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"For yet a little while, and he that shall come will come, and will not tarry." --
Hebrews for Skeptics
Although the author of Hebrews never claims to be Paul (and wasn't), he
wanted people to think that he was (13:23). And it worked, which is why Hebrews is now part of the New Testament.
I find the book tiresome to read, though there is some fun stuff in chapter 11. The author praises the most atrocious acts in the Old Testament and credits them all to faith. If that's what faith can do, it's a good thing
to stay away from.
Here are the highlights.
- The author of Hebrews believed that he was living in the "last days." 1:2,
9:26, 10.25, 10:37
- Every skeptic and nonbeliever has "an evil heart of unbelief." 3:12
- It is impossible for fallen-away Christians to be saved. (Didn't the author know about confession or the finality of being saved?)
- Apostates will burn in hell with the other non-believers. 6:8
- Melchisedec had no father or mother. He was never born (he just appeared ready-made by God) and he never died. He's still around somewhere.
- God will not forgive us unless we shed the blood of some innocent creature. 9:13-22
- Those who disobeyed the Old Testament law were killed without mercy. It will be much worse for those who displease
- "It is a fearful thing to fall into the hands of the living God." 10:31
- Faith is believing without evidence things that you wish were true (but aren't). 11:1
- If you're not a Christian, it's impossible to please God. 11:6
- "By faith Noah ... condemned the world." 11:7
- "Through faith also Sara herself received strength to conceive seed." 11:11
- "Abraham ... offered up Isaac ... his only begotten son." (To the author of Hebrews this was a good thing.) 11:17
- Moses "kept the passover, and the sprinkling of blood, lest he that destroyed the firstborn should touch them." 11:28
- "By faith the walls of Jericho fell down." 11:30
- "By faith the harlot Rahab perished not with them that believed not." 11:31
- The heroes of faith: Samson, Jephthah, David, and Samuel. It would be hard to find a more monstrous group than these guys. 11:32
- "Others were tortured ... that they might obtain a better resurrection." 11:35
- God always hurts the ones he loves. If he doesn't hurt you, you're a bastard, not a son. 12:6-8
- God ordered animals to be "stoned, or thrust through with a dart" if they "so much as ... touch the mountain."
- Avoid "strange doctrines." Those who do so
will avoid nearly everything in the Bible. 13:9
- "Our brother Timothy is set at liberty; with whom, if he come shortly, I will see you."
The author of Hebrews never claims to be (and wasn't) Paul, but he wants people to think that he was. And it worked. That's why Hebrews is in the Bible. 13:23