Hebrews 13

Final Exhortations

1Brotherly love must continue. 2Do not neglect hospitality, because through it some have entertained angels without knowing it.
This is a vague allusion to people described in scripture and extra-biblical literature and may include Abraham and Sarah (Gen 18:2–15), Lot (Gen 19:1–14), Gideon (Judg 6:11–18), Manoah (Judg 13:3–22), and possibly Tobit (Tob 12:1–20).
3Remember those in prison as though you were in prison with them,
Grk “as being imprisoned together.”
and those ill-treated as though you too felt their torment.
Or “since you too are vulnerable”; Grk “you also being in the body.”
4Marriage must be honored among all and the marriage bed kept undefiled, for God will judge sexually immoral people and adulterers. 5Your conduct must be free from the love of money and you must be content with what you have, for he has said, “ I will never leave you and I will never abandon you .”
A quotation from Deut 31:6, 8.
6So we can say with confidence, “The Lord is my helper, and
Some important mss (א* C* P 0285vid 33 1175 1739 pc lat) lack καί (kai), but because the omission conforms to the wording of Ps 118:6 (117:6 LXX), it is suspect.
I will not be afraid. What can man do to me?
A quotation from Ps 118:6.
7Remember your leaders, who spoke God’s message to you; reflect on the outcome of their lives and imitate their faith. 8Jesus Christ is the same yesterday and today and forever! 9Do not be carried away by all sorts of strange teachings.
Grk “by diverse and strange teachings.”
For it is good for the heart to be strengthened by grace, not ritual meals,
Grk “foods,” referring to the meals associated with the OT sacrifices (see the contrast with the next verse; also 9:9–10; 10:1, 4, 11).
which have never benefited those who participated in them.
10We have an altar that those who serve in the tabernacle have no right to eat from. 11For the bodies of those animals whose blood the high priest brings
Grk “whose blood is brought by the high priest.”
into the sanctuary as an offering for sin are burned outside the camp.
12Therefore, to sanctify the people by his own blood, Jesus also suffered outside the camp. 13We must go out to him, then, outside the camp, bearing the abuse he experienced.
Grk “his abuse.”
14For here we have no lasting city, but we seek the city that is to come. 15Through him then let us continually offer up a sacrifice of praise to God, that is, the fruit of our lips, acknowledging his name. 16And do not neglect to do good and to share what you have,
Grk “neglect doing good and fellowship.”
for God is pleased with such sacrifices.

17 Obey your leaders and submit to them, for they keep watch over your souls and will give an account for their work.
Or “as ones who will give an account”; Grk “as giving an account.”
Let them do this
Grk “that they may do this.”
with joy and not with complaints, for this would be no advantage for you.
18Pray for us, for we are sure that we have a clear conscience and desire to conduct ourselves rightly in every respect. 19I especially ask you to pray
Grk “I urge you to do this all the more.”
that I may be restored to you very soon.

Benediction and Conclusion

20 Now may the God of peace who by the blood of the eternal covenant brought back from the dead the great shepherd of the sheep, our Lord Jesus Christ, 21equip you with every good thing to do his will, working in us
Some mss (C P Ψ 6 629* 630 1505 pm latt syh) read ὑμῖν (humin, “in you”) here, but ἡμῖν (hēmin) has stronger external support (Ƥ46 א A Dvid K 0243 0285 33 81 104 326 365 629c 1175 1739 1881 pm syp co). It is also more likely that ἡμῖν would have been changed to ὑμῖν in light of the “you” which occurs at the beginning of the verse than vice versa.
what is pleasing before him through Jesus Christ, to whom be glory forever.
‡ Most mss (א A [C*] 0243 0285 33 1739 1881 Maj. latt) include the words “and ever” here, but the shorter reading (supported by Ƥ46 C3 D Ψ 6 104 365 1505 al) is preferred on internal grounds. It seemed more likely that scribes would assimilate the wording to the common NT doxological expression “for ever and ever,” found especially in the Apocalypse (cf., e.g., 1 Tim 1:17; 2 Tim 4:18; Rev 4:9; 22:5) than to the “forever” of Heb 13:8. Nevertheless, a decision is difficult here. NA27 places the phrase in brackets, indicating doubts as to its authenticity.

22 Now I urge you, brothers and sisters,
Grk “brothers.” See note on the phrase “brothers and sisters” in 2:11.
bear with my message of exhortation, for in fact I have written to you briefly.
23You should know that
Grk “Know that” (an imperative).
our brother Timothy has been released. If he comes soon, he will be with me when I see you.
Grk “has been released, with whom, if he comes soon, I will see you.”
24Greetings to all your leaders and all the saints. Those from Italy send you greetings. 25Grace be with you all.
Most witnesses, including several important ones (א2 A C D H Ψ 0243 1739 1881 Maj. lat sy bo), conclude the letter with ἀμήν (amēn, “amen”). Such a conclusion is routinely added by scribes to NT books because a few of these books originally had such an ending (cf. Rom 16:27; Gal 6:18; Jude 25). A majority of Greek witnesses have the concluding ἀμήν in every NT book except Acts, James, and 3 John (and even in these books, ἀμήν is found in some witnesses). It is thus a predictable variant. Further, there is sufficient testimony (Ƥ46 א* Ivid 6 33 sa) for the lack of the particle, rendering its omission the preferred reading.

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