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Daily Archives: December 1, 2006

Hebrews Is a Sermon

Scholars have understood for some time that the book we sometimes call the “Epistle” to the Hebrews is in fact a sermon, the product of rhetorical art. Anyone who remains doubtful on this point should check out Ryan Ferguson’s dramatic recitation of Hebrews 9?¢‚Ǩ‚Äú10.

I can’t say I understand his choice of this text to dramatize but I’ll trust that it made sense within the context of the gathering of which he was a part. It is one of the most arcane passages in the New Testament, and one that many Christians think they understand, but without at least a passing familiarity with ancient religious conceptions of blood sacrifice, I’m skeptical they really do (maybe I’ll blog about that at some point). Still, his delivery is very moving, moreso if?¢‚Ǩ‚Äùlike me?¢‚Ǩ‚Äùyou’ve spent long hours in Hebrews wrestling with its mysteries. This is the kind of thing I wish we could see more of in church: the reading/telling of the biblical story without adornment or commentary. (The commentary can come later, but first let’s experience the word of God and be transformed as it takes up residence within us.)

Related:

(H/T: Better Bibles Blog)

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