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Literary structure (chiasmus, chiasm) of Epistle to the Hebrews

Chiasmus and Concentric Structure of divided by 4


4-1

1 God has spoken by his son (1:1-14)
  2 Warning to pay attention (2:1-18)
    3 Moses a servant, Christ a son (3:1-6)
  4 Warning against unbelief (3:7-19)
5 The rest that God promised (4:1-13)
Former halfRelationLatter half
1 God has spoken by his son (1:1-14)
You are my son; this day I have begotten you (1:5)
This day5 The rest that God promised (4:1-13)
he once more set a day, "today," when long afterwards he spoke through David, as already quoted: "Oh, that today you would hear his voice: 'Harden not your hearts.'" (4:7)
2 Warning to pay attention (2:1-18)
2:1 Therefore, we must attend all the more to what we have heard, so that we may not be carried away.(2:1)
Listening to4 Warning against unbelief (3:7-19)
3:7 Therefore, as the holy Spirit says: "Oh, that today you would hear his voice,(3:7)

4-1-1

1 God has spoken by his son (1:1-14)
  2 Warning to pay attention (2:1-18)
3 Moses a servant, Christ a son (3:1-6)
Former halfRelationLatter half
1 God has spoken by his son (1:1-14)
1:2 in these last days, he spoke to us through a son, whom he made heir of all things and through whom he created the universe, (1:2)
Son of God3 Moses a servant, Christ a son (3:1-6)
3:6 but Christ was faithful as a son placed over his house. We are his house, if (only) we hold fast to our confidence and pride in our hope.(3:6)

4-1-2

3 Moses a servant, Christ a son (3:1-6)
  4 Warning against unbelief (3:7-19)
5 The rest that God promised (4:1-13)
Former halfRelationLatter half
3 Moses a servant, Christ a son (3:1-6)
3:4 Every house is founded by someone, but the founder of all is God. (3:4)
The creation5 The rest that God promised (4:1-13)
4:3 his works were accomplished at the foundation of the world. (4:3)

4-2

5 The rest that God promised (4:1-13)
  6 Juseus the great high priest (4:14-5:10)
    7 Warning against falling away (5:11-6:12)
  8 The certainty of God's promise (6:13-7:10)
9 The priestly order of Melchizedek (7:11-28)
Former halfRelationLatter half
5 The rest that God promised (4:1-13)
As I swore in my wrath, 'They shall not enter into my rest (4:3)
God's oath9 The priestly order of Melchizedek (7:11-28)
The Lord has sworn, and he will not repent: 'You are a priest forever (7:21)
6 Juseus the great high priest (4:14-5:10)
Therefore, since we have a great high priest who has passed through the heavens, Jesus, the Son of God, let us hold fast to our confession. (4:14)
Jesus as the great high priest8 The certainty of God's promise (6:13-7:10)
where Jesus has entered on our behalf as forerunner, becoming high priest forever according to the order of Melchizedek. (6:20)

4-2-1

5 The rest that God promised (4:1-13)
  6 Juseus the great high priest (4:14-5:10)
7 Warning against falling away (5:11-6:12)
Former halfRelationLatter half
5 The rest that God promised (4:1-13)
Therefore, let us be on our guard while the promise of entering into his rest remains, that none of you seem to have failed (4:1)
Promise of God7 Warning against falling away (5:11-6:12)
so that you may not become sluggish, but imitators of those who, through faith and patience, are inheriting the promises (6:12)

4-2-2

7 Warning against falling away (5:11-6:12)
  8 The certainty of God's promise (6:13-7:10)
9 The priestly order of Melchizedek (7:11-28)
Former halfRelationLatter half
7 Warning against falling away (5:11-6:12)
since they are recrucifying the Son of God for themselves and holding him up to contempt. (6:6)
Only one sacrifice9 The priestly order of Melchizedek (7:11-28)
He has no need, as did the high priests, to offer sacrifice day after day, first for his own sins and then for those of the people; he did that once for all when he offered himself. (7:27)

4-3

9 The priestly order of Melchizedek (7:11-28)
  10 Mediator of a better covenant (8:1-13)
    11 The earthly and the heavenly sanctuaries (9:1-22)
  12 Christ's sacrifice takes away sin (9:23-28)
13 Christ's sacrifice once for all (10:1-18)
Former halfRelationLatter half
9 The priestly order of Melchizedek (7:11-28)
7:16 who has become so, not by a law expressed in a commandment concerning physical descent but by the power of a life that cannot be destroyed. (7:16)
The law13 Christ's sacrifice once for all (10:1-18)
10:1 Since the law has only a shadow of the good things to come, and not the very image of them, it can never make perfect those who come to worship by the same sacrifices that they offer continually each year.(10:1)
10 Mediator of a better covenant (8:1-13)
8:1 The main point of what has been said is this: we have such a high priest, who has taken his seat at the right hand of the throne of the Majesty in heaven,(8:1)
Heavenly things12 Christ's sacrifice takes away sin (9:23-28)
9:23 Therefore, it was necessary for the copies of the heavenly things to be purified by these rites, but the heavenly things themselves by better sacrifices than these.(9:23)

4-3-1

9 The priestly order of Melchizedek (7:11-28)
  10 Mediator of a better covenant (8:1-13)
11 The earthly and the heavenly sanctuaries (9:1-22)
Former halfRelationLatter half
9 The priestly order of Melchizedek (7:11-28)
he did that once for all when he offered himself. (7:27)
Only one sacrifice11 The earthly and the heavenly sanctuaries (9:1-22)
he entered once for all into the sanctuary, not with the blood of goats and calves but with his own blood, thus obtaining eternal redemption. (9:12)

4-3-2

11 The earthly and the heavenly sanctuaries (9:1-22)
  12 Christ's sacrifice takes away sin (9:23-28)
13 Christ's sacrifice once for all (10:1-18)
Former halfRelationLatter half
11 The earthly and the heavenly sanctuaries (9:1-22)
9:15 For this reason he is mediator of a new covenant: since a death has taken place for deliverance from transgressions under the first covenant, those who are called may receive the promised eternal inheritance.(9:15)
Atonement of Christ13 Christ's sacrifice once for all (10:1-18)
10:12 But this one offered one sacrifice for sins, and took his seat forever at the right hand of God; (10:12)

4-4

13 Christ's sacrifice once for all (10:1-18)
  14 A call to persevere (10:19-39)
    15 Faith (11:1-40)
  16 Warning against rejecting God's grace (12:1-29)
17 Service well-pleasing to God (13:1-25)
Former halfRelationLatter half
13 Christ's sacrifice once for all (10:1-18)
10:12 But this one offered one sacrifice for sins, and took his seat forever at the right hand of God; (10:12)
Atonement of Christ17 Service well-pleasing to God (13:1-25)
13:12 Therefore, Jesus also suffered outside the gate, to consecrate the people by his own blood. (13:12)
14 A call to persevere (10:19-39)
10:24 We must consider how to rouse one another to love and good works. 10:25 We should not stay away from our assembly, as is the custom of some, but encourage one another, and this all the more as you see the day drawing near. (10:24-25)
Encouragement16 Warning against rejecting God's grace (12:1-29)
Therefore, since we are surrounded by so great a cloud of witnesses, let us rid ourselves of every burden and sin that clings to us and persevere in running the race that lies before us (12:1)

4-4-1

13 Christ's sacrifice once for all (10:1-18)
  14 A call to persevere (10:19-39)
15 Faith (11:1-40)
Former halfRelationLatter half
13 Christ's sacrifice once for all (10:1-18)
Since the law has only a shadow of the good things to come, and not the very image of them, it can never make perfect those who come to worship by the same sacrifices that they offer continually each year. (10:1)
Person doesn't be made perfect15 Faith (11:1-40)
God had foreseen something better for us, so that without us they should not be made perfect. (11:40)

4-4-2

15 Faith (11:1-40)
  16 Warning against rejecting God's grace (12:1-29)
17 Service well-pleasing to God (13:1-25)
Former halfRelationLatter half
15 Faith (11:1-40)
11:3 By faith we understand that the universe was ordered by the word of God, so that what is visible came into being through the invisible.(11:3)
Faith17 Service well-pleasing to God (13:1-25)
13:7 Remember your leaders who spoke the word of God to you. Consider the outcome of their way of life and imitate their faith. (13:7)

Citations of the Bible are from New American Bible, New Revised Standard Version and New Jerusalem Bible.

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Literary Structure of the Bible by Hajime Murai is licensed under a Creative Commons Attribution-ShareAlike 4.0 International License.
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