Graduation Semester and Year




Document Type


Degree Name

Doctor of Philosophy in Linguistics



First Advisor



The question of the authorship of the New Testament epistle to the Hebrews has provided scholars with fertile ground for speculation from the earliest days of Church history until the present time. The purpose of this dissertation is to propose and argue for the possibility of Luke the physician and traveling companion of the Apostle Paul as having been the independent author. After a survey of the major theories on authorship proposed from the times of the Church Fathers to the present, I briefly discuss the arguments pro and con for the possibility of the three leading candidates for authorship: Paul, Apollos, and Barnabas, as well as other matters of background in order to set the stage for the argument of Lukan authorship. Chapter two furnishes linguistic evidence from three broad fronts to support the theory: (1) lexical similarity, (2) stylistic similarity, and (3) textlinguistic considerations. Under this third section, I evaluate four lines of evidence: (1) a comparison of the prologues to Luke, Acts, and Hebrews, (2) a comparison of the two longest expositions of Old Testament history in the New Testament: Acts 7 and Hebrews 11, (3) a comparison of the use of chiasm as an over-arching framework for the entire discourse of Luke-Acts and Hebrews which tends to set them off against other New Testament books, especially the Pauline epistles, and (4) a comparison of Old Testament citation formulae found in the three works. Chapter three evaluates the theological outlook characteristic of Luke-Acts and Hebrews and finds them to be closely related especially in matters of Christology and Eschatology. Chapter four proposes a Jewish background for Luke on the basis of a reading of his two-volume Luke-Acts which reveals extensive influence by and interest in matters of Jewish concern. Luke is shown to be capable of writing such a highly Jewish work as Hebrews. Finally, in chapter five I offer a theory of the authorship and background of Hebrews in which I suggest that Luke wrote it ca. A.D. 67 from Rome and addressed it to former Jewish Priests who are now Christians living in Antioch of Syria.


Philosophy, Religion and theology, Language, Literature and linguistics


Linguistics | Social and Behavioral Sciences


Degree granted by The University of Texas at Arlington

Included in

Linguistics Commons