into the sanctuary, sees “the golden table and sacred candlestick, the cups, and the multitude of frankincense,” but says nothing of the golden altar of incense.

77) Planting and Training of the Ch. Church, B. VI. App. 2.

78) Introd. III. p. 212.

79) See the passages quoted by Stuart in the Introd. to his Comm. on Hebrews, p. 132.

80) Quoted by Davidson, Introd. Vol. III. p. 212.

81) See on the use of this word in the sequel.

82) Introd. III. p. 214.

83) Planting and Training, VI. 2. p. 220.

84) Comm. App. p. 412, 13.

85) These passages are so peculiar as to warrant the exhibition of two or three of them side by side. Rom. 15:9–12; καθὼς γέγραπται: διὰ τοῦτο ἐξομολογήσομαί σοι ἐν ἔθνεσι, καὶ τῷ ὁνόματί σον ψαλῶ. Καὶ πάλιν λέγει: εὐφράνθητε ἔθνη καὶ πάλάλιν: αἰνεῖτε τὸν Κύριον πάντα τὰ ἔθνη, καὶ πάλιν ῾Ησαΐας λέγει, κ.τ. λ. Heb. 2:12-13; λέγων ἀπαγγελῶ τὸ ὄνομά σου τοῖς ἀδελφοις μου καὶ πάλιν: ἐγὼ ἔσομαι πεποιθὼς ἐπ᾿ αὐτῶ, καὶ πάλιν: ἰδοὺ ἐγὼ, κ. τ. λ. It should not be forgotten, that καὶ πάλιν is used out of Paul and the Hebrews only once in Matt. 3:7, and there in a different way from the passages above.

86) Forster, Sect. 10.

87) The Hebrew runs thus: הָיִיהִי להֶם אלֹהִים וְמָּה יִהיוּ־לִי לְעָם. The Greek of the Hebrews: ἔσομαι αὐτοῖς εἰς θεὸν, καὶ αὐτοὶ ἔσονταί μοι εἰς λαόν. The LXX: ἔσομαι αὐτοῖς θεὸς; καὶ αὐτοί μου ἔσονται λαός. Corinth. I. ἔσομαι αὐτῶν Θεὸς, καὶ αὐτοὶ ἔσονταί μοι λαός.

88) Forster, Sect. X. p. 398.

89) Forster, Ap. Auth. of Ep. to Heb. Introd. p. 27, and Michaelis’s Introd. N. Test. Vol. IX. Ch. 24, Sect. 16, p. 256.

90) We are well aware that there is a great deal of assertion upon this point by Bleek, Schulz, and others; but, as it seems to us, very little proof.

91) Introd. III. p. 231, 2.

92) p. 388.

93) Introd. to Comm. p. 187.

94) We omit to speak here of an argument from the use of different MSS. in the Hebrews and acknowledged epistles of Paul; for even the most strenuous opposers of the Pauline authorship admit the untenableness of this argument; for, as Schulz says: “The number of passages where the readings of Paul differ from the Vatican copy and agree more with the Alexandrine; and on the other hand, in the Epistle to the Hebrews, where they agree more with the Vatican than the Alexandrine, is not much less than where the reverse is the case.” It is in part, as Davidson declares, “absurd to try the question of authorship by such minutiae, or to suppose that they should have any proper bearing on the point.” See Davidson’s Introd. III. p. 231-2, and Schulz in Hal. Allgem. Literaturzeit. 1829, No. 104, 5.

95) Ebrard, Comm. App. D. p. 417.

96) Davidson’s Introd. Vol. III. p. 250.

97) Introd. Vol. II. p. 145.

98) Introd. Vol. III. p. 250.

99) Comra. App. p. 419.

100) Introd. Vol. II. p. 145.

101) Introd. Vol. III. p. 251.

102) See Stuart’s Comm. Introd. § 12.

103) Ibid.

104) See also remarks of Stuart on these passages in Introd. § 12, and Comm. on the passages; also Forster, Auth. Hebr.

105) Davidson, Introd. Vol. II. p. 150.

106) Davidson, Introd. Vol. II. p. 150.

107) Ibid. III. p. 251.

108) Davidson, Introd. II. p. 151.

109) See also further remarks upon the Gen. Absol. in Stuart’s Introd.

110) Davidson’s Introd. as above.

111) Vol. II. p. 152.

112) This word, not elsewhere found in the New Testament, has parallel phrases used only by Paul: e. g. Rom. 3:2, κατὰ πάντα τρόπον; Philip. 1:18, παντὶ τρόπῳ; 2 Thess. 3:16, ἐν παντὶ τρόπῳ.

113) Apost. Author of Ep. Hebr. p. 347.

114) See Forster’s Apost. Auth. Ep. of Heb. Sect. II.

115) Sect. VI. p. 348, sq.

116) Quoted by Forster as above, p. 350.

117) See also Forster’s extended remarks upon the parallel between Heb. 6:9–12, and 2 Thess. 1:3, and I Thess. 1:3–5.

118) P. 348–9, and note.

119) 2 Thess. 1:3; καὶ πληονάζει ἡ ἀγάπη ἐνὸς ἑκάστου πάντων ὑμῶν εἰς ἀλλήλους and Heb. 6:10; τῆς ἀγάπης ἧς ἐνδείξασθε διακονήσαντες τοῖς ἁγίοις, καὶ διακανοῦντες.

120) For further remarks upon these passages and their connections, see Forster, p. 355 sq.

121) Such are the following: ̓́Αθλησις Heb. 10:32, and ἀθλέω 2 Tim. 2:5, twice; αἰδώς Heb. 12:28, and 9; ἀναλογίζομαι Heb. 12:3, and ἀναλογία Rom. 12:6; ἀνυπότακτος Heb. 2:8; 1 Tim. 1:9, and Tit. 1:6, 10; ἀπείθεια Heb. 4:6, 11; Rom. 11:30, 32; Eph. 2:2, 5:6, and Col. 3:6; ἀπεκδέχομαι Heb 9:28; Rom. 8:19, 23, 25; 1 Cor. 1:7:Gal. 5:5; Phil. 3:20; ἀπόλαυσις Heb. 11:25, and 1 Tim. 6:17; ἀφιλάργυρος Heb. 13:5 and 1 Tim. 2:3; ἔνδικος Heb. 2:2, and Rom. 3:8 ἐνεργής Heb. 4:12; 1 Cor. 16:9, and Philem. 6; ἐφάπαξ Heb. 7:27, 9:12, 10:10, Rom. 6:10, and 1 Cor. 15:6; μήπω Heb. 9:8, and Rom. 9:11; μηδέπω Heb. 11:7, and μηδέποτε 2 Tim. 3:7; νεκρόω Heb. 11:12, Rom. 4:19, and Col. 3:5; ὀρέγομαι Heb. 11:16; 1 Tim. 3:1 and 6:10; παρακοή Heb. 2:2; Rom. 5:19, and 16:6; παραπλησίως Heb. 2:14, and παραπλήσιον Phil. 2:27; πηλίκος Heb. 7:4, and Gal. 6:11; πληροφορία Heb. 6:11, 10:22; Coloss. 2:2, and Thess. 1:5; τοιγαροῦν Heb. 12:1, and 1 Thess. 4:8; φιλοξενία, Heb. 13:2; Rom. 12:13; φιλόξενος, 1 Tim. 3:2, and Tit. 1:8.

122) See these also enumerated in Stuart’s Comm. Introd. § 11. 4,111. and Forster’s Authent. p. 234 sq.

123) Of this class there are between forty and fifty words which with references may be found in Stuart’s Comm. Introd. § 11. 4, II.

124) Vol. III. p. 249.

125) Vol. III. p. 249.

126) See the recapitulation of these arguments above.

127) See passage quoted above.

128) App. to Comm, p. 415. Eng. Ed.