The Authorship of the Pastoral Epistles - Liberty University Digital


Pastoral Epistles 1


The Authorship of the Pastoral Epistles

Brandon Carter

A Senior Thesis submitted in partial fulfillment of the requirements for graduation in the Honors Program Liberty University Fall 2007

Pastoral Epistles 2

Acceptance of Senior Honors Thesis This Senior Honors Thesis is accepted in partial fulfillment of the requirements for graduation from the Honors Program of Liberty University.

______________________________ Wayne A. Brindle, Th.D. Chairman of Thesis

______________________________ Michael J. Smith, Ph.D. Committee Member

______________________________ Mark A. Hamilton, Ph.D. Committee Member

______________________________ James Nutter, D.A. Honors Program Director

______________________________ Date

Pastoral Epistles 3 Abstract This thesis discusses issues related to the authorship of the epistles of 1 and 2 Timothy and Titus. The authenticity of the Pastoral Epistles has become the subject of much debate in the last two centuries, and the writer explores the major positions on authorship. Along with the traditional view that the Pastorals were written by Paul the apostle, contemporary theories on pseudonymity and the implications of such a view on canonicity are considered. The historical evidence, theological content, and literary style and diction of the epistles are examined in defense of Pauline authorship.

Pastoral Epistles 4 The Authorship of the Pastoral Epistles Throughout the course of the last two millennia, the books of 1 Timothy, 2 Timothy, and Titus have been a source of guidance and direction for leaders of the church and believers everywhere. These three books of the canon of Scripture form a distinct unit known as the Pastoral Epistles. Ferdinand Baur says, “The three epistles are so much alike that none of them can be separated from the others; and from this circumstance the identity of their authorship may be confidently inferred.”1 The letters make up such a “closely knit group” that their authorship and authenticity can be examined together,2 and these issues have been the subject of much debate during the last two hundred years. The traditional view is that Paul the apostle was the author of the letters, but, beginning in the nineteenth century, many critical scholars began questioning this accepted position. Difficulties with Pauline authorship arose when the Pastoral Epistles were compared to the acknowledged letters of Paul including Romans, 1 and 2 Corinthians, Galatians, Philippians, 1 Thessalonians, and Philemon.3 From the first century until the nineteenth, no one ever doubted that they were written by Paul,4 but Raymond Collins confidently states that “[b]y the end of the twentieth century, New Testament scholarship was virtually unanimous in affirming that the Pastoral Epistles


F. C. Baur, Die sogenannten Pastoralbriefe des Apostels Paulus (Stuttgart: Cotta, 1835), quoted in Alfred Plummer, The Pastoral Epistles (London: Hodder and Stoughton, 1894), 12. 2

George W. Knight, The Pastoral Epistles: A Commentary on the Greek Text, New International Greek Testament Commentary (Grand Rapids: Wm. B. Eerdmans Publishing Company, 1992), 4. 3

Anthony T. Hanson, The Pastoral Epistles: based on the Revised Standard Version (Grand Rapids: Wm. B. Eerdmans Publishing Company, 1982), 2. 4

Alfred Plummer, The Pastoral Epistles (London: Hodder and Stoughton, 1894), 4.

Pastoral Epistles 5 were written some time after Paul's death.”5 However, even a cursory reading on the matter demonstrates that this is certainly not the case, and one must examine all the evidence involved to come to a conclusion. The issue of authorship is particularly important because the position which one takes concerning this question will determine how one exegetes and interprets the epistles. Ultimately, the canonicity of the letters is on the line. According to Alfred Plummer, the general consensus of scholars is that “the three epistles must stand or fall together.”6 They are all genuine, or they must all be rejected. Alternatives to Pauline Authorship The view of pseudonymity. At the beginning of all three epistles the writer claims to be Paul the apostle (1 Tim. 1:1, Tit. 1:1, 2 Tim 1:1). Here is where opponents of the traditional view of Pauline authorship encounter their first obstacle. Many prominent scholars such as Ferdinand Baur concluded that the letters were written sometime near the middle of the second century to refute the Marcion heresy involving Gnosticism.7 Others, while still denying Pauline authorship, saw fit to ascribe the letters to an earlier date at the end of the first century.8 However, if these men wish to maintain such a date for the composition of the epistles, they must be able to account for the fact that the letters profess to be written by Paul. In an effort to explain this data, many scholars look to the phenomenon of pseudonymity. They maintain that the letters were written by an individual who assumed the name of Paul to advance the purpose of his writing. 5

Raymond F. Collins, I & II Timothy and Titus, The New Testament Library (Louisville: Westminster John Knox Press, 2002), 4. 6

Plummer, 7.


Patrick Fairbairn, Pastoral Epistles (Minneapolis: James & Klock, 1976), 3.


Ibid., 4.

Pastoral Epistles 6 There are numerous theories on the pseudonymity of the Pastorals. These range from the suggestion that they are completely unPauline to the suspicion that they include several genuine fragments of the writings of Paul which were embellished for the sake of publishing. One of the more prominent explanations for this alleged pseudonymity is that the letters are forgeries committed with good intention in order to deal with problems in the church. Few would argue that a pseudepigrapher wrote the Pastorals maliciously in an effort to deceive his readers into believing that he was Paul.9 Rather, these scholars argue that the name of Paul found in the introduction of the letters is donned by a church leader seeking apostolic authority for his ideas. According to Davidson, “The author chose the name of an apostle to give currency to his sentiments.”10 The intent behind this was to claim apostolic authority in correcting heresies and troubles within church organization; thus, says Davidson, “In all this there was no dishonesty, because the intent was good.”11 So, according to Davidson, the good intentions of a pseudepigrapher justify the practice of pseudonymity in the New Testament. A similar argument posed by proponents of pseudonymity involves the idea that the pseudepigrapher was a devout follower of the apostle who sincerely sought to perpetuate the teachings of Paul on various situations following the apostle's death. The names of Timothy and Titus are used because of their association with Paul,12 and the


Thomas D. Lea and Hayne Griffin, 1, 2 Timothy, Titus, New American Commentary (Nashville: Broadman & Holman Publishers, 1992), 38. 10

Samuel Davidson, An Introduction to the Study of the New Testament (London: Longmans, Green and Company, 1868), 2:194. 11



David G. Meade, Pseudonymity and Canon: an Investigation into the Relationship of Authorship and Authority in Jewish and Earliest Christian Tradition (Grandon Rapids: Wm. B. Eerdmans Publishing Company, 1986), 127.

Pastoral Epistles 7 pseudepigrapher simply said what Paul would have said had he still been alive. Thus, it is as if the apostle himself was writing the letters.13 According to those who support pseudonymity, the Pastoral Epistles are to be understood as Pauline tradition. These individuals believe that “[b]y co-opting Paul's name, the pseudepigrapher implies that he understands his task to be to interpret Paul.”14 The writer, being familiar with the letters of Paul, seeks to interpret Pauline theology and apply it to the new situations which the church is facing.15 According to Meade, the Pastorals are a “mediation of his [Paul's] apostolic presence: the apostolic representative, and the apostolic letter.”16 They are an effort to assert authoritative tradition. Not only this, but Meade's theory also attempts to account for all of the personal allusions in the letters: Because Paul had become such a part of the community-creating tradition of the Pastorals, due to his own unique personal relationship which he fostered in his genuine letters (e.g. I Cor. 4:14-15), any restatement…of that tradition had to take place in personal terms, indeed more personal than in the general run of pseudonymous literature.17 Thus, Meade explains the personal information by saying that the author was concerned about expressing the truth and traditions of Paul in the very manner of Paul. The pseudepigrapher is trying to convey the thoughts contained in the letters just as Paul would have, including his personal interjections. For those holding to this theory of pseudonymity, the underlying motive of the pseudepigrapher is the establishment of Pauline tradition in a way that the apostle himself would have expressed it. 13

Lea and Griffin, 38.


Phillip H. Towner, The Letters to Timothy and Titus, The New International Commentary on the New Testament (Grand Rapids: Wm. B. Eerdmans Publishing Company, 2006), 18. 15

Towner, 19.


Meade, 131.


Ibid., 127.

Pastoral Epistles 8 The problems for the view of pseudonymity. Although many scholars have turned to pseudonymity to explain the apparent discrepancies between the Pastoral Epistles and the undisputed Pauline writings, the validity of such an explanation still remains to be seen. One must consider the implications of the phenomenon of pseudonymous and pseudepigraphic writings in relation to the canon. There are several major problems with the idea of pseudonymity in general. The first difficulty with pseudonymity is that the early church both in the lifetime of Paul and in the patristic period strongly opposed such false writings. The people of the first century were concerned with problems of literary fraud, and Meade says, “By the Christian era, ancient critics had developed literary tools for exposing forgeries not unsimilar to our techniques today.”18 While it has been documented that instances of pseudonymity were acceptable in Greco-Roman and Jewish cultures,19 early Christians did not endorse the practice.20 There is evidence for this in several of Paul’s letters. In 2 Thessalonians 2:2, the apostle warns the readers to beware of letters and teachings that have supposedly come from him. Paul also guarantees the authenticity and authority of his letter to the Galatians by pointing to evidence that parts of it were in fact written by his own hand (Gal. 6:11). The apostle had approved of the letter, and it was important for the recipients of both of these letters to realize that they were the words of the apostle himself.


Meade, 4.


Towner, 21.


Terry L. Wilder, Pseudonymity the New Testament and Deception: an Inquiry into Intent and Reception (Lanham: University Press of America, 2004), 247.

Pastoral Epistles 9 A similar concern for authenticity is also seen in the period following the apostles. Towner explains that while the Pastoral Epistles were generally accepted, any letters claiming Pauline authorship which were found to be inauthentic were consistently rejected.21 An example of such an occurrence is found in the writings of Tertullian. In On Baptism (c. 200 A.D.), he describes an elder who had falsely written under the name of Paul. The elder had apparently done so in an attempt to increase Paul’s fame because of his love of the apostle. However, because of this pseudonymous writing, the elder was removed from his office.22 Therefore, in response to the argument that pseudonymity is not deceptive because of an author’s good will, Towner replies that those “first confronted with pseudonymous or pseudepigraphical apostolic writings...were not accepted as benign, well-intentioned writings but as substandard fakes to be rejected.”23 Because the early church opposed false writings, Wilder argues that a pseudepigrapher seeking to claim Pauline authorship and authority would have to take great care to cover up pseudonymity. Such activity would be inherently deceptive and would conflict with the ethic of honesty in Christianity; pseudonymity, therefore, is ruled out as means to perpetuate Christian truth. Even if a pseudepigraphic work does not contradict an apostle's teaching, it is still deceptive because it was written without his approval.24 Wilder points out that “The words of pseudonymous letters lose their weight of authority when an apostle does not author or authorize them but instead someone using



Towner, 21. Lea and Griffin, 38.


Towner, 21.


Wilder, 245, 248.

Pastoral Epistles 10 the guise of an apostle pens them.”25 Therefore, the idea of pseudonymity as a legitimate means of establishing a Pauline tradition must be rejected. A pseudepigrapher could not authoritatively address problems in the early church. Again, because the early church disapproved of pseudonymous writings, it is not likely that the Pastoral Epistles were accepted as authoritative in spite of their pseudonymity. Rather, it is more plausible that the letters to Timothy and Titus would have been accepted because they were believed to be authentic. However, Porter poses the question of whether or not the early church could have been wrong in their assessment of the Pastorals.26 The answer is yes; it is possible that the church could have been fooled by a pseudonymous writing, but that does not mean that the writing itself can be authoritative. The biblical canon is understood to be those writings which have been “recognized and accepted by the church as authoritative and inspired by God.”27 This means that the church does not give authority to Scripture, but that scriptural texts are inherently authoritative because they are the word of God. If the early church was deceived concerning the authenticity of the Pastorals and on this basis accepted them as authoritative, it would only mean that the early church incorrectly recognized it as such. The main objection to the idea of pseudonymity is derived from the correct understanding of the doctrine of the Bible. Again, the canon is considered to be those writings which are inspired by God. Because God is the God of truth, it follows that the Bible which he inspired is also completely truthful and inerrant. The Chicago Statement


Wilder, 251.


Stanley E. Porter, “Pauline Authorship and the Pastoral Epistles: Implications for Canon,” Bulletin for Biblical Research 5 (1995): 122. 27

D. S. Dockery, The Doctrine of the Bible (Nashville: Convention Press, 1991), 54.

Pastoral Epistles 11 on Biblical Inerrancy affirms that “Scripture in its entirety is inerrant, being free from all falsehood, fraud, or deceit.”28 This extends to every aspect of the text; it includes not only religious truth, but all matters of history and science as well. For Wall, “whether or not the historical Paul wrote the Pastorals has nothing to do with the authority of their subject matter.”29 However, this is not true. If one cannot trust the letters on matters of history, why should he expect them to be true on matters of theology? Because the practice of pseudonymity necessarily involves falsehood and deceit, any letter written pseudonymously cannot be trusted to faithfully convey religious truth. Therefore, no writing in which the practice is involved should be accepted as authoritative. According to J. I. Packer, “We may lay down as a general principle that, when biblical books specify their own authorship, the affirmation of their canonicity involves a denial of their pseudonymity. Pseudonymity and canonicity are mutually exclusive.”30 If one understands the Scriptures to be the true, authoritative word of God, then he must reject any writing that is built upon falsehood. Thus, if it could be demonstrated that the early church was deceived and that the Pastorals were, in fact, not Pauline, then they should be removed from the canon. The view of allonymity. In recent years, I. H. Marshall has developed another alternative theory of authorship labeled “allonymity.” Marshall believes that the epistles address circumstances around the time of Paul but maintains that they are not Pauline 28

The International Council on Biblical Inerrancy, The Chicago Statement on Biblical Inerrancy, art. 19 (Chicago, 1978). The conclusions concerning inspiration and inerrancy were reached by a thorough study of the following Scriptural passages: 2 Peter 1:20-21; 1 Corinthians 2:7-14; 1 Thessalonians 2:13, and 2 Timothy 3:16. 29

Robert W. Wall, “Pauline Authorship and the Pastoral Epistles: A Response to S. E. Porter,” Bulletin for Biblical Research 5 (1995): 127. 30

J. I. Packer, Fundamentalism and the Word of God (Grand Rapids: Wm. B. Eerdmans Publishing Company, 1958), 184.

Pastoral Epistles 12 because of their linguistic characteristics.31 Furthermore, Marshall recognizes that pseudonymity is not an acceptable alternative because it entails deliberate deception.32 He says that the “composition of Christian writings and the intent to deceive were not compatible.”33 In his attempt to find middle ground, he argues that a situation could arise where “somebody else close to a dead person continued to write as (they thought that) he would have done. An incomplete work can be completed by somebody else, but again in a modern situation this would be made quite explicit.”34 Towner explains allonymity in terms of a follower who “steps into the shoes of the dead apostle and carries the master's teaching forward for future generations that is faithful to earlier apostolic intentions.”35 For Marshall, this is a feasible solution for the authorship of the Pastorals because there is no intention of deceit.36 However, the major problem with the theory of allonymity is that it simply renames a theory that many scholars have espoused already. It is merely an attempt to avoid the stigma that accompanies the term “pseudonymity.” In essence, allonymity describes an author who takes on another name, in this case Paul's, in order to perpetuate his teachings on a current situation. This is the same scenario envisioned by those who hold to some benign, well-intentioned pseudonymity,37 and consequently it fails under


I. H. Marshall, The Pastoral Epistles, The International Critical Commentary (London: T&T Clark LTD, 1999), 79. 32

Ibid., 58.


Ibid., 83.


Ibid., 84.


Towner, 25.


Marshall, 84.


cf. discussion on page 6.

Pastoral Epistles 13 the same critiques. If an individual pretends to be an apostle to establish apostolic tradition, the act is inherently deceptive no matter how noble the motive.38 A correct understanding of biblical inerrancy does not allow for deceptive writings in the canon. Having examined the issues involved with the theories of pseudonymity of the Pastoral Epistles, the church has two options: the Pastorals are either genuine or they are not, in which case they must be removed from the canon of Scripture. There is no middle ground in which pseudonymity can allow for an authoritative tradition as some would maintain. This begs the question as to the nature of the critical problems of the Pastorals that led to theories of pseudonymity in the first place. Is a theory of pseudonymity necessary to account for the epistles? Is such a hypothesis demanded by the details given within the epistles themselves and the information which scholars have gleaned from the book of Acts, Paul's undisputed letters, and other ancient sources? These questions must be discussed in relation to the historical, theological, and literary evidence. Historical Evidence Internal evidence. One major cause of arguments for and against the traditional view of Pauline authorship is the historical evidence both internal and external to the Pastoral Epistles. First, the evidence and claims found within the letters themselves need to be examined. Again, the introduction of all three letters indicates that they were written by the apostle Paul to his colleagues Timothy and Titus. Not only is pseudonymity is a dangerous option, but there is also a great deal of evidence within the letters that points to Paul as the author. One example of this is found in 1 Timothy 1:12-14, where the author describes himself in his pre-Christian life as being “a blasphemer and a persecutor and a violent 38

Porter, 122.

Pastoral Epistles 14 man.” This is certainly congruent with what we know about the pre-conversion Paul from the book of Acts. He was a blasphemer and persecutor in that he denied the deity of Christ and persecuted believers in Christ vehemently. He was present at the stoning of Stephen and continually sought to bring believers to death (Acts 7:58; 9:1-2). These circumstances align quite well with statements of the author of the epistles. Moreover, the multitude of personal references found in the Pastorals suggests Pauline authorship and the authenticity of the letters. Throughout the epistles, the author mentions numerous individuals with which he had contact during his activities and travels. In 1 Timothy 1:20, he names Hymenaeus and Alexander as false teachers, and in Titus 3:12, he asks Titus to join him once Artemas or Tychicus arrives to replace him. He also names two other fellow workers, Apollos and Zenas the lawyer (3:12-13). In 2 Timothy, the writer refers to Timothy's mother and grandmother, Eunice and Lois (1:5), and he blesses Onesiphorus for his kindness to him at Rome and Ephesus (1:16-18). These are just a few of the allusions to people and circumstances in the letters.39 If such situations and contacts with people were fabricated by a pseudepigrapher pretending to be Paul, surely the fraud could have been easily exposed. However, none of the church fathers doubted the letters' authenticity. Thus, Knight argues that the self-testimony of the Pastoral Epistles makes clear in each introduction that the author was in fact Paul the apostle, and the extensive personal allusions that permeate each letter substantiate that claim.40


Knight, 5.


Ibid., 6.

Pastoral Epistles 15 The details of the Pastoral Epistles must also be compared to what scholars know of the timeline of Paul's ministry discovered in Acts. Anthony Hanson maintains that it “is almost impossible to fit the apparently historical details which the Pastorals supply about Paul into the sequence of his life as we know it from his acknowledged letters and from Acts.”41 While many critics of Pauline authorship say that there cannot be any reconciliation between what is recorded in Acts and the Pastoral Epistles, and therefore maintain that the historical allusions of the Pastorals are incorrect,42 it is not inconceivable that Paul wrote the epistles. A feasible timeline allowing for Pauline authorship can be established. The Pastorals portray Paul as traveling freely throughout the eastern Roman Empire. He has evangelized Crete with Titus (Titus 1:5) and has visited Ephesus with Timothy with hopes to return there (1 Tim. 1:3; 3:14). He intended to spend the winter in Nicopolis located on the southern Adriatic. Then, in 2 Timothy, he is in prison again in Rome with the expectation of death (2 Tim. 1:8, 16-17; 2:9; 4:6-8, 16-18). However, these events do not fit readily into a reconstruction of Paul’s life based on Acts and his other epistles.43 The traditional solution to the problems that this conflict creates is that Paul was released from the imprisonment of Acts 28 and underwent a second imprisonment in close confinement a few years later.44 Although Hanson maintains that


Hanson, 5.


Donald Guthrie, The Pastoral Epistles: an Introduction and Commentary (Grand Rapids: Eerdmans, 1990), 22. 43

Gordon D. Fee, 1 and 2 Timothy, Titus (Peabody, MA: Hendrickson Publishers, 1988), 3.


Fee, 4.

Pastoral Epistles 16 the majority of scholars today do not hold to a second imprisonment, he admits that it is neither impossible nor implausible.45 Support for a second imprisonment is established by comparing Luke's depiction of the imprisonment of Acts 28 with the conditions described by Paul in 2 Timothy. Luke says that upon his arrival to Rome, “Paul was allowed to stay by himself with the soldier who was guarding him” (Acts 28:16). He closes Acts by saying that Paul “stayed two full years in his own rented quarters and was welcoming all who came to him, preaching the kingdom of God and teaching concerning the Lord Jesus Christ with all openness, unhindered” (Acts 28:30-31). Paul seems to have had considerable freedom during this imprisonment. In 2 Timothy, however, the apostle is awaiting his impending death and has been deserted by most of his fellow workers (2 Tim. 4:6, 16). His request for Timothy to bring his cloak indicates that he is cold and does not have the freedom to purchase what he needs (2 Tim. 4:13). This situation differs greatly from the imprisonment described in Acts 28, and thus, it suggests that Paul did indeed suffer two Roman imprisonments. Many clues that Paul was released from his first imprisonment are also seen throughout the accepted epistles of Paul. Fee argues that the majority of scholars place the writing of Colossians, Philemon and Philippians during the imprisonment of Acts 28, and in those epistles, it is clear that Paul expected to be released and that he planned to go into the province of Asia (Phil. 1:19, 25, 26; 2;24; Phm. 22).46 So, evidence for a release from his first imprisonment is found in Paul's expectation in the Prison Epistles.


Hanson, 6.


Fee, 4.

Pastoral Epistles 17 Furthermore, Festus wrote to Caesar stating that Paul had done nothing to deserve death (Acts 25:25), and according to Agrippa, Paul may have been released before his first Roman imprisonment had he not appealed to Caesar (Acts 26:32). These comments suggest that there is little reason to believe that Paul was executed at the end of his rather relaxed imprisonment.47 On the contrary, readers are given the impression that Paul would be freed. On the basis of a release from Paul's first imprisonment, a viable timeline can be established for the events described in the Pastoral Epistles. According to Fee, Paul, following his release from imprisonment, probably traveled to Crete accompanied by Titus and Timothy. Leaving Titus behind to deal with opposition by Hellenistic Jews and to set things in order, Paul and Timothy decided to make their way to Macedonia. In route, they stopped in Ephesus to find false teachers wreaking havoc among the church. As a result, Paul left Timothy there to clear up the matter and continued on to Macedonia from whence he wrote the letters of 1 Timothy and Titus. He told Timothy to remain at Ephesus (1 Tim. 1:3) while telling Titus to meet him in Nicopolis for the winter (Titus 3:12). Fee thinks that Paul was traveling back to Ephesus when he was taken into custody. This arrest may have resulted from the conflict with Alexander the metalworker (2 Tim. 4:13-15). Paul was then taken to Rome to stand before a tribunal (2 Tim 4:1618). In prison, Paul sent Tychicus to Ephesus with the second letter to Timothy imploring him to come to Rome before winter disrupted the shipping routes on the Mediterranean.48 So, with the assumption of a release and second imprisonment, there is


Knight, 16-17.


Fee, 4-5.

Pastoral Epistles 18 no need to squeeze the events alluded to in the Pastorals into the account given by Luke. Acts is by no means a comprehensive record of the ministry of Paul. Confirmation of Paul's release and second imprisonment is found in the writings of the early church fathers. Eusebius had no problem with the idea of a second imprisonment of Paul. He said: Thus after he had made his defense it is said that the apostle was sent again upon the ministry of preaching, and that upon coming to the same city [Rome] a second time he suffered martyrdom. In this imprisonment he wrote his second epistle to Timothy, in which he mentions his first defense and his impending death.49 Similarly, 1 Clement 5:6, 7 also provides evidence that Paul was released from prison and continued to preach in “the East and the West” possibly taking the gospel to Spain.50 This testimony helps to substantiate the data internal to the Epistles which seems to indicate a second Roman imprisonment. External evidence. The external evidence of the early Christian writers and their discussion of the Pastoral Epistles is another portion of historical evidence that must be considered. The witness of the church fathers testifies to Pauline authorship of the Pastorals. For example, Polycarp is one of the first writers known with certainty to use the Pastorals as a source. He cites 1 Timothy 6:7 and 10 in the fourth chapter of The Epistle of Polycarp to the Philippians: “But the love of money is the root of all evils.” Knowing, therefore, that “as we brought nothing into the world, so we can carry nothing out,” let us arm ourselves


Eusebius, Ecclesiastical History, 2.22.2, translated in Philip Schaff, The Nicene and Post-Nicene Fathers Second Series (Oak Harbor: Logos Research Systems, 1997), 1:124. 50

Clement of Rome, 1 Clement 5:6,7, translated in Alexander Roberts, James Donaldson, and A. Cleveland Coxe, The Ante-Nicene Fathers: Translations of the Writings of the Fathers Down to A.D. 325 (Oak Harbor: Logos Research Systems, 1997), 1:6.

Pastoral Epistles 19 with the armour of righteousness; and let us teach, first of all, ourselves to walk in the commandments of the Lord.51 Irenaeus, Polycarp's disciple, attributes to Paul the letters to Timothy,52 and he introduces his quotation of Titus 3:10, saying “Paul commands.”53 Tertullian also attributes the letter to Paul when he references Titus 3:10-11 in his discussion of heresies: [I]t is the same Paul who, in his Epistle to the Galatians, counts “heresies” among “the sins of the flesh,” who also intimates to Titus, that “a man who is a heretic” must be “rejected after the first admonition,” on the ground that “he that is such is perverted, and committeth sin, as a self-condemned man.”54 Furthermore, in the preface to “Book I” of The Stromata, Clement of Alexandria cites 2 Timothy 2:1-2 and 2:15: “Thou, therefore, be strong,” says Paul, “in the grace that is in Christ Jesus. And the things which thou hast heard of me among many witnesses, the same commit thou to faithful men, who shall be able to teach others also.” And again: “Study to show thyself approved unto God, a workman that needeth not to be ashamed, rightly dividing the word of truth.” (emphasis added)55 The list of church fathers who accepted the letters as genuine is extensive. Guthrie says that there are “allusions to these letters in Justin Martyr, Heracleon, Hegesippus, Athenagoras, Theophilus and Irenaeus, which show that they were widely known, while 51

Polycarp, The Epistle of Polycarp to the Philippians, translated in Alexander Roberts, James Donaldson, and A. Cleveland Coxe, The Ante-Nicene Fathers: Translations of the Writings of the Fathers Down to A.D. 325 (Oak Harbor: Logos Research Systems, 1997), 1:34. 52

Irenaeus, Against Heresies, 3.3.3, translated in Alexander Roberts, James Donaldson, and A. Cleveland Coxe, The Ante-Nicene Fathers: Translations of the Writings of the Fathers Down to A.D. 325 (Oak Harbor: Logos Research Systems, 1997), 1:416. 53

Irenaeus, Against Heresies, 1.16.3, translated in Alexander Roberts, James Donaldson, and A. Cleveland Coxe, The Ante-Nicene Fathers: Translations of the Writings of the Fathers Down to A.D. 325 (Oak Harbor: Logos Research Systems, 1997), 1:342. 54

Tertullian, The Prescription Against Heretics, 6, translated in Alexander Roberts, James Donaldson, and A. Cleveland Coxe, The Ante-Nicene Fathers: Translations of the Writings of the Fathers Down to A.D. 325 (Oak Harbor: Logos Research Systems, 1997), 3:245. 55

Clement of Alexandria, The Stromata, “Book 1”, translated in Alexander Roberts, James Donaldson, and A. Cleveland Coxe, eds., The Ante-Nicene Fathers: Translations of the Writings of the Fathers Down to A.D. 325 (Oak Harbor: Logos Research Systems, 1997), 2:299.

Pastoral Epistles 20 Theophilus definitely believed them to be inspired.”56 The Pastoral Epistles are also quoted in the works of Clement of Rome (A.D. 95) and Ignatius of Antioch (A.D. 112).57 Overall, the number of references to these epistles during the second-century totals around 450.58 The external evidence for Pauline authorship and the authenticity of the letters is overwhelming. However, there were a few individuals of the second century who did reject the canonicity of the Pastoral Epistles. Two such personalities were Marcion and Tatian, but both of these men were considered to be heretics.59 Their rejection of the letters was based on doctrinal disagreements, not authorship, and others who were unwilling to accept the Pastoral Epistles did so in a similar vein.60 In the case of Marcion, the rejection of the letters was not built upon a critical basis. As he put together his canon of Scripture, he only accepted pieces of Luke and certain letters of Paul while rejecting others “not because he doubted their authenticity, but because he disliked their content.”61 The stance of the letters on combating heresy and their view on the proper use of the Old Testament did not cohere with Marcion's own opinions.62 It is interesting to note that Tertullian marveled at Marcion's rejection of the epistles, and the fact that Tertullian


Guthrie, 19.


Plummer, 5-6.


Collins, 2.


Plummer, 4.


Plummer, 5.




Guthrie, 20.

Pastoral Epistles 21 questioned Marcion's judgment indicates the letters were generally accepted as authentic.63 By the end of the second century, the Pastoral Epistles were firmly established as Scripture, and no one questioned their authenticity until the nineteenth century.64 Eusebius declared that they were universally received in ancient Christianity saying that “Paul's fourteen epistles are well-known and undisputed,”65 and Guthrie maintains that “there are no grounds for holding that the early church had any doubts about the authenticity of these Epistles.”66 They are found in the Peshitta, the Syriac Version compiled in the second century, and in the Muratorian canon which is dated A.D. 170 at the latest.67 The compiler of the Muratorian Canon notes that the “two letters to Timothy and the letter to Titus are valuable in matters of ecclesiastical discipline.”68 There is just as much evidence in the church fathers for the authenticity of the Pastoral Epistles as there is for the other epistles of Paul.69 Thus, the internal evidence of the letters and other portions of Scripture as well as the external witness of the church fathers give no reason to doubt Pauline authorship.


Plummer, 5.


Fee, 23.


Eusebius, Ecclesiastical History, 3.3.5, translated in Philip Schaff, 1:134. Eusebius does include the Epistle to the Hebrews as the fourteenth epistle of Paul, but goes on to note that some had rejected Pauline authorship of that letter. 66

Guthrie, 18.


Plummer, 6.


Guthrie, 19.


Fairbairn, 3.

Pastoral Epistles 22 Issues of Theological Content The author's discussion of ecclesiology. Another major cause for debate over the authorship of the Pastoral Epistles involves the theological content discussed in the letters. One of the issues brought up by critical scholars is the references to ecclesiology in the epistles. Guthrie explains that disputants of Pauline authorship believe that the church organization mentioned in the Pastoral Epistles is very much like that of the second century, and thus, it is far too advanced for the letters to have been written in the lifetime of Paul.70 According to Hanson, the churches addressed in the Pastorals already have a “clearly established clergy” of elders and deacons. He also cites I Timothy 3:1-13 and Titus 1:5-9 as signs of monepiscopy in the church.71 This is the idea of a hierarchical structure in which one bishop (1 Tim. 3:1-2, Tit. 1:7) oversees a group of elders (Tit. 1:5).72 It is argued that because such “structure” did not exist in Paul's day, the Pastorals could not have been written by Paul.73 Those holding to the traditional view maintain that there is nothing in the ecclesiology of the Pastorals that demands a date after Paul's life.74 The verses cited by Hanson as signs of monepiscopy necessitate no such thing. They are simply passages in which Paul lists the character requirements for individuals who desire to have offices in the church, offices which are clearly established by the time of Paul. The offices


Guthrie, 32.


Hanson, 4.


William Hendriksen, “Pastoral Letters,” J. D. Douglas and Merrill C. Tenney, eds., New International Bible Dictionary, rev. ed. (Grand Rapids: Zondervan, 1987), 754. 73

Hanson, 4.


Guthrie, 33.

Pastoral Epistles 23 discussed in the Pastorals are those of overseer, elder, and deacon (1 Tim. 3:1-13; Titus 1:5-7). In the passage in Titus the terms “overseer” and “elder” are interchangeable, and the term “overseer” or “bishop” is not used in the second century “sense of a monarchical episcopate.”75 In the letter to the Philippians, Paul addresses the saints of the church “together with the overseers and deacons” (1:1). How could Paul have mentioned such officials if they were not contemporaneous with Paul? In addition, there are occasions in the New Testament where Paul is described as appointing and interacting with overseers and elders in various churches (Acts 14:23; 20:28). Guthrie says that the apostles “recognized the need for the elder system at the very beginning of the Gentile mission.”76 Furthermore, Oden argues that as time progressed and the churches grew, there would be a greater need for organization in the body. Paul understood that need and wrote the Pastorals to address the issue.77 In light of the evidence of an already existing church structure during the life of Paul, the argument from ecclesiology against Pauline authorship is found to be baseless. The author's discussion of heresies. A second issue concerning the theological content of the letter deals with the heresy discussed by the author of the Pastoral Epistles. The nature and time period of the heresy are the subjects of much debate in determining the date of the letters. Those who do not hold to Pauline authorship label the heresy mentioned in the epistles as fully developed Gnosticism. The Gnostic system of thought,


Guthrie, 32.


Ibid., 34.


Oden, 12-13.

Pastoral Epistles 24 which existed in various forms, was characterized by radical dualism between the physical and spiritual world. According to this dualism, the material creation was created against the will of God, and matter is thus evil and opposed by the transcendent, good God.78 According to Hanson, the heresy addressed is from a period of time after Paul.79 Similar critics say that the allusions to heresy are a Marcionite or Valentinian type of Gnosticism. If so, these occurred in the second century, and the Pastorals were written during this time or later.80 However, scholars who hold to the traditional view of Pauline authorship cite evidence that the heresy was actually influenced by Judaism and an incipient form of Gnosticism. While the passages of the letters deal with some Gnostic and ascetic ideas concerning the evils of the flesh, such concepts were not unknown to the people of Paul's day.81 As seen in 1 Timothy 4:1-3, the false teachers were forbidding people to marry and telling them to abstain from certain foods. During the apostolic age, certain theosophists thought that purity was obtained through fasting and the renunciation of fleshly relations. This asceticism as a basis for Gnosticism is known to have existed for many decades in Egypt and Judea during the time of the apostles.82 In reference to the “fables and endless genealogies” (1 Tim. 1:4), “Jewish fables and commandments of men” (Titus 1:14), and “foolish questions and genealogies, and strifes and disputations


Edwin Yamauchi, Pre-Christian Gnosticism: A Survey of the Proposed Evidences, 2nd ed. (Grand Rapids: Baker Book House, 1983), 14-15. 79

Hanson, 5.


Fairbairn, 6.


Yamauchi, 50.


Fairbairn, 7.

Pastoral Epistles 25 about the law” (Titus 3:9), Baur says these are the Gnostic teaching of Valentinus and his system of aeons.83 However, while Irenaeus does preface his discussion of Valentinian Gnosticism with a reference to the “endless genealogies” mentioned in Timothy, these are a mere application of the Scripture which he attributes to the apostle Paul.84 It should also be noted that the heresies discussed in the Pastorals are distinctly Jewish in nature. In Titus 3:9, the author refers to disagreements about the law, and in 1 Timothy, he says that the proponents of the heresy are professing to be teachers of the law. This emphasis demonstrates that the heresies were influenced in a large part by Judaism. Moreover, in Titus 1:14, the author explicitly calls the fables “Jewish.”85 Thus, they would have been contemporaneous with the lifetime of Paul. This leads Fairbairn to the following conclusion: Had a desire to meet the rising indications of Gnosticism tempted someone to enter the field under false colours, the object would have appeared far more prominent than it actually does, and the epistles would not have presented either the varied or the earnest character which belongs to them.86 With the evidence that the heresies involved a distinctive Jewish characteristic, the argument against Pauline authorship based on the nature of the heresy discussed in the Pastorals fails. The theological issues of ecclesiology and heresy found in the Pastoral Epistles tend to affirm rather than contradict Pauline authorship.


Fairbairn, 8.


Ibid., 9.




Ibid., 19.

Pastoral Epistles 26 Issues of Diction and Literary Style The author’s use of vocabulary. A third line of evidence involved in the debate of the authorship of the Pastoral Epistles deals with the analysis of their diction and literary style. Over the past two centuries, it is these critiques that have prompted many scholars to abandon Pauline authorship. The arguments based on diction will be considered first. Through analysis of the text of letters, scholars noticed that the vocabulary differs greatly from the undisputed letters of Paul. Fee notes that this vocabulary seems to be closely related to Hellenistic ideas. For example, eujsebeia (godliness) describes the Christian Faith, and ejpefaneia (appearance) is used for the coming of Christ instead of parousia. The gospel is referred to as “sound teaching” (uJgiainoush didaskalia). Instead of Jesus, God is named as “Savior,” and swfrwn (sound-mindedness) is mentioned as an important virtue. These are all words that one would readily expect from Hellenistic philosophy of the second century but not necessarily from Paul based on his previous letters.87 Collins says that about one third of the 850 words in the Pastorals do not occur in the seven undisputed letters of Paul, but much of this vocabulary appears in Hellenistic writings of the late first and early second-century.88 This leads him to believe that the letters were written at this time. Another problem is that Paul’s profound theological vocabulary is missing or used differently in the three epistles. For example, “righteousness” is used as the virtue of uprightness but does not occur in the sense of right-standing with God.89 Terms


Fee, 24.


Collins, 2.


Fee, 24.

Pastoral Epistles 27 important to Pauline thought such as “body” and “Lord” are missing, and the “in Christ” formula is used with a theological connotation unusual to Paul. According to Collins, the apostle typically uses the formula in a mystical sense to signify a believer's union with Christ while in the Pastorals it is used as an adjective to mean “Christian.”90 Thus, critics say that because the phrase “in Christ’ is rarely used in the mystical sense in the epistles to Timothy and Titus, Paul could not have written them. Such an observation is open to interpretation, however, and Mounce concludes that the formula does occur in this mystical sense (1 Tim. 1:14; 2 Tim. 1:9).91 The critiques involved in this type of argumentation are weighty and must be dealt with, but first, one more argument against Pauline authorship concerning vocabulary will be examined. Most scholars who challenge the authorship of Paul do this on the basis of the numerous hapax legomena and statistical analyses of the vocabulary in the epistles. There are some 176 hapax legomena found in the Pastorals as well as 130 additional words not found in Paul's undisputed works.92 It is reasoned that because this vocabulary is so different from Paul's known writings, he could not have written the letters. However, those who hold to the traditional view say that this is not necessarily the case. One of the main opponents to Pauline authorship, Percy Harrison, acknowledges that there are fewer than twenty words used in the Pastorals that were not used widely among writers before A.D. 90.93 In addition, about 80 of the 176 hapax legomena used in


Collins, 3.


William D. Mounce, Pastoral Epistles, Word Biblical Commentary (Nashville: T. Nelson, 2000), xcii. 92


Ibid., xcix.

Percy N. Harrison, “Important Hypotheses Reconsidered: III. The Authorship of the Pastoral Epistles,” Expository Times 67 (1955): 79.

Pastoral Epistles 28 the Pastorals are found in the Septuagint.94 These two facts demonstrate there is no reason to say that the words employed in the epistles were not part of Paul's vocabulary. Moreover, upon the comparison of the calculation of the percentage of hapax legomena per book for each of the books written by Paul and that of the Pastorals, one finds that the numbers for 2 Timothy and Titus are very close to that of Romans.95 This evidence does a great deal of damage to the theory that the epistles must have been written in the second century on the basis of vocabulary. The discrepancy in vocabulary between the Pastorals and acknowledged Pauline letters can be accounted for when one considers the different occasions and purposes for the writing of the letters. Bird points out that “the hapax legomena tend to be words that are determined by subject matter and under the conscious control of the writer.”96 Mounce's analysis of all the hapax legomena in the Pastorals Epistles confirms this proposition and demonstrates that the unique words are easily accounted for by the historical situations involved.97 Furthermore, the use of the hapax legomena and the differing connotations of Pauline words must be considered in light of the recipients of the letters. They are the only letters of Paul addressed to his colleagues. As such, Paul only needed to allude to general concepts that Timothy and Titus would already understand.98 There was no need for him to rehash the basic doctrines of the Christian


Oden, 13.


Knight, 39-40.


Anthony E. Bird, “The Authorship of the Pastoral Epistles - Quantifying Literary Style,” Reformed Theological Review 56 (September-December 1997): 131. 97


Mounce, cxvi.

B. B. Edwards, “The Genuineness of the Pastoral Epistles,” Bibliotheca Sacra 150 (April-June 1993): 139.

Pastoral Epistles 29 faith.99 If certain words such as “in Christ” or “faith” are not used as frequently or with the particular emphasis that one might expect, it simply means that Paul did not feel that it was necessary to write to Timothy and Titus in this way.100 Not only were these epistles intended for Timothy and Titus, but they were probably meant to be read to the church as well. There are no other epistles with this dual purpose, and this would have had some impact on the diction employed.101 Additionally, Mounce is correct to point out that the absence of certain vocabulary in different epistles does not mean that these words were not part of the vocabulary of the writer; it simply means that he chose to express himself in different ways in different circumstances.102 The author's literary style. Another basis for disagreement over the authorship of the Pastoral Epistles is the style in which they were written. Friedrich Schleiermacher was the first to dispute Pauline authorship of I Timothy in 1807. He did so on stylistic and linguistic grounds.103 Eichhorn, another German scholar, was the first to raise doubts about 2 Timothy and Titus,104 and scores of others soon followed suit throughout the nineteenth and twentieth centuries.105


Oden, 13.


Mounce, xcii.


Hanson, 6.


Mounce, c.


Friedrich Schleiermacher, Über den sogenannten ersten Brief des Paulus an den Timotheos (Berlin: Sendschreiben and J. C. Gass, 1807), cited by Donald Guthrie, The Pastoral Epistles: an Introduction and Commentary (Grand Rapids: Eerdmans, 1990), 21. 104

J. G. Eichhorn, Historisch-krstische Einleitung in das Neue Testament (Leipzig: Weidmannischen Buchhandlung, 1812), cited by William D. Mounce, Pastoral Epistles, Word Biblical Commentary (Nashville: T. Nelson, 2000), lxxxiv. 105

Guthrie, 21.

Pastoral Epistles 30 While Fee maintains Pauline authorship, he does acknowledge that the style of these letters is different from that of the accepted writings of Paul. They vary in the “use of particles [conjunctions], prepositions, and pronouns, or the use/non-use of the definite article.”106 Later, he says, “By and large, the letters have a more monotonous style, lacking the vigor, the tumbling forth of ideas that characterize Paul.”107 Dornier says, “The style of the moralist has taken the place of the style of the prophet.”108 Despite these difficulties, Knight maintains that a syntactical analysis of the variation in the use of particles within the Pastoral Epistles compares favorably to the variation found in the other epistles of Paul. Thus, there is no reason to exclude the Pastoral Epistles from the Pauline corpus on stylistic grounds. 109 As with the vocabulary, the difference in style between the letters and other Pauline epistles can be accounted for by a consideration of the circumstances surrounding their composition. Like most of Paul's epistles, the Pastorals are ad hoc letters written for specific purposes in order to address certain historical situations.110 Since the situations addressed in the letters vary greatly from those discussed in other Pauline writings, one would naturally expect Paul to use a different vocabulary and style. Unlike Paul's other writings, these epistles were written to Paul's colleagues to instruct them on leadership as


Fee, 24.


Fee, 24.


P. Dornier, Les Épîtres Pastorales, Sources Bibliques (Paris: Gabalda, 1969), quoted in Anthony T. Hanson, The Pastoral Epistles: based on the Revised Standard Version (Grand Rapids: Wm. B. Eerdmans Publishing Company, 1982), 4. 109

Knight, 45.


Mounce, xlvii.

Pastoral Epistles 31 well as how to establish leadership within the churches at Ephesus and Crete (1 Tim. 1:14; Tit. 1:5-9; 2 Tim. 2:2). No other Pauline letters address church leadership in this way. In addition, the less organized form of the letters, especially those to Timothy, compared to the more formal compactness of Paul's other writings, demonstrates the effect that purpose has on writing style. In the Pastorals, Paul is writing to his close friends and addressing matters that would have been discussed among them regularly. Thus, there is no need for a highly organized presentation with smooth, flowing transitions. These are natural outcomes of the circumstances surrounding the letters.111 Furthermore, because Paul writes to his dear friends, the Pastorals are more personal in style. He includes many details that would be expected in a personal letter such as references to shared experiences. Paul's emotions are also clearly seen throughout the epistles, especially his love and concern for Timothy and Titus (1 Tim. 1:2, 5:23; Tit. 1:4; 2 Tim. 1:3-5, 4:9-22). These things are an integral part of the text and have a great influence on the style used. Mounce adds that it is difficult to see why a pseudepigrapher would have included such personal references.112 This personal style of the letters suggests that they are in fact genuine epistles of Paul. It is necessary to address several other problems with the rejection of Pauline authorship on literary grounds. First, it is generally accepted that the writing style of many authors changes throughout their lifetime; a more mature elderly man does not write the same he did earlier in his life.113 This accounts for many of the variations of


Fairbairn, 17.


Mounce, lxxxii.


Ibid., xciv.

Pastoral Epistles 32 Pastoral Epistles. While Marshall concedes that old age may slightly alter writing style, he maintains it “does not lead to a significant shift in the way in which [people] express themselves.”114 Similarly, Hanson believes that old age cannot account for the differences in the language of the Pastorals. He says, “If much is made of the alteration which old age brings, we must reply that if Paul wrote the Pastorals he must have been afflicted with approaching senility.”115 However, this does not have to be the case. There are many modern illustrations in which an author's style varies throughout his lifetime. The compositions of C. S. Lewis are one example of this phenomenon. If one were to compare his Chronicles of Narnia or The Allegory of Love to his apologetic works, one could conclude that the works were so different that they could not have possibly been written by the same author. 116 The work of Shakespeare is another example. There are a number of instances in which language common in one play is altogether absent in another. Shakespeare's plays demonstrate a wide variety of “unique words.”117 Furthermore, the differences in his use of various rare words in his plays can be mapped throughout the course of his life, and this information is compared to certain groups of sonnets in order to establish a date for them.118


Marshall, 64.


Hanson, 5.


Mounce, cxiv.


Mounce, cxiv.


M. P. Jackson, “Vocabulary and Chronology: the case of Shakespeare's Sonnets,” Review of English Studies 52 (February 2001): 59-60.

Pastoral Epistles 33 Similar instances occur with Schiller, Goethe, and Tennyson. Each of these authors underwent a major stylistic and lexical change throughout their lives, but no one questions the authenticity of their work. 119 Why are the writings of Paul subjected to a different standard? One has to acknowledge and allow for the variability of style as an author gains age and experience and as he writes with different objectives throughout the course of his lifetime. Although there are many differences in style between the Pastoral Epistles and the undisputed writings of Paul, many similarities do exist. For example, the salutations of the Pastorals follow the pattern found in his other compositions. The author begins by introducing himself as an apostle chosen by God (cf. Rom. 1:1; 1 Cor. 1:1). Then, after addressing the recipients, he extends a blessing of “grace and peace” as he does in all of his other letters. There is one slight variation in 1 and 2 Timothy, where Paul adds “mercy” to this blessing, but it is unlikely that someone who was merely imitating Paul's style would have added another term to the well established formula. There are also many other characteristics of Pauline style found in the Pastorals. Simpson points out Paul’s fondness of enumerations, especially in regard to moral issues.120 Examples of this are seen in I Timothy as the writer describes those for whom the law was made (1:9-10) as well as the description of evil men in the last days found in 2 Timothy 3:1-5 (cf. Rom. 1:29-30). Also evident in the Pastorals is Paul’s tendency to burst into doxology (1 Tim. 1:17; Rom. 11:36).121 Furthermore, as Paul often does, the 119

Oden, 14.


E. K. Simpson, “The Authenticity and Authorship of the Pastoral Epistles,” The Evangelical Quarterly 12 (October 1940): 308. 121

Hendriksen, 753.

Pastoral Epistles 34 author includes many maxims and compound words. The Pastorals contain Hebraisms, metaphors, and wordplay, all of which are important features found in the writings of Paul (1 Tim 6:5-6; 2 Tim. 2:9; 3:4, 17).122 In addition, the author closes each of the epistles with the “grace be with you” formula that is characteristic of all of Paul's letters. The shortened version of the formula found in these letters appears first in Paul's letter to the Colossians.123 As a result of the many similarities between the Pastorals and the undisputed letters of Paul, it is not unreasonable to conclude that Paul wrote the letters to Timothy and Titus. Any differences between the Pastorals and the acknowledged Pauline corpus can be accounted for by the different recipients and subject matter, as well as the different circumstances of Paul. Paul is a much older man by the time he writes the Pastorals, and he has also spent a considerable amount of time in Roman and Greek cultures during his missionary journeys and Roman imprisonment. These experiences may have resulted in his use of Hellenistic vocabulary as well as Latin and Greek idioms124 and generated the differences seen in the Pastorals. Thus, while the variations of style and vocabulary do pose a problem for the view of Pauline authorship, they are not beyond valid explanation. Conclusion Having investigated the arguments for and against Pauline authorship of the Pastoral Epistles, several conclusions can be made. First, theories of pseudonymity create more problems than they solve and are not viable solutions for the problem of authorship. A pseudonymous writing is inherently deceptive and cannot be considered 122

Oden, 14.


Knight, 5-6.


Oden, 14.

Pastoral Epistles 35 authoritative. Second, in regard to the historical evidence, the information within the epistles does not have to be forced into the timeline of the book of Acts. Paul’s release from his first Roman imprisonment and then a second arrest is entirely plausible. Furthermore, the numerous internal references to various historical circumstances only strengthen the case for authenticity while the external witness of the church fathers is overwhelmingly in favor of Pauline authorship. Third, the conclusion that Paul wrote the letters is not undermined by their theological content. The ecclesiology found in the letters does not conflict with church structure evident in Acts and the other epistles of the New Testament. Also, the heresy addressed in the letters is Jewish in nature and contemporaneous to the time of Paul. Finally, the differing vocabulary and literary style of the Pastoral Epistles and the undisputed Pauline corpus can be accounted for by the various circumstances and purposes surrounding the Pastorals’ composition. The use of hapax legomena is dictated by the content of the letters, and statistical studies have demonstrated that the percentage of hapax legomena in the Pastoral Epistles is comparable to that of other Pauline writings. Moreover, the literary style of the Pastorals exhibits many similarities to the undisputed writings of the apostle. Thus, while the view of Pauline authorship is not without difficulties, readers have every reason to believe that the epistles to Timothy and Titus are, in fact, genuine writings of the apostle Paul and authoritative for the church today.

Pastoral Epistles 36 Bibliography Baur, F. C. Die sogenannten Pastoralbriefe des Apostels Paulus. Stuttgart: Cotta, 1835. Quoted in Alfred Plummer, The Pastoral Epistles. London: Hodder and Stoughton, 1894. Bird, Anthony E. “The Authorship of the Pastoral Epistles - Quantifying Literary Style.” Reformed Theological Review 56 (September-December 1997): 118-137. Clement of Alexandria. The Stromata. Translated in Alexander Roberts, James Donaldson, and A. Cleveland Coxe, The Ante-Nicene Fathers: Translations of the Writings of the Fathers Down to A.D. 325. Vol. 2. Oak Harbor: Logos Research Systems, 1997. Clement of Rome. 1 Clement. Translated in Alexander Roberts, James Donaldson, and A. Cleveland Coxe, The Ante-Nicene Fathers: Translations of the Writings of the Fathers Down to A.D. 325. Vol. 1. Oak Harbor: Logos Research Systems, 1997. Collins, Raymond F. I & II Timothy and Titus. The New Testament Library. Louisville: Westminster John Knox Press, 2002. Davidson, Samuel. An Introduction to the Study of the New Testament. Vol. 4. London: Longmans, Green and Company, 1868. Dockery, D. S. The Doctrine of the Bible. Nashville: Convention Press, 1991. Dornier, P. Les Épîtres Pastorales. Sources Bibliques. Paris: Gabalda, 1969. Quoted in Anthony T. Hanson, The Pastoral Epistles: based on the Revised Standard Version. Grand Rapids: Wm. B. Eerdmans Publishing Company, 1982. Edwards, B. B. “The Genuineness of the Pastoral Epistles.” Bibliotheca Sacra 150 (April-June 1993): 131-139. Eichhorn, J. G. Historisch-krstische Einleitung in das Neue Testament. Leipzig: Weidmannischen Buchhandlung, 1812. Cited by William D. Mounce, Pastoral Epistles, Word Biblical Commentary. Nashville: T. Nelson, 2000. Eusebius. Ecclesiastical History. Translated in Philip Schaff. The Nicene and PostNicene Fathers Second Series. Vol. 1. Oak Harbor: Logos Research Systems, 1997. Fairbairn, Patrick. Pastoral Epistles. Minneapolis: James & Klock, 1976. Fee, Gordon D. 1 and 2 Timothy, Titus. Peabody: Hendrickson Publishers, 1988.

Pastoral Epistles 37 Guthrie, Donald. The Pastoral Epistles: An Introduction and Commentary. Grand Rapids: Eerdmans, 1990. Hanson, Anthony T. The Pastoral Epistles: based on the Revised Standard Version. Grand Rapids: Wm. B. Eerdmans Publishing Company, 1982. Harrison, Percy. N. “Important Hypotheses Reconsidered: III. The Authorship of the Pastoral Epistles.” Expository Times 67 (1955): 77–81. Hendriksen, William. “Pastoral Letters.” Douglas, J. D. and Merrill C. Tenney, eds., New International Bible Dictionary, rev. ed. Grand Rapids: Zondervan, 1987. Irenaeus. Against Heresies. Translated in Alexander Roberts, James Donaldson, and A. Cleveland Coxe, The Ante-Nicene Fathers: Translations of the Writings of the Fathers Down to A.D. 325. Vol. 1. Oak Harbor: Logos Research Systems, 1997. Jackson, M. P. “Vocabulary and Chronology: the case of Shakespeare's Sonnets.” Review of English Studies 52 (February 2001): 59-75. Knight, George W. The Pastoral Epistles: A Commentary on the Greek Text. New International Greek Testament Commentary. Grand Rapids: Wm. B. Eerdmans Publishing Company, 1992. Lea, Thomas D. and Hayne Griffin. 1, 2 Timothy, Titus. The New American Commentary V. 34. Nashville: Broadman & Holman Publishers, 1992. Marshall, I. H. The Pastoral Epistles. The International Critical Commentary. London: T&T Clark LTD, 1999. Meade, David G. Pseudonymity and Canon: an Investigation into the Relationship of Authorship and Authority in Jewish and Earliest Christian Tradition. Grand Rapids: Wm. B. Eerdmans Publishing Company, 1986. Mounce, William D. Pastoral Epistles. Word Biblical Commentary. Nashville: T. Nelson, 2000. Oden, Thomas C. First and Second Timothry and Titus. Interpretation. Louisville: John Knox Press, 1989. Packer, J. I. Fundamentalism and the Word of God. Grand Rapids: Wm. B. Eerdmans Publishing Company, 1958. Plummer, Alfred. The Pastoral Epistles. London: Hodder and Stoughton, 1894.

Pastoral Epistles 38 Polycarp. The Epistle of Polycarp to the Philippians. Translated in Alexander Roberts, James Donaldson, and A. Cleveland Coxe, The Ante-Nicene Fathers: Translations of the Writings of the Fathers Down to A.D. 325. Vol. 1. Oak Harbor: Logos Research Systems, 1997. Porter, Stanley E. “Pauline Authorship and the Pastoral Epistles: Implications for Canon.” Bulletin for Biblical Research 5 (1995): 105-123. Schleiermacher, Frierich. Über den sogenannten ersten Brief des Paulus an den Timotheos. Berlin: Sendschreiben and J. C. Gass, 1807. Donald Guthrie, The Pastoral Epistles: an Introduction and Commentary. Grand Rapids: Eerdmans, 1990. Simpson, E. K. “The Authenticity and Authorship of the Pastoral Epistles.” The Evangelical Quarterly 12 (October 1940): 289-311. Tertullian. The Prescription Against Heretics. Translated in Alexander Roberts, James Donaldson, and A. Cleveland Coxe, The Ante-Nicene Fathers: Translations of the Writings of the Fathers Down to A.D. 325. Vol. 3. Oak Harbor: Logos Research Systems, 1997. The International Council on Biblical Inerrancy. The Chicago Statement on Biblical Inerrancy, art. 12 Chicago, 1978. Towner, Phillip H. The Letters to Timothy and Titus. Grand Rapids: Wm. B. Eerdmans Publishing Company, 2006. Wall, Robert W. “Pauline Authorship and the Pastoral Epistles: A Response to S. E. Porter.” Bulletin for Biblical Research 5 (1995): 125-128. Wilder, Terry L. Pseudonymity, the New Testament and Deception: an Inquiry into Intention and Reception. Lanham: University Press of America, 2004. Yamauchi, Edwin. Pre-Christian Gnosticism: A Survey of the Proposed Evidences, 2nd ed. Grand Rapids: Baker Book House, 1983.


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