Paul to Hebrews, 1980

Record number

Paul to Hebrews

synthetic polymer paint
3 sheets of paper
each sheet: 730 x 1095 mm

1: PAUL TO HEBREWS. C.McC. FEB. '80. 'Remember where you stand.'- (brushpoint, b.l.-b.c.); 1. (brushpoint, b.r.)
2: PAUL TO HEBREWS. C McC. FEB. '80. 'He who made his angels winds'- (brushpoint, b.l.-b.c.); 2. (brushpoint, b.r.)
3: 3. (brushpoint, t.r.); PAUL TO HEBREWS. C. McC. Feb. '80. By thee, Lord, were earth's foundations laid- (brushpoint, b.l.-b.c.)

Extended inscriptions

1: REMEMBER WHERE YOU STAND: not before the palpable, blazing
fire of Sinai with the darkness, gloom, and whirlwind,
the trumpet-blast and the oracular voice which
they heard , and begged to hear no more; for they
could not bear the command; 'If even an^ animal
touches the mountain, it must be stoned
So appalling was the sight, that Moses said,
'I shudder with fear'

Today if you hear his voice do not grow stubborn as in those
days of rebellion, at that time of testing in the desert,
where your forefathers tried me and tested me and thought they
saw the things I did for fourty years.
And so, I was indignant with that generation and said,
Their hearts are forever astray; they would not discern
my ways; as I vowed in my anger,
they shall never enter my rest.

2: 'HE who makes his Angel's winds,
and his ministers a fiery flame.'
Thy throne O God, is for ever and ever.
And the sceptre of justice is the sceptre of his Kingdom
Thou hast loved right and hated wrong;.
Therefore, O God, thy God has set thee above thy fellows,
by anointing with the oil of exultation.

What is man that thou rememberest him,
or the son of man, that thou hast regard to him?
Thou didst make him for a short while lower than the angels.
thou didst crown him with glory and honour
thou didst put all things in all subjection beneath
his feet.

3: BY thee, Lord, were earth's foundations laid of old,
and the heavens are the work of thy hands.
They shall pass away: but thou endurest:
Like clothes they shall all grow old;
thou shalt fold them up like a cloak,
yes, they shall be changed like any garment
But thou art the same,
and thy years shall have no end.

Exhibition history

1980 Colin McCahon New Works
Peter Webb Gallery
18/2/1980 - 7/3/1980

1980 CSA Centennial Exhibition
CSA Gallery
6/9/1980 - 25/9/1980

2002 Colin McCahon: A Question of Faith
Stedelijk Museum
30/8/2002 - 10/11/2002


The texts McCahon used in the first sheet of this painting are from Hebrews 12: 18-21; 7-11. The texts in second sheet come from Hebrews 1:7-10 and Hebrews 2:6-8, while the third sheet is Hebrews 1:10-12, all from the New English Bible. Although the painting is called Paul to Hebrews, St Paul is not generally regarded as the author of the epistle.