November 13th Hebrews, 13
1: Let brotherly love continue. 2: Be not forgetful to entertain strangers: for thereby some have entertained angels unawares. 3: Remember them that are in bonds, as bound with them; and them which suffer adversity, as being yourselves also in the body. 4: Marriage is honourable in all, and the bed undefiled: but whoremongers and adulterers God will judge. 5: Let your conversation be without covetousness; and be content with such things as ye have: for he hath said, I will never leave thee, nor forsake thee. 6: So that we may boldly say, The Lord is my helper, and I will not fear what man shall do unto me. 7: Remember them which have the rule over you, who have spoken unto you the word of God: whose faith follow, considering the end of their conversation. 8: Jesus Christ the same yesterday, and to day, and for ever. 9: Be not carried about with divers and strange doctrines. For it is a good thing that the heart be established with grace; not with meats, which have not profited them that have been occupied therein. 10: We have an altar, whereof they have no right to eat which serve the tabernacle. 11: For the bodies of those beasts, whose blood is brought into the sanctuary by the high priest for sin, are burned without the camp. 12: Wherefore Jesus also, that he might sanctify the people with his own blood, suffered without the gate. 13: Let us go forth therefore unto him without the camp, bearing his reproach. 14: For here have we no continuing city, but we seek one to come. 15: By him therefore let us offer the sacrifice of praise to God continually, that is, the fruit of our lips giving thanks to his name. 16: But to do good and to communicate forget not: for with such sacrifices God is well pleased. 17: Obey them that have the rule over you, and submit yourselves: for they watch for your souls, as they that must give account, that they may do it with joy, and not with grief: for that is unprofitable for you. 18: Pray for us: for we trust we have a good conscience, in all things willing to live honestly. 19: But I beseech you the rather to do this, that I may be restored to you the sooner.
20: Now the God of peace, that brought again from the dead our Lord Jesus, that great shepherd of the sheep, through the blood of the everlasting covenant, 21: Make you perfect in every good work to do his will, working in you that which is wellpleasing in his sight, through Jesus Christ; to whom be glory for ever and ever. Amen.
22: And I beseech you, brethren, suffer the word of exhortation: for I have written a letter unto you in few words. 23: Know ye that our brother Timothy is set at liberty; with whom, if he come shortly, I will see you. 24: Salute all them that have the rule over you, and all the saints. They of Italy salute you. 25: Grace be with you all. Amen.
And so the writer to the Hebrews brings his letter to an end with homely exhortation. He reminds the Hebrews to have brotherly love for each other and to have hospitality. They are to remember those who are in prison for Christ’s sake. He reminds them that marriage and sexual relations are honourable to all. He says let you hearts be contented, because Christ promised that he would never leave those who have believed in him. They are to have due respect for those who have the spiritual rule over them. He then warns them not to be carried away with unorthodox and strange doctrines. He then describes the rejection of Jesus and how that he was taken ‘outside the camp’ to suffer. He then exhorts them to go ‘outside the camp’ (of Israel), to stand with Christ in his rejection. He says we (Jews) have no earthly city here, because we seek one to come. He encourages them to worship the Lord in song and to give to those who need charity (the highest form of legalistic righteousness). He says, obey those that have the rule over you in the LORD, because they care for your souls and they will give account to the Lord for their responsibility. Then the writer says pray for us, because we live as law abiding Jews in all good conscience before God. Finally the writer gives the benediction. He prays that the Lord Jesus the Good Shepherd, might bring them to maturity in every good work to do Gods will. He says Timothy has been released (placing this letter after Acts 28) and when he joins me, we will both come to you. He closes with salutations to the Elders and all the saints. Then the writer sends greetings from the believers of Rome. (Probably this indicates that this letter is written from Rome by Paul.) Lastly he closes with the Christian greeting ‘Grace be with you’.