AN INTRODUCTION TO THE STUDY OF THE NEW TESTAMENT by A H McNeile. Copyright A H McNeile - first published at the University Press, Oxford 1927. 2nd Edition revised by C S C Williams 1953. - This Edition prepared for Katapi in Arial Unicode MS by Paul Ingram 2003.

Chapter VIII - Part 1


HOME | James (pages 201-213) | 1 Peter  (pages 213-224)

THE remaining writings of the New Testament are not, and do not profess to be, the work of St. Paul.
The epistles are of various dates, 1 Peter or Hebrews being possibly the earliest, and 2 Peter the latest.
But they can best be studied according to the prevailing colour of their contents:

James and 1 Peter may be described as ethical, Hebrews as Christological, Jude, 2 Peter, and the Apocalypse (which is clearly intended to be an epistle) as eschatological.


Contents | Authorship | Character of the readers | Literary connexions | Date | Bibliography | Top


The epistle consists, for the most part, of a series of little groups of maxims, and the only analysis that is possible is to distinguish the groups.
Their order does not appear to be determined by any particular plan;
a thought, or even a word, sometimes leads the writer on from one to another.
But the main thread on which many of them are strung is the obvious but important truth that a man's faith, his attitude towards God, is unreal and worthless if it is not effective, if it does not work practically in life.

i. 1.



Trial is useful to test the worth of your faith, and endurance tends to perfectness and wholeness, so that you may be lacking in nothing,


Any one who lacks divine wisdom can obtain it only by single-hearted effort in prayer,


The poor brother can rejoice in the exaltation that divine wisdom gives, and the rich brother ought also to rejoice at the salutary trial of losing his wealth, because endurance of trial leads to moral and spiritual reward.



An examination of the true meaning and nature of trial: a man is tried not by God but from within.
Evil desire, which succeeds in seducing the soul, gives birth to death.
What comes from God is not trial but every good and perfect gift; of His own will He gave birth to us.


Anger, filthiness," malice cannot work the righteousness of God, the salvation of the soul.
That is gained by God's ἔμφυτος λγος - (emphutos logos).


Hearing God's word without doing it does not produce moral results.

vv.26, 27.

Pure religion is not shown by an unbridled tongue, but by charity and chastity.



Religious faith is not sincere if it does not involve a right relationship to the poor, in accordance with the royal law 'Thou shalt love thy neighbour as thyself.
To transgress that command in any respect is to transgress the whole law.


More generally, religious faith is worthless if it is not effective in 'works', the practical conduct of daily life.


No one can be τέλειος - (teleios), much less a teacher of others, if he cannot control his tongue,

vv.13-18; iv.1-6.

To claim heavenly wisdom is boastfulness and lying if you give way to bitter jealousy and factiousness; that is the very reverse of heavenly.
The friendship of the world, which issues in these quarrels and jealousies, is the very reverse of the friendship of God.


An appeal to submit to God in humble repentance,

vv.1, 12.

To speak evil of others is opposed to the law of the divine Judge,

vv.13-17; v.1-6.

Two stern warnings against the proud self-sufficiency of wealthy traders, and against the wantonness of the rich and their exploiting of the poor.



An exhortation to sufferers to exercise unmurmuring patience, both because the Lord is soon coming, and because all trial has a divine purpose (τέλος Κυρου - telos Kuriou).


Swear not.


The value of prayer, and in particular the healing value of the prayer of Church leaders with unction.

vv.19, 20.

The spiritual reward of reclaiming a wanderer from his errors.

In ch. i there are some verbal links, and as far as iv.6 the 'thread' spoken of above is more or less discernible;
but after the appeal in iv.7-10 the advice given is varied and quite miscellaneous.
The epistle thus answers well to Ropes' description [St. James (I.C.C.), p. 3.] of it as an imitation of the diatribe, a homiletic exhortation that passed into popular use from the Cynics.

A. Meyer takes James to be a unit composed of twelve short homilies upon the twelve patriarchs taken in turn (Das Ratsel des Jacobusbriefes, 1930, pp. 179-94).
But according to W. L. Knox [J.T.S. xlvi, 1945, pp. 10-17.] the epistle contains three addresses in diatribe form, ii.1-13 and 14-26 and iv.1-10.
To him the real problem lies in i.2-27 and iii, underlying which he finds a basic document, i. 2-4, 9-i2, 19-20, 26-27, and iii. 13, presenting a coherent line of thought based on the recognized standards of Jewish piety: but the rest of this section he takes to be the work of some Hellenistic commentator, concerned to give a running commentary on the basic document and introducing Hellenistic ideas which frequently are quite out of place and Greek words which are often forced into a doubtful or impossible sense.
The remainder of the later chapters consist of a series of detached moral and religious maxims.
Knox was inclined to suggest that the high authority that the basic text must have possessed may be due to its having been an utterance of James, the Lord's brother while the 'commentator' may have been Ariston of Pella.


The writer names himself James, but we have no means whatever of identifying him.
Tradition ascribes the epistle to the Lord's brother, who was leader of the Church in Jerusalem, whose martyrdom at the hands of the Jews is variously assigned to the reigns of Nero [Joseph. Ant. xx. 9, followed by Jerome, De vir. illustr. 2.] and of Vespasian. [Heges. ap. Eus. H.E, ii. 23.]
During the growth of the canon a book that was not thought to be 'apostolic' had little chance of universal reception.
And the fact that James was the brother of Jude, to whom an epistle was ascribed, might contribute to the growth of the tradition.
But it was, in fact, very slow in attaining to canonical authority.
No writer is known to have attributed it to the Lord's brother before Origen [In Rom. Lommatsch, vi. 286.], and even he frequently quotes him quite loosely as 'the apostle James'.
And Eusebius (loc. cit.) in the fourth century could still say only 'it is said to be by James the Lord's brother'.
The tradition, therefore, rests on a somewhat slender foundation. And considerations can be urged against it:

(1) The lack of early evidence and the slowness with which the epistle was received as canonical are unfavourable to the idea that it was written by the head of the mother-Church of Christendom.

(2) It is difficult to think that a brother of the Lord, who had become a believer in Him, writing certainly before ad 69 some think at a much earlier datecould have written without speaking of His death or resurrection (unless a veiled reference to His death is to be seen in v.6), and have contented himself with naming Him only twice (i. i; ii. i)or only once, if, as is probable, the name in the latter passage is an interpolation.
Although he refers to words of our Lord (see below), he shows little sign, such as we see in i Peter, of His 'personal spell'.
And the moralizings and aphorisms which are the principal feature of the book, while they are natural from the pen of a Judaistic Christian, hardly seem to belong to the age of the Church's first life and inspiration, marked by enthusiasm and charismata.
In particular the gift of healing, which St. Paul says that the Spirit distributed to Christians as He willed (1 Cor..9, ii.28), has become, in this epistle, an official endowment of Church elders (v.14 f.).

(3) The language and style of the whole epistle belong to a stage of literary ability and culture that could hardly be expected from a countryman of Galilee.
The grandsons of Jude the brother of James, in the reign of Domitian, remained simple and hard-handed sons of the soil [Heges. ap. Eus. H.E. iii. 20.], and it is difficult to think that the religious ascetic described by Hegesippus [Ibid. ii. 23.] had so far outstripped the rest of the family, long before, in learning and thought.
The author writes not as a Palestinian but as a Jew of the Dispersion.
He not only knows the LXX, and echoes the Wisdom literature of the Old Testament, but some of his thoughts and language are reminiscent of Alexandria [See N.T. Teaching in the Light of St. Paul's, p. 108.], and his τροχὸς τῆς γενέσεως - trochos tes geneseos (iii.6) is possibly an echo of an Orphic phrase, used as loosely as the word 'Evolution' is today.
His language is idiomatic, and his style shows signs of literary, Hellenistic art.
He even uses a hexameter line, πᾶσα δόσις γαθὴ καὶ πᾶν δώρημα τέλειον - pasa dosis agathe kai pan dorema teleion (i.7), which is probably a quotation from a Hellenistic author known to his readers.
The question is whether the thoughts may have come from James the ascetic of Jerusalem, while the Greek in which they are expressed is the work of another unless we accept Knox's theory.
Wordsworth held that the epistle was a translation from the Aramaic; and Burkitt [Christian Beginnings, pp. 69 f.] revives the theory.
The original, he thinks, was an exhortation to a particular congregation, and the translator has turned it into a general epistle to the twelve tribes of the Dispersion.
He points out that Hegesippus, in relating the martyrdom of St. James, speaks of 'all the tribes' coming to the Feast of the Passover; and he holds that, if the translator was not Hegesippus himself, he was of the same community in Gentile Aelia Capitolina, and of the same tendencies.
But it is easier to suppose that such a person was the author, not the translator, and that the epistle stood to St. James's teaching in somewhat the same relation that St. Mark's gospel stood to the Aramaic instructions of St. Peter.
If he was the 'interpreter' of St. James, it is easy to understand how the latter's name was adopted by the writer.
Jerome already knew the theory that it was pseudonymous (De vir. ill. 2.].
Moffatt doubts whether it was the name of James the Lord's brother that the writer intended to assume, since 'many indeed are called James', as Jerome says in the same passage; he asks why a pseudonymous Judaistic writer did not 'make more of Paul's opponent'.
But if he was not arguing with St. James's name as a handle, but simply expressing what he felt to be his mind, it was enough for his purpose to state his case in the plain, direct language of an authoritative teacher.
Anyone who knew the early conditions knew that St. James could not have written the epistle in its Greek shape, and yet it gradually acquired 'apostolic' repute.

character of the readers.

'There were rich members as well as poor (i.9-11; ii.15).
There was religiousness together with social snobbery (ii.1-3); a desire to be thought religious, and to be teachers, together with an inability to control the tongue (i.26; iii.1-12; cf. iv.11); and the ambition to be esteemed wise and understanding led to jealousy and a factious spirit (iii.13-16; cf. v.9); and there was not only jealousy but bitter fightings and even murder [Perhaps the word is used metaphorically.] (iv.1, 2), together with worldliness and pride (vv.4-6), filthiness and overflowing of wickedness (i.21).' [A. H. McNeile's N.T. Teaching in the Light of St. Paul's, p. 89.]
If the Christian congregations in any part of the empire answered to the description, an early date for the epistle is scarcely possible.
But how much of this denunciation was the stock-in-trade of a diatribe writer?
Some have thought that it was a Jewish writing with Christian interpolations.
But apart from i.1; ii.1 [In the latter passage the words ἡμῶν ησοῦ Χριστοῦ - (hemon Iesou Christou) are very likely a scribal addition which has made havoc of the syntax.], the reminiscences of sayings of our Lord (see below) cannot be interpolations, and the Christianity of the writer gleams behind his words with a subdued light that no redaction could produce.
A Christian interpolator would almost certainly have added more, and his additions would have been more easily separable from the original. J. H. Moulton [Expositor, 7th series, iv. 44-55.] suggested that James of Jerusalem wrote it for Jews, but in that case it must have been written in Aramaic.
It is difficult, indeed, to think that Christians are directly addressed in the two stern warnings, typical of a moralist, beginning ἄγε νῦν - (age nun), to wealthy traders, and to the wanton rich who oppress the poor (iv.13-17; v.1-6).
But the facts are probably best accounted for by supposing that a Hellenistic Christian wrote for both Jews and Christians.
He wanted to describe for all alike the true principles of Christian morality, his writing being called forth partly by sins to which Jews were especially prone, and partly by the antinomian spirit in Christian circles which grew out of a misunderstanding or perversion of St. Paul's teaching on freedom.
That is very different from the view that he was a Judaizer who deliberately attacked that teaching.
But there was nothing in the epistle from which a good-minded Jew could not derive pleasure and profit.
And several of his words and phrases whether deliberately chosen for the purpose or notare in fact capable of either a Jewish or a Christian interpretation;
e.g. 'The twelve tribes that are in the Dispersion' (i.1) would be understood literally by Jews, metaphorically by Christians.
'The Lord' could refer either to Yahweh or to Christ (i.7; iv.10, 15; v.7, 8, 10, 11, 14, 15; in iii.9; v.4, it refers to Yahweh only).
Our 'begetting' by God with the word of truth, that we might be, so to speak, a first fruit of His creatures (i.18) might be either the first creation (cf. the allusion in iii.9 to Gen.i.27) or the second, spiritual, Christian creation.
'The perfect law, the law of liberty' (i.25; cf. Ps.cxix.45), 'the royal law according to the scriptural passage, Thou shalt love thy neighbour as thyself (ii.8), is the moral law thought of either as contained in the Pentateuch or as fulfilled by Christ.
'The honourable Name which was called upon you' (ii.7) is in keeping with the Hebrew thought that Yahweh's Name was 'called upon' the nation, and on those who spiritually attached themselves to it (Amos ix.12 [Quoted in the speech of St. James as given in Acts xv.17.];, &c.), while Christians would think of the Name called upon them at their Baptism when they were incorporated in the New Israel.
'The elders of the ecclesia' (v.14) may, perhaps, be intended to refer only to Christian elders; but that cannot be gathered from the expression itself.
The word ecclesia, used in the LXX of the nation of Israel as a sacred assemblage, occurs in the same sense in Acts vii. 38, and it was not felt to be incongruous as placed in the mouth of our Lord (Matt.xviii.17), a Jew speaking to Jews. συναγωγή - (synagoge) (ii.2) could naturally be read by Jews as meaning 'synagogue', if the word denotes a building; and it is found in early days used of a Christian church [Encycl. Bibl. 4833.].
But it probably means simply 'assembly', 'congregation'.
'Brother' (i.9; ii.15; iv.11) is frequent in Deuteronomy (xv.3, 7, 9, &c.), and '[my] brethren' (i.2 + 11 times) occurs in Gen.xxix.4 and elsewhere ['My beloved brethren' (i.16, 19; ii.5) has a more Christian sound.].
'The Parousia of the Lord' (v.7 f.) and 'the Judge standeth before the doors' (v.9) are expressions of Jewish no less than Christian eschatology.
'Ye murdered the righteous man' (v.6) refers to the persecution of the poor and pious by the rich and worldlya thought to which Jews had been accustomed for centuries, cf. Wisd.ii. Christians would naturally think of the supreme instance of it, the death of Jesus.
Besides ambiguous language, the author uses the Old Testament, but never in Christian polemic, or as predicting anything fulfilled in the Messiah or in Christianity; the characters to whom he refers Abraham and Rahab (ii.21-25), the prophets and Job (v.11, 11), Elijah (v.17, 18) and all the passages which he quotes or echoes, are only supports and illustrations of his moral teaching and appeal.
'He desires to prove nothing doctrinal, and to "proselytize" no one, but to show that the highest standard of ethics for Jew and for Christian could be one and the same.'
Luther could describe this as a 'right strawy epistle' but only in comparison with other New Testament writings.
Luther's other remark is not so well known.
'It seems that [James] was some good man who obtained some of the words of the Apostles' disciples and put them on paper or perhaps someone else made notes on a sermon of his.
Therefore I cannot put his among the chief books, but I will not ask anyone else not to, for [the epistle] contains many good sayings.'

Literary Connexions

(a) Synoptic Gospels.

Parallels are found in utterances of our Lord; but the number of these has been greatly exaggerated.
Plummer [Expositor's Bible, St. James, 1891, pp. 310 ff.] gives a list of no less than nineteen in parallel columns, and six other references in Matt. i-iv. In most of them, while the moral teaching is akin, the language is quite different; in a few the thought is wholly different though the passages happen to contain some verbal similarities.
The clearest parallel is in v. 12: 'But before all things, my brethren, swear not, neither by heaven (τὸν οὐρανόν - ton ouranon) nor by earth nor by any other oath, but let your Yea be Yea, and your Nay Nay, that ye fall not under judgment.'
Matt.v.34-37: 'But I say unto you not to swear at all, neither by heaven (ἐν τῷ οὐρανῷ - en ro ourano), because it is God's throne, nor by earth, because it is the city of the great King...  But let your speech (λόγος - logos) be Yea, Yea, Nay, Nay; and what is superfluous beyond these is of the evil one.'
The differences forbid a direct literary connexion with Matthew, but the author of our epistle evidently knew the logion in a form in which it was orally current.
And if he knew one he probably knew others: e.g. the contrast of hearing and doing the word, illustrated by a simile (i.22 f. = Matt.vii.24, 26); the poor as heirs of the kingdom (ii.5 =; peacemakers (τοῖς ποιοῦσιν εἰρήνην - tois poiousin eirenen) iii.18 = εἰρηνοποιοί - eirenopoioi Matt.v.9).
And his general attitude towards wealth is similar to that of several sayings recorded in Luke.
'It would look', says Streeter [The Primitive Church, 1929, p. 193.], 'as if the author of James had read Q in the recension known to Luke.'
But the only conclusion to be drawn from these, or any other, parallels is that he was in contact with circles in which sayings of the Lord were becoming common property, and were moulding Christian language.

(b) Acts xv.14-21, 23-29.

Stress has sometimes been laid on the parallels with the speech and letter ascribed to St. James as a sign of identity of authorship. They are as follows:

'Men, brethren, hear me' (v.14) = 'Hear, my beloved brethren' (Jas.ii.5). 'Greeting' (χαίρειν - Chairein) v.23= Jas.i.1.
And the words κρίνειν, ἐπισκέπτεσθαι, and ἐκλέγεσθαι - (krinein, eposteptesthai, and eklegesthai) occur in both, but the force is different in each case.
On the other hand, in v.19 ἐπιστρέφειν - (epistrephein) (act.) is intransitive while in James (v.19, 20) it is transitive. χαίρειν - (Chairein) is the ordinary Greek salutation at the opening of a letter (cf. Acts xi.26), and the other parallels amount to nothing at all.

(c) 1 Cor., Gal., Rom.

In the first two of these epistles Moffatt notes the following parallels: Jas. i. 26 'If anyone think himself to be religious = 1 Cor.iii.18 'If anyone think himself to be wise', ' ... to be anything'.
Jas.ii.5 'Hath not God chosen the poor in the world? = 1 Cor.i.27 'God chose the foolish things of the world'.
Jas.iii.15 'Wisdom that is not from above, but is ψυχική - (psychike) = 1 Cor.ii.14 'The ψυχικὸς νθρωπος - (psychikos anthropos)'.
Jas.iv.4 f. 'Friendship of the world is enmity against God', 'The spirit... yearneth unto envy' == Gal.v.17 'The flesh lusteth against the spirit, and the spirit against the flesh'.
Jas.ii.8-12, the thought of love to one's neighbour as the fulfilment of the law, is found in Gal.v.14; Rom.i.8 f. (But see also Matt.x.37-40.)

In Romans Moffatt's parallels are: Jas. i. 2-4 Rejoice in trials because 'the δοκίμιον - (dokimion] of your faith worketh endurance (ὑπομονήν - hypomonen) = Rom. v. 3-5 Let us boast in afflictions, because 'affliction worketh endurance, and endurance δοκιμήν , and δοκιμή  - (dokimen, and dokime)hope'.
Jas. i. 6 'Let him ask in faith, nothing doubting. (διακρινόμενος - diakrinomenos)' = Rom.iv.20 'He doubted not (οὐ διεκρίθη - ou diekrithe) at the promise through unbelief.
Jas.i.22 'Be ye doers of the word, and not hearers only, deluding your own selves' = Rom.ii.13 'For not the hearers of law are righteous with God, but the doers of law shall be justified'.
Jas.ii.11, the thought that one commandment is as important to keep as another, appears quite differently expressed in Rom.ii.22-25.
Jas.ii.21 'Was not Abraham our father justified by works?' = Rom.iv.1.
Jas.iv.4, 7 'The friendship of the world is enmity against God'. 'Be subject therefore unto God' = Rom.viii.7 'The mind of the flesh is enmity against God, for it is not subject to the law of God'.
Jas.iv.11, to judge one's neighbour is to judge law = Rom.ii.1, to judge one's neighbour is to judge oneself.

Sanday and Headlam [Romans, p. lxxviii.] omit two of these, Jas.ii.11 and iv.4, 7, but add Jas.i.21 'Putting off all filthiness, &c.' = Rom.i.12 'Let us therefore put off the works of darkness'.
Jas.iv.1 'your pleasures which war in your members' = Rom.vii.23 'I see another law in my members warring against the law of my mind'.
And further resemblances are collected by Mayor [James, p. xciii.].
But direct literary indebtedness is hard to prove.
Both writers probably refer to current Jewish discussions, and the author of James very likely found it necessary to utter a warning against an antinomian tendency fostered by a misunderstanding or misrepresentation of St. Paul's teaching on salvation 'apart from works of the law'.
At most, therefore, it is possible to acquiesce in Moffatt's vague phrase that our author 'draws upon the conceptions which Paul had already minted for the primitive Church'.

(d) 1 Peter.

In this case the literary connexion is much clearer. Jas.i.1, the address to those in the Diaspora = 1 Pet.i.1; Jas.i.2 f. τ δοκίμιον ὑμῶν τῆς πίστεως - (to dokimion hymon res pisteos) [i.e. 'what is genuine in your faith' (Hort, / Peter, p. 42). For parallels from the papyri see Moulton and Milligan, Vocabulary of the Gk. Test., s.v. δοκίμιος - (dokimios).] in connexion with πειρασμοί - (peirasmoi) = 1 Pet.i.6 f.; Jas.iii.17 ἀνυπόκριτος - (anupokritos) = 1 Pet.i.22; Jas.i.27 ἄσπιλος - (aspilos) = 1 Pet.i.19; Jas.i.25 παρακπύτειν - (parakuptein) = 1 Pet.i.12; Jas.v.20, the quotation from Prov.x.12 in a peculiar form = 1 Pet.iv.8.
And the following parallels in thought may be noted: Jas.i.18 'He brought us to birth by the word of truth' = 1 Pet.i.23 'begotten again (cf. v.3) ... of the word of the living and abiding God'; Jas.i.21 'putting off all filthiness ... receive the inborn word' = 1 Pet.ii.1 f. 'putting off all wickedness... long for the λογικὸν δολον γάλα - (logikon adolon gala)'; Jas.iv.1 'your pleasures which war in your members' = 1 Pet.ii.11 'your fleshly lusts which war against the soul'; Jas.iii.13 'a good ἀναστροφή - (anastrophe)', 'meekness of wisdom' = 1 Pet.iii.2, 4 'your pure ἀναστροφή  - (anastrophe)', 'a quiet and meek spirit'; Jas.i.12 'he shall receive the crown of life' = 1 Pet.v.4 'ye shall be rewarded with the unfading crown of glory'; Jas.iv.6 f., the quotation from Prov.iii.34, followed by submission to God and resistance to the devil = 1 Pet.v.51., 8; Jas.iv.10 'Humble yourselves before the Lord and He will exalt you' = 1 Pet.v.6 'Humble yourselves therefore under the mighty hand of God that He may exalt you in due season'.

There is very little to indicate on which side the indebtedness lies; but perhaps the scale is turned by the first passage.
It is probable that the general expression 'the twelve tribes that are in the Diaspora' (Jas.i.1) is borrowed from the more specific geographical description in 1 Pet.i.1. 'If direct dependence exists, then 1 Peter is much more likely to be original than James: B. Weiss's arguments [Manual, ii. 106 n.] seem to me far more cogent than those of A. Meyer on the opposite side', says . E. G. Selwyn. [The First Epistle of St. Peter, 1946, p. 463.]


On the assumption that the author was James the Lord's brother [On the different traditions about his date, ad 62 or c. 69, see Schurer, The Jewish People in the Time of Jesus Christ (transl. of fifth edition, 1902), Div. I, vol. ii, pp. 186 f.] an early and a later date have been assigned to the epistle.
Mayor (op. cit.) and others would place it before the Council of Jerusalem (Acts xv), 'as otherwise it must have contained some reference to the question, which was then agitating the Diaspora, as to the admission of Gentiles into the Church', and because St. Paul's epistles are directed against mistakes to which our epistle gave a handle.
The latter is more than doubtful (see above);
and the former can be explained as well by a late date as by an early one.
The same reasoning would place before 'the Council most of the books of the New Testament!
[Judaistic Christianity, pp. 148 f.
He accepts the genuineness of the reference in Jos. Ant. xx. ix. i to the death of James, 'the brother of him who is called Christ', and the date, ad 62, which it implies; and he thinks that the epistle was written not long before, because of the references to persecution in i.2; v.10.]

Parry [A Discussion of the General Epistle of James (1903).],
and others date it c. 62-65, allowing time for the author to have known some of St. Paul's epistles, and accounting for 'the development of the Christian conscience, social and individual' (Parry) which it shows.

If, on the other hand, the author is unknown and sub-apostolic, the terminus ad quern must be supplied by external evidence.
Some have found echoes in Clement Rom., [F. W. Young inclines to the belief that James was indebted to 1 Clement, J.B.L lvii, 1948, pp. 339-45.] ad Corinth., 'Because of faith and hospitality a son was given to him [Abraham] in his old age' (x.7).
'Because of faith and hospitality Rahab the harlot was saved' (.1).
But these are not written in order to balance the teaching of St. Paul and St. James.
Clement only gives a list of examples on which we should 'fix our eyes'.
Enoch was 'found righteous in obedience'.
'Noah, being found faithful, by his ministration preached regeneration unto the world.'
Abraham was 'found faithful in that he rendered obedience to the word of God'.
'Because of hospitality and godliness Lot was saved from Sodom.'

Similarly in ch.xxxi:
'Wherefore was our father Abraham blessed?
Was it not because he wrought righteousness and truth through faith?'
This is only noted as one among the records of the blessings received by the patriarchs, without the least indication of the influence of our epistle.
The reference in xi.3 and Jas.i.8 is to a common source, ?Eldad and Modad;

that in xxx.2 and Jas.iv.6 (1 Pet.v.5) to Prov.iii.34; and that in xlix.5 and Jas.v.20 (1 Pet.iv.8) to Prov.x.12.
Apart from these, the few verbal parallels that can be found are no evidence of literary connexion: they belong to the common language of hortatory moralizings.
The editors of The New Testament in the Apostolic Fathers (1905) do not so much as mention a point of comparison between the two writings.
The earliest author in whose work they find marked traces of our epistle is Hermas, c. ad 130.
They cannot, indeed, place it higher than class C, indicating a low, but not the lowest, degree of probability of the use of the epistle, but they conclude, 'Although the passages which point to dependence on James fail to reach, when taken one by one, a high degree of probability, yet collectively they present a fairly strong case' (p. 113).
E. J. Goodspeed [Introduction to the New Testament, p. 293.], however, concludes that the resemblances between the two are so slight that they are probably due to the common forms of popular preachingthe paraenesis of the day.

If, then, 1 Peter influenced our epistle, and if it influenced the Shepherd of Hermas, the limits of date are c. 67, at the earliest, and 130, and there is no external evidence to reduce the period.
But since the tone of the writer and the character of the readers give the impression of a late rather than an early date, it is hardly safe to place it before the end of the first century.


A. T. Cadoux,

The Thought of St. James, 1944.

G. Kittel,

Zeitschrift f. d. neutest. Wissenschaft, xli, 1942, pp. 71-105.

W. L. Knox,

J. T.S. xlvi, 1945, pp. 10-17.

A. Meyer,

Das Ratsel des Jacobusbriefes, 1930.

R. St. J. Parry,

A discussion of the General Epistle of James, 1903.

G. H. Rendall,

The Epistle of James and Judaic Christianity, 1927.


F.J. A. Hort (1909), J. B. Mayor (and ed., 1897), W. O. E. Oesterley (1910), J. H. Ropes (1916), H. Windisch (and ed., 1930).



Contents | Destination& readers | Literary connexions | Authorship & date | Bibliography | Top


Two threads of thought are intertwined throughout the epistle,
(1) Hopeful endurance under trial, because trial leads to glory and joy.
'The temper inculcated by Peter in view of suffering is not a grey, close-lipped stoicism, but a glow of exultation such as Jesus (Matt.v.11 f.) and Paul (Rom.v.3 f.) had already counselled. Christians can only be patient under their trials by being more than patient' (Moffatt [Introd. Lit. N.T., p. 319, note 2.]).
(2) This 'more than patience' includes holiness and innocence of life.
These two thoughts are combined with a free simplicity, which forbids any formal analysis of the epistle.
Further, the first portion i-ii.10 is coloured throughout by the thoughtnot, as in St. Paul - that Christians have taken the place of a rejected Israel, but that Christians are Israel in the true form for which it was divinely destined.
The following summary will show the alternation of the two thoughts of Christian endurance and Christian conduct.


Opening salutation to Christians in Asia Minor as the true Diaspora.


The glory, which follows trial, is the salvation of Christians as the New Israel, to which they have been begotten anew, and to which the Old Testament pointed.


Live, then, as the New Israel should, whom the blood of Christ the Lamb without blemish has redeemed.


In particular, having been begotten anew, love one another,


And being new born, desire the pure spiritual milk, and grow as a building into union with Christ the Foundation, who was foretold in the Old Testament, as also was your call to be His sacred people,



vv.11, 12

An appeal to show a good manner of life before pagans

vv 13-17

is particularized in the duties of subjects,

vv. 18-25

slaves enduring suffering with Christian patience,








Christian social virtues

vv. 9-17

are to be combined with endurance under suffering,


because Christ gave us the example,

vv. 19-22

and in view of the crisis foreshadowed by the deluge.




For these reasons pagan sins must be avoided,


and Christians must show love and mutual helpfulness; first conclusion.


Suffer in fellowship with Christ with true Christian endurance, and not as a consequence of evil doing,


Appeal to elders in the performance of their office; appeal to younger men and to all Christians to show humility.


Closing moral exhortations in the face of suffering.


Personal details, and conclusion.


destination and readers.

The epistle is addressed to 'elect sojourners of the Dispersion in Pontus, Galatia, Cappadocia, Asia, and Bithynia' (1. i), which means Christians who are the true Israel dispersed in the provinces mentioned.
If it is to be understood from v. 13 that the writer was actually in Babylon, the geographical order of the names is more than surprising.
See Hort, St. Peter, pp. 6, 167 f. [See also Salmon, Introd. N.T., pp. 440 f., and Lightfoot, Clement, ii. 491 f.]
The whole of his valuable chapter (pp. 157-84) on the provinces of Asia Minor should be read.
Following Ewald, he explains that if 'Babylon' means Rome (which became a common precaution when persecution began), the writer could think of the bearer of the epistle as landing at a port in Pontus, travelling through [northern] Galatia, probably via Ancyra its capital, or perhaps Tavium, into Cappadocia, no doubt to its capital Caesarea; then westward along the great Ephesus road into Asia; and finally northward through Bithynia, to take ship either at some Bithynian port or where he had landed in Pontus.
[This explanation is rejected by F. W. Beare, The First Epistle of Peter, 1947, pp. 22 f.]

'In thus following by natural and simple routes the order of provinces which stands in the first sentence of the epistle, Silvanus would be brought into contact with every considerable district north of the Taurus in which there is reason to suppose that Christian communities would be found.'

An alternative theory must not be ruled out as impossible that St. Peter avoided writing to districts in which St. Paul had laboured. If the 'south Galatian' theory of St. Paul's activities (see pp. 143-6) is accepted, and if we may suppose Silvanus to have travelled not by the high road but by some less frequented route from Cappadocia into the northern portion of the province of Asia, then the destination of the epistle was a circuit of districts in the northern half of Asia Minor, all St. Paul's fields of missionary work being omitted.
St. Peter himself had probably not preached in the districts to which he writes; see i. 12.
But in any case there had been plenty of time since St. Paul's work in the south of the peninsula for Christianity to have spread to the north by the work of other missionaries, as that passage shows.
And this in turn might account for the absence of all reference to St. Paula salutation from him if he was alive, or a mention of his martyrdom if he was deadwhich some have found surprising.

That the bulk of the readers were Gentiles is evident. Before conversion they had lived in their 'former lusts in their ignorance' (i.14).
They had been called out of darkness into God's light; they had once been 'not God's people' but were now 'God's people', once 'not pitied' but now 'pitied' (ii.9, 10, adapted from Hos.i.10; ii.23; cf. Rom.ix.25 f.).
Their former manner of life handed down from their ancestors (i.18) was the pagan manner of life.
And this meant 'doing the will of the Gentiles, walking in lasciviousness, lusts, wine-bibbings, revellings, carousings, and abominable idolatries' (iv.3, 4).

literary connexions.

There is clear evidence for the author's dependence on Romans;1 it is drawn out with the use of parallel columns by Sanday and Headlam, Romans, pp. lxxiv ff., to which the reader is referred.
1[J. W. C. Wand challenges this verdict, 'Out of eight passages from Romans in which Sanday and Headlam see a close parallelism with i Peter it is noteworthy that two are Old Testament prophecies... two give lists of common Christian duties... a fifth is semi-liturgical... a sixth depends rather on thought than words... while the remaining two are doubtful...' The General Epistles of St. Peter and St. Jude, 1934, p. 19). On the other hand, it is doubtful whether C. Bigg is right in saying that i Pet. iv. i has no connexion with Rom. vi. 7.]
The connexion with Ephesians, which has been discussed on pp. 170 f., is less striking, but it is difficult to deny it, though Wand does so (ibid.).
After examining the parallels between Colossians, Ephesians, and 1 Peter, C. L. Mitton [J.T.S., n.s. i, 1950, pp. 67-73.] has shown that 'the author of 1 Peter was closely enough acquainted with Ephesians for its phrasing and thought to be from time to time reproduced in his own epistle'.
Connexion with James is clearer; see pp. 210 f. But the relation that has been claimed to exist with 1, 2 Timothy, Titus is very hard to discover.
The passage on the dress and behaviour of women in 1 Pet.iii.1-6 may be compared with that in 1 Tim.ii.9-11 [Cf. Weidinger, Die Haustafein and J. W. C. Wand, op. cit., pp. 3-9.]; and the appeal to presbyters in 1 Pet.v.1-4 with the description of a good ἐπίσκοπος - (episkopos) to guide Titus in his choice of presbyters. Tit.i.5-9.
But these are not enough to prove literary dependence.
[On Hebrews see Moffatt, op. cit., p. 440, cf. E. J. Goodspeed, New Solutions of New Testament Problems, 1927, pp. 110 ff.]

Of uncanonical writers Polycarp certainly, and Clement Rom. possibly, knew our epistle [See The N.T. in the Apost. Fathers, pp. 86-89 and 55-57.].
The use of it by Polycarp is stated by Eusebius, H.E. iv. 14.

authorship and date.

The epistle was therefore written, pace Wand, after Romans and before Ep. Polycarp, i.e. between ad 56-57 and 115. [Or 135 if P. N. Harrison's date for Pol. i-, ad 135, is accepted (Polycarp's Two Epistles to the Philippians, 1936).]
If it was written after Ephesians and before Clement ad Corinth; the period is narrowed to ad 61-63 (or later if Eph. is post-Pauline) to 96.
But within these thirty-five years or so opinions differ among those who accept the Petrine authorship.
There is a general agreement that the early tradition was correct that St. Peter and St. Paul were martyred at Rome.
But it is not certain that they met their death at the same time.
Harnack [Chronologie, pp. 708 ff.] believes it on the strength of Clem.Cor.6: 'To these men [St. Peter and St. Paul] ... was gathered a vast multitude of the elect, who through many indignities and tortures ... became a splendid example among us.'
But the words prove no more than that the two apostles and the vast multitude suffered death in the same persecution.
Lightfoot [Clement, ii. 497 f.] thinks that St. Peter died in the year 64 at the outbreak of the Neronian persecution, St. Paul in 67.
It seems more probable that the dates should be exactly reversed.
Swete [St. Mark, pp. xvii f.] places St. Paul's death as the earlier, and St. Peter's in 70 or even later.
He holds that St. Peter must have written after St. Paul's death because some of the communities to whom he wrote 'were distinctly Pauline churches and had received letters from St. Paul during his imprisonment', that Silvanus, who carried the epistle, was a well-known colleague of St. Paul, and that it contained reminiscences of Romans and Ephesians.
But these considerations do not of themselves require a date later than 67.
To place it, as he does, in the eighth decade, or (Ramsay [The Church in the Roman Empire, pp. 279 ff.]) in 80, is to abandon the theory that St. Peter suffered under Nero, and could be justified only if it were certain that the descriptions of the readers' sufferings implied a systematic persecution such as is not known to have begun in Asia before 70.

The theory that St. Peter was not the author presents difficulties.
(1) An examination of 2 Peter, which was certainly pseudonymous (see p. 246), shows the methods which could be adopted to give colour to the use of his name; 'the apostle is made to speak prophetically of a future age, stress is laid on his qualifications as an eye-witness of Jesus, and an irenical allusion to Paul occurs' (Moffatt [Intr. Lit. NT., p. 335.]).
In 1 Peter there is a marked absence of any such stress on the apostle's claims or qualifications.
Moreover, pseudonymity is a device mostly adopted when a writer has a specific purpose for which he borrows the authority of a greater name; he denounces a heresy, or teaches a particular doctrine or belief, or lays down rules for Church life or organization.
But there is no sign of that in this epistle of grace and hope.
The Tilbingen theory, that it represents an attempt to mediate ironically between the hostile Petrine and Pauline factions in the Church, has been almost universally abandoned.
(2) The name Silvanus was known in Christian tradition only as that of a close companion of St. Paul.
He is not, of course, necessarily the Silas of the Acts; but since it would be natural for the readers of the epistle to identify them; it is one of the last names that a pseudonymous writer would have selected to play the part of amanuensis to St. Peter (v.12).
(3) The order of the geographical names in i.1, which can be explained, as shown above, if the bearer of the epistle was to carry it to definite districts on a circular route beginning and ending with Pontus, is almost inexplicable if the writing is an open letter to the Church at large.

It may be added that there are slight but important indications that the author was a disciple of the Lord.
If there is a marked absence of any stress on the apostle's claims and qualifications, yet hints are not wanting.
[Not much weight can be attached to the words 'whom not having seen ye love' (i.8), as though they distinguish the readers from the writer who had seen Jesus Christ.
With the exception of i.3 (ἡ
μῶν, ἡμᾶς - hemon, hemas) and iv.17 (ἀφ᾽ μῶν - aph hemon) the second person plural is used throughout the epistle.]
In the same sentence in which he joins himself modestly with the elders as their 'fellow-elder', he claims to be a 'witness (μάρτυς - martus) of the sufferings of Christ, and a partaker in the glory that is about to be revealed'.
Christ's sufferings and resurrection and exaltation (cf. i.11) formed the main substance of the early Christian message published on the authority of the apostolic witnesses.
On the other hand, His earthly life and teaching did not at first occupy a large place in it, as the speeches in the Acts show; and the absence of detailed references to them is rather a sign of early date than the reverse.
Some who place the epistle late, strangely understand the pseudonymous writer as referring to St. Peter as a 'martyr', who had already partaken in the consequent glory.
But to write under the apostle's name, and yet to refer to his martyrdom, would be a self-contradiction and a blunder too great for any writer to commit.
The words 'gird yourselves (γκομβσασθε - (egkombosasthe)1 with humility' (v.5) may be an allusionnot, indeed, to the wording, but to the event recorded in John i. 4 f. And the injunction to 'shepherd the flock of God' recalls the incident in John xxi.15-17.
1[Hesychius gives for this rare word the synonym στολίσασθαι - (stolisasthai), to put on (beautiful) apparel but Pollux (c. ad 180) suggests that the noun ἐγκόμβωμα - (egkomboma). meant the slave's apron tied over his garment, cf. Apollodorus Carystius (iv-iii cent. bc) who is cited as using the verb meaning 'to gird oneself with'.]
The numerous echoes of our Lord's teaching which Bp. Chase [Hastings's D.B. iii. 787 f.] finds in the epistle are not so striking as those in James.
There are a few which may be reminiscences.
But a later writer who knew the synoptic Gospels would probably have represented St. Peter as using them to a greater extent than he has.

Again, there are many parallels between 1 Peter and the Petrine speeches in the early chapters of Acts, cf. Wand, op. cit., pp. 26-30.
Were these due to St. Peter or to a late writer with a copy of Acts before him?

The objections to the Petrine authorship are mainly as follows: Harnack [Chronologie, pp. 457 ff.] rejects it partly on the ground that no writer before Irenaeus (c. 180) names St. Peter as the author.
But feeling the difficulties of the pseudonymous theory he suggests that the body of the epistle (i.3-v.11) was written by some Christian teacher at Rome (McGiffert [History of Christianity in the Apostolic Age, p. 599. Bornemann (Zeitschr. f. d. mutest. Wiss. xix. 143-65) goes farther, and finds in i.3-v.11 a baptismal sermon delivered by Silvanus in Asia Minor, about 90, with close affinities with Psalm xxxiv.], who agrees with him, suggests Barnabas), between 83 and 93, or possibly earlier; and, despite the absence of textual evidence for this view, the opening and closing sentences (i.1,2 and v.12-14) were added later, between 150 and 175; so that we have no means of knowing whether the main portion was originally an epistle or not.
Finding resemblances between these sentences and 2 Peter he thinks that the writer of the latter may have been the interpolator.
Bp. Chase has pointed out the improbabilities of the theory (op. cit., p. 786).
Other theories of extensive interpolations in an originally non-Petrine homily to produce a Petrine epistle are less probable without the merit of ingenuity.
A more serious objection arises in connexion with the style and language of the writing. Bp. Chase (pp. 781 f.) notes that the author has an intimate knowledge of the Septuagint, that he uses a considerable number of words and expressions which do not occur elsewhere in the New Testament, and which may briefly be described as classical,
[e.g. ἀναγκαστῶς, ἀνάχυσις, ἀπέχεσθαι, ἐπιθυμιῶν πογενέσθαι [metaph.), ἀπόθεσις, βιοῦν, ἐμποκή, οἰνοφλυγία, ὁμόφρων, ὁπλίξειν, πατροπαράδοτος, προθύμως - (anagkastos, anachusis, apechesthai, epithumios apogenesthai, (metaph.), apothesis, bioun, emploke, oinophlugia, homophron, hoplizein, patroparadotos, prothumos.)]
and a remarkable series of words for which there seems to be no earlier or contemporary authority;
[e.g. λλοτρι[ο] επίσκοπος - (allatri(o) episkopos), cf. Epict. 3. 22. 97, ἀμάραντος and ἀμαράντινος - (amarantos and amarantinos), cf. Wisd. vi.12, Apoc. Petri v.15, ἀνεκλάλητος, ἀπροσωπολήμπτως - (aneklaletos, aprosopemptos) (a Hebraism), ἀρτιγέννητος, περίθεσις - (artigennetos, perithesis).
It should be noted that these words and those in the previous footnote are found in 'both parts' of the epistle if a break should be made after iv.11.]
also that within certain limits he had a very considerable appreciation of, and power over, the characteristic usages of Greek, which is confirmed 'when we note the delicacy and accuracy of his perception in regard to the rhythmical arrangement of words, the use of synonyms, and the arrangement of tenses, prepositions, &c.'
The question arises whether a fisherman, brought up in bilingual Galilee, could or could not have gained, in the course of years, this command of the Greek language and knowledge of the Septuagint, although Aramaic was his native language (cf. Matt.xxvi.73).
The question does not admit of a confident answer.
It has been suggested that we must either credit St. Peter with this literary ability, or put it down to the account of Silvanus.
The latter seems to be the more likely.
Silvanus may only have improved St. Peter's Greek, or he may have played the more important part of virtually writing the epistle himself when St. Peter had expressed his thoughts to him in outline.

E. G. Selwyn, who has defended the latter theory at length, [The First Epistle of St. Peter, 1946.] compares this epistle with the two Thessalonian letters, where Silvanus is mentioned as if he might be joint author with Paul and Timothy.
The many 'affinities of thought and phrase' between these three Epistles are taken to indicate a stock of common material already formed before 1 Peter was composed.
Silvanus may have helped to shape this material or belonged to the circle of Christians who did so.

A third objection of a different kind is drawn from the words of iv.16: 'but if (any one suffer) as a Christian let him not be ashamed, but let him glorify God in this name.'
This is thought to mean that the readers in Asia Minor were suffering official persecution for the name 'Christian'', of which we do not possess actual evidence before the time of Trajan.
His reply to Pliny's letter (ad 112) is the first imperial pronouncement known to us of Rome's attitude to Christianity; but it was clearly a pronouncement for the needs of the moment, and not an initiation of policy.
Pliny, as his letter shows, had already tried repressive measures.
And Christianity, as soon as it was seen to be distinct from Judaism, lost the advantage of being coupled with a religio licita, and was 'unincorporated', not illegal.
This had come about, not by edict, but by the force of circumstances, the fall of Jerusalem and the hostility of Jews to Christians.
The latter had been active from the first.
The nickname 'Christian' was flung at them from an early date (Acts xi. 26).
And whatever reason Nero might give for his persecution, it would be to the Christians themselves a suffering for Christ, or for the name of Christ.
[See the discussion of the whole question by Merrill, Essays in Early Christian History, 1924, chs. 3, 4.]
Moreover, the epistle contains no indication that the readers were in a persecution that involved martyrdom.
The state of things reflected in ii.18-25; iii.13-17 is comparable with the condition of the readers of Hebrews, who had not yet 'resisted unto blood'.
They were suffering and Christian slaves in particular from hostility, which might frequently be shown them by Jewish or pagan opponents (cf. Acts v.41; ix.16; xv.26; xxi.13; Phil.i.29).
If Tacitus says that Christians were convicted 'of odium humani generis, private malice and persecution must have been their lot long before, cf. Mk.i.9-13.
It is not easy to decide to what extent, if at all, official punitive measures had begun to be taken in Asia Minor when the epistle was written.
They had almost certainly begun at Rome, since the cryptic 'Babylon' had come into use (v.13).
[Unless v.12-14 is a later addition, despite the absence of textual support for omission. 'Babylon' is used for 'Rome' in Rev.xiv.8 and xviii.2 and Sib. Oracles v. 143, 159 and a Baruch xi: cf. Baruch vi.1-4.]
On the other hand, they do not appear to have been extended systematically over the empire, or the injunction in ii.13-17, to honour governors as sent by the emperor for the punishment of evildoers and the praise of well-doers, could hardly have been written, unless with E. J. Goodspeed we take the view that 1 Peter was written after Rev. xviii and partly to counteract the latter's seditious tendencies by appealing to St. Paul's teaching, as in Rom.i, to support the civil powers.

Some scholars, like F. W. Beare, take the references to persecution, especially in iv.12-19 and v.8 f., to apply to that under Trajan (ad 98-117) long after Peter's death.
As Wand admits, op. cit., p. 14, there are phrases in Pliny's correspondence with Trajan 'which might almost have been taken from 1 Peter', cf. Pliny, Epp. x. 96.
But as Wand shows, the situation confronting Pliny was different from and no doubt later than that envisaged in this epistle.
Pliny alludes to some Christians having given up the faith some three years before, and one as many as twenty years previously.
Does this point to sporadic persecution in the region of Bithynia-Pontus as early as ad 93?
If so, it would support the theory of other scholars who think that 1 Peter was written while Domitian was emperor (ad 81-96).
The difficulty here is that despite ecclesiastical historians from Orosius to Fliche and Martin, the evidence that Domitian persecuted Christians as such is very slender.
'Domitian was quite ready to persecute anyone who stood in his way but there seems no reason to suppose that he selected the Christians as a class for harsh treatment, though individual Christians would not have been exempted from it.'
[R. L. P. Milburn, Church Quarterly Review, cxxxix, 1945, pp. 157 ft., cf. H. Last, 'The Study of the Persecutions', Journal a/Roman Studies, xxvii, 1937, pp. 80-92.]
'The date under Domitian seems to combine all the difficulties of the other views' says K. Lake.
[Introduction to the New Testament, pp. 166 f.]

A fourth objection to the Petrine authorship of 1 Peter is based on the maturity of its doctrinal teaching, especially that on the Descent into Hades, which seems akin to that of the Old Roman Creed rather than to that of first-century Christians.
E. G. Selwyn, however, has removed the weight of this objection by the study of the theology and ethics of this epistle and by the essay on 1 Pet.iii.18-iv.6.[Op. cit., pp. 64-115 and pp. 314-62.]

A date about 67, just before St. Peter's death and after St. Paul's, seems to many to satisfy the requirements best, and is adopted by the majority of English scholars.
Christians at the capital were still feeling the after-effects of Nero's mad outburst, but at the outskirts of the empire they were at peace so far as official persecution was concerned.

There are some, however, like B. H. Streeter [The Primitive Church, 1929, pp. 123 ff.], who are impressed by the indications of a later date and by the change of tone in iv.12-end. Streeter divided the work into two parts,
(a)  i.3-iv.11, a bishop's sermon to a group of newly baptized converts, and
(b)  iv.12-v.11, either the bishop's address to the general congregation including presbyters from neighbouring villages or the bishop's pastoral letter written some years later with reference to the 'fiery trial' of an unexpected character (iv.12).
Like Harnack, Streeter thought that i.1-2 and v.12-14 were later additions to give the work an epistolary form and Petrine character.

He made the tentative suggestion that parts (a) and (b) were by Aristion.

E.J. Goodspeed [Op. cit., p. 258.], again, would date 1 Peter with 1 Clement after the Epistle to the Hebrews, c. ad 95.
The latter, he thinks, had issued a challenge to the Church in Rome to undertake the instruction and leadership of other churches, cf. Heb.v.12.
This letter and 1 Clement were the response, so that later Ignatius could say to the Church in Rome, 'You have taught others' (Rom.iii.1).
The book of Revelation had already adopted the apparently unchristian attitude of hatred against Babylon, and the author of 1 Peter was concerned with the real danger that Christianity might degenerate into a religion of hate and Christians into disloyal revolutionaries.
The Church in Rome could already speak in St. Peter's name and while 1 Clement went to Macedonia and Greece i Peter went to the rest of the Christian Church, apart from Syria, and especially to the churches influenced by the Letters to the Seven Churches.
Goodspeed thinks that 1 Peter was strongly influenced by the Pauline letters and that the mention of Silvanus' is a mere epistolary touch; also that Heb.i.22 points forward to 1 Pet.v.12; Heb.i.20 to 1 Pet.v.4; and the doctrine of priesthood and sacrifice found everywhere in Heb. to 1 Pet.i.19 and ii.9.


F. W. Beare (1947), C. Bigg (1901), F. J. A. Hort (i.i-ii.17, 1898), J. H. B. Masterman (1900), J. Moffatt (The General Epistles, 1928), E. G. Selwyn (1946), J. W. C. Wand (1934).