Several early Christian texts lack sufficient information to determine such things as when, where, and to whom they were written. Historians have often attempted to “locate” such texts in history by comparing them to other writings for which date, provenance, audience, and authorship are known. Similarities and differences between them are often introduced to discussions as a basis for historical reconstruction, with varying degrees of success. Gilmour explores this approach to the reconstruction of earliest Christianity, using the pseudonymous 2 Peter as a test case. He develops criteria which help determine if literary parallels are the result of literary dependence, lists possible pitfalls for historical reconstruction based on literary parallels, and considers the possible relationship between 2 Peter and the Pastoral Epistles (1, 2 Timothy, and Titus).
Paperback edition is available from the Society of Biblical Literature (www.sbl-site.org).
About the Author
Michael J. Gilmour, Ph.D. in New Testament (2000), McGill University, is Assistant Professor of New Testament at Providence College in Otterburne, Manitoba.