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9 excellence, all merit, keep these in mind! Practise what you have also learned and received and heard and seen in me; so shall the God of peace be with you.

10 It was a great joy to me in the Lord that you at last blossomed out in thoughtfulness on my behalf; though what you did lack indeed was not

11 thoughtfulness but opportunity. Not that 1 speak on the score of want;

For I have learnt to be content with my position.

12 I know how to live in straits,

I know also how to live in wealth:
In each and every case I hold the secret
of fulness and of hunger,
of wealth and of want.

13 I am able for anything, in him who strengthens me.

14 Nevertheless, you have done well to make common cause with me in my

15 hardship. You yourselves are aware, Philippians, that in the beginning of the gospel when I left Macedonia no Community had dealings with me in

16 the matter of debit and credit, none except yourselves; for even when I

17 was in Thessalonika you sent once and again to relieve my need. Not that

18 I crave the gift; I crave the accumulation of interest to your account. I have got everything, and I abound; I am fully supplied, after receiving from Epapnroditus what you sent, an odour of fragrance, an acceptable sacrifice

19 well-pleasing to God. And my God shall fully supply every need of yours through his riches in majesty in Christ Jesus.

20 Now to our God and Father be the honour for ever and ever: Amen.

21 Salute every saint in Christ Jesus.

The brothers who are with me salute you.

22 All the saints salute you, especially those who belong to Caesar's household.

23 The grace of the Lord Jesus Christ be with your spirit.


Two tides of fire swept through the Christian world of the first century: the outburst of Nero's malevolence and the persecution under Domitian. Up to the time of the former, the capital enemy of Christianity had been the Jew, not Caesar; but the punishment of the Christians (64 A.d.) as scapegoats for the Emperor first introduced persecution to the Christian horizon, which had hitherto (Phil l12t = Ac 2831) been comparatively unclouded. The agitation and shock produced by this forms the background of 1 Peter. Evidently sporadic and spasmodic persecution (tv Tu icoo-pa, 59) was going on in the provinces upon the charge of the Name.1 The Christians qud Christian were liable to be sought out and punished. Ripples had passed out from the capital,2 where Peter wrote, to the Asiatic provinces, and recently affected the position of Christians in those localities. Consequently the purport of this message to Northern Asia is practically the same as the instruction and encouragement given nearly twenty years earlier, perhaps, by Paul and Barnabas to Southern Asia: on dta TroWciu 6\fy€tav del rjftas cltrc\3fiv €is Ttjv (Saaikfiav rov 0«ou (Ac 1422). Only, the situation is graver. Possibly it was aggravated by the local restlessness and turbulence, e.g. in the province of Bithynia during its senatorial administration between 27 B.C. and the despatch of Pliny in 112 A.d. to execute necessary reforms. In these years disorganisation and riot were a common feature of the province, so that references such as those made in 1 Peter to social interference are historically credible by the seventh decade of the first century. There is not, indeed, any reason " why Asia Minor should not have had persecutions of its own, independent of any known persecution bearing an Emperor's name, and perhaps even a little earlier than Nero's persecution " (Hort). At the

1 This is a weighty and disputed point. On the view taken above, persecution and punishment for the " name" of Christian commenced as early as the seventh decade of the first century. Even under Nero it became criminal to be a Christian. This is practically Mommsen's position, supported by Mr. E. G. Hardy (Christianity and the Roman Empire, 1894, pp. 70f., 80 f., 125 f.), Prof. Sanday (Exp* vii. p. 405 f.), and those editors who accept the seventh-decade date and authenticity of the writing. A casual remark like that in Phil lu shows that the distinctiveness of Christianity was not unrecognised in Rome even as early as the opening of the seventh decade. This is put with much force by Chase (DB, iii. p. 784 f.), whose article on the epistle is the finest piece of work upon it in any language. He adopts the pre-64 date.

2 The figurative sense of " Babylon" suits excellently the situation and the semiapocalyptic tinge of the writing (314"22 47r- I*u 58r-). It is widely accepted in modern criticism: cp. Rvnan, VAntichrist, chap. v. ; Seufert, XwTh (1885), pp. 146-156; Salmon, INT, p. 440 f. ; Lishtfoot, Clement, ii. p. 401 f. ; 0. Holtzmanu, Neutest. Ztitgcsch. (1885), p. 97; Hort, Jud. Christ, p. 155; von Soden, HC, ad loc.; Jiilicher, EM. p. 166 : Rumsay, CUE, pp. 286, 287 ; Samlav and Headlara, "Romans," ICC, p. xxix. ; McUifl'ert, A A, p. 598; Chase, DB, i. pp. 213, 214; and Zaun (Einl. ii. pp. 19-21), with many others.

On the fiagitia of Christians, cp. the English summaries and discussions in Churdi Quart. Review (Oct. 1895), pp. 26-17; F. C. Conybeare, Monuments of Early Christianity - (1896), pp. 282-288 ; and Lccky, Hist. Europ. Morals, chap. iii. same time it is from Nero's persecution that the writer at any rate drew the intensity of his counsels. The writing certainly looks back to a period of keen terror and distress (l6 316 4'9 59), which had not long begun (cp. the almost contemporary evidence of Mk 13, n, and the allusions to the past in Heb 1032-3S).

After the crisis and controversy at Antioch, Peter's career is only to be traced with dim and approximate accuracy. Like John, he had left Jerusalem by the time of Paul's last visit (Ac 2118). General activity (1 Co 9s) is visible in Svria and possibly in those parts of Asia Minor where, as he travelled and preached, he would not traverse the Pauline mission-field (1 P l1). But several items in the later tradition {e.g. Clem. Rom. and Ignatius) point with comparative certainty to a final residence in Rome; which is only possible after Paul had either left the city or died. That both apostles were there together is simply unprovable. External circumstances, then, imply, or at least favour, a connection and familiarity on Peter's part with Paul's teaching, and an acquaintance with Paul's surviving followers. Whether this involves an approximation in doctrine is another question. In the dispute at Antioch, Peter's fault was not a difference of principle (Harman, Journ. Bibl. Lit. xvi. pp. 31-39). He and Paul shared 1 the same general conception of the gospel and its obligations. But he failed in practical consistency, and in loyalty to the principles upon which he had already agreed. His error was a false opportunism. If in subsequent years, after this temporary aberration had passed, Peter came under the impressiveness of the Pauline teaching, especially during his residence in Rome, that influence would half unconsciously and vaguely colour his thoughts 2 and words when he set himself to write a letter of encouragement to the tried Christians of Northern Asia Minor (figuratively addressed as God's people and chosen ones l1),8 with whom, however, there is no trace either inside

1 Cp. Hort, Jud. Christianity, pp. 77-79. The evidence of 1 Corinthians (e.g. 15u) corroborates the supposition that there was no vital antagonism of principle between Paul and Peter. A rapprochement was not out of the question, when Peter's "gospel" and Paul's were not contradictory views, but in the main complementary delimitations (Gal 279; cp. Sabatier, pp. 28-31, and Lipsius adloc.). Of the two men, Peter— so far as we can jndge from our sources—was distinctly the more receptive and less original. Renan, in his discussion of the epistle {t'A ntlclirist, chap, v.), demurs to the conception of Peter as an exponent of modified Paulinism. He prefers to explain the relation of the two men by Peter's scanty gift for literature and even for speculation: "happily for himself, Peter appears to have remained all through his life a theologian of very moderate ability." The epistle, however, is no compilation or echo, for all its dependence upon other and earlier writings; and Renan is on safer lines when, in an earlier chapter of the same volume, he calls attention to two considerations which are essential for a grasp of the apostolic age. One is that "deep differences of opinion (deeper indeed than any that, in the subsequent history of the church, gave rise to schism) divided the founders of Christianity," leading to a bitterness of polemic which was partly due to the fire and susceptibility of the Jewish character. The other is, that "a higher conception united these brother-opponents, even during their lifetime "—anticipating the later and official reconciliation made by the sub-apostolic church. Wernle {Die Synoptische Frage, p. 199 f.) very similarly lays stress on Peter's untheological temperament as the key to his character.

1 The soteriology, no less than the Christology, "is in the spontaneous rather than the articulated stage" (Fairbairn, Christ. Mod. Theol. p. 330). The author "has no philosophy as to the vocation or institutions of Israel; he has only the most vivid intuition, born of personal experience, into the significance of Christ."

3 On l12" see the beautiful saying in Ep. Diognetus: wirm (im wmtfit im* iM, M) win T«t/>;« (fa. For the colloquial use of «*nfo>9i/'<i and tiim/m, compare the three letters of R. Gamaliel of Jerusalem (Derenbourg, Histoire et gtogr. de la Palestine, pp. 241-244), where the greeting liftn "H-~" s**fc»fc«i is taken from the

or outside the epistle that he had any direct acquaintance. Paul had died, not Paulimsm. Eripitur persona, manet res. Yet it was a modified Paulinism, combined with other ideas, and reproduced on more general lines, that spoke through this circular epistle addressed by the Jewish Christian leader to the North Asiatic communities.

The problem of the sources from which the epistle draws its references to Jesus is still unsolved. Either they are due to the evangelic tradition from which the synoptic gospels presently sprang, or simply to the Messianic interpretation of OT passages (like Is 53), which in the early church afforded colours for the picture of Christ's patience, suffering, and redemption. Even if a later date is chosen for the epistle, it is unlikely that it, any more than even Hebrews, draws upon the synoptic gospels in their present form. It is more valid to trace resemblances between the general conception of the epistle and some of the Petrine speeches in Acts, which (as even Holsten, Overbeck, and Schmiedel allow) reflect a nucleus of primitive Christian theology; and there is a convincing statement of the epistle's priority to the Apocalypse, with which it has several features in common, by Usteri, IVissenschaftlieher u. praktischer Cominentar ii. den ersten Petrusbrief (1887), pp. 309-312.

In addition to the dogmatic question (on which cp. besides Reuss, Hist. Christ. Theol. ii. p. 262 f., and Paul Ewald, Hauptproblem, pp. 68-75, Ritschl's Entstehung,2 pp. 116, 285), three points are material in a discussion upon the period of this writing's composition : the authorship, the literary connections, and the relations which are implied between the Roman government and Christianity. All these points, it must be confessed at the outset, are unhesitatingly used by the best editors and critics to determine a position for the document which brings it down later than the lifetime of its reputed author. But if the Petrine authorship be provisionally admitted!, the date is plainly within the seventh decade of the first century; the letter falls either before 64 A.d., the possible date of Peter's martyrdom upon the newer chronology, or before 67, the commonly adopted year. Two periods then are tenable. That before 64 has been held by Hofmann, Bleek (+62 A.D.), Bartlet {AA, p. 297 f., c. 63 A.D.), and Renan (63-64 A.d.), while Zahn puts it in the spring of 64 {EM. ii. pp. 17-27). Salmon dates it not earlier than 64 A.d. Usually, however, a somewhat later period in the apostle's life is assigned as the date of the epistle's composition, with the consequences of the Neronic persecution in the background (Tacitus, Annates, xv. 44, quos per flagitia invisos vulgus Christianos appelabat = 414-ls). The years 64-67 in this case form the general locus of the letter. So the older critics after Ewald and Neander, Mayerhoff, de Wette, Meyer, Sieffert (Rcal-Encycl. xi. (1883), p. 534 f.), and Huther; in this country and more recently, Farrar, Early Days of Christianity, pp. 67-85; Plumptre, Dible Studies, p. 450, "Epistles of St. Peter and St. Jude," Cambridge, 1887; Schafer, Einl. pp. 319-329; also Bovon, NTTh, ii. pp. 440-444; Sanday and Hcadlam, "Romans," ICC, pp. lxxiv-lxxvi; Stevens, NTTh, pp. 293-311; Hort, Judaistic Christianity, pp. 154, 155, also in his posthumous First Epistle of J'eter (1898); and, with his usual candour, Adeney, 111, pp. 440-447. Weiss is practically alone, except for Kiilil

iMeyer), in putting the epistle prior to Rom.-Ephes. (Petrinisclie ,dirbegriff, 1858, and in INT, ii. pp. 143,144); the admitted coincidences of language (especially with Ro xii-xiii) and sentiment certainly imply

LXX (Dan 3* S25 [Theod.]). The Gentile origin of the readers must, particularly since the arguments of von Sodcn and Zahn, be accepted as an axiom.

its subsequent position (cp. especially at tliis point, Usteri, op. cit. pp. 250-256, 280 f., and Zahn, Mini. ii. pp. 36-38) and its literary dependence. The latter point is valid, though it has been frequently over-estimated, cp. Dr. Patrick's article, Theological Review, ii. pp. 177-193; and Scharfe, SK (1889), iv. pp. 633-670, "Die schriftstellerische Originalitat des ersten Petrusbriefs." The terminus a quo, then, for the date is the period in which Romans, if not Ephesians, was composed and circulated. The terminus ad quern is the more doubtful date of Peter's death, on the assumption that the writing is authentic.

Professor Ramsay, on tTie other hand, finds himself compelled by not very obvious historical considerations to regard the imperial procedure found in the second century as initiated not by Nero, nor—as Neumann holds—by Domitian, but by Vespasian ; in consequence of this, he dates 1 1 Peter in the second part of Vespasian's reign (between 75 and 80 A.d.), CRE, chaps, xi-xiii; SPT, p. 22 ; Exp* viii. pp. 8f., 110f., 282f. This period, he holds, is the only one which adequately corresponds to the policy of the Empire and the consequent attitude of Christianity, as these are reflected in this epistle. For the necessary abandonment of 67 as the traditional terminus ad quern of Peter's life, he quotes an obiter dictum of Dr. Hort. But there is no need, and hardly any evidence, for the hypothesis that a change took place in the imperial policy under the Flavians. As a rule, the features of that recently started persecution (4,s) and hostile pressure upon the Christians, which forms part of the historical situation for this writing, can be interpreted as characteristically NeronicJ (Beyschlag, NTTh, i. pp. 377-382; Allard, Histoire des Perse'c. i. p. 61 f.). "The words of Tacitus [Annal. xv. 44] in regard to the Christians under Nero exactly suit the circumstances to which this epistle refers" (Hatch, EB, article "Peter"). While Christianity is evidently within an anxious and agitated situation, besieged by suspicion and prejudice, the compulsory worship of the Emperor, which distinguished the later persecution of Domitian, is conspicuously absent. The unpopularity of Christians might be due partly to their connection with Judaism, partly to the 6ecrecy of their rites and beliefs, partly to social disturbances. The organisation and general shape of the communities, too, are primitive, and there is an absence of definiteness in the official traits, even where it might have been expected. All this points to a date between the Pauline letters and the Apocalypse (or Hebrews). The difficulties of such a position must be admitted. But they are not insuperable. They rise from our limited knowledge of the period in question, rather than from any inherent discrepancies which can be

i Similarly Swete (Mark, p. xvii. f.) and F. J. Briggs (CR, 1897, pp. 449-454). The latter also gives up the traditional martyrdom of Peter under Nero, and thinks that not until 70-75 A.n. could the Roman attitude of hostilities to Christians have spread from the capital to the provinces. Zahn (Einl. ii. 39-42) endeavours to explain the features of the writing from the pre-Neronic period, i.e. apart from the existence of any authoritative persecution, and agrees that the term «t«x«}-/« (3,s) should be taken in a non-technical sense (Col 45 '■). Jacoby (AT Ethik, pp. 220-222) fully accepts the traditional date and authorship, like Charles, EM, ii. 1379.

» L. Schultze, Handbuch der theol. Wissenschaftcn, Band 1, Ahth. 2, pp. 106-109. In the Domitianic Apocalypse (6W) and Lk 18'-"-8, exactly as in 4 Esdras 4", the cry is, "How long?" The apparent delay of retribution is the question, not (as in 1 P 4'-) the approach of trial. The reference in Clem. Rom. to Jewish "jealousy" as the cause of Peter's death might also lead us to infer that the apostle had become an object of suspicion to the Jews during his later life. Would this implied "apostasy" tally with that approximation to the liberal views of Paulino Christianity, which must be assumed upon the traditional view of 1 Peter t

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