In my previous posts I’ve talked about writings that claimed to be written by Peter, the closest disciple to Jesus – a Gospel, and Apocalypse, and an Epistle . These are not the only Petrine writings floating around in the early church. Among other things, we have two other (different) apocalypses, one of them unusually fascinating that was discovered only in 1945 (a Gnostic writing).
None of these was actually written by Peter, and I don’t think there’s a biblical scholar on the planet who seriously thinks it was. It appears that writing books in the name of Peter was something of a cottage industry in early Christianity.
That should give us pause. There are two books that also claim to be written by Peter that actually are in the New Testament. If we know that such pseudepigrapha were floating around, on what grounds should we think these two were authentic?
Of all the books of the NT that have been thought to be forged – written by an author falsely claiming to be someone else – 2 Peter is by far the one most widely regarded as falling into the category. Even some more left wing evangelicals think so. My own conservative Christian mentor, the great scholar Bruce Metzger, thought it could not actually be by Peter. The common reason: the writing style is so massively different from 1 Peter that there is simply no way both were written by the same person.
That, as you might realize, is a specious argument, because
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