Going against the tide of much recent scholarship on Hebrews, Kenneth Schenck argues that the letter was addressed to a primarily Gentile audience, to console them and strengthen their faith in the wake of the destruction of the Temple. The implications-that Christians, Jews and Gentiles alike, valued the Temple highly and grieved its destruction-point to a new perspective on the so-called parting of the ways between Jews and predominantly Gentile Christians. Schenck's work challenges many of the established assumptions of Hebrews scholarship and will deserve close attention for years to come.
Kenneth Schenck, a leading authority on the Epistle to the Hebrews, here offers a carefully argued case that Hebrews was written for a Gentile audience after the destruction of the Jewish Temple. He further argues that this case did not reflect a parting of the ways between Christianity and Judaism. Instead, on all essential points Hebrews fits into the context of first-century Jewish followers of Jesus. Learned and insightful, Schenck's work will interest anyone concerned with the ways in which early Christians understood their relationship to their Israelite heritage. -- Harold W. Attridge, Sterling Professor of Divinity, Yale Divinity School Serving a vital need in Hebrews scholarship as well as New Testament scholarship as a whole, A New Perspective on Hebrews invites readers to probe the deep assumptions one brings to the reading of this provocative sermon. The scholar and the beginner will find themselves appropriatly introduced to the scholarship on the New Perspective and Hebrews so that they can make informed decisions on the interpretive themes Schenck offers. All readers may not be convinced of the decisions he makes with regard to Hebrews unknown historical context, but his book will equip them with the tools for a more robust conversation. -- Amy Peeler, Wheaton College