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3. Obj. “St. · Peter's epistles were written to the Hebrew Christians, scattered in Asia, and • Pontus, Galatia, Cappadocia, and Bithynia. St. Paul must have written an epistle to those : Hebrew Christians, to whom St. Peter writes his two epistles. For St. Peter, 2 epist. iii. 15, • cites to them what - Paul had written' unto them.” No epistle of Paul was written to
Hebrews, particularly, but this. So that these must be the Hebrews of the above named • countries.'
To which I answer, that St. Peter's epistles were not sent to Jews, but to Gentiles, or to all Christians in general, in the places above-mentioned, as will be clearly shewn hereafter. When St. Peter says, “as Paul has written unto you,” he may intend Paul's epistle to the Galatians, and some other epistles written to Gentiles. If he refers at all to this epistle to the Hebrews, it is comprehended under that expression, ver. 16, “ as also in all his epistles.
4. Obj. This epistle to the Hebrews seems to have been written in Greek. But if it had been sent to the Jewish believers in Judea, it would have been written in Hebrew.
"To which I answer, that allowing the epistle to have been written in Greek, it might be sent to the believers in Judea. If St. Paul wrote to the Jewish believers in Palestine, he intended the epistle for general use, for all Christians, whether of Jewish or Gentile original. Many of the Jews in Judea understood Greek. Few of the Jews out of Judea understood Hebrew. The Greek language was almost universal, and therefore generally used. All St. Paul's epistles are in Greek, even that to the Romans. And are not both St. Peter's epistles in Greek? and St. John's, and St. Jude's? Yea, did not St. James likewise write in Greek, who is supposed to have resided at Jerusalem, from the time of our Lord's ascension, to the time of his own death ? His epistle is inscribed “ to the twelve tribes scattered abroad." But I presume, that they of the twelve tribes, who dwelt in Judea, are not excluded by him, but intended. Nor could he be unwilling, that his epistle should be read and understood by those, who were his special charge. The epistle written by Barnabas, a Levite, or ascribed to him, was written in Greek. Not now to mention any other Jewish writers, who have used the Greek language.
II. Thus we are unawares brought to the inquiry, in what language this epistle was written. For there have been doubts about it among both ancients and moderns. So that we are obliged to take some particular notice of this point. But I should have deferred the consideration of it, till we had observed the writer of the epistle, if the just mentioned objection had not brought this inquiry in our way in this place.
And it may be recollected, that " I formerly alleged divers learned and judicious moderns, who have been of opinion, that'Greek, and not Hebrew, was the original language of this epistle. To them I now add several others: * James Capellus, ' S. Basnage, 8 Mill in his prolegomena to the New Testament, and the late Mr. Wetstein, and also Spanheim · in his Dissertation concerning the author of this epistle, which well deserves to be consulted. One argument for this, both of Spanheim, and 'Wetstein, is taken from the Greek paronomasias in the epistle, or the
• Wall, as before, p. 318, 319.
n Ad hæc observamus, 1. epistolam ad Hebræos, quæ Videtur respicere Petrus ad Rom. ii. 4. ubi de Dei nunc Græce exstat, non esse interpretis, sed ipsius auctoris. * longanimitate similia habet his quæ docet hic. Petrus: dice- Qui putant ad Hebræos non aliter quam Hebraïce scribi reque ad Asiaticos scriptam epistolam, quæ ad Romanos data, debuisse, manifesto falluntur. Omnes enim novi fæderis eo quod epistolæ Pauli, quamquam ad singulas ecclesias, et libri, etiam Matthæi, ut ad ipsum vidimus, lingua Græca homines singulos, missæ, omnium Christianorum illius ævi scripti sunt. Hanc linguam plerique Judæi nôrant. Wetstein. communes jure haberentur. Cleric. H. E. A. 69. p. 459. T. Gr. T. II. p. 385.
Ils n'ont point eu d'autre raison de croire, quie S. Paul i Spanh. De Auctore epist. ad Hebr. Part. III. cap. ii. avoit écrit en Hébreu, que celle qu'il écrivoit à des Hébreux. tom. II. p. 245–252. *Or cette raison, toute vraisemblable qu'elle paroît, n'est point ķNono, decretorium fere argumentum est a Græcorum convaincante, parcequ'il est certain, que la langue Grecque idiotismis, liac in epistolâ passim conspicuis. Pauca hæc de étoit entenduë dans la Judée, quoiqu'elle ne fût pas la langue multis. Auctor. cap. v. versu 8. elegantem adhibet Tasuyavulgaire. Tous les auteurs du nouveau Testament ont écrit en μασιαν, Scil. Εμαθεν αφ' ων επαθε, qualem Hebraismus Don Grec, bien qu'ils écrivissent pour tous les fidèles, soit Hébreux, ferebat. Græci contra mire sibi in talibus placent, &c. Spanh. soit Gentils. Beaus. Préf. sur l'épître aux Hébreux. num. xv. ubi supr. n. xii. p. 249. d See Vol, ii. p. 391.
''Porro manifestæ reperiuntur paronomasiæ, et isoloTENEUTA, e Jacob. Capell. observat. in ep. ad Hebr. sect. ii. et iii. quæ si in aliam linguam convertantur, pereunt. Hebr. v. S. f Ann. 61. num. vi.
et ver. 14. καλουτε και κακό. vii. 3. απατωρ, αμητωρ. xi. 37. 8 Et sane magis adhuc futilis est eorum sententia, qui hanc επρισθησαν, επειρασθησαν. ix. 10. βρωμασι και σομασι. Αlii. epistolam Paulo quidem Hebraïce scriptam volunt, ab alio 14. μενεσαν και μελλασαν. Talia auctor potius sectatuur quam autem aliquo traductam fuisse in sermonem Græcum. Nihil interpres. Wetst, ib. p. 385. enim clarius atque evidentius, quam eam linguâ Græcâ primitus conceptam fuisse, &c. Prolegom, num. 95–98.
frequent concurrence of Greek words of like sound. Which seems to be an argument not easy to be answered.
Some ancient Christian writers were of opinion, that the epistle to the Hebrews was written in the Hebrew language, and a translated into Greek by Luke, or Clement of Rome. Jerom in particular, seems to have supposed, that this epistle was written in Hebrew. And Origen also is sometimes reckoned among those, who were of this opinion. But I think I have shewn it' to be probable that he thought it was written in Greek. It seems likewise, that they must have been of the same opinion, who considered the elegance of the Greek language of this epistle as an objection against its having been written by St. Paul. For if the Greek epistle had been supposed to be a translation, the superior elegance of the style of this epistle above that of the other epistles of Paul could have afforded no objection against his being the author of it.
Indeed the ancients, as Beausobre said " formerly, had no other reason to believe that St. Paul wrote in Hebrew, but that he wrote to the Hebrews. So likewise says Capellus. The title deceived them. And because it was written to Hebrews, they concluded it was written in Hebrew. For none of the ancients appear to have seen a copy of this epistle in that language.
III. I now proceed to the third inquiry, who is the writer of this epistle. And many things offer in favour of the apostle Paul.
1. It is ascribed to him by many of the ancients.
Here I think myself obliged briefly to recollect the testimonies of ancient authors, which have been produced at large in the preceding volumes. And I shall rank them under two heads : first the testimonies of writers who used the Greek tongue, then the testimonies of those who lived in that part of the Roman empire, where the Latin was the vulgar language.
There are some passages' in the epistles of Ignatius, about the year 107, which may be thought by some to contain allusions to the epistle to the Hebrews. This epistle seems to be referred to by : Polycarp bishop of Smyrna, in his epistle written to the Philippians in the year 108, and in the relation of his martyrdom, written about the middle of the second century, This epistle is often quoted as Paul's by · Clement of Alexandria, about the year 194. It is received, and quoted as Paul's by Origen, about 230. It was also received as the apostle's by · Dionysius bishop of Alexandria in 247. It is plainly referred to by - Theognostus of Alexandria, about 282. It appears to have been received by " Methodius, about 292, by • Pamphilus, about 294, and by ? Archelaus, bishop in Mesopotamia, at the beginning of the fourth century, by the Manichees in the fourth, and' by the Paulicians, in the seventh century. It was received, and ascribed to Paul by. Alexander, bishop of Alexandria, in the year 313, and by' the Arians in the fourth century: Eusebius, bishop of Cæsarea, about 315, says, " There"
are fourteen epistles of Paul, manifest and well known: but yet there are some, who reject • that to the Hebrews, alleging in behalf of their opinion, that it was not received by the • church of Rome, as a writing of Paul.' It is often quoted by Eusebius * himself, as Paul's, and sacred scripture. This epistle was received by Athanasius, without any hesitation. In his enumeration of St. Paul's fourteen epistles, this is placed next after the two to the Thessalonians, and before the epistles to Timothy, Titus, and Philemon. The same order is observed ’ in the Synopsis of scripture ascribed to him. This epistle is received as Paul's by ** Adamantius, author of a dialogue against the Marcionites in 330, and by bb Cyril of Jerusalem, in 348, by " the council of Laodicea, in 363. Where St. Paul's epistles are enumerated in the same order, as in Athanasius, just taken notice of. This epistle is also received as Paul's by dd Epiphanius, about 368, by " the Apostolical Constitutions, about the end of the fourth century, by's Basil, about 370, by · Gregory Nazianzen, in 370, by Amphilochius o also. But he says it was not received by all as Paul's. It was received by Gregory Nyssen, about 371, by Didymus of Alexandria, about the same time, by · Ephrem the Syrian, in 370, and by the churches of Syria, by 3 Diodorus of Tarsus, in 378, by “ Hierax, a learned Egyptian, about the year 302, by : Serapion, bishop of Thmuis in Egypt, about 347, by * Titus, bishop of Bostra, in Arabia, about 362, by 1 Theodore bishop of Mopsuestia, in Cilicia, about the year 394, by " Chrysostom, at the year 398, by " Severian, bishop of Gabala, in Syria, 401, by Victor, of Antioch, about 401, by P Palladius, author of a life of Chrysostom, about 408, by 9 Isidore of Pelusium, about 412, by Cyril, bishop of Alexandria, in 412, by . Theodoret, at 4.23, by ' Eutherius, bishop of Tyana, in Cappadocia, in 431, by "Socrates, the Ecclesiastical Historian, about 440, by * Euthalius, in Egypt, about 458, and, probably, by' Dionysius, falsely called the Areopagite; by z the author of the Quæstiones et Responsiones, commonly ascribed to Justin Martyr, but rather written in the fifth century. It is in aa the Alexandrian manuscript, about the year 500, and bò in the Stichometry of Nicephorus, about 806, is received as Paul's by “ Cosmas of Alexandria, about 535, by od Leontius, of Constantinople, about 110, by “ John Damascen in 730, by Photius, about 858, by 63 (Ecumenius, about the year 950, and by hh Theophylact in 1070. I shall not go any lower.
a See Vol. i. p. 291, 394,399. and Vol. ii. p. 381, 382. 6 Vol. ii. p.
556. • See Vol. i. p. 538. and Vol. ii. p. 391. d Vol. ii. p. 391. See likewise here p. 328. note e.
e Qui volunt hanc epistolam Hebražce scriptam, hos decepit titulus. Cum enim ad Hebræos scribebatur, Hebraice quoqhe scribi debuisse sunt opinati. Sed meminisse debuerant, etiam Hierosolymis magnum fuisse linguæ Græcze
Cis Hierosolymam paucissimi Judæi aliter quam Græce loquebantur. Jacob. Capel. Observat, in Nov. Testam.
* See Vol. i. p. 321.
8 P. 331. h P. 333.
i P. 394. 401. k P. 532, 535, 536.
IP. 633-649. m Vol. ii. p. 83.
" P. 105, 106. o P. 121. P P. 139.
1 P. 215. 1 P. 239.
s P. 302. 1 P. 310.
– P. 370. 372. * P. 381, 382.
y P. 400, 401. 2 P. 404.
aa P. 406. bb P. 409, 410.
cc P. 415. dd P. 417, 418.
ke P. 438.
ff P. 466. 2 U
I shall now rehearse such authors as lived in that part of the Roman empire, where the Latin was the vulgar tongue.
Here in the first place offers Clement in his epistle to the Corinthians, written about the year 96, or, as some others say, about the year 70. For though he wrote in Greek, we rank him among Latin authors, because he was bishop of Rome. In his epistle
In his epistleare divers passages, generally supposed to contain allusions, or references to the epistle to the Hebrews. Irenæus, bishop of Lyons, about 178, as we are assured by Eusebius, alleged kk some passages out of this epistle, in a work now lost. Nevertheless, it does not appear, that he received it as St. Paul's. By Tertullian, presbyter of Carthage, about the year 200, this " epistle is ascribed to Barnabas. Caius, about 212, supposed to have been presbyter in the church of Rome, reckoning up
the epistles of St. Paul, mentioned thirteen only, omitting that to the Hebrews. Here I place Hippolytus, who flourished about 220. But it is not certainly known where he was bishop, whether at Porto in Italy, or at some place in the east. We have seen evidences, that he did not receive the epistle to the Hebrews as St. Paul's. And perhaps, that may afford an argument, that though he wrote in Greek, he lived where the Latin tongue prevailed. This epistle is not quoted by Cyprian, bishop of Carthage, about 248, and afterwards. Nor does it appear to have been received by PP Novatus, otherwise called Novatian, presbyter of Rome, about 251. Nevertheless it was in after times received 99 by his followers. It may be thought by some, that this epistle is referred to by" Arnobius, about 306, and “ Lactantius about the same time. It is plainly quoted by." another Arnobius in the fifth century. It was received as Paul's by " Hilary, of Poictiers, about 354, and ** by Lucifer, bishop of Cagliari, in Sardinia, about the same time, and by yy his followers. It was also received as Paul's by z2 C. M. Victorinus. Whether as it was received by Optatus, of Milevi, in Africa, about 370, is doubtful. It was received as Paul's by bbb Ambrose, bishop of Milan, about 374, by cec the Priscillianists, about 378. About the year 380, was published a commentary upon thirteen epistles of Paul only, di ascribed to Hilary, deacon of Rome. It was received as Paul's by cec Philaster, bishop of Brescia in Italy, about 380. But he takes notice that it was not then received by all. His successor Gaudentius, about 387, quotes this " epistle as Paul's. It is also readily received as Paul's by 885 Jerom, about 392. a Vol. ii. p. 170.
li Those passages are alleged, with remarks, Vol. i. p. 299-301. and see p. 302.
kk Ibid. p. 369, 370. and 372. Vol. ii. p. 155.
11 P. 420-428.
mm P. 483, 484. nn P. 497. 502.
00 See Vol. ii. p. 23, 24. & 30. p This Vol. p. 5.
9 P. 7.
PP P. 63, 64.
'rr P. 256. u P. 93.
tt P. 256. aa This Vol. p. 45.
c P. 475.
d P. 478.
f P. 498.
b P. 473. c P. 482.
8 P. 518.
i P. 146.
* P. 147. 215. m P. 601. 606. · P. 628.
t P. 19.
P. JO, 11. * P. 39.
y P. 41.
xx P. 450.
99 P. 03, 66.
z2 P. 454.
bub P. 495.
343. bb P. 46. ce P. 80.
ddd P. 520.
ni P. 524. ete. P. 522, 523. 888 P. 548, 556.558.
di P. 77.
cc P. 52.
! P. 82.
And he says, it was generally received by the Greeks, and the Christians in the east, but not by all the Latins. It was received as Paul's by · Rufinus in 397. It is also in the catalogue of the third council of Carthage in 397. It is frequently quoted by Augustin as St. Paul's. In one place," he says, “ It is of doubtful authority with some. But he was inclined to follow " the opinion of the churches in the east, who received it among the canonical scriptures. It was received as Paul's by Chromatius, bishop of Aquileia in Italy, about 401, by Innocent, bishop of Rome, about 402, by : Paulinus, bishop of Nola, in Italy, about 403. Pelagius" about 405, wrote a commentary upon thirteen epistles of St. Paul, omitting that to the Hebrews. Nevertheless it was received by his followers. "It was received by Cassian, about 424, by' Prosper of Aquitain, about 434, and by the authors of the works ascribed to him: by" Eucherius, bishop of Lyons, in 434, by ° Sedulius, about 818, by ? Leo, bishop of Rome, in 440, by Salvian, presbyter of Marseilles, about 440, by 'Gelasius, bishop of Rome, about 496, by Facundus, an African bishop, about 540, by 'Junilius, an African bishop, about 556, by · Cassiodorius in 556, by the author of the imperfect Work upon St. Matthew, about 560, by'Gregory, bishop of Rome about590, by ? Isidore of Seville, about 596, and by · Bede, about 701, or the beginning of the eighth century.
It may be now needful to make a few remarks,
It is evident that this epistle was generally received in ancient times, by those Christians, who used the Greek language, and lived in the eastern part of the Roman empire. I forbear to insist here on the seeming references in Ignatius and Polycarp. But Clement of Alexandria, before the end of the second century, received this epistle as Paul's, and quotes it as such frequently, without any doubt or hesitation. And had a tradition from some before him, concerning the reason why the apostle did not prefix his name to this, as he did to the other epistles.
Concerning the Latin writers, it is obvious to remark, that this epistle is not expressly quoted, as Paul's, by any of them in the first three centuries. However, it was known to Irenæus, and Tertullian, as we have seen, and possibly to others also. It is generally supposed, that there are divers allusions and references to this epistle, in the epistle of Clement of Rome, written to the Corinthians. However, I formerly mentioned bb two learned men, who did not think that a clear point. I have since met with another of the same mind, whose words I place" below. And I must likewise refer to a consideration, formerly dd proposed: that the little notice taken of this epistle by Latin writers in the second and third centuries; and Eusebius " and Jerom" assuring us, that by many of the Romans in their time this epistle was not received; seem to weaken the supposition, that Clement had often alluded to this epistle. l'or if the church of Rome, in his time, had owned it for an epistle of Paul, it is not easy to conceive, how any Latin Christians afterwards should have rejected it, or doubted of its authority.
However, it is manifest, that it was received as an epistle of St. Paul by many Latin writers in the fourth, fifth, and following centuries.
The reasons of doubting about the genuineness of this epistle, probably, were the want of a name at the beginning, and the difference of argument, or subject matter, and of style, from the commonly received epistles of the apostle, as is intimated by es Jerom. Whether they are sufficient reasons for rejecting this epistle, will be considered in the course of our argument.
2. There is nothing in the epistle itself, that renders it impossible or unlikely to be his.
For the epistle appears to have been written before the destruction of Jerusalem ; as was of old observed by th Chrysostom, and " Theodoret, and has been argued also by many moderns.kk a Vol. ii. p. 573.
Clemente citatur) non est adeo perfecta et frequens, non adeo c P. 579. 585-587. d P. 586.
singularis, ut ex Ep. ad Hebræos eas repetitas esse, inde evinf P. 628. & P. 629.
catur. Herman. Venem. Diss. ii. de Tit. ep. ad Ephes. num, h P. 630.
* This Vol. p. 17.
viii. p. 343. IP. 21.
da See Vol. i. · P. 32, 33.
o P. 575.
e P. 625.
i P. 631.
m P. 22.
ec Vid. Euseb. H. E. I. 3. c. 3. p. 72. B. C. and in this i P. 42.
work, Vol. ii. p. 370. s P. 56.
rf See Vol. ii. p. 558. u P. 60, 61. * P. 66.
hh Vid. Chrysost. Pr. in Ep. ad Heb. T. XII. p. 4. C.D. y P. 70.
ii Theod. in Heb. xiii. 9, 10. bb See Vol. i. p. 300.
kk Quærentibus, quo tempore, et unde scripta sit epistola ad cc Sed quis dubitaret, quin ex epistolâ ad Hebræos multa Hebræos, nihil est quod respondeamus. nisi scriptam fuisse, habeat, cum Eusebius illud diserte annotet
cum Judæi adhuc gloriarentur templo Jerosolymitano, et illud tam exploratum est. Phrasium et sententiarum æqua. sacerdotio Mosaïco: de quibus ubique loquitur scriptor, ut litas, ex quà illud unice derivandum est (ram nusquam a etiamnum stantibus. Cleric. Hist. Ec. An. 69. p. 461.
o P. 29.
| P. 34.
9 P. 36.
i P. 58.
$& P. 556.
s P. 74.
aa P. 78.
- ? Nec tamen
That the temple was still standing, and sacrifices there offered, may be inferred from ch. viïi. 4. “ For if he were on earth, he should not be a priest : seeing there are priests, that offer according to the law :” and from ch. xiii. 10. “We have an altar, whereof they have no right to eat, which serve the tabernacle.” Moreover, if - the temple had been destroyed, and the worship there abolished, the writer would not have failed to take some notice of it, in support of his argument, and for abating the too great attachment of many to the rites of the Mosaic institution. To this purpose speaks Spanheim in a passage which I have transcribed below. And in like manner another learned commentator, to whom I refer. It is also probable, that those words ch. iii. 13. “ While it is called to day,” refer to the patience which God yet continued to exercise toward the Jewish nation. He seems to have had in view the approaching desolation of Jerusalem, which would put an end to that “to day,” and finish the time which God gave to the Jews, as a nation, to “ hear his voice.” And Lightfoot argues from ch. xii. 4. “ Ye have not yet resisted unto blood :” that the epistle was written before the war in Judea was begun.
Indeed those words have been the ground of an objection against this epistle having been sent to the believing Jews in Judea, because there had been already several martyrdoms in that country. That difficulty I would now remove. And I have received from a learned friend the following observation, which may be of use. • It seems to me,' says he, that the apostle * here, as well as in the preceding context, alludes to the Grecian games or exercises : and he signifies, that they, to whom he writes, had not been called out to the most dangerous combats,
and had not run the immediate hazard of their lives. Which, I suppose, might be said of • them, as a body, or church.' And I shall transfer hither Mr. Beausobre's note upon this place. • There had been martyrs in Judea, as Stephen, and the two James's. But for the most • part the Jews did not put the Christians to death, for want of power. They were imprisoned • and scourged. See Acts v. 40, and here ch. xiii. 3. And they endured reproaches, and the • loss of their substance, ch. X. 32–34. These were the sufferings, which they had met with. • The apostle therefore here indirectly reproves the Hebrews, that though God treated them * with more indulgence than he had done his people in former times, and even than his own son, they nevertheless wavered in their profession of the gospel. See ver. 12.'
3. There are divers exhortations in this epistle, much resembling some in the acknowledged epistles of St. Paul.
1.) Heb. xii. 3.-“ Lest' ye be wearied, and faint in your mind.” Gal. vi. 9. “ And $ let us not be weary in well-doing, for in due season we shall reap, if we faint not.” . And see 2 Thess. iii. 13. and Eph. iii. 13.
2.) Heb. xii. 14. “ Follow "peace with all men, and holiness, without which no man shall see the Lord.” An exhortation very suitable to Paul, and to the Jewish believers in Judea: admonishing them not to impose the rituals of the law upon others, that is, the Gentile believers, and to maintain friendship with them, though they did not embrace the law. It has also a resemblance with Rom. xii. 18. But the words of the original are different.
3.) Heb. xiii. 1. “ Let brotherly love continue :" and what follows to the end of ver. 3. Then at ver. 4. “ Marriage is honourable. But fornicators and adulterers God will judge." Here is an agreement with Eph. v. 2, 3. “ And walk in love, as Christ also has loved us. But fornication, and all uncleanness, and covetousness, let it not be once named among you."
-Ver. 4. “ For this ye know, that no fornicator, nor unclean person, nor covetous man, has any inheritance in the kingdom of God.”
4.) Ch. xiii. 16. “ But to do good, and to communicate, forget not. For with such sacrifices God is well pleased.” That exhortation is very suitable to Paul's doctrine, and has an agreement with what he says elsewhere: as Philip. iv. 18." An odour of a sweet smell, a
· Quia nata hæc epistola, stante templo et Levitico sacer- 6 See Beausobre's preface to the epistle to the Hebrews, dotio-Heb. viii. 4. Neque alias necesse fuit declamare
« The same. in sacrificiorum usum, et praxin sacerdotii, penitus eo templi d Harm. of the Ń. T. Vol. i. p. 339. et urbis et reipublicæ eversione sublato. Neque maxime
-προς την αμαρτιαν ανταγωνιζομενοι. . omnium prægnans argumentum Judæis confundendis, et coër- f-ινα μη καμητε, ταις ψυχαις εκλυομενοι. cendis pseudo-apostolis, ab ipså jacturâ cultûs, et Hierosoly- 8 Το δε καλον σοιεντες μη εκκακωμεν Καιρα γαρ ιδια
mitane sedis restitutionis spe nulla amplius affalgente preter- θερισομεν, μη εκλυομενοι.
Της δε ευποιιας και κοινωνιας μη επιλανθαγεσθε.