Category: Authorship (Page 1 of 6)

Tsuji, Bokkai Shokan [Pastoral Epistles]

As a service to researchers in the Pastorals, we regularly note new publications that have been added to the secondary literature, and (especially through our annual bibliographies) we try to surface scholarly work in the letters that is in languages other than the relatively standard research languages of English, German, and French. My own accounting suggests there is easily as much secondary literature on the Pastorals in Italian as in French, and Polish and Dutch works are not lacking.

As many differences as there may be among, say, English, German, French, Dutch, Polish, and Italian, they are all spoken in Europe and share many similarities, not least of which is the same basic alphabet. At the time I began searching for works on the Pastorals written in Asian languages, I realized I was in a very different linguistic world. This post provides an unusual opportunity in that regard, allowing me to acknowledge a new major commentary:

Manabu Tsuji, Bokkai Shokan (Commentary on the Pastoral Epistles). Tokyo: Shinkyô Shuppansha, 2023. [Japanese]

Tsuji is Professor of Religious Studies at Hiroshima University. He holds his doctorate from the University of Berne; his dissertation was published as Glaube zwischen Vollkommenheit und Verweltlichung: Eine Untersuchung zur literarischen Gestalt und zur inhaltlichen Kohärenz des Jakobusbriefes, WUNT 2/93 (Tübingen: Mohr Siebeck, 1997). A few years back, he contributed to a list of Japanese-language scholarly articles on the Pastorals, which we posted here at

At 759 pages, Bokkai Shokan is a major work. Comparing page count to English works isn’t necessarily an apples-to-apples proposition, but one might think of Mounce’s 778-page WBC volume as similar in heft. Tsuji provided this summary of his work, which will give readers of the blog a good sense of where the commentary is located in the realm of Pastorals scholarship:

“This commentary consists of an approximately 60-page introduction that discusses the name ‘Pastoral Epistles,’ problems of authorship, opponents, and theological and literary characteristics, followed by nearly 700 pages of detailed exegesis and bibliography. According to the author, the three letters were written by a single author as the Corpus Pastorale, a collection of Pauline letters to individuals (Timothy and Titus) modeled after the Corpus Paulinum and intended to be read in the order of 1 Timothy, Titus, and 2 Timothy. Titus serves as a ‘spatial extension’ of the content of 1 Timothy, showing that the content of 1 Timothy is equally applicable to churches in other regions, while II Timothy serves as a ‘temporal extension,’ showing that the issue of confronting false doctrine (the main theme of 1 Timothy) remained an important concern for Paul until the end of his life. This Corpus Pastorale was written against the backdrop of conflicts over Paul’s understanding: The role of these letters is to let Paul himself speak about the ‘final correct answer’ to the questions he left unresolved or ambiguous, such as the autonomy of women and the understanding of the resurrection. The author criticizes as ‘false doctrine’ an ascetic understanding of Paul (which prohibits marriage and the consumption of certain foods). The Pastoral Epistles were written in the first half of the second century AD. Their theological characteristics (e.g., God, Christ, faith, etc.) reflect how Pauline Christianity was preached and received in the post-Pauline Hellenistic pagan world.”

Tsuji’s previous publications on the letters include the following:

“1 Tim 5:17–25: Its Context and Structure.” Shin’yakugaku Kenkyu [New Testament Studies] (Japan Society of New Testament Studies) 25 (1997): 13–24.「Ⅰテモテ 5:17–25 の文脈と構成」、『新約学研究』(日本新約学会)25 号 (1997 年)13–24 頁。[Japanese]

“II Timothy 1:6: Laying on of Hands by Paul for Ordination?” Annual of the Japanese Biblical Institute 39 (2013): 65‒76.

“Beyond the Original Context: Reception of the Pauline Letters in the First Century.” Pages 5–21 in Scrinium: Revue de patrologie, d’hagiographie critique et d’histoire ecclésiastique, vol. 6: Patrogia Pacifica Secunda: Selected Papers Presented to the Asia-Pacific Early Christian Studies Society Fifth Annual Conference (Sendai, Japan, September 10–12, 2009) and Other Patristic Studies. Edited by Vladimir Baranov, Kazuhiko Demura, and Basil Lourié. Piscataway, NJ: Georgias, 2010. = 「元の文脈を超えて――紀元一世紀におけるパウロ書簡の受容史」、『ペディラヴィウム』65号(2010年)38–56頁。[Japanese]

“‘Different teachings’ and ‘Rich Women’: On the Structure and Background of 1 Timothy 6:3–21.” Shingaku Kenkyu [Theological Studies] (Society of Theological Studies of Kwansei Gakuin University) 43 (1996): 17–38.「『異なる教え』と『富める女性』――1テモテ6,3–21の構成とその背景――」、『神学研究』 43号(1996年)17–38頁。[Japanese]

“Die Intertextualität von 1 Tim 2,1–3/Tit 3,1–2.” Pages 99–110 in Neutestamentliche Exegese im Dialog: Hermeneutik—Wirkungsgeschichte—Matthäusevangelium. Festschrift für Ulrich Luz zum 70. Geburtstag. Edited by Peter Lampe, Moises Mayordomo, and Migaku Sato. Neukirchener-Vluyn: Neukirchener, 2008. = 「Ⅰテモテ2,1–3/テトス3,1–2の間テクスト性」、『人間文化研究』第3号(2011年3月)36-48頁。[Japanese]

“Laying on of Hands by the Elders (1 Timothy 4:14) and by Paul (2 Timothy 1:6),” in: Shingaku Kenkyu [Theological Studies] (Society of Theological Studies of Kwansei Gakuin University) 51 (2004): 63–75.「長老団の按手(Ⅰテモテ4:14)とパウロの按手(Ⅱテモテ1:6)」、『神学研究』 51号(2004年)63–75頁。 [Japanese]

“On the Enrollment of ‘Widows’ (1 Timothy 5:3–16).” Shin’yakugaku Kenkyu [New Testament Studies] (Japan Society of New Testament Studies) 26 (1998): 17–29.「『やもめ』の登録 (1 テモテ 5:3–16) をめぐって」、『新約学研究』26 号 (1998年) 17–29 頁。 [Japanese]

“The Pastoral Epistles: On the Advocates of their Authenticity.” Shogaku Ronkyu [Journal of Business Administration of Kwansei Gakuin University] 50.4 (2003): 135–152.「牧会書簡――真筆性擁護の動きをめぐって」、『商学論究』 50巻4号(2003年)135–52頁。[Japanese]

“Persönliche Korrespondenz des Paulus: Zur Strategie der Pastoralbriefe als Pseudepigrapha.” New Testament Studies 56.2 (2010): 253–72. = 「パウロの個人宛書簡――偽名文書としての牧会書簡の戦略――」、『聖書学論集』43号(2011年4月)71–96頁。[Japanese]

“Saved through Childbearing: Context and Background of 1 Timothy 2:15.” Seishogaku Ronshu 41 (“Bible as Experience. Festschrift for Prof. ONUKI Takashi”) (2009): 463–79.「子を産むことによって救われる――1テモテ2:15の文脈と背景――」、日本聖書学研究所編『経験としての聖書:大貫隆教授献呈論文集』(聖書学論集41)リトン社、2009年3月、463–79頁。 [Japanese]

“Der zweite Timotheus als letzter Gefangenschaftsbrief.” Kwansei Gakuin University Humanities Review 11 (2006): 1–11. = “2 Timothy as the Last Captivity Letter.” 「獄中書簡としてのⅡテモテ書」、『新約学研究』 31号(2003年)42–55頁。 [Japanese]

“Zwischen Ideal und Realität: Zu den Witwen in 1 Tim 5.3–16.” New Testament Studies 47.1 (2001): 92–104.

Bulundwe, 2 Timothée dans le corpus paulinien: Analyse mémorielle

Mohr Siebeck’s WUNT series continues to produce monographs on the Pastorals, with two coming out nearly back-to-back near the end of 2023. Mark Langford’s Diagnosing Deviance: Pathology and Polemic in the Pastoral Epistles was WUNT 2/592, released a short while ago, and WUNT 2/598 is now available:

Kampotela Luc Bulundwe, 2 Timothée dans le corpus paulinien: Analyse mémorielle [2 Timothy in the Pauline Corpus: Memory Analysis]. Wissenschaftliche Untersuchungen zum Neuen Testament 2/598. Tübingen: Mohr Siebeck, 2023.

Even at a first glance, two acts of generosity stand out. First, Bulundwe has released the work in open-access form. Those who do not wish to pay the typically steep price for a physical copy of an academic monograph can work through a well-organized electronic facsimile here. Second, though Bulundwe’s work is in French, he has thoughtfully provided a detailed ten-page summary in English at the close of the book (pp. 429–38). I reproduce the opening of that summary here for convenience:

“This monograph examines the role of 2 Timothy (2 Tim) within the Pauline corpus through the lens of social memory. It aims to show that the letter’s literary genre — an epistolary farewell address — and content make it a hermeneutic key that guides the reading and transmission of a first collection of Paul’s letters. This collection includes the seven undisputed Pauline letters … and Colossians, and is considered to be Paul’s legacy. The main originality of the monograph lies in the specific consideration of 2 Tim in the Pauline literature and not only in the corpus of the so-called ‘Pastorals,’ the letters to Timothy and Titus (LTT).

“The first part describes the historical and methodological framework of the analysis. The second part consists of a reading of the whole letter through the lens of memory, while the third assesses the relationship between 2 Tim and the above-mentioned collection of Paul’s letters. Three realms of memory (lieux de mémoire) guide the assessment: the characters, the geographical locations, and the literary points of contact between 2 Tim and each letter.” (429)

Luke Timothy Johnson and the Pastorals

I learned a good deal by reading Luke Timothy Johnson’s recently published memoir, The Mind in Another Place: My Life as a Scholar (Grand Rapids: Eerdmans, 2022), from both his interesting and detailed account of his scholarly preparation and career, and his incisive treatment of the intellectual and moral virtues of a scholar. Researchers in the Pastorals are, of course, familiar with his work in the letters, most notably his volume on the letters to Timothy in the Anchor Bible series. That volume is remarkable not least for its robust disagreement with the position that the Pastorals are pseudonymous, but also for its extensive treatment of history of research in the letters. On the former point regarding authorship, he notes, “Of particular importance was my demonstrating how the ‘consensus’ view of scholarship was based not on the power of argument but on the weight of custom” (165).

Johnson’s oeuvre is far broader than his work on the Pastorals, and his specific remarks about his work in those letters are actually fairly brief. I have pulled three pertinent excerpts, thinking they might be of interest to students of the letters. They may be read here.

Darko, “Kinship and Leadership in 1 Timothy”

A new article of potential interest to students of 1 Timothy:

Daniel K. Darko. “Kinship and Leadership in 1 Timothy: A Study of Filial Framework and Model for Early Christian Communities in Asia Minor.” Religions 14.2 (2023): 1–14, article 169.

Abstract: “This essay examines the kinship framework and lexemes in the directives for leadership in 1 Timothy, aiming to curb the influence of false teachers and to bolster internal cohesion in the communities. It explores the author’s appeal to household conduct, natural and fictive kinship, and group dynamics couched in filial parlance vis-à-vis the undisputed Pauline letters. The study sheds light on the authorial framework, and suggests that the notion of a departure from ‘love-patriarchalism’ or egalitarian Paul developing later into hierarchical kinship framework in 1 Timothy may be misleading. It becomes apparent that the letter’s kinship lexemes are consistent with what we find in the undisputed letters. Thus, the pseudonymous author, an associate of Paul, does not appeal to or use kinship lexemes any differently from the undisputed letters or elsewhere in Greco-Roman discourse. This does not establish Pauline authorship, but suggest that the notion that the kinship lexemes reflect an elevated hierarchical institutional development in a post-Pauline era, that is uncharacteristic of Paul in the authorship debate, may need to be reconsidered if not revised.”

The article is open access.

Quesnel, “Identifier les parties pauliniennes de la 2ème lettre à Timothee”

A new article on 2 Timothy has been published in Revue Biblique:

Michel Quesnel, “Identifier les parties pauliniennes de la 2ème lettre à Timothee,” Revue Biblique 129.2 (2022): 199–212.

The article is in French, but an English-language abstract is provided: “While the 1st letter to Timothy and the letter to Titus are pseudepigrapha, the 2nd epistle to Timothy is not entirely so. A precise analysis of the vocabulary used and the relationship of the authors to time enables us to distinguish parts of which Paul is certainly the author (2 Tm 1:1–2:13 and 4:6–22) from an addition composed by an editor at the end of the 1st century, giving instructions regarding behaviour to leaders of local churches (2 Tm 2:14–3:9). With less certainty we must probably also attribute to Paul 2 Tm 3:10–4:5.”

Van Nes, “Second-Century Vocabulary in the Pastoral Epistles? A Reassessment”

A recent article of interest to Pastorals researchers:

Van Nes, Jermo. “Second-Century Vocabulary in the Pastoral Epistles? A Reassessment.” Filología Neotestamentaria 34 (2021): 41–67.

Abstract: “Many contemporary New Testament scholars consider 1–2 Timothy and Titus, collectively known as the Pastoral Epistles (PE), to be pseudonymous. Some of them do so on the basis of the PE’s comparatively large number of hapax legomena (hapaxes), which they believe is closer to writings of the second century AD. The aim of this study is to reconsider this influential thesis as advocated by P.N. Harrison over the course of the twentieth century. It will be argued that the (statistical) evidence presented by Harrison is flawed as he gives no proper definition of hapaxes, unevenly compares the PE collectively to individual writings, and does not use any criteria to show how his results are statistically significant. By way of alternative, this paper will (1) provide a proper definition of hapaxes, (2) count how many of these hapaxes recur in all Greek second-century writings classified as such in the Thesaurus Linguae Graecae database, and (3) by means of (simple) linear regression analysis determine whether or not 1 Timothy, 2 Timothy, and/or Titus in comparison to each of the other undisputed Pauline letters share significantly more hapaxes with these second-century writings.”

Schmidt, “Drei aus zweiter Hand: Die Pastoralbriefe und ihre Autoren”

A lengthy piece has recently been published on the authorship of the Pastoral Epistles:

Schmidt, Karl Matthias. “Drei aus zweiter Hand: Die Pastoralbriefe und ihre Autoren.” Studien zum Neuen Testament and seiner Umwelt A 46 (2021): 71–151.

Abstract: “Within a discussion on the literary form of the Pastoral Epistles becoming more complex this essay gets in line with those interpretations, which assume three pseudepigrapha, written by three different authors. Form and contents suggest that the letter to Titus is based on the Second Letter to Timothy and that the First Letter to Timothy is depending on both predecessors.”

Fickenscher, “A Rank-Based Analysis of Word Order and Codification in the Greek of the Pastoral Epistles”

A recent dissertation may be of interest to students of the Pastorals, especially those interested in questions of the authorship of the letters:

James Fickenscher, “A Rank-Based Analysis of Word Order and Codification in the Greek of the Pastoral Epistles.” PhD diss., Concordia Seminary, 2022.

The dissertation was completed under the direction of James Voelz. Voelz is not a specialist in the Pastorals, but I have used his 2-volume commentary on Mark (Concordia Commentaries; 2013, 2019) with profit. Here is the abstract:

“The relationship of word order and clausal structures with meaning, literary style, and authorial considerations in New Testament Greek is an often underdeveloped yet important field for reading, understanding, and interpreting the New Testament text. Navigating between a grammatical-historical and historical-critical reading of the New Testament, this dissertation analyzes the phenomena of word order and clausal structures afresh through the lens of systemic functional grammar, following the work of Michael Halliday. This project contributes a preliminary step forward in constructing a method that can account for and understand the purpose of word order patterns and variance from those patterns within New Testament Greek without presuming that variations are simply for emphasis or that they arise from a priori assumptions of an historical or authorial nature behind the text. As an initial test case, this dissertation explores the Pastoral Epistles, chosen due to their similarity in content, genre, and register, constructing a linguistic profile for each work that includes the codified patterns of word order and structure on the ranks of larger sections of text, individual clauses, and word groups within each clause that have a discrete, syntactical function. It is shown that a fuller understanding of word order, especially where variations or marked syntax occurs, both contributes to an overall analysis of the text, including issues of textual criticism and interpretation, as well as identifies multiple causes for changes in word order beyond simple emphasis. The phenomenon of rank shift, where a clause functions as a single, syntactical element within another clause, also impacts expected patterns of word order and clausal structure. This study then compares the linguistic profiles of Pastoral Epistles to one another and to other select texts of the New Testament, demonstrating both areas of general consistency and difference between the works. This suggests that some patterns under investigation are likely not significant for inter-textual discussions of literary style, provenance, or register, but many areas of word order do have potential import for larger analysis of literary or historical considerations as they are manifested within each work on a strictly linguistic basis.”

The entire dissertation is available here.

Zamfir and Theobald: Two Essays on Dating the Pastorals

A just-published WUNT volume contains two essays on dating the Pastoral Epistles:

Korinna Zamfir, “Something Old, Something New, Something Borrowed: Dating the Pastoral Epistles.” Pages 313–54 in Die Datierung neutestamentlicher Pseudepigraphen: Herausforderungen und neuere Lösungsansätze. Edited by Wolfgang Grünstäudl and Karl Matthias Schmidt. Wissenschaftliche Untersuchungen zum Neuen Testament 470. Tübingen: Mohr Siebeck, 2021.

Michael Theobald, “Zur Datierung der Pastoralbriefe: Parameter zur Ausmessung ihres Entstehungskorridors.” Pages 355–84 in Die Datierung neutestamentlicher Pseudepigraphen: Herausforderungen und neuere Lösungsansätze. Edited by Wolfgang Grünstäudl and Karl Matthias Schmidt. Wissenschaftliche Untersuchungen zum Neuen Testament 470. Tübingen: Mohr Siebeck, 2021.

Reinhardt, “‘God, Who Giveth Us Richly’: Wealth, Authorship, and Audience in 1 Timothy 6”

A recent article engages the topic of wealth in the context of the Pastorals, a topic which happens to be pertinent to the upcoming presentations in the ETS Pastorals study group.

Jackson Reinhardt. “‘God, Who Giveth Us Richly’: Wealth, Authorship, and Audience in 1 Timothy 6.” Journal of the Oxford Graduate Theological Society 2.1 (2021): 101–14.

Abstract: “While prior biblical scholarship has firmly rejected the Pauline authorship of the Pastoral Epistles (1–2 Timothy and Titus), rarely has analysis focused on socio-economic context. I argue that examining the economic conditions and theology of 1 Timothy provides additional reasons to rejects the letter’s authenticity. While Paul’s audience was primarily impoverished urbanites, the author of 1 Timothy (i.e., the Pastor) was writing to a prosperous congregation who needed instruction on the proper handling of their wealth. Paul’s theology of wealth, in turn, reflects the context of his audience: he supported inter-ecclesial programs of mutual interdependence and a rejection of the prevailing modes of economic exploitation that existed in first-century Palestine. The Pastor does not promote any similar alternative economy among believers. He contends that wealthy believers should be charitable so as to build up a heavenly treasure and secure posthumous favor.”

A PDF of the article is freely available here.

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