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Letter of Peter to Philip

At a Glance
Gospel
Genre:
(2/5) **
Reliability of Dating:
(3/5) ***
Length of Text:
Greek
Original Language:
Ancient Translations:
Modern Translations:

Estimated Range of Dating: 170-220 A.D.

Chronological List of Early Christian Writings
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Information on Letter of Peter to Philip

Marvin W. Meyer writes (The Nag Hammadi Library in English, p. 433): "It is possible, then, to suggest a general outline for the literary history of The Letter of Peter to Philip. On the basis of the parallels with The Apocryphon of John and Irenaeus, we suggest that The Letter of Peter to Philip was written around the end of the second century C.E. or into the third. The author of the text presumably wrote in Greek: such may be intimated by the presence of Greek loan words and Greek idioms. The author apparently was a Christian Gnostic who was well versed in the Christian tradition, and who used and interpreted that tradition in a Christian Gnostic fashion. A gnostic dialogue has been constructed, though it is less true a dialogue than a revelatory discourse of Christ in answer to questions raised by the apostles. Within this dialogue are included gnostic materials which are non-Christian or only marginally Christian; these materials have been adopted as revelatory disclosures of the risen Christ. On the basis of the Christian and gnostic traditions with which the author was familiar, the author compiled a narrative document with a revelatory focus. The letter itself was added at the beginning of this narrative in order to stress the authoritative place of Peter, and The Letter of Peter to Philip subsequently received its present title. Finally, the Greek tractate was translated into Coptic, and found its way into Codex VIII of the Nag Hammadi library."


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Kirby, Peter. "Letter of Peter to Philip." Early Christian Writings. <http://www.earlychristianwritings.com/petertophilip.html>.