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Another Note on Hebrews Outlines

Dave Black commented on my outline, linked in my previous post, thus:

1:28 PM Henry Neufeld, who has published a work on the epistle to the Hebrews, enters the discussion about the book’s outline/discourse structure. You can check out his soon-to-be-revised outline here. I love it! The only comment I might make concerns the title given to Heb. 6:1: “Press on to maturity.” Here’s why.

I think he is absolutely right and this change will find its way into my revised outline.

One might justifiably ask me in what way I’m dissatisfied with the outline. My problem with my current outline is that I don’t think it provides adequate links between the various sections of Hebrews, nor does it adequately focus on the key passage at the core. In fact,  I believe the passage in question provides the focus for the book, however much we may try to avoid the verses that follow, particularly 4-6 or consider the verses immediately after that overly obscure.

Hebrews does not follow a straight line in its structure. It’s more like a cord woven of threads of different colors, with different themes coming to the fore at different times. I’m hoping that by wording my outline properly, these connections will become more clear. With the outline display I use, one can choose how many levels to view, so one should be able to view the structure almost as though one was zooming in and out.

Will I be successful? I have no idea. Hebrews is a special piece of scripture to me, and I find that no matter how many times I read it, or how many different ways I look at it, it keeps speaking. Maybe it’s inspired or something! 🙂

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  1. David says:

    Greetings! I would like to enter into this larger discussion by offering an outline on Hebrews that I first worked on when teaching a New Testament Literature course in NYC back in 2004. It is more of a rhetorical outline in which I try to preserve and present the way in which this letter/sermon would have been “heard” by its original first century audience. Sadly, I think the spacing I use in Microsoft Word would make mincemeat of the presentation. If you are interested, do you have any suggestions?

    Grace & peace

    1. Thanks for commenting!

      If you have a place to post it on the web, I’d be happy to link to it here, or if you don’t have that option, e-mail it to me (pubs@energion.com) and I’ll make a guest post of it. I should be able to duplicate most of the formatting from Word. Make sure to give me whatever identifying information you’d like included with your post if you choose this second option.

      I’m very interested in seeing any rhetorical outlines I can get my hands on.

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