Merry Christmas, According to the Letter to the Hebrews, by Dr. Jeff Mirus

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By Dr. Jeff Mirus, Catholic Culture, Dec 20, 2022

Jeffrey Mirus holds a Ph.D. in intellectual history from Princeton University. A co-founder of Christendom College, he also pioneered Catholic Internet services. He is the founder of Trinity Communications and

It is hard to reread the Letter to the Hebrews without thinking of St. Paul, because the themes are clearly Pauline even though the style of writing is not. While there have always been disputes over this letter’s authorship, the preponderance of evidence more strongly suggests it was written by a co-worker or disciple of St. Paul. The writer recapitulates several Pauline themes (as seen in the earlier letters known to have been written by Paul), and he is clearly a Jew writing to demonstrate that the the New Covenant is superior to the Old in exactly the same sense as Christ is superior to Moses.

The Old Covenant is based on priestly sacrifices for sin which must be endlessly repeated; the New is based on God’s acceptance of the once-for-all offering of His eternal Son, Jesus Christ, God made man. Regardless of authorship, this makes the Letter to the Hebrews a Christmas letter. It bears a message about God’s direct entry into human history through One whose being, authority and power exceeds not only the Jewish priests but the angels themselves: …

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