Hebrews 13:3 (KJV)
Remember them that are in bonds, as bound with them; and them which suffer adversity, as being yourselves also in the body.
We are so prone to read into the Bible our preconceived notions.
Among students of the Bible, both the authorship of the book of Hebrews and the audience are questioned. One commentator says that if Paul is not the author, the viewpoint is definitely Pauline. I see no reason to question that Paul wrote it. As to the audience, it is generally thought to be the same as that of 1 and 2 Peter, the believing Jews scattered in eastern regions. It is seldom viewed as written to a local church. I think Hebrews 13 reflects a strong local church position.
Verse 3 refers to a body, a term that applies to a local church throughout the writings of Paul. The connection of the members and the suggestion that we share afflictions only makes sense in a local body situation.
This phrase is found in verses 7, 17 and 24. It would be impossible to understand the role of a (spiritual) ruler except in the context of a local congregation.
We don’t have to, as some interpreters do, consign the book of Hebrews to another dispensation. It applies today and it applies to members of a local church.
To my readers:
First of all, thank you! It is a great joy to me to know you read the thoughts and lessons God has given me in His word. Secondly, I would love to hear from you. Please feel free to leave comments.
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Hebrews 13:3 Applies To A Local Church
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