2nd letter of Peter

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New Testament
Acts of the Apostles
Paul's letters
Catholic letters
Two pages from the Bodmer VIII papyrus. This papyrus is the oldest surviving source for the 2nd Epistle of Peter.

The second letter of the apostle Peter belongs to the New Testament of the Christian Bible .

The author wants to strengthen Christians in the faith, warns them against false teachers and emphatically defends the expectation of the return of Christ.


In historical-critical theology it is practically unanimously assumed that the Symeon Peter , servant and apostle of Christ, named as the author in verse 1.1 , is not the author. The main reasons for this are great stylistic differences to the first letter of Peter , which some church fathers , such as B. Eusebius of Caesarea , and later John Calvin discussed an assumed dependency on the content of Jude's letter as well as the delayed inclusion of the letter in the canon (see also below “Important passages”).

Conservative authors counter this by saying that stylistic differences with so little comparative material and different topics do not necessarily mean that the author is different, that the letter of Jude can just as well be dependent on the letter of Peter and that it was included in the canon precisely because the early church the majority was based on apostolic authorship - in contrast to many other writings also named after Peter such as the Gospel of Peter , the Acts of Peter or the Apocalypse of Peter , whose inclusion in the canon was never an option.


According to 2 Petr 1.12–15  EU and 2 Petr 3.1  EU , the letter is addressed to the same recipients as the first Peter letter, ie to Christians in different areas of Asia Minor. According to 2 Petr 1,1  EU , the letter is addressed to all believers , i.e. to Jewish and Gentile Christians.


The letter represents, among other things, an answer to the problem of the failure to return Christ. For this reason it is also regarded as one of the latest writings of the New Testament and is often dated to the beginning of the 2nd century.

Assuming “authenticity” (ie from Simon Petrus as author), the letter is usually dated shortly before Peter's death (1.14), probably before the year 64; if the letter is understood as an answer to the questions raised by Paul's first letter to the Thessalonians , it is even dated to around the year 51. However, these positions are rejected by almost all theologians and historians, with reference to them, among other things that the letter assumes that everyone who had known Jesus personally is already dead (3, 4), which would not have been the case in the 1960s, i.e. only about 30 years after Jesus' death.


  • Author, recipient, greetings 1, 1–2
  • Growth of the elect 1, 3-21
  • Dangers and false teachers 2: 1–22
  • The Second Coming of Christ 3: 1–14
  • Closing admonitions 3.15–18

Important places

  • 1.5–7 stages of spiritual growth: Faith - virtue - knowledge - self-control - perseverance - piety - brotherhood - love
  • 1.16–19 recourse to the story of the “ transfiguration of Jesus on a mountain ” (cf. Matthew 17: 5).
  • 1.19–21 Biblical Hermeneutics and Scripture Inspiration
  • 3.15 The author has a collection of Paul's letters (although it is not stated which letters they contain), which are equated with the other scriptures.

See also


  • Barbara Aland et al. a. (Ed.): Novum Testamentum Graecum. Editio critica maior . Vol. 4: The Catholic Letters . Lfg. 2: The letters of Peter . Teilbd. 1: text ; Teilbd. 2: Accompanying materials . Stuttgart 2000 (full text-critical edition)
  • Richard J. Bauckham : 2 Peter: An Account of Research . In: ANRW II.25.5, de Gruyter, Berlin / New York 1988, pp. 3713–3752 (research report)
  • Norbert Brox : Peter I. The 1st Peter II. The 2nd Peter . In: Theologische Realenzyklopädie 26 (1996), pp. 308-319.
  • Watson E. Mills: 2 Peter and Jude . Bibliographies for Biblical Research. New Testament Series 19. Mellen Biblical Press, Lewiston NY u. a. 2000 ISBN 0-7734-2443-1
  • P. Müller: The second letter of Peter . In: Theologische Rundschau 66 (2001), pp. 310–337 (research report)


  • Richard J. Bauckham : Jew. 2 Peter . Word Biblical Commentary 50. Word, Waco 1983 ISBN 0-8499-0249-5 (comprehensive like Vögtle)
  • Walter Grundmann : The letter of Judas and the second letter of Peter . Theological commentary on the New Testament 15th Deichert, Leipzig 3rd edition 1986
  • Henning Paulsen : The second letter of Peter and the letter of Jude . Critical-exegetical commentary on the New Testament 12.2. Vandenhoeck and Ruprecht, Göttingen 1992 ISBN 3-525-51626-6
  • Jerome H. Neyrey : 2 Peter, Jew. A New Translation with Introduction and Commentary . The Anchor Bible 37C. Doubleday, New York et al. a. 1993 ISBN 0-385-41362-9
  • Uwe Holmer , Werner de Boor : The letters of Peter and the letter of Judas . Wuppertaler Studienbibel.NT 18. Brockhaus, Wuppertal 1994 (generally understandable, application-oriented)
  • Heiko Krimmer , Martin Holland : First and second Peter letter . Edition C, Biblical Commentaries 20. Hänssler Verlag, Neuhausen-Stuttgart 1994 ISBN 3-7751-1599-4 (generally understandable , application-oriented)
  • Anton Vögtle : The Letter of Judas. The 2nd letter of Peter . Evangelical-Catholic Commentary on the New Testament 22. Benziger, Zurich a. a. 1994 ISBN 3-545-23124-0
  • Johann Tobias Beck : Peter’s letters. A comment . Reprint of the edition Gütersloh, Bertelsmann, 1896. with an escort. by Gerhard Maier . Brunnen-Verl., Gießen 1995 ISBN 3-7655-9226-9
  • Douglas J. Moo: 2 Peter and Jude . The NIV Application Commentary. Zondervan, Grand Rapids 1996 ISBN 0-310-20104-7 (generally understandable , application-oriented)
  • G. Bray (Eds.): James, 1-2 Peter, 1-3 John, Jude . InterVarsity Press, Downers Grove 2000 (for almost every verse the respective commentary by the Church Fathers in English translation)
  • Karl Hermann Schelkle : The letters of Peter. The letter of Jude . Herder's theological commentary on the New Testament. Herder, Freiburg i. Br. 2002
  • Thomas R. Schreiner : 1, 2 Peter, Jew . The New American Commentary 37. Broadman & Holman, Nashville 2003 ISBN 0-8054-0137-7
  • Rebecca Skaggs : The Pentecostal Commentary on 1 Peter, 2 Peter, Jude . Pentecostal commentary New Testament. T. & T. Clark International, London 2004 ISBN 0-8264-6569-2 (Pentecostal Church)

Individual studies

  • Klaus Berger : Controversy about God's providence. On the position of the opponents in the 2nd letter of Peter . In: Jan Willem van Henten u. a. (Ed.): Tradition and Re-Interpretation in Jewish and Early Christian Literature. FS JCH Lebram . StPB 36. Leiden 1986, pp. 121-135
  • Andrew Chester , Ralph P. Martin : The Theology of the Letters of James, Peter, and Jude . University Press, Cambridge 1994 ISBN 0-521-35631-8
  • Anders Gerdmar : Rethinking the Judaism-Hellenism Dichotomy. A Historiographical Case Study of Second Peter and Jude . Coniectanea biblica, New Testament series 36. Almqvist & Wiksell International, Stockholm 2001 ISBN 91-22-01915-4
  • Thomas J. Kraus : language, style and historical location of the second letter of Peter . WUNT II / 136. Mohr Siebeck, Tübingen 2001 ISBN 3-16-147550-X
  • Michael J. Gilmour : The Significance of Parallels between 2 Peter and Other Early Christian Literature . Academia Biblica 10. Brill, Leiden et al. a. 2002 ISBN 90-04-12714-3
  • Karl Mathias Schmidt : Reminder and reminder in the mask game. Epistolography, rhetoric and narrative of the pseudepigraphic letters of Peter . Herder's Biblical Studies 38. Herder, Freiburg i.Br. 2003 ISBN 3-451-28184-8
  • Jörg Frey : Savior, God and Morgenstern. Metaphor and Christology in the Second Letter of Peter . In: Jörg Frey, Jan Rohls , Ruben Zimmermann (eds.): Metaphorics and Christology . TBT 120. de Gruyter, Berlin a. a. 2003, pp. 131-148
  • Terrance Callan : Use of the Letter of Jude by the Second Letter of Peter . In: Biblica 85 (2004), pp. 42-64
  • Rudolf Hoppe : Belief in Parousia between the first epistle of Thessalonians and the second epistle of Peter. An unfinished business . In: Jacques Schlosser (Ed.): The Catholic Epistles and Tradition . BEThL 176. Leuven 2004, pp. 433-449
  • Lauri Thurén : The Relationship between 2 Peter and Jude. A Classical Problem Resolved? . In: Jacques Schlosser (Ed.) (Ibid.), Pp. 451–460
  • Hermann Josef Riedl : Anamnesis and apostolicity. The second letter of Peter and the theological problem of New Testament pseudepigraphy . Regensburg studies on theology 64. Lang, Frankfurt am Main 2005 ISBN 3-631-54557-6

Web links

Individual evidence

  1. 2nd Letter of Peter in the WiBiLex /
  2. Klaus Berger : Commentary on the New Testament. Gütersloh 2011, pp. 934–935.