The book of Hebrews offers a thorough explanation of faith, redemption and salvation by demonstrating how Jesus Christ fulfilled the Old Testament prophecies and the Old Testament religion, and how salvation has always been by grace through faith from the beginning of time.
It was written to encourage 1st Century Jewish Christians to avoid slipping into the legalism of the Pharisees religion, and to hold on to their faith. The book accomplished this goal by showing how Christ fills the role of High Priest, and how the Old Testament Patriarchs acted on faith, not out of religious duty.
For all of the great Theological truth in Hebrews, one thing remains a mystery. Who wrote it? No one put their name on it, and the author didn’t introduce himself at the beginning.
For centuries, Theologians and scholars believed that the Apostle Paul wrote Hebrews. That theory makes sense as Paul skillfully used logic in his writings to combat Judaism and to teach salvation by grace through faith. However, Hebrews doesn’t exactly match the style Paul had used in his other writings. In fact, the writing style doesn’t match any other book of the New Testament.
Some believe Apollos wrote the book. Indeed, Apollos was a skilled orator, had a way with words, was well educated and was capable of such. However, questions remain as to whether Apollos would have been the one to write a letter to Jewish Christians in Jerusalem. Sure, he spent a lot of time in Asia minor debating Judaizers, but that fact in and of itself does not prove authorship.
Timothy is also seen as a possible author, but the letter references Timothy in verse 13:23. It’s uncertain whether Timothy would have referred to himself in the third person like this.
Other names have been postulated… Clement, Priscilla, Luke the Evangelist. We could study the writings of each of these early church leaders and formulate theories, or, we could make life much simpler.
If you have ventured to read any of the New Testament, you’ve probably noticed that the authors tend to identify themselves at the beginning. So, following that pattern, let’s look at the beginning of the book of Hebrews:
God, who at sundry times and in divers manners spake in time past unto the fathers by the prophets, Hath in these last days spoken unto us by his Son, whom he hath appointed heir of all things, by whom also he made the worlds;
Boom! Mystery solved.
The Author of Hebrews was identified in verse 1. “God.”
Now the likelihood of God coming down and handwriting this letter on a scroll of paper is minute, but it is important to remember that, even though we may not know whom God called to write Hebrews, the words are inspired by God none the less. So never mind who put the ink to the paper. Hebrews is God’s word, and thus we should learn it and obey it as we would any other book.