Original Research - Special Collection: Eben Scheffler Festschrift

Deuteronomy’s concept of life in Hebrews

Albert J. Coetsee
HTS Teologiese Studies / Theological Studies | Vol 75, No 3 | a5374 | DOI: https://doi.org/10.4102/hts.v75i3.5374 | © 2019 Albert J. Coetsee | This work is licensed under CC Attribution 4.0
Submitted: 10 January 2019 | Published: 19 September 2019

About the author(s)

Albert J. Coetsee, School for Christian Ministry and Leadership, North-West University, Potchefstroom, South Africa


This article endeavours to contribute to the study of the influence and effect of Deuteronomy in the book of Hebrews. It investigates the possible influence of one of Deuteronomy’s key concepts on Hebrews, namely, the concept of ‘life’. The article starts off by defining the multifaceted concept of ‘life’ in Deuteronomy. This is followed up by combing through the text of Hebrews to identify traces of this concept in the words and arguments that the writer employs. The possible traces found are then investigated intertextually in detail. This includes references to ‘the living God’ (Heb 3:12; 9:14; 10:31; 12:22), God’s ‘living and active’ word (Heb 4:12), ‘the new and living way’ Jesus opened through his death (Heb 10:20) and the command to ‘submit to the Father of spirits and live’ (Heb 12:9). The article concludes by synthesising the findings to discuss whether Hebrews deliberately employs Deuteronomy’s concept of life.


Deuteronomy; Hebrews; Life; Live; Living; Alive; Intertextual


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