The Authorship of Hebrews

“The history of the Epistle [to the Hebrews] is very instructive in its bearing on why books were accepted by the ancient church [into the New Testament canon].  It was accepted as canonical in those places – and in only those places – where it was considered to be a genuine work of Paul.  Appeal was not made to its antiquity nor to the testimony of the Holy Spirit nor to any other auxiliary reason.  Authorship was what was decisive.”  (R. Laird Harris in Inspiration and Canonicity of the Bible, Zondervan, 1957, 1969, p. 268.)

“The question of the necessity of apostolic origin for a book to be considered canonical is demonstrated by the decades-long debate over the status of the book of Hebrews.  In the Greek-speaking East the book was generally considered Pauline and accepted as canonical, whereas in the Latin-speaking West the book was not regarded as Pauline and thus was not initially considered canonical.”  (M. James Sawyer in the ebook How the Bible Came to Be which included his article “The Canon of the New Testament,” taken from The Baker Illustrated Bible Handbook, edited by J. Daniel Hays and J. Scott Duvall, Baker Books, 2011, 2012, Kindle location 716)


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