Bible Commentaries

Cambridge Greek Testament for Schools and Colleges


Book Overview - Titus


IN the Notes and Introduction to this edition of the Pastoral Epistles I have thought it desirable to state the opinions which have been adopted after consideration, without, as a rule, giving references to the views of the many commentators who have travelled over the same ground. It is therefore necessary now to express my chief obligations. The problems of date and authorship are handled most fully by Holtzmann, whose edition is indispensable to the student who desires to learn the difficulties in the way of accepting St Paul as the writer. These are also stated, with brevity and candour, in Jülicher’s Einleitung in das N.T. The Introductions of Dr Salmon and Dr Zahn should be read on the other side; and the chapter on the Pastoral Epistles in Dr Hort’s Judaistic Christianity should not be overlooked. A more complete and elaborate statement of the conservative case is given by Weiss, whose edition of these Epistles is, on the whole, the best now accessible, whether for criticism or for exegesis. Of modern English commentaries Bishop Ellicott’s is the most exact and trustworthy, in its detailed exposition of the text. Among the Patristic writers, St Chrysostom and St Jerome will often be found instructive; and Bengel’s Gnomon can never be safely neglected.

I have to thank my friends, Dr Gwynn, and the General Editor, for their great kindness in reading the proofs and for much valuable criticism.


21st August, 1899.




THE interpretation of the several books of the Bible is necessarily affected in many directions by the view which is taken of their author and their date. In the case of some of St Paul’s Epistles, those for instance addressed to the Romans, Galatians, and Corinthians, there is such a general consensus of opinion among scholars that they proceed from St Paul, that it is not necessary for an editor to spend much space in elaborating the proofs of what everyone who reads his commentary is likely to admit.

In the case of other Epistles, however, questions of date and authorship become of primary importance; the data may be uncertain, the phenomena which the documents present may have received widely different explanations; and it thus becomes a duty to present in detail all the evidence which is available. The Epistles to Timothy and Titus offer peculiar difficulties in these respects. They have been reckoned by the Church as canonical books, ever since the idea of a Canon of the N.T. came into clear consciousness; and they claim for themselves to have been written by St Paul, the Apostle of the Gentiles. But for various reasons which shall be explained as we proceed, serious difficulty has been felt by many in accepting the Pauline authorship; and critics are not in agreement as to whether we are justified in believing them to have been written in the Apostolic age.

We have to consider, then, at the outset, the problem of the date and authorship of the Pastoral Epistles. The distribution of the argument in this Introduction will be as follows. We shall summarise (Chap. I.) the external evidence as to the diffusion of these letters in the early Christian communities, and consider how far this evidence justifies us in placing their origin in the apostolic period. We go on (Chap. II.) to examine the place which the Epistles must occupy in St Paul’s life, if they are to be regarded as the work of that Apostle. The arguments which will here engage our attention will be mainly those derived from the historical notices of events and individuals to be found in the Epistles themselves. Chapter III. is devoted to a discussion of the peculiar vocabulary, phraseology and style of these letters, which admittedly vary much in this respect from the Pauline letters universally conceded to be genuine. Chapter IV. treats of the heresies which the writer had in his mind. In Chapter V. an attempt is made to examine the nature of the ecclesiastical organisation which the Pastoral Epistles reveal to us as existing at the time of their composition.

To treat these large subjects exhaustively would require a treatise; and only a brief sketch can be attempted here. But the main drift of the argument will be to shew that external and internal evidence conspire to place the Epistles to Timothy and Titus in a very early period of the history of the Christian Society, and that, this being established, there is no good reason for denying that their author was the Apostle whose name they bear.

It will be convenient to remark in this place that these three epistles are so closely linked together in thought, in phraseology, and in the historical situation which they presuppose, that they must be counted as having all come into being within a very few years of each other. The general consent of critics allows that they stand or fall together; and it is therefore not always necessary to distinguish the indications of the existence of one from those of the existence of another. We may speak generally, without loss of accuracy, of evidences of knowledge of the Pastoral Epistles if we come upon reminiscences of any one of them. And so, in investigating their literary history, we consider them not separately, but together.

Let us take, for clearness’ sake, the testimony of the East before we consider that of the West. In either case, we may begin our enquiry about the year 180 of our era, after which date there was no controversy as to the reception and authority of our letters. We shall then work backwards as far as we can.

§ I. The testimony of the East

(i) Theophilus, Bishop of Antioch circa 181, may be our first witness. Two passages from his apologetic treatise ad Autolycum present certain traces of our letters:—

(a) Ad Autol. iii. 14 p. 389 ἕτι μὴν καὶ περὶ τοῦ ὑποτάσσεσθαι ἀρχαῖς καὶ ἐξουσίαις, καὶ εὔχεσθαι περὶ αὐτῶν, κελεύει ἡμᾶς θεῖος λόγος ὅπως ἤρεμον καὶ ἡσύχιον βίον διάγωμεν.

1 Timothy 2:2 ὑπὲρ βασιλέων καὶ πάντων τῶν ἑν ὑπεροχῇ ὄντων, ἵνα ἥρεμον καὶ ἡσύχιον βίον διάγωμεν.

Titus 3:5 διὰ λουτροῦ παλινγενεσίας καὶ ἀνακαινώσεως πνεύματος ἁγίου.

(b) Ad Autol. p. 95 διὰ ὕδατος καὶ λουτροῦ παλινγενεσίας πάντας τοὺς προσιόντας τῇ ἀληθείᾳ.

Titus 3:1 ὑπομίμνησκε αὐτοὺς ἀρχαῖς ἐξουσίαις ὑποτάσσεσθαι.

It will be observed that Theophilus not only quotes the Pastorals, but speaks of them as proceeding from ‘the Divine Word.’

(ii) An entirely different kind of witness may next be brought into court. The apocryphal Acts of Paul and Thecla, a romance setting forth certain legendary adventures of St Paul, is believed by the best authorities to have been originated in Asia Minor, and to have received its present form not later than 170 A.D.[1] Now these Acta depend for many details of their story upon 2 Tim. The romancer borrows phrases (λέγει οὗτος ἀνάστασιν γενἐσθαι ὅτι ἤδη γέγονεν ἐφ οἷς ἔχομεν τέκνοις §14; cp. 2 Timothy 2:18), and names (Demas, Hermogenes, Onesiphorus) from that Epistle, and works them up into his tale. Whether these details were part of the original document, or were added by a reviser, is uncertain; but in any case we have here another indication of the circulation of 2 Tim. in Asia before the year 170.

(iii) Hegesippus, the earliest Church historian, may be cited next as an Eastern witness; for, though he travelled to Rome and to Corinth, his home was in Palestine. The date of his work, which we chiefly know from the citations in Eusebius, was probably about 170. In the following extract Eusebius seems to be incorporating the actual words of Hegesippus.

ap. Eus. H. E. III. 32 διὰ τῆς τῶν ἑτεροδιδασκάλων ἀπάτης, οἷ καὶ, ἄτε μηδενὸς ἔτι τῶν ἀποστόλων λειπομένου, γυμνῇ λοιπὸν ἤδη κεφαλῇ τῷ τῆς ἁληθείας κηρύγματι τὴν ψευδώνυμον γνῶσιν αντικηρύττειν ἐπεχείρουν.

1 Timothy 1:3 ἵνα παραγγείλῃς τισὶν μὴ ἑτεροδιδασκαλεῖν. Cp. 1 Timothy 6:3.

1 Timothy 6:20 ἀντιθέσεις τῆς ψευδωνύμου γνώσεως.

The references to the ἑτεροδιδάσκαλοι and to their ‘knowledge falsely so called’ are unmistakeable.

(iv) Justin Martyr (circa 155) has two or three allusions to the phraseology of our letters.

(a) Dial. 7. 7 τὰ τῆς πλάνης πνεύματα καὶ δαιμόνια δοξολογοῦντα.

1 Timothy 4 :1 προσέχοντες πνεύμασιν πλάνοις καὶ διδασκαλίαις δαιμονίων.

Dial. 35. 3 ἀπὰ τῶ τῆς πλάνης πνευμάτων.

(b) Dial. 47. 15 γὰρ χρηστότης καὶ φιλανθρωπία τοῦ θεοῦ.

Titus 3:4 ὄτε δὲ ἡ χρηστότης καὶ ἡ φιλανθρωπία ἐπεφάνη τοῦ σωτῆρος ἡμῶν θεοῦ.

(v) The letter to the Philippians by Polycarp, bishop of Smyrna (circa 117), betrays several times a familiarity with the thought and language of the Pastorals.

(a) § 8 προσκαρτερῶμεν τῇ ἐλπίδι ἡμῶνὄς ἐστιν Χριστὸς Ἰησοῦς.

1 Timothy 1:1καὶ Χριστοῦ Ἰησοῦ τῆς ἐλπίδος ἡυῶν.

See note on 1 Timothy 1:1 below.

(b) § 12 Orate etiam pro regibusut fructus vester manifestus sit in omnibus. [Fragment preserved only in Latin.]

(c) § 5 ὁμοίως διάκονοι ἄμεμπτοιμὴ διάβολοι, μὴ δίλογοι, ἀφιλάργυροι

1 Timothy 2:1-2 παρακαλῶποιεῖσθαι δεήσειςὑπὲρ βασιλέων.

1 Timothy 4:15 ἵνα σου ἡ προκοπὴ φανερὰ ῃ πᾶσιν.

1 Timothy 3:8 f. διακόνουςμὴ διλόγουςμὴ αἰσχροκερδεῖςγυναῖκας ὡσαύτως σεμνἀς, μὴ διαβόλους.

The directions about deacons in these two passages are much more closely parallel than even the above coincidences in language would suggest.

(d) § 4 ἀρχὴ δὲ πάντων χαλεπῶν φιλαργυρίαεἰδότες οὐν ὅτι οὐδὲν εἰσηνέγκαμεν εἰς τον τὸν κόσμον ἀλλʼ οὐδὲ ἐξενεγκεῖν τι ἔχομεν.

1 Timothy 6:10ῥίζα γὰρ πάντων τῶν κακῶν ἐστὶν ἡ φιλαργυρία.

1 Timothy 6:7 ουδὲν γὰρ εἰσηνέγκαμεν εἰς τὸν κόσμον, ὅτι οὐδὲ ἐξενεγκεῖν τι δυνάμεθα.

This is an unmistakeable quotation.

(e) § 5 καὶ συνβασιλεύσομεν αὐτῷ εἴγε πιστεύομεν.

2 Timothy 2:12 εἰ. ὑπομένομεν καὶ συνβασιλεύσομεν.

It is just possible that in this passage Polycarp may be quoting, not from 2 Timothy 2:12, but from the hymn there quoted by St Paul. See note in loc.

(f) § 9 οὐ γὰρ τὸν νῦν ἠγάπησαν αἰῶνα.

2 Timothy 4:10 Δημᾶς γάρ με ἐγκατέλιπεν ἀγαπήσας τὸν νῦν αἰῶνα.

Note that Polycarp generally uses the phrase phrase ὁ αἰὼν οὗτος, not ὁ νῦν αἰὼν.

(vi) We turn from Polycarp, the disciple of St John, to Ignatius, Bishop of Antioch (circa 116), of whose letters (in the shorter Greek recension) Lightfoot’s investigations may be taken as having established the genuineness. There is no long quotation from the Pastorals in Ignatius as there is in Polycarp. But the coincidences in phraseology can hardly be accidental.

(a) ad Magn. 11 &c. Ἰησοῦ Χριστοῦ τῆς ἐλπίδος ἡμῶν.

1 Timothy 1:1 Χριστοῦ Ἰησοῦ τῆς ἐλπίδος ἡμῶν.

So also ad Trall. inscr. and 2.

(b) ad Polyc. 6 ἀρέσκετε ᾦ στρατεύεσθε.

2 Timothy 2:4 οὐδεὶς στρατευόμενος ἐμπλέκεται ταῖς τοῦ βίου πραγματίαις, ἵνα τῷ στρατολογήσαντι ἀρέσῃ.

(c) ad Ephesians 2 καὶ Κρόκοςκατὰ πάντα με ἀνέπαυσεν ὡς καὶ αὐτὸν ὁ Πατὴρ Ἰησοῦ Χριστοῦ ἀναψύξαι.

2 Timothy 1:16 δᾠη ἔλεος ὁ Κύριος τῷ Ὀνησιφόρου οἴκῳ, ὅτι πολλάκις με ἀνέψυξεν.

(d) ad Magn. 8 μὴ πλανᾶσθε ταῖς ἑτεροδοξίαις μηδὲ μυθεύμασιν τοῖς ποῖς παλαιοῖς ἀνωφελέσιν οὖσιν· εἰ γὰρ μέχρι νῦν κατὰ Ἰουδαισμὸν ζῶμεν κ.τ.λ.

1 Timothy 4:7 γραώδεις μύθους παραιτοῦ.

Titus 3:9 μωρὰς δὲ ζητήσειςπεριίστασοεἰσίν γὰρ ἀνωφελεῖς.

Titus 1:4 μὴ προσέχοντες Ἰουδαϊκοῖς μύθοις.

(e) ad Magn. 3 καὶ ὑμῖν δὲ πρέπει μὴ συγχρᾶσθαι τῇ ἡλικίᾳ τοῦ ἐπισκόπου.

1 Timothy 4:12 μηδείς σου τῆς νεότητος καταφρονείτω.

(f) We have some peculiar words in Ignatius only found elsewhere in the Pastoral Epistles, e.g. ἐτεροδιδασκαλεῖν (ad Polyc. 3; cp. 1 Timothy 1:3; 1 Timothy 6:3). Again κατάστημα (ad Trall. 3) is only found in N.T. at Titus 2:3, and πραϋπάθεια (ad Trall. 8) only at 1 Timothy 6:11; and αἰχμαλωτίζειν is used by Ignatius of the machinations of heretical teachers (ad Philad. 2, Eph. 17) as it is at 2 Timothy 3:6.

There is thus a continuous testimony to the circulation of the Pastoral Epistles in the East as far back as the year 116.

§ II. The testimony of the West

(i) We begin with Irenaeus, bishop of Lyons (cir. 180), the disciple of Polycarp. The witness of his treatise contra Haereses is express and frequent to the circulation, the authority, and the Pauline authorship of the Pastoral Letters. The passages are familiar and need not be quoted. Cp. Pref. with 1 Timothy 1:4; 1 Timothy 4:16. 3 with 1 Timothy 1:9; 1 Timothy 2:14. 7 with 1 Timothy 6:20; 1 Timothy 3:14. 1 with 2 Timothy 4:9-11; 2 Timothy 3:2. 3 with 2 Timothy 4:21; and 2 Timothy 1:16. 3 with Titus 3:10. In the last-mentioned passage it is noteworthy that Irenaeus is appealing to the Epistle to Titus as written by St Paul, against heretics, who would certainly have denied the authority of the words quoted if they could have produced reasons for doing so.

(ii) Eusebius has preserved a remarkable Letter of the Churches of Vienne and Lyons to their brethren in Asia, written about the year 180 to acquaint them with the details of the great persecution in which they had recently lost their venerable bishop. Pothinus, the predecessor of Irenaeus, was martyred in the year 177, when he was ninety years of age. The witness of the Church over which he presided to the use of any N.T. book thus brings us a long way back into the second century. And the following phrases in the Letter betray a knowledge of the First Epistle to Timothy.

(a) Eus. H. E. V. i. 17 Ἄτταλονστῦλον καὶ ἑδραίωμα τῶν ἐνταῦθα ἀεὶ γεγονὁτα.

1 Timothy 3:15ἥτις ἐστὶν ἐκκλησία θεοῦ ζῶντος, στύλος καὶ ἑδραίωμα τῆς ἀληθείας.

(b) ap. Eus. H. E. V. iii. 2 Ἀλκιβιάδης μὴ χρώμενος τοῖς κτίσμασι τοῦ θεοῦπεισθεὶς δεπάντων ἀνέδην μετελάμβανε καὶ ηὐχαρίστει τῷ θεῷ.

1 Timothy 4:3-4ἃ ὁ θεὸς ἔκτισεν εἰς μετάλημψιν μετὰ εὐχαριστίας.

(c) ap. Eus. H. E. V. i. 30 ὅς ὑπὸ τῶν στρατιωτῶν ἐπὶ τὸ βῆμα κομισθείςἐπιβοήσεις παντοίας ποιουμένων, ὡς αὐτοῦ ὅντος Χριστοῦ, ἀπεδίδου τὴν καλὴν μαρτυρίαν.

1 Timothy 6:13 Χριστοῦ Ἰησοῦ τοῦ μαρτυρήσαντος ἐπὶ Ποντίου Πειλάτου τὴν καλὴν ὁμολογίαν. (The vg. is qui testimonium reddidit.)

Dr Robinson has argued that the text of this Letter of the Churches of Vienne and Lyons betrays a familiarity with a Latin version of the N.T., rather than the Greek original[2]. If this could be regarded as established (and his arguments seem to me to be well founded), it would prove that by the year 180 the Pastoral Letters were so firmly received as canonical that a Latin version of them had been made and was current in Gaul.

(iii) Contemporary with Irenaeus and the Letter from Vienne and Lyons is the work of Athenagoras of Athens (cir. 176); there is at least one remarkable parallel to a phrase in 1 Tim.

Legat. Pro Christianis 16 p. 291 πάντα γὰρ ὁ θεός ἐστιν αὐτὸς αὑτῷ φῶς ἀπρόσιτον.

1 Timothy 6:16 ὁ μόνος ἔχων ἀθανασίαν φῶς αἰκῶν ἀπρόσιτον.

Note that the word ἀπρόσιτος does not occur again in the Greek Bible, although it is used by Philo and Plutarch.

(iv) Our next Western witness, Heracleon, must be placed a few years earlier (cir. 165); one phrase seems to recall 2 Tim.

ap. Clem. Alex. Strom. IV. 9 διόπερ ἀρνήσασθαιἑαυτὸν οὐδέποτε δύναται.

2 Timothy 2:13 ἀρνήσασθαι γὰρ ἑαυτὸν οὐ δύναται.

See note below in loc.

(v) In the year 140 we find the heretic Marcion at Rome excluding the Pastoral Epistles from his Apostolicon, possibly on the ground (though this can be no more than conjecture) that they were only private letters and not on a par with formal declarations of doctrine. But whatever Marcion’s reason for the omission, Tertullian who is our earliest authority for the fact cites it as a novel feature in his heretical teaching. “Miror tamen cum ad unum hominem literas factas receperit, quod ad Timotheum duas et unam ad Titum, de ecclesiastico statu compositas, recusaverit” are Tertullian’s words (adv. Marc. 2 Timothy 2:21). Thus Marcion may be counted as an unwilling witness to the traditional place which the Epistles to Timothy and Titus occupied in orthodox circles at Rome about the year 140.

The parallels to our letters in the ‘Epistle to Diognetus’ (a composite work of the second century) are not uninteresting (cp. e.g. §§ iv. xi. with 1 Timothy 3:16 and § ix. with Titus 3:4), but inasmuch as the date of the piece is somewhat uncertain, and as the parallels are not verbally exact, we do not press them

(vi) The writer of the ancient homily which used to be called the Second Epistle of Clement, and which is a Western document composed not later than 140, was certainly familiar with the Pastorals.

(a) § 20 τῷ μόνῳ θεῷ ἀοράτῳ, πατρὶ τῆς ἀληθείας κ.τ.λ.

1 Timothy 1:17 τῷ δὲ βασιλεῖ τῶν αἰώνων, ἀφθάρτῳ, ἀοράτῳ μόνῳ θεῷ κ.τ.λ.

(b) § 7 οὐ πάντες στεφανοῦνται, εἰ μὴ οἱ πολλὰ κοπιάσαντες καὶ καλῶς ἀγωνισάμενοι.

1 Timothy 4:10 εἰς τοῦτο γὰρ κοπιῶμεν καὶ ἀγωνιζόμεθα, ὅτι κ.τ.λ.

(c) § 8 τηρήσατε τὴν σάρκα ἁγνὴν καὶ τὴν σφραγῖδα ἄσπιλον ἵνα τὴν αἰώνιον ζωὴν ἀπολάβωμεν.

1 Timothy 6:14 τηρῆσαί σε τὴν ἐντολὴν ἄσπιλον ἀνεπίλημπτον κ.τ.λ.

1 Timothy 6:19 ἴνα ἐπιλάβωνται τῆς ὄντως ζωῆς.

The whole of §§ 6, 7, 8 recalls the language and thought of 1 Timothy 6. In addition to the above parallels there are noteworthy verbal coincidences, κοσμικαὶ ἐπιθυμίαι (§ 17; cp. Titus 2:12); κακοπαθεῖν (§ 19; cp. 2 Timothy 1:8; 2 Timothy 2:3; 2 Timothy 2:9; 2 Timothy 4:5); and the word ἐπιφάνεια (§§ 12, 17) used as a synonym for the Parousia of Christ, a usage not found in the N.T. outside the Pastorals (see note on 1 Timothy 6:14 below).

(vii) We may also with some degree of confidence cite Clement of Rome as a writer who was familiar with the phraseology of the Pastorals.

(a) § 2 ἔτοιμοι εἰς πᾶν ἔργον ἀγαθόν.

Titus 3 :1 πρὸς πᾶν ἔργον ἀγαθὸν ἐτοίμους εἷναι Cp. 2 Timothy 2:21; 2 Timothy 3:17.

(b) § 29 προσέλθωμεν οὗν αὐτῷ ἐν ὁσιότητι ψυχῆς, ἀγνὰς καὶ ἀμιάντους χεῖρας αἴροντες πρὸς αὐτόν.

1 Timothy 2:8 βούλομαι οὗν προσεύχεσθαι τοὺς ἄνδραςἐπαίροντας ὁσίους χεῖρας χωρὶς ὀργῆς καὶ διαλογισμοῦ.

(c) § 45 τῶν ἐν καθαρᾷ συνειδήσει λατρευόντων τῷ παναιρέτῳ.

2 Timothy 1:3 ᾧ λατρεύω ἀπὸ προγόνων ἐν καθαρᾷ συνειδήσει.

(d) § 7 καὶ ἴδωμεν τί καλὸν καὶ τί τερπνὸν καὶ τί προσδεκτὸν ἐνώπιον τοῦ ποιήσαντος ἡμᾶς.

1 Timothy 2:3 τοῦτο καλὸν καὶ ἀπόδεκτον ἐνώπιον τοῦ σωτῆρος ἡμῶν θεοῦ.

We may also compare § 54 with 1 Timothy 3:13, § 21 with 1 Timothy 5:21, § 32 with Titus 3:5, and the title βασιλεῦ τῶν αἰώνων (§ 61) with 1 Timothy 1:17 (but cp. Tobit 13:6, Revelation 15:3).

Holtzmann explains these coincidences between Clement and the Pastorals to be due to ‘the common Church atmosphere’ in which they all originated; but it seems as if they were too close to admit of any other hypothesis save that Clement wrote with the language and thoughts of the Pastorals in his mind.

Holtzmann’s explanation is sufficient, we think, of the parallels between the Pastorals and the Epistle of Barnabas, which occur for the most part in doctrinal phrases that may well have become stereotyped at a very early period. Thus we have (§7) μέλλων κρίνειν ζῶντας καὶ νεκρούς (cp. 2 Timothy 4:1) and (§ 12) ἐν σαρκὶ φανερωθείς (cp. 1 Timothy 3:16); but that two writers both use these expressions does not by itself prove that one borrowed from the other. See notes on 1 Timothy 3:16; 1 Timothy 5:17, 2 Timothy 4:1 below.

The conclusion which we derive from this survey of the literature of the period is that we find traces of the Pastoral Epistles in Gaul and Greece in 177, in Rome in 140 (certainly)—as far back as 95, if we accept Clement’s testimony—and in Asia as early as 116. The remains of primitive Christian literature are so meagre for the first hundred years of the Church’s life that we could hardly have expected à priori to have gathered testimonies from that period so numerous and so full to any book of the New Testament. And this attestation appears the more remarkable, both as to its range and its precision, if we consider the character of the letters under examination. They are not formal treatises addressed to Churches, like the Epistles to the Romans and the Galatians, but semi-private letters to individuals, providing counsel and guidance which to some extent would only be applicable in special circumstances. And yet we find that their language is already familiar to the Bishop of Smyrna, who was St John’s pupil, so familiar that he naturally falls into its use when he is speaking of the qualifications of Christian ministers. No subsequent Pastoral letters thus imprinted themselves on the consciousness of the Church. Further, we observe that these Epistles claim to come from St Paul. There can be no mistake about that. Hence a writer who quotes from them as Polycarp does, indicates his belief in their apostolic authorship.

External evidence, such as has been under review, is the most trustworthy of all; for, although men may differ as to the internal evidence,—the tone, the temper,—of a document, they rarely differ as to the fact of its citation by a subsequent writer. And so it has been worth giving in detail.

Finally, a word must be said as to the additional emphasis that is given to the use of a New Testament Epistle when its words are used as authoritative or as familiar, not merely by individuals whose only claim to memory is that they have written books, but by bishops who represent the continuous tradition of their respective sees. Clement, Polycarp, Ignatius, are not single authorities. Their use of the Pastorals is not to be compared to the use by a literary man of our own day of a phrase or an argument that he has seen somewhere, and that has caught his fancy. It bears witness to the belief of the primitive Christian communities at Rome, at Smyrna, at Antioch, that the Pastoral letters were, at the least, documents “profitable for teaching, for reproof, for correction, for instruction which is in righteousness.” When speaking of early Christian literature it must always be remembered that, however fragmentary it be, it is the outcome of the continuous life of a society, a society which has been ever jealous of change, for from the beginning it has claimed to be in possession of the truth of God. And thus we must read and interpret the literature in the light of the common faith which lies behind it.

From our study then of the evidence of the early and wide diffusion of the Pastoral Epistles, we are forced to conclude, that, if not genuine relics of the Apostolic age, they must have been forged in St Paul’s name and accepted on St Paul’s authority all over the Christian world, within fifty years of St Paul’s death—within thirty years if we accept the testimony of Clement of Rome. At any rate, the documentary evidence forces them back to the first century. We have next to consider how far their internal witness agrees with the recorded tradition of the Church, the claim that they make for themselves, that they were written by St Paul, the Apostle of the Gentiles.



We have now considered the evidence which history gives us of the diffusion of the Epistles to Timothy and Titus in the primitive Christian communities; and we have learned, from the traces of these letters which are to be found in the fragmentary remains of early Christian literature, more especially in the letter of Polycarp of Smyrna, that they were in the possession of the Church at the very beginning of the second century. This conclusion, it will be borne in mind, is entirely independent of their authorship. Whether they were written by St Paul or not, at all events they were current in Christian circles, and were accepted as authoritative, within fifty years of his death.

We now proceed to interrogate the letters themselves, that we may determine how far their internal character corresponds with the early date that history demands for them; and we begin with the enquiry, as to how far they agree with what we know or can surmise of the facts of St Paul’s life. Since they claim St Paul as their author, it is natural to expect that they will connect themselves with his troubled career. What then do they tell us about the circumstances of their composition, and about the history of the Apostle of the Gentiles?

Our chief authority for St Paul’s life is, of course, the book of the Acts of the Apostles; but that book does not give us any account of St Paul’s death. It brings him to Rome where he has appealed to the Emperor Nero; and it leaves him there, in custody, it is true, but yet permitted in his own hired house to enjoy the society of his friends and acquaintances. Whatever be the reason of his silence, St Luke does not tell us what happened as the result of that hazardous appeal. As far as St Luke’s narrative is concerned, St Paul’s subsequent history is a blank. We could not tell from the Acts whether that imprisonment in Rome was ended by death, or whether the great prisoner was released from his bonds and again permitted to pursue his missionary labours. The opinion on the subject most widely held among scholars is that the Epistles to the Philippians, Colossians, Ephesians and Philemon, were written during the period of St Paul’s life at Rome of which St Luke gives us a glimpse in the closing verses of the Acts; just as it is agreed that the Epistles to the Churches of Thessalonica, Corinth, Galatia and Rome were written on previous missionary journeys. The question that comes before us now is: At what period of St Paul’s life do the Pastoral Epistles claim to have been written? Is it when he was on his early missionary travels, or when he was in Rome expecting daily the issue of his appeal to the Emperor, or is it at a later period of his life of which we have no information from St Luke? We do not assume at this stage that they were written by St Paul; but we ask, At what period of his life do they profess to have been written, and is there any inherent difficulty as to the period which they claim for themselves?

Taking up the question in this form, we are soon forced to the conclusion that they cannot be fitted into St Paul’s life as recorded in the Acts. Let us first examine the Second Epistle to Timothy. This letter might seem at first sight to be suitably placed in the period covered by the closing verses of St Luke’s account, for the place of writing is plainly Rome, where the Apostle represents himself as calmly awaiting his martyrdom. He has finished his course; he has kept the faith; henceforth is laid up for him the crown of righteousness (2 Timothy 4:7-8). But a closer inspection reveals to us that the allusions to individuals and events in the Epistle do not harmonise with such an hypothesis. For we know from the Acts that before St Paul sailed for Italy he was two years in custody in Palestine (Acts 24:27), and that then he was at least two years longer in Rome (Acts 28:30). And yet here is a letter which alludes to events as quite recent that could only have taken place when he was a free man. Take for instance the words, “Erastus abode at Corinth, but Trophimus I left at Miletus sick” (2 Timothy 4:20). This would be a strange way of telling news now some years old. As a matter of fact, on the last occasion that St Paul was at Miletus before he sailed for Italy, Timothy was with him, and would have been fully cognisant of all that had happened (Acts 20:4; Acts 20:17). And further on that occasion Trophimus was not left at Miletus sick, for we find him immediately afterwards in Jerusalem at the time of St Paul’s arrest. Indeed St Luke tells us that it was because the Jews saw Trophimus the Ephesian in the city with him, that they made a disturbance on the ground that Paul was defiling the Temple by introducing a Greek into the holy place (Acts 21:29). It is impossible to suppose that the little piece of information given at 2 Timothy 4:20 referred to an event so long past. It was evidently a recent occurrence. A like observation may be made on 2 Timothy 4:13, “The cloke that I left at Troas with Carpus, bring when thou comest, and the books, especially the parchments.” It is unnatural to imagine that St Paul’s concern for the baggage that he had left behind at Troas was drawn out by the recollection of a travelling cloak and some books that had been parted from him years before. We cannot, then, with any plausibility place 2 Timothy in the period of imprisonment mentioned by St Luke. It presupposes a recent period of freedom.

Similar difficulties beset all theories by which it is attempted to place 1 Tim. or Titus in the years preceding the voyage to Rome. “I exhorted thee to tarry at Ephesus when I was going into Macedonia,” are the opening words of the first letter to Timothy, following immediately after the customary salutation (1 Timothy 1:3). When could this have been? There are only two occasions on which St Paul was at Ephesus mentioned in the Acts. [1] On the first of these visits, which was very brief, he was on his way to Caesarea (Acts 18:19-22), not to Macedonia, so that this cannot be the visit alluded to in 1 Tim. [2] The other visit was of longer duration. It is described in Acts 19 and lasted for some three years. And the suggestion has been made (though it is not adopted now by critics of any school) that we may find room in this period for both 1 Tim. and Titus. It is the case that after the termination of this long residence in Ephesus, St Paul journeyed to Macedonia (Acts 20:1); but then he did not leave Timothy behind him. On the contrary he had sent Timothy and Erastus over to Macedonia beforehand (Acts 19:22). This journey, then, cannot be the one alluded to in 1 Timothy 1:3. In short, if we are to suppose that the first letter to Timothy alludes to an expedition which started from Ephesus during St Paul’s long stay there, some years before he visited Rome, we must recognise that St Luke tells us nothing about it. The same may be said of the visit of St Paul to Crete which is mentioned in the Epistle to Titus (Titus 1:5). Now it is not improbable that the Apostle may have made several excursions from Ephesus of small extent, during the period mentioned in Acts 19, of which no information is given us by St Luke. It is likely, for instance, that he paid a brief visit to Corinth during the three years (2 Corinthians 12:14; 2 Corinthians 13:1). But it is not possible to suppose that great and important journeys like those indicated in the Pastorals could have been passed over by the historian. Indeed there would hardly be time for them. We should have to take out of the three years not only a visit to Macedonia, of which we have no other record, but what would necessarily be a prolonged residence in Crete, when the Church was being organised there, and (apparently) a winter at Nicopolis (Titus 3:12). Events such as these are not the kind of events that are omitted by St Luke, who is especially careful to tell of the beginnings of missionary enterprise in new places, and of the “confirmation” of distant Churches. And further, if we are to take all these journeys out of the three years at Ephesus, St Paul’s statement “By the space of three years I ceased not to admonish every one [sc. the elders of Ephesus] night and day with tears” (Acts 20:31), becomes an absurd exaggeration[3].

Hence we come to the conclusion that the Pastoral Epistles do not fit into the life of St Paul as recorded in the Acts of the Apostles. They presuppose a period of activity subsequent to the imprisonment in Rome mentioned by St Luke; they indicate certain events in his life which are not mentioned and for which no room can be found in the Acts. 1 Tim. and Titus tell us of missionary enterprise of which we have no record in that book, so that they imply his release from his captivity; and 2 Tim., inasmuch as it places him again at Rome, daily expecting death, presupposes a second imprisonment there.

Up to this point there is practically no difference of opinion among scholars, whether they accept or deny the Pauline authorship of the Pastoral letters. The fact is admitted. The Epistles to Timothy and Titus cannot be fitted into the history of the Acts. But from this admitted fact widely different inferences have been drawn. Those who accept the prima facie evidence which the Pastoral Epistles afford, urge that the assumptions underlying them, of St Paul’s release from captivity and his second imprisonment, afford no solid ground for disputing their authenticity, inasmuch as the whole of St Paul’s life is not told in the Acts. If we take them as they stand they give a quite conceivable though necessarily incomplete picture of the later history of St Paul. It would be impossible that they should receive direct verification from the Acts or from the other Pauline letters, for they deal with a later period than do those books. If they are consistent with themselves, that is all that can be demanded.

Those, on the other hand, who deny the Pauline authorship of the Pastorals begin by assuming that St Paul’s first imprisonment at Rome under Nero was his only imprisonment, it being terminated by his death, and that therefore there is no time available in which we may place our letters. And it is insisted that, in the absence of additional testimony, the inferential witness of the Pastorals to a second imprisonment can only be doubtful. From this the transition is easy to the statement that such a second imprisonment is unhistorical. This is the judgment of many writers of repute, and must receive detailed examination. At the outset the criticism is obvious, that such a method of historical enquiry, if pressed to extremes, would result in discarding all documentary evidence for which direct corroboration could not be produced; and such procedure can hardly be called scientific. Unless there is some better reason for discarding the Pauline authorship of the Pastoral Epistles than the reason that they tell us of events in his life, which, without them, we should not know, they may still continue to rank as authentic. It is not a sound maxim of law that a single witness must necessarily mislead. But it is worth our while to ask, Is there any corroboration forthcoming of the testimony of the Pastoral letters to missionary labours of St Paul outside the period embraced by the Acts of the Apostles?

In the Epistle to the Philippians, written during his first sojourn in Rome, probably about the year 62 or 63 A.D., St Paul apparently anticipates that his captivity will not be prolonged much further. “I trust in the Lord,” he says, “that I myself also shall come unto you shortly” (Philippians 2:24). And, again, writing to Philemon under the same circumstances he bids him be ready to receive him: “Withal prepare me also a lodging, for I hope that through your prayers I shall be granted unto you” (Philemon 1:22). No doubt such anticipations might be falsified, but it is worth noticing that the tone of St Paul’s letters at this period is quite different from the tone of a letter like 2 Tim., which breathes throughout the spirit of resignation to inevitable martyrdom.

It ought not to be forgotten that there was no reason for anticipating that the issue of an appeal, such as that which St Paul made to Nero when he was brought before Festus (Acts 25:11), would be unsuccessful or unfavourable to the prisoner. On hearing the facts King Agrippa said that, had St Paul not appealed to the Emperor, his liberty would probably have been assured (Acts 26:32), so little was there that could fairly be counted against him. And, although such appeals to the imperial jurisdiction might involve protracted delays, we cannot but suppose that they were on the whole fairly conducted. The stern justice of the imperial policy was, in large measure, independent of the personal character of the reigning Caesar. And it must be remembered that, although matters were different ten or twenty years later, there would be no question of putting a citizen on his trial merely for being a Christian, at as early a date as that of St Paul’s first imprisonment in Rome. St Luke represents him as abiding “two whole years in his own hired dwelling,” receiving all that visited him, “teaching the things concerning the Lord Jesus Christ with all boldness, none forbidding him” (Acts 28:31). The specification of “two years” seems to indicate that the historian is conscious that at the end of that time a change in St Paul’s circumstances was brought about, and this would most naturally be by his release.

St Paul at any rate did not despair of release; nay, at times he expected it. Was it granted to him? As we have seen, the New Testament does not tell us directly. The scanty fragments of information that survive must be gathered from subsequent Christian literature. Now in the letter of Clement, Bishop of Rome, addressed to the Corinthian Church about the year 95, there is a passage bearing on this question which is worthy of our careful attention. “Paul,” says Clement (§ 5), “pointed out the prize of patient endurance. After that he had been seven times in bonds, had been driven into exile, had been stoned, had preached in the East and in the West, he won the noble renown which was the reward of his faith, having taught righteousness unto the whole world and having reached the bounds of the West; and when he had borne his testimony before the rulers, so he departed from the world and went unto the holy place.” The passage is significant when the date and position of the writer are remembered. St Paul’s long sojourn in Rome must have left an abiding impression on the members of the Church there, to whom indeed he had addressed before he saw them one of the most important and closely reasoned of his epistles. And we now find that the Bishop of Rome, writing less than thirty years after St Paul’s death, seems to know of trials and adventures of the great Apostle of which we have no record in the New Testament. The phrase “seven times in bonds” may not perhaps be pressed; we do not know of precisely so many imprisonments of St Paul, but it is not impossible that Clement may be speaking in general terms, and the number seven serves well to round off a rhetorical sentence. But what is to be made of the phrase “having reached the boundary of the West” (ἐπὶ τὸ τέρμα τῆς δύσεως ἐλθών)? The place where the words were written was Rome, under Whose dominion had now come Gaul, Spain, Britain. Rome itself, whatever it might seem to an Asiatic, was certainly not to a Roman the furthest Western limit of the Empire. Clement in this sentence distinctly implies that St Paul extended his missionary labours towards the western boundary of the then civilised world. But it is plain from the history in the Acts that he had not travelled further West than Rome before the year 63 A.D. His appeal to Nero was the occasion of his first visit to Italy. And thus it seems that Clement knew of some further journey of St Paul for which a place cannot be found in his life save by supposing that the result of the appeal was that he was set at liberty for a season. Clement’s testimony is emphatic. He had the best opportunities for acquainting himself with the facts, and he mentions a journey of St Paul to the utmost limit of the West, not as if it were a little known expedition, but as if, on the contrary, it were one not needing fuller description in the summary that he is giving to the Corinthians of the labours of the Apostle of the Gentiles. Clement, then, is a witness for the release of St Paul from his first imprisonment.

What locality is meant by “the boundary of the West”? Whatever the phrase means, as we have seen, it must have reference to a place west of Italy. But we may bestow upon it a little closer scrutiny. The most natural meaning of the phrase τὸ τέρμα τῆς δύσεως in the first century would be the Pillars of Hercules at the Straits of Gibraltar, as Lightfoot has shewn[4] by quotations from Strabo and Velleius Paterculus; and if this be what Clement meant to convey, it indicates a visit of St Paul to Spain. Now we are not without evidence that such a visit was both planned and undertaken by St Paul. Writing to the Romans as far back as the year 58, he says (Acts 15:23-24): “having these many years a desire to come unto you, whensoever I go unto Spain”; and again, “I will go on by you unto Spain” (Acts 15:28). There was, then, the intention in his mind to proceed, as soon as he could, from Rome to Spain, and there is every probability that if opportunity were given him he would carry out the intention.

There is, however, in Christian literature no direct assertion, for more than a century after St Paul’s death, that such a visit to Spain was actually paid. Perhaps the earliest corroboration of Clement’s hint is found in the interesting catalogue of books of the New Testament, which is called, from the name of its discoverer, the Muratorian fragment on the Canon. The date of this is somewhere about the end of the second century; and the writer distinctly mentions a journey of Paul to Spain, although in a passage which is so corrupt that its meaning is not quite certain[5]. Like Clement, the author of the Muratorian fragment was probably a Roman; so that he had whatever benefit might be derived from local traditions about St Paul.

acta autem omnium apostolorum

sub uno libro scribta sunt lucas obtime theofi-

le conprindit quia sub praesentia eius singula

gerebantur sicuti et semote passionem petri

euidentur declarat sed et profectionem pauli

ab urbe ab spaniam proficiscentis.

Zahn emends this so that the meaning will be that while Luke tells in the Acts the things of which he was a personal witness, he does not tell of the Martyrdom of Peter or of Paul’s journey from Rome to Spain. This seems to be the best interpretation of the passage. But, on any interpretation, it is plain that the Muratorian writer had heard of this Spanish visit. It is probable, indeed (see James, Apocrypha Anecdota, ii. xi.), that this writer derives some of his information, including this very point, from the Leucian Actus Petri cum Simone, which begin with the profectio Pauli ab urbe in Spaniam, and end with the passio Petri. These Acts, in their present form, are of uncertain date; but the latest date which is possible for them is the second half of the second century. Thus the argument in the text is not affected, if Dr James’ theory of the sources of the Muratorian fragment be adopted; for we are then certain that the Muratorian writer is not inventing but borrowing from an older (apocryphal) document.

As we go later, the story becomes quite common. Quite a number of fourth and fifth century writers assert that St Paul visited Spain; and a still larger number speak of his release from captivity and his subsequent missionary labours, although they do not mention the quarter of the world which witnessed them[6]. Eusebius, for instance, one of the most trustworthy of these writers, introduces a probably erroneous interpretation of a verse in 2 Tim. by saying that “Report has it” (ὁ λόγος ἔχει) that St Paul’s martyrdom took place on his second visit to Rome. But it does not seem safe to place reliance on any of these writers. There is no evidence that they were possessed of any information that we have not got; and most of them were quite capable of building up a superstructure of history on the verse in the Epistle to the Romans which speaks of St Paul’s intention to go to Spain. It would be easy to infer loosely from this, and state as a fact, that he did go.

To sum up, then, the results to which we have been led so far. We can find no place for the Pastorals in the life of St Paul as recorded in the Acts. If they are genuine letters of his we must suppose that he was released from his first captivity at Rome, spent some years in missionary enterprise in the East and West, was again imprisoned at Rome, and met his death by martyrdom, the Second Epistle to Timothy containing the last words that he has for the Church. There is nothing in any way inconsistent with any known fact in this supposition; it was put forward as history by the most competent of Christian scholars in the fourth and fifth centuries, when formal commentaries on Scripture became common. That St Paul paid a visit to Spain is mentioned as early as the second century in the Actus Petri cum Simone. It is in the highest degree probable that if released he would have done so. But the only piece of early direct evidence, outside the Pastorals, which we have for a period of activity additional to that described by St Luke is the passage cited from Clement of Rome.

All attempts to reconstruct, from these scanty materials, the life of St Paul after the period covered by the Acts must be more or less conjectural. But it is necessary to indicate the leading points brought out by the evidence, imperfect as it is.

We learn from Philippians 2:24 and Philemon 1:22, as has been said, that St Paul proposed to proceed to Macedonia and to the churches of Asia Minor after his release. We may therefore conclude that his steps were immediately turned eastward, and it is in no way improbable that he should have paid a short visit to Crete about the same time. If he sailed from Ephesus on his long intended voyage to Spain (Romans 15:24; Romans 15:28), Crete would lie on his way. Of this voyage and visit we have no detailed knowledge whatever; although it probably lasted for some time. If we are to translate Γαλατία in 2 Timothy 4:10 by ‘Gaul’ (see note in loc.), he may have extended his journey to the towns along the Gulf of Lion.

Our next fixed point is that presented in 1 Timothy 1:3. Paul is at Ephesus again; he proceeds to Macedonia (1 Timothy 1:3), and at the moment of writing he intends to return to Ephesus shortly (1 Timothy 3:14). We do not know the place from which this Epistle was written, but that it was from some town in Macedonia seems probable[7].

We then find him at Crete (Titus 1:5), where he leaves Titus in charge of the infant Church. When he wrote this Epistle, he intended to pass the following winter (Titus 3:12) in Nicopolis (probably the city in Epirus of that name); and the letter was probably despatched from some of the towns on the coast of Asia Minor, which we hear of his visiting on his journey northward.

He is at Miletus (2 Timothy 4:20) where he leaves Trophimus; he is at Troas (2 Timothy 4:13) with Carpus; and then passes through Corinth (2 Timothy 4:20). Not improbably he was arrested here and carried to Rome, his intention of going to Nicopolis being frustrated. Titus, who had been invited to Nicopolis (Titus 3:12), is with him at Rome for a time (2 Timothy 4:10), but has left for Dalmatia when the Second Epistle to Timothy is written.

So far the Pastoral Epistles. Tradition adds one more fact, and that a kind of fact as to which its witness is hardly to be gainsaid, viz. in respect of the place and circumstances of St Paul’s death. The concurrent testimony of many writers affirms that he ended his life by martyrdom at Rome, being beheaded under Nero. To Paul’s martyrdom Clement (§ 5) is a witness, and, as Bishop of Rome, his testimony is peculiarly weighty. Tertullian[8] notes that the Apostle was beheaded, which is likely enough in itself, inasmuch as he was a Roman citizen, to whom the ignominious torture of crucifixion would have been inappropriate. Dionysius of Corinth, writing about 170[9], says that Peter and Paul suffered at Rome “at the same time” (κατὰ τὸν αὐτὸν καιρόν), a perplexing phrase, which however does not necessarily imply that they perished in the same year. And Gaius the Roman presbyter[10], who lived about the year 200, mentions the grave of Peter on the Vatican and of Paul on the Ostian Way[11]. The force of this testimony is not to be evaded. A Church in whose early progress St Paul was so deeply interested, to which he had addressed the most elaborate and closely reasoned of his letters, many of whose members had been his personal friends—it is impossible to suppose that the tradition of such a Church could be mistaken about an event which must have affected it so deeply.

As to the exact year of St Paul’s martyrdom we have no such certainty. We have no express evidence until the 4th century; the 13th year of Nero is the date registered by Eusebius in his Chronicle[12], and Jerome puts it a year later[13]. That is to say, according to these writers the date of St Paul’s death is 67 or 68 A.D. There is nothing improbable in itself in this date. It is true that the great outbreak of persecution at Rome arose in July 64, being caused by the indignation directed against Christians as the supposed incendiaries; and the language of Clement of Rome (§ 5) suggests (though it does not explicitly assert) that it was in this persecution that Paul suffered. But it would be a grave mistake to suppose that persecution of Christians was not heard of again during Nero’s reign. On the contrary it seems from that time forth to have been a standing matter, like the punishment of pirates or of brigands, to which Mommsen compares it. There would be nothing unusual or extraordinary in the execution of Christian believers at Rome in any year after that in which suspicion was directed to them on account of their alleged share in the destruction of the city. Thus St Paul’s martyrdom is quite as credible in the year 68 as in the year 64, although it is only of the persecutions of the earlier year that we possess a full account.

According to the received chronology, then, St Paul’s death took place in 68 A.D., his first Roman imprisonment being terminated by release in the year 63. And this leaves a period of five years of which the only record in the N.T. is that to be found in the Pastoral Epistles[14]. The notices of St Paul’s life found therein are in conflict with no known facts, and they are consistent with themselves. When we remember that admittedly apocryphal Pauline letters, such as the so-called Third Epistle to the Corinthians, invariably go astray when they deal with events and individuals, we find in this consistency a significant note of truth.

Further than this we cannot go with the evidence before us; but it is not too much to say that, if the only objections to the genuineness of the Pastoral Epistles were derived from the novelty of the information that they give as to the life of St Paul, there would be very little question as to their authorship. The really grave objections to them are based on their style and language, and these with kindred matters must now be considered in some detail.



Adopting the received chronology, we must place the Second Epistle to Timothy, if genuine, in the year 68; for that letter purports to be written from Rome while St Paul was waiting for his end. It contains his last words to his friend and disciple, his son in the faith. And the First Epistle to Timothy and the Epistle to Titus cannot have been written many months before, for they allude to long journeys undertaken after St Paul’s release in 63, which had been brought to a successful issue before the time of writing. We can thus hardly date either of these letters before 67. The marked similarities indeed between our three epistles, in respect alike of subject-matter and of style, forbid us to place any long interval between their several dates.

The Pastoral Letters constitute then a distinct group, differing from the other groups of Pauline Letters in various particulars. The following are the main points which it will be necessary to bear in mind. [1] They are addressed to individuals, not, like all the other letters (save the brief note to Philemon), addressed to Churches. [2] They were written some (possibly four or five) years later than any other letter from St Paul’s hand, which has come down to us. [3] These intervening years were years of varied experience and of travel in many lands. It was in this period that, according to Clement, St Paul visited “the utmost limit of the West.” These facts help us to meet the most serious difficulty in the way of accepting the Pastoral Epistles as genuine. Nothing has yet appeared in the course of our investigation which gives fair cause for suspicion; but it must now be pointed out that our three letters differ widely in point of vocabulary and style from the other letters which bear the name of Paul.

I. In each group of St Paul’s writings, as in the writings of most authors, we find a number of words which he does not use elsewhere; but this tendency to a different vocabulary is especially marked in the Epistles to Timothy and Titus. It has been computed[15] that the number of words in the Pastoral Epistles which occur nowhere else in the New Testament is 176, a proportionately larger number of ἅπαξ λεγόμενα than we find in the earlier letters of St Paul. They are of all kinds; some, common Greek words, the use or neglect of which would depend largely on a man’s peculiarities of style or the circumstances of his life; some, uncommon and curious, which might or might not come within his range of knowledge.

First, it is worth while to examine the value of such arguments in general. There are 77 hapax legomena in 1 Tim., 49 in 2 Tim., and 29 in Titus (all such words are indicated by an asterisk in the Index Graecitatis at the end of this volume). Mr Workman[16] has shewn that this means for Titus and 1 Tim. that there are 13 hapax legomena for every page of Westcott and Hort’s edition, the figure for 2 Tim. being 11. In the case of the other epistles the figures become: Philippians 3:8, Colossians 4:3, 2 Corinthians 6, Ephesians 4:9, 1 Corinthians 4:6, Romans 4:3, 1 Thessalonians 4:2, Galatians 4:1, Philemon 1:4, 2 Thessalonians 3:6. Now this shews at once that the number of unusual words in the Pastorals is proportionately twice as great as in any other of St Paul’s letters, and three times as great as in most of them. Upon this remarkable fact, Mr Workman makes two very interesting observations. (i) It appears from the figures that, speaking broadly, there are more hapax legomena in the later epistles than in the earlier ones, a circumstance which may be observed in the writings of many authors. As a man gains experience as a writer, his command over the language becomes greater, and his vocabulary is less limited to the words in common use among his associates. (ii) If a similar table of “relative frequency of hapax legomena” be drawn up for Shakespeare’s plays, it is found that the frequency ranges from 3.4 in The Two Gentlemen of Verona to 10.4 in Hamlet, all the other plays lying between these limits. This shews that any argument based on the mere fact that hapax legomena occur in very large numbers in any given work must be applied with great caution, and that, indeed, by itself such a fact is no disproof of traditional authorship. Indeed the untrustworthiness of such a line of argument when applied to the particular case of the Pastoral Epistles becomes plain when we reflect that if we push it a little further, we should be driven to conclude that each of these epistles is by a different hand, for each has its own list of hapax legomena. Yet nothing can be more certainly shewn by internal evidence than that these letters form a group written by the same person about the same time.

Secondly, of the 176 hapax legomena which occur in the Pastorals, it must be observed that no less than 78 are found in the LXX. These were, therefore, entirely within St Paul’s sphere of knowledge. And of the rest while some are strange words, uncommon or unknown in Greek literature, others are cognate to words elsewhere used by St Paul (e.g. ἀνάλυσις, cp. Philippians 1:23; or σώφρων, cp. Romans 12:3), or are words which must have been familiar to any educated man of his time. Examples will be given, as they occur, in the notes on the text.

The character of this peculiar vocabulary will be better understood by studying it under the heads suggested by Lightfoot[17]. We have, for instance, a new set of terms to describe moral and religious states; βέβηλος (see on 1 Timothy 1:9), εὐσέβεια and σεμνότης (see on 1 Timothy 2:2), καλός which occurs with unusual frequency (see on 1 Timothy 1:8). Also a new set of terms relating to doctrine; διδασκαλία which is far more frequent in these letters than generally in St Paul (see on 1 Timothy 1:10), ἐκζήτησις, ζήτησις, μῦθος, λογομαχία, παραθήκη, and ὑγιής and its cognates as applied to doctrine (see on 1 Timothy 1:10). In considering such phenomena as these, we must not forget that the subject-matter of our letters is quite different from that of any other letter of St Paul. Now a difference in subject presupposes a certain change in vocabulary. In speaking of the qualifications of a deacon or a presbyter, or of the organisation and discipline of the early Christian communities, the writer is moving in a different ecclesiastical atmosphere from that of the days when he had to contend with opponents who counted the Jewish synagogue the only doorway of the Church. He has done with Judaism. He now recognises the existence of a distinctively Christian theology and the possibility of its development whether for good or for evil. And such a conception requires the use of words which did not naturally come in his way before. Words after all are only the expression of thoughts; as new thoughts arise in the mind, a new vocabulary is demanded[18].

We come now to consider the traces of liturgical formulae which the Pastorals present, of expressions, that is, which have become stereotyped through usage. Such are the five Faithful Sayings (πιστὸς ὁ λόγος, see on 1 Timothy 1:15), and the rhythmical confession of faith introduced by the words “Great is the mystery of Godliness” (1 Timothy 3:16). Such passages teach us that at that moment of the Church’s life when the letters were written, there had grown up a doctrinal and religious phraseology which would come naturally to the lips of a Christian teacher addressing a well-instructed Christian disciple and friend. By this St Paul would be influenced as much as another man and it is not extravagant to suppose that as time went on he would acquire phrases and words from the use of the society with which he associated which did not form part of his earlier style. The hypothesis which we have found necessary on other grounds, viz. that he spent the years immediately succeeding his release from captivity in wanderings both East and West, renders it in the highest degree probable that his later style would be modified by his more extended experience.

Stress has sometimes been laid on new ways of speaking of God, which appear in these letters. He is called e.g. σωτήρ (1 Timothy 1:1), μακάριος (1 Timothy 1:11), δυνάστης (1 Timothy 6:15). But it is believed that the notes in loc. will help to remove the difficulty in these instances; and the like may be said of the use of ἐπιφάνεια for the παρουσία of Christ (see on 1 Timothy 6:14 and cp. 2 Maccabees 14:15)[19].

The salutation with which 1 and 2 Tim. open, viz. χάρις, ἔλεος, εἰρήνη, is not in the form adopted in all the other epistles ascribed to Paul, which is simply χάρις καὶ εἰρήνη (see on Tim. 1 Timothy 1:1). Here, it has been urged, is an indication of a different hand. Such an argument is singularly unconvincing. For all through these investigations we are bound to consider not only the difficulties in the way of ascribing the Pastoral Epistles to St Paul, but the difficulties in the way of counter-hypothesis, viz. that they were forged in his name. Now it is all but certain that a forger would be careful to preserve so obvious a note of Pauline authorship as the salutation common to all his letters. He would not venture to change the familiar “Grace and peace.” The one man who would have no scruple in changing his ordinary mode of address would be St Paul himself. The reasons for the change must remain conjectural; but the change itself is rather in favour of the Pauline authorship than against it.

II. Not only are these traces of a new vocabulary important to notice, but we have also to take account of the absence from the Pastoral Epistles of a large number of familiar Pauline words and phrases. Some of these, indeed, could not be expected here. ἀκροβυστία does not occur, but then the controversy about circumcision had gone by; διαθήκη does not occur, but the idea does not naturally enter into the argument of the Pastorals as it enters into Epistles like Romans and Galatians which deal with the burning questions about the permanent authority of the Jewish constitution. ἄδικος, ἀκαθαρσία, δικαίωμα, κατεργάζεσθαι, μείζων, μικρός, μωρία, παράδοσις, πείθειν, σῶμα, χαρίζεσθαι, χρηστός, appear in Holtzmann’s list of Pauline words not found in the Pastorals, but in each case words cognate to them are found in the Pastorals. The other words in his list are hardly numerous enough to be significant, all things being considered; the most interesting being καυχᾶσθαι and ἀποκαλύπτειν with their cognates, which are very prominent in St Paul’s other letters and yet have no place in these.

Against such differences may be fairly set some undoubted resemblances to the earlier letters, to which attention is called in the notes. Holtzmann has endeavoured to minimise the significance of these by urging that the Pastorals agree better as to vocabulary with the Epistles of the Third Missionary Journey than with the Epistles of the First Captivity; but, not to speak of the fact that the letters are all too short to permit of such arguments being regarded as trustworthy, the resemblances with Philippians (which is not improbably the last written of the letters of the First Captivity and therefore the nearest in time to the Pastorals) are unmistakeable[20]; cp. ἀνάλυσις (2 Timothy 4:6) and ἀναλύειν (Philippians 1:23), σπένδεσθαι (2 Timothy 4:6; Philippians 2:17), σεμνός (1 Timothy 3:8, and in St Paul only at Philippians 4:8 outside the Pastorals), κέρδος (Titus 1:11; Philippians 1:21), προκοπή (1 Timothy 4:15; Philippians 1:12; Philippians 1:25).

III. We pass to differences of syntax and structure of sentences. These, if present, would afford far better grounds for declaring in favour of difference of authorship than do differences of vocabulary. And there are a considerable number of such differences. The absence of connecting particles such as ἄρα, διό, διότι (we have διʼ ἤν αἰτίαν three times, a form which does not occur in any of the other Pauline writings), ἔπειτα, ἔτι, and many others enumerated by Holtzmann, is curious, for St Paul is very fond of connecting sentences together by means of such. The sentences of the Pastorals are more rigidly constructed than in the earlier letters, and the style has less of their ease and unconventionality. The prepositions ἀντί, ἄχρι, ἔμπροσθεν, παρά with the accusative, and (a remarkable singularity) σύν are never once used in our epistles[21]. The definite article is used very sparingly. All this is very puzzling on any hypothesis.

Possibly the most plausible explanation that has yet been offered of these differences between the earlier and the later letters is that they are due to the employment after St Paul’s first captivity of a new amanuensis. That it was the Apostle’s habit to avail himself of such assistance we know (see Romans 16:22; 1 Corinthians 16:21; Galatians 6:11; Colossians 4:18; 2 Thessalonians 3:17); and we can readily imagine that whoever wrote the Pastoral Letters for him may have introduced some peculiarities of phrase and diction, such as would have been foreign to the style of Tertius (Romans 16:22) or any former secretary.

At the same time, we must not exaggerate these differences between the style of the Pastorals and that of the earlier letters. The Pauline fashion of repeating and playing on a word appears several times (1 Timothy 1:18; 1 Timothy 6:5-6; 2 Timothy 2:9; 2 Timothy 3:4; 2 Timothy 3:17). Sentences are strung together sometimes until grammar is lost, quite in the Apostle’s old manner, e.g. 1 Timothy 1:10; Titus 1:1-3 (cp. Ephesians 1:3; Ephesians 3:1; Colossians 1:3 ff.). It would not be easy, for instance, to find a sentence more Pauline in its involved parenthesis and in its rough vigour than the following from 2 Timothy 1:8-11, “Suffer hardship with the gospel according to the power of God: who saved us and called us with a holy calling, not according to our works, but according to his own purpose and grace, which was given us in Christ Jesus before times eternal, but hath now been manifested by the appearing of our Saviour Christ Jesus, who abolished death, and brought life and incorruption to light through the gospel, whereunto I was appointed a herald, and an apostle, and a teacher.” Again St Paul’s thoughts often seem to travel so fast that they outstrip his powers of expression; there is in his confessedly genuine writings a marked tendency to leave sentences unfinished, to the occurrence of the figure which grammarians call anacoluthon. This is hardly a peculiarity that would occur to anyone writing in his name to reproduce; still less is it likely that a forger (and, if the Pastorals be not by St Paul, their author was nothing else, however well-intentioned) would begin a letter with an anacoluthon. And yet so one of the letters opens. The first sentence after the salutation in 1 Tim. has no end; it is imperfect and ungrammatical. This is not a probable beginning to an epistle laboriously constructed by a literary artist simulating the manner of another. If the syntax and structural form of the letters be appealed to on the one side, they may also be appealed to on the other.

Such are some of the reasons which tend to diminish the force of the argument based on vocabulary and style. If there are traces of fresh experience in the language employed by the writer of these letters, that is what might have been expected; and it must not be forgotten that in many particulars the agreement with Pauline usage is remarkably close.

This topic of internal evidence may be examined from another point of view. If the letters were not written by St Paul, they must have been written by some one thoroughly imbued with his style and possessed of considerable insight into his ways of thinking. It is conceivable that the idea might have occurred to some enterprising person to compose letters in the name of the great Apostle with the laudable object of placing on an undisputed basis the edifice of Church organisation. But as we read the Second Epistle to Timothy we can hardly persuade ourselves that it was so produced. The many personal salutations and references to slight incidents at the end of the letter are quite too lifelike to have been introduced for the sake of artistic effect. Even supposing that the minute knowledge which is displayed of St Paul’s friends and associates does not point to anything more than intimate acquaintance on the part of the writer with the history of St Paul’s last days at Rome, are we to admit that touches like the request that Timothy would not forget to bring with him the cloak and books that had been left behind at Troas (2 Timothy 4:13) could have been due to a forger? Such a request is founded on no recorded incident, nor does it lead to any result. Or again, can the twice repeated “Do thy diligence to come shortly unto me” (2 Timothy 4:9; 2 Timothy 4:21) have any other explanation than that of the eager anxiety of the writer to see once more his best beloved son in the faith? Or to take one other instance which, curiously enough, has been appealed to by those who find indications of the spuriousness of our letters in their internal evidence. In the first letter to Timothy (1 Timothy 4:12) the advice is given, “Let no man despise thy youth”; and again in the second letter (2 Timothy 2:22), “Flee youthful lusts[22].” And all through both letters Timothy is addressed in language savouring somewhat of distrust and misgiving. All this, it has been said, implies that the writer conceives of Timothy as a very young man, young enough to be led away by passion, so young that he finds his legitimate authority difficult to enforce. And this is inconsistent not only with his implied position as head of an important Church, but also with the fact that he could not well have been less than 30 years old in the year 68, his association with St Paul having extended over 13 years. Here, it is urged, is an impossible use of language. The forger has but a confused notion of Timothy’s age, and thinks of him at one moment as he is represented in the Acts, at another as old enough to be entrusted with the supervision of the Ephesian Church. It makes us view all arguments based on internal evidence with some suspicion when we find that a passage which to another is a token of spuriousness seems to ourselves a manifest note of genuineness. For it displays but a small experience of life and little knowledge of human nature to be surprised that an old and masterful man writing to one who had been his pupil and associate for thirteen years should continue to address him as if he were a youth. Timothy was, as a matter of fact, young for the responsible post which he filled; at this early period there were of necessity appointments of this sort; and St Paul’s language might be justified from this point of view. And furthermore, the suspicion (underlying both letters) of Timothy’s possible lapses into folly, whether it were well founded or not, is exactly what we might conjecture as present to the mind of the older man (see on 2 Timothy 1:6). He had seen Timothy grow up as it were; and to him therefore Timothy will for ever be in a condition of pupilage, needing the most minute directions on points of detail, likely to make false steps as soon as he begins to stand alone, not free from the hotheadedness which perhaps might have been his failing ten years before. To find in these directions, in this undercurrent of thought, anything but the most natural and affectionate anxiety is to display a perverted ingenuity.

The note of truth which appears in passages similar to those which have just been cited is so conspicuous that many critics[23], who, for various reasons, find it impossible to advocate the genuineness of the Pastoral Epistles as a whole, have put forward the hypothesis that in these interesting relics of an early Christian period are embedded precious fragments of true letters of St Paul. The hypothesis is not inconceivable in itself; but it is not easy to work out satisfactorily in detail, and it has not a shred of external evidence in its favour. Certainly the presence of such passages as 2 Timothy 1:15-18; 2 Timothy 4:13; 2 Timothy 4:19-21, which fall in naturally with their context, makes it extremely difficult to doubt the genuineness of that epistle as a whole. And if 2 Tim. be from the hand of St Paul, it carries 1 Tim. and Tit. with it, to a very high degree of probability. It cannot be said that the attempts which have been made to dismember 1 Tim. are very convincing[24]; nor is there any general agreement among those who indulge in such critical exercises as to the passages that are to be counted genuine remains of St Paul.

The result of the foregoing discussion may be thus summarised. The internal character of the Pastoral Epistles, their vocabulary and their style, presents a very perplexing literary problem. The peculiarities of vocabulary have not yet received full explanation. But, on the whole, these peculiarities are not of so anomalous a character as to outweigh the strong external testimony (see Chap. I.) to the Pauline authorship of the letters, supported as it is by the significant personal details in which the letters abound. The solution of our difficulties perhaps lies in facts of which we have no knowledge. We have already suggested (p. xli) that the employment of a new secretary by St Paul during his second imprisonment at Rome might account for a good many of the linguistic peculiarities which these Epistles present. No doubt this is only an hypothesis; but it is an hypothesis which contradicts no known facts, and, inasmuch as it serves to coordinate the phenomena, it deserves to be taken into serious consideration.



No discussion of the characteristics of the Pastoral Epistles would be complete which omitted to take notice of the warnings against heretical teachers with which the letters abound. The growth of vain, or irrelevant and useless, doctrine seems to have been present to the mind of the writer as a pressing danger to the Church; and he recurs again and again to the more prominent features of the teaching which he deprecates, that he may remind Timothy and Titus how serious is their danger when brought into contact with it. The Pastoral Epistles are, however, not controversial treatises; they are semi-private letters written for the guidance of friends. And thus it is not easy to discover the exact nature of the heresies that were prevalent at Ephesus and at Crete. The allusions are casual; and our knowledge of the conditions of Christian thought in the later Apostolic and sub-Apostolic age is so imperfect, that it is not possible to arrive at conclusions more than probable on this and many kindred questions. In a former epistle of St Paul, the Epistle to the Colossians, we have a somewhat similar polemic directed against the innovating teachers at Colossae; and it is possible that we may find in the earlier document hints by which we may interpret the latter. And, on the other hand, the letters of Ignatius written half a century later contain warnings against the strange doctrines then spreading in the cities of Asia Minor, which may perhaps shew us what the fruit was like of the seed which we see growing in the Pastoral Epistles.

But we shall begin by interrogating our epistles themselves, and then we may compare their witness with the information gained from other sources.

We notice first the direct advice which St Paul gives to Timothy and Titus as to the manner of their own teaching. They are not to teach anything new, in view of the new developments in the Churches entrusted to their care; but they are to reiterate the doctrine that the Church has held from the beginning. “Abide thou in the things which thou hast learned and hast been assured of” (2 Timothy 3:14). “Hold the pattern of sound words” (2 Timothy 1:13). “Guard that which is committed unto thee” (1 Timothy 6:20). Positive statement of the main principles of the faith is suggested as the best safeguard against error. And such methods of meeting perversions of the truth seem to have been specially applicable to the circumstances of the Churches for whose benefit the Pastoral Epistles were written. For it will be observed that all through the epistles it is not so much the falsity as the irrelevance of the new teaching that is insisted on. The opponents of Timothy and Titus do not come before us, save perhaps in one particular to which we shall return, as openly denying any cardinal article of the Christian Creed. They are not represented, for instance, as are the heretics of the days of Ignatius, as denying the doctrine of the Incarnation. But the teaching with which they beguile the unwary is quite irrelevant. They are ἑτεροδιδάσκαλοι; their gospel is a ‘different Gospel’ Their teachings are ‘divers and strange’ like those deprecated in another epistle of the Apostolic age, the Epistle to the Hebrews (Hebrews 13:9). And so St Paul says in reference to them: “Foolish and ignorant questionings refuse” (2 Timothy 2:23). “Shun foolish questionings … for they are unprofitable and vain” (Titus 3:9). The heretical teachers themselves are described as men who “strive about words to no profit” (2 Timothy 2:14); and their vain talking and “profane babblings” are spoken of more than once (1 Timothy 6:20; 2 Timothy 2:16).

This irrelevance in speculation, however, is not merely foolish; it is positively mischievous. The history of religion presents many instances of the intimate connexion between vague and unmeaning theory and absurd or immoral practice. For the inevitable consequence of laying stress in religious matters on topics which have no proper significance in relation to life is that religion ceases to be a trustworthy guide to conduct. Mysticism encourages the ascetic habit in the best and purest souls whom it attracts, and so withdraws them from the discharge of common human duties. And when it has become the property of those whose passions are unruly, it furnishes a cloak for immorality and extravagance of every kind. In both directions St Paul saw the danger of the ἑτεροδιδασκαλία against which he warned Timothy and Titus; but the more immediate danger was that of undue asceticism. “The Spirit saith expressly,” he writes, “that in later times some shall fall away from the faith, giving heed” to those who “forbid to marry and command to abstain from meats, which God created to be received with thanksgiving by them that believe and know the truth” (1 Timothy 4:1-4). And again he declares that “in the last days grievous times will come”; for the result of this unreal religion will be the increase of teachers who “have the form of godliness, but have denied the power thereof” (2 Timothy 3:1 ff.). “Of these are they that creep into houses, and take captive silly women laden with sins, led away by divers lusts, ever learning, and never able to come to the knowledge of the truth.” Such grave irregularities are, as yet, no doubt, in the future; but nevertheless the Apostle is careful to warn Timothy about his own conduct in the presence of undue licence or undue asceticism. “Flee youthful lusts” (2 Timothy 2:22): “Keep thyself pure” (1 Timothy 5:22); that is essential. But on the other hand do not give any sanction, by your practice to asceticism which may be injurious to health: “Be no longer a drinker of water, but use a little wine for thy stomach’s sake, and thine often infirmities” (1 Timothy 5:23).

We have seen that the teaching against which the Pastorals give warning is irrelevant to religion and therefore likely to be mischievous in practice. But we must try to determine its character a little more closely. The heresy—for so we must call it—was essentially Jewish. So much is plainly implied and must be borne in mind. The men “whose mouth must be stopped” are “specially they of the circumcision” (Titus 1:10). The fables to which no heed is to be given are “Jewish fables” (Titus 1:14). The opponents against whom Timothy is to be on his guard “desire to be teachers of the law, though they understand neither what they say, nor whereof they confidently affirm” (1 Timothy 1:7). It is the “fightings about the law” that are pronounced in the Epistle to Titus to be “unprofitable and vain” (Titus 3:9). Thus, whatever the growth of the heresy may have been like, it had its roots in Judaism. We are not, of course, to confuse these apostles of novelty with the Judaizing opponents whom St Paul had to face in earlier years. There is nothing here of any insistence upon circumcision, or upon the perpetual obligations of the Mosaic law. That is now a thing of the past within the Christian Society. Christianity had won for itself a position independent of Judaism, though no doubt its independence would only be fully appreciated by its own adherents. To the eye of a stranger Christianity was still a Jewish sect. But it was not so counted by Christians themselves. Jewish thought would necessarily influence men brought up in the atmosphere of the synagogue and the temple, but the influence would hardly be consciously felt. And we find that the opposition which Timothy and Titus were to offer to the novel doctrines that were gaining popularity, was suggested not because the doctrines were Jewish, but because they were fabulous and unedifying. “I exhorted thee,” writes St Paul to Timothy, “to tarry at Ephesus, … that thou mightest charge certain men not to teach a different doctrine, neither to give heed to fables and endless genealogies, the which minister questionings rather than a dispensation of God which is in faith” (1 Timothy 1:1-3). So he bids Titus “shun foolish questionings and genealogies” (Titus 3:9).

What then are these “genealogies” which the Apostle finds so unfruitful? The answer that has been most commonly given to this question of late years has been found in the peculiar tenets of the Gnostics. It has been supposed that traces of a kind of Judaistic Gnosticism may be found in the Epistle to the Colossians, that it becomes more prominent in the Pastorals, and that we see it in full vigour in the Letters of Ignatius. And no opinion on the condition of parties in the early Church which has the authority of Bishop Lightfoot can be lightly treated, or discarded without the most careful examination. We shall thus have to scrutinise with attention the language of the Pastorals to determine whether it affords sufficient ground for our ascribing the term Gnostic to the frivolous teaching condemned by St Paul.

Of the beginnings of Gnosticism we know very little. We find it fully developed in various forms in the second century, as soon as the Church had become affected by Greek speculation; and there is no serious historical difficulty in the way of supposing it to have been current at Ephesus as early as the year 67. But of direct evidence we have little to produce. The term Gnostic is generally taken to include all those who boast a, superior knowledge of spiritual things to that possessed by their neighbours; and the Gnostics of whom history tells us constructed elaborate theories as to the precise relations between God and His universe, as to the origin of evil, as to the various ranks and orders of created beings—theories which repel everyone who now examines them, inasmuch as one feels that they are quite unverifiable where they are not demonstrably unscientific or absurd. It is not necessary to explain how natural was such a development in the religion of Jesus when brought into contact with Greek philosophy; we go on to point out that, however true it is that such teaching was popular fifty years later, there is no certain trace of it in the Pastoral Epistles.

To begin with, it has been acutely pointed out by Weiss that language is used in the Epistle to Titus of the strange teachers which is quite inconsistent with the claims made by the Gnostics with whom history has made us familiar: “They confess that they know God” says St Paul—θεὸν ὁμολογοῦσιν εἰδέναι (Titus 1:16). For, surely, ὁμολογοῦσιν would be a most inappropriate word to use of the claim to the exceptional and superlative knowledge of the Supreme put forward by Gnostic teachers; their claim was more than a ‘confession,’ it was a boast of exclusive privilege. And when we turn to the phrases in the Pastoral Epistles which are supposed distinctively to indicate Gnostic doctrine, we find that they afford but an insecure basis for any such opinion, and that in every case a more natural explanation is suggested by the Jewish roots and affinities of the teaching under consideration. “Shun genealogies and strifes and fightings about the law,” says St Paul (Titus 3:9), “for they are unprofitable.” “Do not give heed to myths and endless genealogies which minister questionings” (1 Timothy 1:4). Now the close association in the former passage of the γενεαλογίαι with μαχαὶ νομικαί, ‘fightings about the law,’ should of itself teach us that here is no thought of long strings of emanations of æons or angels, such as Irenæus speaks of in later days, but some speculation intimately allied to Judaism. And Dr Hort[25] seems to have pointed out the true explanation. ‘Myths and genealogies’ occur in similar close connexion in Polybius (IX. 2. 1); and the historian seems to refer to the legendary Greek mythologies, and the old world stories about the pedigree and birth of heroes. So too Philo includes under τὸ γενεαλογικόν all the primitive history in the Pentateuch. And we know that legends had been multiplied during the later periods of Hebrew history as to the patriarchs and the early heroes in a degree for which there is, perhaps, no parallel elsewhere. One branch of the Haggadah, or illustrative commentary on the Old Testament, was full of such legend; and traces of Jewish Haggadoth have been found by some in the canonical books themselves. In the curious production called the Book of Jubilees we have a conspicuous proof of the stress laid upon genealogies as the bases upon which legends might be reared[26]. Indeed the care with which family pedigrees were preserved is illustrated by the remarkable genealogies incorporated in two of the Gospels. There were, to be sure, special reasons why these should be counted of deep interest for Christians; but the fact that genealogies were regarded as appropriate subjects for curious and respectful enquiry may be established from many other sources. When the Pastoral Letters, then, tell us that genealogies and strifes about the law and foolish questionings formed part of the stock in trade of the new teachers, we are not led to think of any specially Greek lines of speculation, but of Hebrew legend and casuistry.

Once more, the “oppositions of the knowledge falsely so called” (1 Timothy 6:20) have been supposed to have reference to certain peculiar tenets of Gnosticism. And it is true that a Gnostic teacher, Marcion, nearly a century later published a book entitled ἀντιθέσεις, “Oppositions of the Old and New Testaments”; and equally true that the phrase ψευδώνυμος γνῶσις is used by the Fathers of the second and third centuries as having special applicability to the controversies in which they were themselves interested. But such coincidences are merely verbal. The fact that the orthodox of later times caught up a phrase of St Paul which might serve as a convenient missile to hurl at adversaries is a fact not so entirely without parallel in later days that it need cause us to delay long over its explanation. And in truth, the phrase would be quite inapplicable to Marcion, who (despite his general description as a Gnostic) did not claim the possession of γνῶσις in any marked degree. However, it is only here needful to point out that a quite natural explanation of the phrase ἀντιθέσεις τῆς ψευδωνύμου γνώσεως follows from the conception of the heretical teachers as casuistical doctors of the law, which has just been suggested. ‘Antitheses’—oppositions—might well describe “the endless contrasts of decisions, founded on endless distinctions[27],” with which the casuistry of the scribes was concerned. And allusions may be traced in the Gospels themselves to this claim of the scribes to superior γνῶσις; the lawyers, for instance, were reproached for having taken away the key of knowledge (τῆς γνώσεως, Luke 11:52).

These are the main features of the heretical doctrine that have been brought forward as suggesting affinities with Gnosticism; but we have found a more natural as well as a more exact correspondence in the speculations of Jewish doctors, and this agrees well with the general description of the heretical myths as Jewish.

It has been urged indeed by Lightfoot and others that the earlier forms of Gnostic error were of Jewish origin; and that all Gnostics were accustomed to treat the Old Testament as a field for mystical speculation. They also took much the same view of the impurity of matter as is hinted at in the Pastorals. And there is no reason for denying that Gnostic doctrine, in the large sense, may have had its roots in teaching such as that described in the Pastorals. It may very possibly have been præ-Christian. But of Gnosticism, properly so called, the Gnosticism of the second century, which was closely allied with Docetic views as to the Person of Christ, there is no distinctive trace; and thus to use the term ‘Gnostic’ in reference to the heretical teachers of Ephesus and Crete is somewhat misleading, as it imports into our documents the ideas of a later age. There is nothing whatever specifically Gnostic; there is much that is best explained as a Jewish development. And although this is not the place to enter on an enquiry as to the heresies treated of in the Epistle to the Colossians, it is probable that the same may be said of them. The φιλοσοφία and vain deceit of which St Paul speaks (Colossians 2:8) is really Jewish speculation which has taken to itself a Greek name; the angelology of which the Colossian Epistle tells is Hebrew rather than Greek; the injunction “let no man judge you in meat and drink” (Colossians 2:16) is of Jewish reference. Here and also in the Pastorals we are dealing with a heretical form of Christianity which arose from contact with Hebrew thought; and when we call it Gnostic we are using a word that has already—whether rightly or wrongly—been appropriated to a different period and has different associations.

There remain to be considered some minor peculiarities of the heretical teachers, which may enable us to fix with greater precision their place in Jewish thought. We are, indeed, not now in Palestine, but in South-west Asia Minor; and it would be rash to assume that the divisions of the Jewish schools which are found in the neighbourhood of Jerusalem are also to be found among the Jews of the Dispersion; but Jews are and always have been so conservative in their habits of thought that such an assumption—though we need not make it—would be at least plausible.

i. The new doctrine seems to have been not only esoteric in character, but exclusive in tendency. All religion which emphasises unduly subtle distinctions and dogmas only to be apprehended by a learned and cultivated minority tends to spiritual pride and contempt of less favoured individuals. And it is hardly too much to see in the emphatic and prominent directions given by St Paul to Timothy as to the Catholic range of Christian prayer a reference to this growing tendency to spiritual exclusiveness. “I exhort you to make supplications and prayers … for all men.… This is good and acceptable in the sight of God our Saviour, who willeth that all men should be saved and come to the knowledge of the truth. For there is one God, one mediator also between God and men, himself man, Christ Jesus” (1 Timothy 2:4-5). In earlier epistles (Romans 1:16; Romans 5:18; Romans 10:12; 2 Corinthians 5:15, &c.) St Paul had emphasised the universality of salvation, but in an entirely different context. He formerly had to do with those who were fain to exaggerate the spiritual privilege of the Jew, who claimed for the children of Abraham a monopoly of God’s grace. He now has to do with those who are in danger of divorcing the religious from the secular life, and counting the Divine promises as exclusively meant for a few favoured persons.

ii. The Apostle’s forecast of trouble conveys a significant warning: “Some shall fall away from the faith, giving heed to seducing spirits and doctrines of devils” (1 Timothy 4:1). “Evil men and impostors (γόητες) shall wax worse and worse, deceiving and being deceived” (2 Timothy 3:13). We are not to confuse the predictions of future error with descriptions of that which was actually a present danger; but nevertheless the germ of the future apostasy lay in the existing disorders. And so it is worth noting that the adherents of the new teaching are described by a name which literally means ‘wizards’ (γόητες), those who practise mysterious or magical rites. This harmonises well with what we read in the Acts (Acts 19:19) and elsewhere of the practice of magical arts at Ephesus. Such superstition was no new thing there.

iii. And, lastly, we are given one specific instance of an error of which two at least of the heretical teachers were guilty. “Shun profane babblings,” says the Apostle in his last letter, “for they will proceed further in ungodliness, and their word will eat as doth a gangrene: of whom is Hymenæus and Philetus: men who concerning the truth have erred, saying that the resurrection is past already” (2 Timothy 2:16). Weiss, who is perhaps the most judicious of the commentators on the Pastoral Letters, here warns us that we must not take the perversions of individuals as direct evidence for the general character of the erroneous teaching. And the warning is salutary; but still it can hardly be doubted that the errors into which Hymenæus and Philetus fell were the outcome of the general principles on which they based their speculations, and that therefore this denial of a resurrection may be counted, if not a necessary, yet a natural accompaniment of the heretical teaching which Timothy had to oppose.

We have then arrived at this point. The heretical teachers at Ephesus and Crete were marked by the following characteristics: [1] They laid much store by irrelevant and unprofitable speculation about the Mosaic law and the Hebrew history. [2] They held views as to the impurity of matter which had already led them to set too high a value on the ascetic life, and which would, in the future, lead to immorality of conduct. [3] The future developments of their tenets would be associated with magic and diabolical arts. [4] They were exclusive in their attitude to their fellow men, and had not fully realised the Universality of the Gospel as revealed in the Fact of the Incarnation. [5] Some of them denied the doctrine of the Resurrection, interpreting it in a spiritual sense of the new life of believers. To sum up, they were professing Christians, but they display Jewish affinities rather than Greek.

Is there any sect of Judaism in which the germ of similar peculiarities may be found? “Speaking of the heresy of the later Epistles,” said Bishop Lightfoot[28], “with reference to its position in the Gnostic system, we may call it Judaic Gnosticism. Speaking of it with reference to its position as a phase of Jewish thought, we may call it Essene Judaism.” We have seen that the first description here given of the heresy prevalent at Ephesus is open to misconception; we pass on to enumerate the facts which seem to shew that the second suggestion is far more likely to be instructive.

All the peculiarities which have been collected of the heretical teaching contemplated in the Pastorals, save one, are found among the tenets of the Essene brotherhood as described by Josephus and Philo. The Essenes were ascetic to an extraordinary degree[29]; they conceived of themselves as a kind of spiritual aristocracy; they are said to have possessed an apocryphal literature, and to have practised occult science; and they spoke of the immortality of the soul rather than of the Resurrection of the Body, here standing in sharp contrast to the more conspicuous sect of the Pharisees. The one point for which direct evidence cannot be adduced is that we do not know that the Essenes devoted any special attention to the Haggadoth or legendary literature of Judaism, though the hint that they possessed secret books is significant. But in any case this feature of Jewish belief, though no doubt more prominent among the learned doctors of the law, would more or less affect all Jewish sects, and there would be nothing in it foreign to the habits of thought of the Essene brotherhood.

We conclude therefore that the heresiarchs at Ephesus and Crete were Christians who were affected by Essene tendencies of thought and practice[30]. This conclusion has been derived from the internal evidence of the Pastoral Epistles, and it falls in with the date which we have assigned to them on other grounds. Were they of a later period we should expect to find the heretical tendencies afterwards called Gnostic much more strongly marked, and the heresies themselves more exactly defined.



An investigation of the date of the Pastoral Epistles cannot leave out of account the nature of the ecclesiastical organisation which they seem to contemplate. We must ask ourselves if the stage which the development of the Church’s life has reached in them is compatible with their origin in the lifetime of St Paul. And thus we are constrained to attempt here a brief summary of the existing evidence as to the growth of the several orders of the Christian Ministry during the first century of the Church’s life. Few questions have been more warmly debated than this, and controversy has run high as to the precise functions of Christian ἐπίσκοποι and πρεσβύτεροι in the Apostolic age. By some the terms are regarded as almost synonyms, and as used in the New Testament to designate the same persons and to describe the same duties; by others it is held that, while the two terms indicate different functions, yet these functions were discharged by the same individuals[31]; by others, again, it has been argued that from the beginning the ἐπίσκοπος has been distinct from the πρεσβύτερος as regards his duties and his gifts. The decision at which we arrive on these disputed points will necessarily modify and colour our interpretation of several important passages of the Pastoral Epistles, and is inextricably involved in any discussion of their date.

Before beginning the investigation, it may be well to remind ourselves of one or two distinctions that may keep us from confusing the issues. And first, we must not assume without proof that the significance of the Episcopate in the continuous life of the Church is bound up with its monarchical or diocesan character. Such an assumption would be entirely without foundation. For centuries (for example) in the Celtic Church there was a bishop attached to each monastery in subordination to the abbot, possessed of no special temporal dignity or administrative authority, but distinguished from the presbyters among whom he lived solely by virtue of his consecration to the Episcopal office, and by the powers which that consecration was believed to impart. It has never been counted part of the essentia of a Christian bishop, that he should exercise any absolute supremacy over the presbyters among whom he is resident. The function of rule is a function which has been accorded to him by the almost universal consent of Christendom, but that his rule should be of a monarchical character or even that he should have a dominating influence in the counsels of the presbyterate is something that would not be easy to establish as an ordinance of the primitive Christian Church. That such functions have been granted to the Episcopate is a matter of history; that it is highly beneficial that they should be exercised—that disobedience to them as an infringement of established order and wholesome discipline is in the highest degree reprehensible—all this may be true. But it does not settle the question as to whether or not these functions belonged to the Episcopate in its earliest days, any more than it nullifies the fact that they were not exercised to any large extent by the bishops of at least one ancient Church.

Secondly, it is to be borne in mind that there is nothing inherently repugnant to the idea of the Christian episcopate in the presence of several bishops at one time in a Christian community. The diocesan idea is one of early growth, it is true; and it is not hard to see its obvious and many advantages. But again it is not part of the essentia of the Episcopate. The Episcopal χάρισμα might be conferred upon several men who happened to be living in one city if the conditions of life in the early Church rendered it desirable that more than one bishop should be available to perform the special duties attaching to the Episcopal office.

And, once more, there is little reason for the assumption often confidently made that the development of the episcopal dignity must have proceeded exactly at the same rate and by the same route in the many widely separated Churches of primitive Christendom. It is entirely a question of evidence. If the evidence teach us that a monarchical Episcopate was developed more slowly in the West than in the East, or that the relations of the bishop or bishops to the presbyters were not always quite the same in all centres of Christian life in the first century, we must be prepared to admit and to interpret it.

Our first enquiry must be, Were there persons called ἐπίσκοποι in the Church of the first century who exercised different functions from the πρεσβύτεροι? And, secondly, if we are thus to differentiate the ἐπίσκοπος from the πρεσβύτερος, on what facts are we to found our distinction? What was the original difference in function?

Primâ facie it would appear that there was some important distinction between them, not only because of the different etymology of the terms, but because the distinction became so soon rooted in the Christian consciousness. When we find that so well instructed a writer as Irenaeus, writing in the last quarter of the second century, not only counts the threefold order of bishop, priest, and deacon as the sole rule for the Church, but seems unconscious that any other rule had ever existed in fact or was possible in theory, we are at once impressed with the antiquity of the offices which he thus regards.

It is well to work backwards in this enquiry, and to start where the evidence is full and indisputable. We begin, then, with Ignatius, whose martyrdom took place cir. 115 A.D. The language of his epistles is very remarkable.

“Submit yourselves to the bishop and the presbytery” is the constant burden of his exhortations to the Churches of Asia Minor (Ephesians 2, Magn. 2, Trall. 2, 13, Smyrn. 8). “As the Lord did nothing without the Father, so neither do ye anything without the bishop and the presbyters” (Magn. 7). “Let all men respect the deacons as Jesus Christ, even as they should respect the bishop as being a type of the Father and the presbyters as the council of God and as the college of Apostles. Apart from these there is not even the name of a Church” (Trall. 3). “There is one altar, as there is one bishop, together with the presbytery and the deacons my fellow-servants” (Philippians 4). It has been pointed out by more than one critic, and the remark seems well founded, that the emphasis laid by Ignatius upon this submission to the ministry in its threefold order is an indication that such submission was not universally practised as a Christian duty when he wrote. If there were no symptoms of insubordination at Ephesus, at Tralles, or at Philadelphia it would not have been natural for him to have dwelt in his letter of farewell on such a point at such length. But although we may not infer from his correspondence that the threefold ministry was as firmly established in the Churches of Asia Minor in his day as it was everywhere in the days of Irenaeus, we must infer that it was recognised there as the existing, though perhaps not the necessarily existing, system of Church rule.

It is remarkable that in Ignatius’ letter to the Church of Rome allusion to the Episcopate is not at all so prominent; unlike the other letters it contains no directions to be obedient to the bishop and the presbytery. It recognises the episcopal office solely by the words “God hath vouchsafed that the bishop from Syria should be found in the West, having summoned him from the East” (Romans 2) and “Remember in your prayers the Church which is in Syria, which hath God for its shepherd in my stead. Jesus Christ alone shall be its bishop—He and your love” (Romans 9). It thus appears that the evidence which Ignatius gives as to the Episcopate in the West and its relation to the presbyterate is not of the same formal and definite character as that which he supplies for the East. It is true at the same time that he speaks elsewhere (Ephesians 3) of bishops as being settled in the farthest parts of the earth.

Next it is to be observed that, from the allusions made by Ignatius to the Christian ministry in the churches of Asia Minor, it seems that the presbyters constitute a sort of college or council, and are not merely individual ministers working under the sole and direct control of the bishop. Their authority is recognised as well as his. They are indeed to submit to him in reverence, as he tells the Magnesians (§ 3), who seem to have had a young bishop; but it is plain that they have a collective authority resident in their own body, in addition to whatever personal authority they may have had from their ministerial office. “Do all things in concord, the bishop presiding after the likeness of God and the presbyters after the likeness of the council of the Apostles” (§ 6). “Do nothing without the bishop; but be obedient also to the presbytery,” he says to the Trallians (§ 2). And the particulars of the bishop’s duty as distinct from the duty of the presbyterate, seem to come out most clearly in his letter to Polycarp. “Have a care for union” (§ 1). “Be not dismayed by those that teach strange doctrine, but stand firm” (§ 3). “Neglect not the widows” (§ 4). These three characteristics we shall see in the sequel to be especially significant.

The next witnesses that are to be cited are both of Rome, viz. Hermas and Clement.

Hermas speaks of deacons (Sim. 9. xxvi.) who “exercised their office ill,” as persons who “plundered the livelihood of widows and orphans, and made gain for themselves from the ministrations which they had received to perform.” Their function was evidently concerned with the temporal relief of the poor, and they had to do with Church money. The bishops he goes on to speak of in direct connexion with the deacons, and describes them as “hospitable persons who gladly received into their houses at all times the servants of God … without ceasing they sheltered the needy and the widows in their ministration” (Sim. 9. xxvii.). It is noteworthy that this relief of widows, perhaps the administration as opposed to the distribution of alms, has already appeared in Ignatius as one of the prominent parts of the duty of the ἐπίσκοπος. In addition to these, Hermas knows of a distinct class of persons entrusted with duties on behalf of the Church, of a very serious character. He speaks in one place (Vis. 3. v.) of “Apostles and bishops and teachers and deacons who … exercised their office of bishop and teacher and deacon in purity … some of them already fallen on sleep and others still living.” Leaving on one side the Apostles, who only continued for one generation, we have in addition to bishops and deacons, teachers. And we hear of them again (Vis. 3. ix.): “I say unto you that are rulers of the Church, and that occupy the chief seats (τοῖς προηγουμένοις τῆς ἐκκλησίας καὶ τοῖς πρωτοκαθεδρίταις), … be not ye like the sorcerers … How is it that ye wish to instruct the elect of God while ye yourselves have no instruction?” The persons who instruct are then, for Hermas, in a position of rule. Who are they? Hear him again. The little book that is written by Hermas in Vis. 2. iv. is to be read to the people of the city of Rome by himself and by “the presbyters who preside over the Church” (τῶν πρεσβυτέρων τῶν προϊσταμένων τῆς ἐκκλησίας). One copy of the little book is to be sent to Clement (the bishop of Rome at this time), and it is notable that then come the words, “He is to send it to the foreign cities, for this is his duty.” The special function of the bishop in this matter is that of communication with other Churches (as above we have seen it to be the entertainment of strangers); the special function of the presbyters is to teach, and they have also (as in Ignatius) certain ruling powers, they preside over the Church. This is the sum of the evidence of Hermas.

It is not too much to say that neither the language of Ignatius nor of Hermas would lead us to infer that the offices of the ἐκίσκοπος and the πρεσβύτερος were identical. So far they seem clearly enough defined, though the evidence is too scanty to enable us to learn in what relation the bishop stood as regards ruling power to the council of the presbyterate, or whether he always stood in the same relation.

We now come to the letter of Clement of Rome[32], the evidence of which as to the position of the ἐπίσκοπος as compared with that of the πρεσβύτερος happens to be peculiarly hard to interpret. The first passage to be cited is from § 42.

“The Apostles received the Gospel for us from the Lord Jesus Christ; Jesus Christ was sent forth from God. So then Christ is from God, and the Apostles from Christ. Both therefore came of the will of God in the appointed order.… Preaching everywhere in country and town, they appointed their first-fruits, when they had proved them by the Spirit, to be bishops and deacons unto them that should believe. And this they did in no new fashion; for indeed it had been written concerning bishops and deacons from very ancient times; for thus saith the Scripture in a certain place, I will appoint their bishops in righteousness and their deacons in faith” (Isaiah 60:17). This passage shews at the least that Clement (and his correspondents, for he does not argue the point as if it were one that could be disputed) held that the institution of bishops and deacons in the Christian Church was of Apostolic origin. He then proceeds (§ 44): “And our Apostles knew … that there would be strife over the name of the bishop’s office. For this cause, therefore … they appointed the aforesaid persons [sc. bishops and deacons], and afterwards they gave a further injunction, that if these should fall asleep, other approved men should succeed to their service. These therefore who were appointed by them or afterward by other men of repute, with the consent of the whole Church,” he goes on, in reference to the schism which was the occasion of his letter, “these men we consider to have been unjustly thrust out from their service (λειτουργία). For it will be no light sin in us, if we thrust out of the bishop’s office those who have offered the gifts unblameably and holily.” So far Clement’s witness is clear enough. He objects to the irregular removal from the bishop’s office at Corinth of some regularly-appointed men. And two things seem to be fairly inferred from his language:—[1] that there were several bishops in the Corinthian Church at the time, i.e. that the monarchical episcopate was not yet established there; and [2] that a special function of the bishop was “to offer the gifts” (προσφέρειν τὰ δῶρα). That is, in all probability, the function of the persons here called ἐπίσκοποι was to offer the alms and other gifts (including the elements) at the Eucharistic celebration. Their service is a λειτουργία; this function is performed by them in the name of the whole Church. The next sentence contains the crux of the passage. “Happy are those presbyters who have gone before, seeing that their departure was fruitful and ripe; for they have no fear lest anyone should remove them from their appointed place. For we see that ye have displaced certain persons, though they were living honourably, from the service (λειτουργίας) which they had respected blamelessly.” Are we to say, on the strength of this passage, that the terms πρεσβύτεροι and ἐπίσκοποι are used interchangeably by Clement?

That is the inference adopted by Lightfoot and many other writers. But it does not seem to be by any means certain that this is involved in Clement’s words. Before we examine them more closely we shall turn back to § 40 of the Epistle. Clement is there illustrating the importance of Church order by an appeal to the O.T. dispensation; and he uses language which suggests that he had a threefold ministry in his mind. “Unto the high priest,” he says, “his proper services (λειτουργίαι) have been given, and to the priests their proper place (τόπος) is assigned, and upon the Levites their proper ministrations (διακονίαι) are laid. The layman (ὁ λαϊκὸς ἄνθρωπος) is bound by the layman’s ordinances.” We may not press this passage so as to urge that it indicates a single bishop, as there was only a single high-priest under the Hebrew religion; but it certainly seems that the application of the term λειτουργία to the first-mentioned Church officer, and of the term διακονία to the third, fixes the sense of the analogy, and entitles us to see here Clement’s recognition of a distinction between ἐπίσκοποι and πρεσβύτεροι. The function of the one is described as a λειτουργία; the office of the other as a τόπος.

What duties came within the presbyteral τόπος? That for Clement, as for Hermas, the duty of rule belongs to the presbyters seems plain from §§ 54, 57. They constitute the body to which the rebels are exhorted to submit, and with which they should be at peace. And forming, as they do, the supreme authority in matters of discipline we naturally look among them for the ‘men of repute’ by whom ‘with the consent of the whole Church’ lawful bishops are appointed (§ 44). To make these appointments is, in fact, an important part of their duty. It is thus plain why the schism which occasioned Clement’s letter is described as a “sedition against the presbyters” (§ 47). Certain ἐπίσκοποι had been thrust out from their functions at the instigation of two or three agitators (§§ 1, 47). But this was an invasion of the presbyteral prerogative. The right of deposition cannot belong to a less authoritative body than that which has the right of appointment. And that such irregular proceedings should have been acquiesced in by any considerable number of the faithful would naturally be most grievous to the presbyters whose place (τόπος) had been usurped.

In the light of these considerations let us read again the concluding words of § 44. “Happy are those presbyters who have gone before … for they have no fear lest anyone should remove them from their appointed place (τόπος). For we see that ye (ὑμεῖς, with special emphasis) have displaced certain persons from their service (λειτουργία).” In other words, the deposition of ἐπίσκοποι from their λειτουργία by unscrupulous agitation, would be a grievous attack upon the authority of the πρεσβύτεροι, within whose τόπος such deposition would properly fall. The language is carefully chosen; the τόπος of the presbyter is distinct from the λειτουργία of the bishop, and yet it is upon the confusion of these words that the identification of πρεσβυτέροι and ἐπίσκοποι depends.

If this interpretation of Clement’s language be accurate, it shews us a plurality of ἐπίσκοποι at Corinth, appointed by the πρεσβύτεροι—still indeed to be counted πρεσβύτεροι from one point of view, but exercising special functions on behalf of the Christian congregation at large. And this institution of ἐπίσκοποι Clement traces to the act of the Apostles themselves, in providing for the regular succession of ministers in the Church.

The testimony of Hermas and Clement is, as we have seen, primarily testimony as to the organisation of the Church at Rome, although Clement gives important incidental information as to the Christian community at Corinth. The only other documents which could tell us anything about the primitive rulers of the Church at the seat of Empire are 1 Peter and the Epistle to the Hebrews, both of which seem to have been written from Italy; and the evidence they afford as to the primitive ἐπίσκοποι is very scanty. The author of 1 Peter recognises the existence of such a title, but he does not apply it directly to the heads of the Christian society. The great Head of the Church is spoken of as a “bishop of souls” (1 Peter 2:25), but the exhortation in the letter is addressed to the presbyters of certain Asiatic Churches[33].

We pass now to the Didache or ‘Teaching of the Twelve Apostles,’ probably current in Palestine some time in the early decades of the second century. We are now on Eastern, not Western soil. The first thing that strikes us on reading this little book is the great prominence of the prophets and apostles in the Christian communities. The distinction between the itinerant and the local ministry has now gained pretty general acceptance[34]. Christianity was first spread (as it often is at the present day in heathen countries) by itinerant preachers going from place to place, local Church officials being only appointed when there was a congregation for them to minister to. The apostles of the Didache are not, of course, the original Twelve; they are simply missionaries, as the word apostles properly signifies. And the distinction between them and the prophets is not very clearly marked. But the significant passage in the Didache for our present purpose is § 15: “Appoint for yourselves therefore bishops and deacons worthy of the Lord, men who are meek, and not lovers of money, and also true and approved; for unto you they also perform the service (λειτουργοῦσι τὴν λειτουργίαν) of the prophets and teachers.” Here we have a hint of the gradual assumption of the prophetical office by the permanent officials of the Church. Spiritual functions begin now to be provided for by a local ministry, as ordinary gifts begin to supersede extraordinary ones, though the period of transition may have been long in some places: indeed the prominence of Montanism at one time shews the unwillingness to admit that the prophetical office had become obsolete. And, again, as in the other documents we have examined, the bishop is the officer of worship, with duties in connexion with the Eucharistic office (§§ 12, 15). We notice here two other points. [1] The bishops are mentioned in the plural, though when the Didache recognises the possibility of a prophet settling down in one place for his life, it furnishes a valuable clue as to the way in which a monarchical episcopate could readily arise even in the very earliest times. [2] There is no mention of presbyters so called, nor indeed is there any hint of any permanent Church officials save ἐπίσκοποι and διάκονοι. But we must not build up an argument on negative evidence. The Didache does not tell us of presbyters; it does tell us of bishops. That is all we have a right to say.

The Didache is far removed in time from the Epistle to the Philippians; and yet a very similar phenomenon there presents itself. The salutation at the beginning is “to the saints at Philippi, with the bishops and deacons.” Neither in this Epistle nor in any of St Paul’s earlier Epistles are presbyters mentioned by name; and yet it would be impossible to deny their existence. Indeed, when we remember that the bishop’s office seems to have included the duty of representing the Church, as well in formal communications with other Churches as in the acts of Eucharistic worship, we find no difficulty in understanding why the bishops should be specially mentioned in St Paul’s salutation. The mention of deacons follows as a corollary. Wherever deacons are mentioned in the sub-apostolic literature (with one exception[35]) they are mentioned in close connexion with and in subordination to the bishops[36]. They are Church officials acting under the ἐπίσκοποι, who supervise or oversee their labours. This at least is part of the significance of the term ἐπίσκοπος.

The evidence so far would give, as it seems, no good ground for identifying the ἐπίσκοπος with the πρεσβύτερος; the terms are of distinct meaning and are kept fairly distinct in usage, the bishop being more of an official, the presbyter more of a pastor in our modern sense—both apparently having certain judicial functions. But whether they were applied to distinct individuals in the earliest Christian age is a more difficult question.

Let us then examine the witness of the Acts. That book repeatedly recognises the existence of presbyters associated with the Apostles at Jerusalem. They are mentioned many times, the most important passages being perhaps Acts 11:30 (which takes it for granted that they were an existing body in the Church of Jerusalem at that early stage) and the account of the Apostolic Council of Jerusalem (see Acts 15:2; Acts 15:4; Acts 15:6; Acts 15:22; Acts 16:4). They are present at the reception of St Paul by St James (Acts 21:18); it is to them that the alms for the poor brethren in Judæa are sent by the hands of Barnabas and Saul (Acts 11:30). Their prominence at Jerusalem is easy to understand. The name ‘presbyter’ was taken over, it is hardly to be doubted, from Judaism. Jewish presbyters appear in the Acts (Acts 23:14; Acts 24:1) and in the Gospels frequently, and we are familiar with the title in the O.T. They seem in N.T. times to have been the officers—not of the synagogue, but of the συνέδριον; the ‘seat of the elders’; and their functions were in part disciplinary[37]. Such duties would be especially important in the earliest days of Christianity at Jerusalem; before the Catholic faith had been finally dissociated from Judaism it was natural that the old title for Church officials should remain, and that the duties connected with the term ‘presbyter’ should be conspicuous. And we find that the organisation of the presbyterate seemed so important even in these first years that St Paul and Barnabas appointed presbyters in every Church on the first great missionary journey to Asia Minor (Acts 14:23). The organisation was afterwards extended to Ephesus, where we meet with presbyters holding a position of prominence, apparently in a sense the representatives of the Christian community, in ch. 20.

So far the Acts. And so, too, in the Epistle of St James; the only servants of the Church that are mentioned are the presbyters, who are spoken of in connexion with a special spiritual function, in the passage which speaks of the anointing of the sick (James 5:14). It is a little surprising to find no mention whatever of presbyters in St Paul’s Epistles until we come to the last group of all, the pastoral letters written to Timothy and Titus. But though the name is absent, the thing is present. They are the προϊστάμενοι, those who have the rule. “We beseech you,” he says to the Thessalonians, “to know them that labour among you, and are over you in the Lord” (1 Thessalonians 5:12). This is an instructive passage, for it suggests that the duties of προϊστάμενοι were largely pastoral, or concerned with the cure of souls. So at least the context would suggest. And in fact a comparison of the lists of χαρίσματα and of the servants of the Church in Rom., 1 Cor., and Eph. will leave no doubt on our minds that the προϊστάμενοι of Romans 12:8 and the κυβερνήσεις of 1 Corinthians 12:28 are to be identified with the ποιμένες of Ephesians 4:11.

But what of the ἐπίσκοπος in the Acts? And have we any hint as to the origin of the term?

It seems probable, on the whole, that the title of this office was taken over from the organisation of the contemporary Greek societies[38]. It can hardly be accident that we find no mention in the N.T. documents (or indeed in any early writings) of ἐπίσκοποι at Jerusalem, while they appear at Ephesus, at Philippi, at Crete, where Greek influences were dominant. At the same time we must not leave out of sight the fact that the words ἐπίσκοπος, ἐπισκοπεῖν are common in the LXX. It is quite intelligible from this point of view how they might have gained an early place in Christian speech. Indeed in Acts 1:20, when the Apostleship vacant through Judas’s death was under discussion, one of the passages in the O.T. which was appealed to was τὴν ἐπισκοπὴν αὐτοῦ λαβέτω ἕτερος. But although this LXX. usage must have familiarised the term itself to those who were entrusted with the organisation of the Church, that the usefulness and the duties of the office were partly—at least—suggested by the practice of the Greek societies and guilds with which they came in contact is a plausible hypothesis.

What, then, it will be said, was the position of St James at the Apostolic Council? Was he not the ἐπίσκοπος? He was president. He spoke in the name of the assembly and gave his sentence with authority (Acts 15:13; Acts 15:19). Are not these the functions of the bishop, and may he not therefore be counted the first bishop of Jerusalem? We should probably be nearest the truth if we said that he certainly was in a position strikingly like that of the monarchical ἐπίσκοπος of a later date, and that he distinctly indicates the beginnings of that dignity at Jerusalem; but it would be an anachronism to call him an ἐπίσκοπος. He is not so called by St Luke. He exercises his important functions as an Apostle, or at least as “the Lord’s brother”; and it does not seem that any other title of dignity would have been deemed natural. It is noteworthy that the later bishops of Jerusalem counted themselves as his successors; but we must not import the term ἐπίσκοπος into the narrative at this point. We are not yet told of an ἐπίσκοπος or of ἐπίσκοποι at Jerusalem, though the presbyters are many times mentioned.

The most puzzling passage in the Acts which relates to the connexion between the presbyters and the bishops may be now considered. When St Paul was addressing the presbyters of the Church at Ephesus (Acts 20:28) he said, “Take heed to yourselves and to all the flock, in the which the Holy Ghost hath made you bishops.” This is one of the passages on which reliance is mainly placed to establish the interchangeability in the N.T. of the terms we are considering. And primâ facie it points that way. Speaking (apparently) to presbyters, St Paul calls them bishops. If on this ground, however, we are to identify the offices, as well as the persons entrusted with the offices at Ephesus, we shall have great difficulty in explaining the speedy divergence of meaning between the terms, and indeed the use of two terms at all.

But the inference is surely a somewhat precarious one. No one imagines that the speeches in the Acts are recorded in their integrity, with all the accuracy of a modern shorthand report. And if we suppose (as Irenaeus did[39]) that among the Ephesian presbyters present some were bishops, there is no difficulty in St Paul’s language. An unrecorded gesture on the speaker’s part may have made his meaning clear to his hearers. Is there any improbability in the hypothesis that the speaker turned and addressed (Acts 20:28) emphatically those of the presbyters who held the episcopal office? Indeed the speech (Acts 20:18-35) naturally falls into two divisions. [1] From Acts 20:18 to Acts 20:27 the Apostle addresses the presbyters: “You know (ὑμεῖς ἐπίστασθε) how faithfully I preached in public and private: you were witnesses of it.” [2] But from Acts 20:28 onward the topics are different. “Take heed to yourselves (cp. 1 Timothy 4:16): beware of heresy, remembering how I admonished you individually in reference to this: you yourselves know (αὐτοὶ γινώσκετε)”—as if the persons addressed had special means of knowing this—“that I did not accept maintenance from the Church.” Now to guard the faith against the encroachments of heresy, and to administer the Church’s alms, were duties specially appropriate to the ἐπίσκοποι, as we have seen above. The whole passage certainly establishes—and the fact is important—the presence of several bishops at Ephesus, as at Philippi; but that all the presbyters who were there were necessarily ἐπίσκοποι is quite a different proposition, very unlikely in itself, not demanded by the context, and not supported by the history of the Church in the next generation.

We proceed to examine the testimony of the Pastoral Epistles. The qualifications and functions of a bishop in these letters (leaving out of account the moral qualifications, which were of course paramount) may be placed under these heads: (a) He is to be above suspicion in matters of money (1 Timothy 3:3; Titus 1:7). This recalls to us what we read in the Didache, and elsewhere. The bishop has at least some financial functions; probably he was the administrator of the Church funds, the deacons being subordinate dispensers (1 Timothy 3:8). But this is not the bishop’s most important function. (b) His control goes further; it extends to the preservation of the apostolic tradition. He is the guardian of discipline, the true ἐπιμελητής (1 Timothy 3:5); “holding by the faithful word which is according to the doctrine, that he may be able both to exhort in the wholesome doctrine and to convict the gainsayers” (Titus 1:9). (c) He must be of good repute, because he is the persona ecclesiae; he represents the Church to those without (1 Timothy 3:2; 1 Timothy 3:7; Titus 1:7). All this is very like the later idea of the ἐπίσκοπος, and unlike the later idea of the πρεσβύτερος, save in one point. The bishop of the Pastorals is to be apt to teach (1 Timothy 3:2). This is not a function that appears prominently in the later writings; such a peculiarly pastoral duty becomes rather appropriated to the presbyters. It seems further from 1 Timothy 5:17 that all the presbyters of the Pastorals did not teach; “those who rule well are to be counted worthy of double honour, especially those who labour in the word and in teaching.” Rule is their normal duty, but of those who rule some do not teach.

One passage in the Pastorals, indeed, suggests at first sight the identity of the ἐπίσκοπος and the πρεσβύτερος. “Appoint presbyters in every city … if any be blameless … for the bishop must be blameless as the steward of God” (Titus 1:5-7). It can hardly however be matter of accident that the ἐπίσκοπος is thus markedly spoken of in the singular, while the πρεσβύτεροι are mentioned in the plural, and that the definite article τὸν ἐπίσκοπον is here used (see note in loc.). And, apart from this consideration, we can understand the language used if we remember that the presbyterate was a very important office from the beginning, not only in view of its spiritual functions, but in respect of the powers of the presbyteral council. Thus (as in Clement) it would naturally be the body which would decide upon the person or persons to be appointed to the episcopate. At first, and probably as long as they had the power, for human nature was much the same then as now, the presbyters would nominate one of their own body for this office. The ἐπίσκοποι would be all πρεσβύτεροι, though not necessarily vice versâ. And thus when St Paul bids Titus be careful about the persons to be ordained presbyter, for the bishop must be blameless, he need not imply more than this, that as the bishop would naturally be chosen out of the presbyteral body, it was of the highest importance that each member of that body should be of good character.

On a review of all the evidence it is not too much to say that the only passages which even suggest the interchangeability in the N.T. of the terms ἐπίσκοπος and πρεσβύτερος are Acts 20:28 and Titus 1:7. But they are susceptible of explanations which fall in with the supposition that the words represent distinct functions (which might, on occasion, be discharged by the same individual). And thus we do not regard these passages as inconsistent with the conclusions to which all the other evidence points. These conclusions are four in number. [1] The episcopate and presbyterate were distinct in origin and in function; the difference of name points to a difference in duty, although no doubt many duties would be common to both, especially in primitive and half-organised communities. [2] The bishops were originally selected by the presbyteral council, and probably from their own body. [3] There were often several bishops in one place, the number being a matter non-essential. [4] A conspicuous part of the bishop’s duty was the administration of worship—the λειτουργία in the largest sense; he is above all things an official, the representative of his Church and the director of its discipline.

A larger question is, no doubt, involved as to the significance of the bishop’s office in the continuous life of the Church, which it does not come within the scope of this Introduction to discuss. There does not seem, however, to be good ground for rejecting Clement’s express statement that the Apostles appointed ἐπίσκοποι to provide for the perpetual succession of the Christian ministry. They took over the office of presbyter from the Jewish Church, and gave to it higher and more spiritual functions, the due discharge of which was provided for by the χάρισμα or grace conveyed in the act of ordination, as the Pastoral Epistles teach (1 Timothy 4:14; 2 Timothy 1:6). And so they took over the office of ἐπίσκοπος from the Greek societies in which Christianity was growing; and they gave to that office also higher and more spiritual functions. The Greek ἐπίσκοπος in a secular association was a representative and responsible official, without any necessarily religious duties. The Christian ἐπίσκοπος was also a representative and responsible official. His position in respect of Church funds, in respect of communication with other Churches, and in respect of the liturgical service of the Christian society, all mark him as representing the Church, as the persona ecclesiae. These were all duties that in the first Christian generation were performed by Apostles. And they, as Clement informs us—and there does not seem to be any other key to the sequel,—delegated these duties to the ἐπίσκοποι that were to come after them, with the right of continuing that succession for the future. As time went on it was this last function that became especially prominent and was counted the essentia of the episcopal office; nor could we now, even if we wished, alter the conception. For whether or not the institution of the Christian episcopate in this sense was due to the direct command of our Lord Himself—a question which we have no means of answering from history—certain it is that it was due to the direct and formal action of the Apostles whom He sent.

The bearing of this discussion upon the date of the Pastoral Epistles may be thus summarised. The Pastorals shew us the episcopate in a somewhat early stage of its development. The bishop’s office is not yet so distinguished from that of the presbyter that he does not take part in the instruction of the faithful. The bishop of the Pastorals must be “apt to teach” (1 Timothy 3:2). Again, the monarchical episcopate of the days of Ignatius is not yet established. However we describe the office held by Timothy and Titus in their own persons—and that it included that of bishop seems tolerably certain—we could not infer from the instructions given to them that there must be only one bishop in each community, which very early became the common practice of the Church. And though the bishops of the Pastorals must not be greedy of money, there is no such formal assignment of the duties falling to them as administrators of Church alms as we should expect in a second century pastoral letter. They are to be “given to hospitality” (1 Timothy 3:2); but their office as representatives of the Church in its external relations does not come into the prominence that it assumed at a later period. Some of these indications may be trivial, but taken together they do not permit us to date the Pastorals later than the first century. But if the Pastoral Letters are first century documents, there is no adequate reason forbidding us to acquiesce in their own claim, confirmed by the unbroken tradition of the Christian Church, that they were written by the hand of St Paul.



The principles have been already explained (p. v.) by which the Greek text of the several books of the New Testament, as printed in this series, is determined. The main authorities (exclusive of the Patristic citations) for the text of the Pastoral Epistles may be thus classified:

i. Uncial Manuscripts

א, the famous Codex Sinaiticus (saec. iv), now at St Petersburg, published in facsimile type by its discoverer Tischendorf, in 1862. It contains the Epistles without any lacuna. The symbol א° is used to indicate the corrections introduced by a scribe of the 7th century, א* denoting the autograph of the original scribe.

A, Codex Alexandrinus (saec. v), at the British Museum, published in photographic facsimile by Sir E. M. Thompson. It contains the Epistles without any lacuna.

C, Codex Ephraemi (saec. v), the Paris palimpsest (Bibl. nat. 9), first edited by Tischendorf. The text of the Epistles is lacking from 1 Timothy 1:1 to 1 Timothy 3:9 and from 1 Timothy 5:20 to 1 Timothy 6:21.

D2, Codex Claromontanus (saec. vi), a Graeco-Latin MS. at Paris (Bibl. nat. 107), first edited by Tischendorf [1852]. D2° denotes the readings introduced by a ninth century corrector. The Latin text is represented by the symbol d; it follows the Old Latin version, with modifications.

E, Codex Sangermanensis (saec. ix), a Graeco-Latin MS. at St Petersburg. The Greek text is a mere transcript of D2, and is not therefore cited in this edition, as not being an independent authority. The Latin text e (a corrected copy of d) has been printed (not very accurately) by Belsheim (Christiania, 1885). The MS. is defective from 1 Timothy 1:1 to 1 Timothy 6:15.

F, Codex Augiensis (saec. ix), a Graeco-Latin MS. at Trinity College, Cambridge (B. xvii. 1), edited by Scrivener [1859]. The Greek text is almost identical with that of G, and therefore we do not cite it, save at 1 Timothy 5:21, where alone, among the readings recorded in our critical apparatus, F and G disagree. Its Latin version (f) is, however, worthy of being cited; it presents the Vulgate text, altered in some places.

G, Codex Boernerianus (saec. ix), a Graeco-Latin MS. at Dresden, edited by Matthaei [1791]. It once formed part of the same volume as Codex Sangallensis (Δ) of the Gospels, and was evidently written by an Irish scribe. Its Latin version (g) is based on the prae-Hieronymian translation, but has been modified a good deal.

H, Codex Coislinianus (saec. vi), whose fragments are dispersed in various Libraries. The portions of the Pastoral Epistles which survive (at Paris and Turin) comprise 1 Timothy 1:4 to 1 Timothy 3:2; 1 Timothy 3:7-13; 1 Timothy 6:9-13; 2 Timothy 1:17 to 2 Timothy 2:9; Titus 1:1-3; Titus 1:15 to Titus 2:5; Titus 3:13-15. They were edited by Omont[40], and some additional leaves were read by J. A. Robinson[41].

I, Codex Petropolitanus (saec. v), at St Petersburg, whose fragments were edited by Tischendorf. Of the Pastoral Epistles it contains Titus 1:1-13 only.

K, Codex Mosquensis (saec. ix), at Moscow, edited by Matthaei [1782]; complete for these Epp.

L, Codex Angelicus (saec. ix), at Rome, collated by Tischendorf and Tregelles; complete for these Epp.

P, Codex Porphyrianus (saec. ix), at St Petersburg, collated by Tischendorf. It is illegible in parts between 1 Timothy 6:7-12 and between 2 Timothy 1:2-5.

Tg, a fragment (saec. v?), at Paris (Egyptian Mus. Louvre 7332), edited by Zahn[42]; it only contains 1 Timothy 3:15-16; 1 Timothy 6:3.

Ψ, an unpublished Codex (saec. ix?), at Mount Athos. It is said to be complete.

Z, Codex Patiriensis (saec. v), at Rome (Vat. Gr. 2061); it contains, inter alia, 1 Timothy 5:6 to 1 Timothy 6:21; 2 Timothy 1:1 to 2 Timothy 2:25; Titus 3:13-15. Its text has not been published in its entirety.

The fact that B is lacking for these Epistles deprives us of a primary authority the loss of which is very serious. As in the Pauline Epistles generally, the type of text known as ‘Western’ (here represented by DG) does not present such wide divergences from the other types as it does in the Gospels and Acts; but nevertheless the combination DG is interesting. אACLP often go together, and form a group which, in Westcott and Hort’s nomenclature, would be described as ‘Alexandrian’: the later uncials KLP represent the type which they call ‘Syrian.’ The combination א° H arm is frequent, and needs attention.

ii. Minuscules

The minuscule manuscripts are very numerous, and only a few need be mentioned. Those numbered Paul. 1, 2, 4, 7 (all at Basle) have a historical interest from the fact that Erasmus used them for the editio princeps [1516], but they are not of the first rank. 17 (saec. ix), “the queen of cursives,” is at Paris; 37 is the famous Leicester codex = Ev. 69; 67 (at Vienna, saec. xi); 73 (at Upsala, saec. xi); 137 (at Paris, saec. xiii), and 181 (at Florence, saec. xiii) are also of importance.

iii. Versions

1. Latin. Of Latin, Versions d, e, f, g have been already mentioned.

We have also of the Old Latin the fragmentary Codex Frisingensis (r) of the 5th or 6th century, containing 1 Timothy 1:12 to 1 Timothy 2:15; 1 Timothy 5:18 to 1 Timothy 6:13, edited by Ziegler (Marburg, 1876).

Evidence is also to be found in the citations of Tertullian, Cyprian, the Latin Irenaeus, Hilary, and the Speculum (m), which represents the Bible of the Spaniard Priscillian.

The Vulgate of the Pauline Epistles differs but little from the prae-Hieronymian Latin.

2. Syriac. Here we have (a) the Peshitto (saec. iii?); and (b) the Harclean version (saec. vii), based on the older version of Philoxenus (saec. vi).

3. Egyptian. Of these versions we have (a) the Bohairic or the North Coptic, and (b) the Sahidic or the South Coptic, the language of Upper Egypt. The dates of these versions are as yet undetermined, but they are probably later than the second century.

4. Armenian. This version is generally regarded as of the fifth century.

Where the testimony of these witnesses is cited in the following pages, it has been derived from the eighth edition of Tischendorf’s Novum Testamentum Graece.


Introductory. Salutation (1 Timothy 1:1-2).

Repetition of charge already given to Timothy (1 Timothy 1:3-20).

I. Practical directions about Public Worship.

i. It is to include prayers for all men (1 Timothy 2:1-8).

ii. Women are not to lead the devotions of the congregation (1 Timothy 2:9-15).

II. Qualifications of officials of the Church.

i. Bishops (1 Timothy 3:1-7).

ii. Deacons (1 Timothy 3:8-13) and Deaconesses (1 Timothy 3:11).

The aim of all the foregoing instructions is:—

ἴνα εἰδῇς πῶς δεῖ ἐν οἴκῳ θεοῦ ἀναστρέφεσθαι (1 Timothy 3:15).

A quotation from an early hymn (1 Timothy 3:16).

III. The dangers of the future (1 Timothy 4:1-5).

Timothy’s duty, in respect of:—

i. The false asceticism (1 Timothy 4:6-10).

ii. His personal conduct (1 Timothy 4:11-16).

IV. The status in the Church of:

i. Its older members (1 Timothy 5:1-2).

ii. Widows in respect of

(a) Their maintenance (1 Timothy 5:3-8).

(b) Their organisation in an order (1 Timothy 5:9-16).

iii. Presbyters (1 Timothy 5:17-25).

iv. Slaves (1 Timothy 6:1-2).

Renewed warnings against false doctrine (1 Timothy 6:3-5) and in especial against the vanity and the perils of wealth (1 Timothy 6:6-11).

Epilogue. i. Personal encouragement to Timothy (1 Timothy 6:11-16).

ii. Charge to the rich Christians at Ephesus (1 Timothy 6:17-19).

iii. Timothy’s responsibility as guardian of the faith (1 Timothy 6:20).

Benediction (1 Timothy 6:21).



[44]ἀγαθοεργεῖν, 1 Timothy 6:18

ἀγάπη, 1 Timothy 1:5 &c.

ἁγιάζειν, 1 Timothy 4:5; 2 Timothy 2:21.

ἁγιασμός, 1 Timothy 2:15.

ἁγνός, 1 Timothy 5:22; Titus 2:5

ἀγωνίζεσθα., 1 Timothy 4:10; 1 Timothy 6:12; 2 Timothy 4:7


[48]ἀδηλότης, 1 Timothy 6:17

ἀδόκιμος, 2 Timothy 3:8; Titus 1:16

ἀθετεῖν, 1 Timothy 5:12


[52]ἀθλεῖν, 1 Timothy 2:5


[55]αἱρετικός, Titus 3:10


[57]αἱσχροκερδής, 1 Timothy 3:8; Titus 1:7; cp. 1 Peter 5:2

αἱχμαλωτὶζειν, 2 Timothy 3:6

ἅλυσις, 2 Timothy 1:16


[67]ἅμαχος, 1 Timothy 3:3; Titus 3:2


[70]ἀμοιβή, 1 Timothy 5:4

ἀνάγνωσις, 1 Timothy 4:13


[73]ἀνακαίνωσις, Titus 3:5; Romans 12:2


[75]ἀνάλυσις, 2 Timothy 4:6; cp. 2 Maccabees 9:1


[78]ἀνανήφειν, 2 Timothy 2:26

ἀναστρέφειν, 1 Timothy 3:15

ἀναστροφή, 1 Timothy 4:12

ἀνάψυξις, Acts 3:19


[82]ἀνδραποδιστής, 1 Timothy 1:10


[84]ἀνδροφόνος, 1 Timothy 1:9; 2 Maccabees 9:28 only


[88]ἀνεπαίσχυντος, 2 Timothy 2:15


[90]ἀνεπίλημπτος, 1 Timothy 3:2; 1 Timothy 5:7; 1 Timothy 6:14

ἀνέχεσθαι, 2 Timothy 4:3


[92]ἀνήμερος, 2 Timothy 3:3

ἀνθιστάναι, 2 Timothy 3:8; 2 Timothy 4:15

ἀνόητος, 1 Timothy 6:9; Titus 3:3

ἀνομία, Titus 2:14

ἄνομος, 1 Timothy 1:9

ἀντέχεσθαι, Titus 1:9


[96]ἀντιδιατίθεσθαι, 2 Timothy 2:25


[98]ἀντίθεσις, 1 Timothy 6:20

ἀντίκεισθαι, 1 Timothy 1:10; 1 Timothy 5:14

ἀντιλέσειν, Titus 1:9; Titus 2:9


[101]ἀντίλυτρον, 1 Timothy 2:6; cp. Matthew 20:28

ἀνυπόκριτος, 1 Timothy 1:5; 2 Timothy 1:5


[103]ἀνυπότακτος, 1 Timothy 1:9; Titus 1:6; Titus 1:10; Hebrews 2:8; cp. Romans 13:1; Romans 13:5

ἀπέχεσθαι, 1 Timothy 4:3

ἀπιστεῖν, 2 Timothy 2:13; ἀπιστία, 1 Timothy 1:13; ἄπιστος, 1 Timothy 5:8; Titus 1:15


[108]ἀπόβλητος, 1 Timothy 4:4


[110]ἀπόδεκτος, 1 Timothy 2:3; 1 Timothy 5:4


[112]ἀποδοχή, 1 Timothy 1:15; 1 Timothy 4:9

ἀπολογία, 2 Timothy 4:16

ἀποστερεῖν, 1 Timothy 6:5

ἀποστρέφειν, 2 Timothy 1:15; 2 Timothy 4:4; Titus 1:14

ἀποτόμως, Titus 1:13; 2 Corinthians 13:10


[119]ἀπρόσιτος, 1 Timothy 6:16

ἀπωθεῖν, 1 Timothy 1:19

ἀπώλεια, 1 Timothy 6:9


[124]ἀρσενοκοίτης, 1 Timothy 1:10; 1 Corinthians 6:9


[126]ἄρτιος, 2 Timothy 3:17

ἀσέβεια, 2 Timothy 2:16; Titus 2:12

ἀσεβής, 1 Timothy 1:9


[129]ἄσπονδος, 2 Timothy 3:3

ἀσωτία, Titus 1:6


[135]αὐθεντεῖν, 1 Timothy 2:12


[137]αὐτάρκεια, 1 Timothy 6:6; 2 Corinthians 9:8


[139]αὐτοκατάκριτος, Titus 3:11

ἄφθαρτος, 1 Timothy 1:17


[143]ἀφιλάγαθος, 2 Timothy 3:3


[145]ἀφιλάργυρος, 1 Timothy 3:3; Hebrews 13:5

βαρεῖσθαι, 1 Timothy 5:16

βλασφημεῖν, 1 Timothy 1:20; 1 Timothy 6:1; Titus 2:5; Titus 3:2; βλασφημία, 1 Timothy 6:4; βλάσφημος, 1 Timothy 1:13; 2 Timothy 3:2

βρῶμα, 1 Timothy 4:3


[159]γάγγραινα, 2 Timothy 2:17


[161]γενεαλογία, 1 Timothy 1:4; Titus 3:9


[165]γόης, 2 Timothy 3:13

γράμμα, 2 Timothy 3:15


[167]γραώδης, 1 Timothy 4:7


[171]γυναικάριον, 2 Timothy 3:6

δέησις, 1 Timothy 2:1; 1 Timothy 5:5; 2 Timothy 1:3

δέσμιος, 2 Timothy 1:8


[175]διαβεβαιοῦσθαι, 1 Timothy 1:7; Titus 3:8

διάβολος, 1 Timothy 3:6-7; 1 Timothy 3:11; 2 Timothy 2:26; 2 Timothy 3:3; Titus 2:3

διακονία, 1 Timothy 1:12; 2 Timothy 4:5; 2 Timothy 4:11; διάκονος, 1 Timothy 3:8; 1 Timothy 3:12; 1 Timothy 4:6 (not in Titus)

διαλογισμός, 1 Timothy 2:8

διαμαρτύρεσθαι, 1 Timothy 5:21; 2 Timothy 2:14; 2 Timothy 4:1 (1 Thessalonians 4:6 only other place in P.)


[179]διαπαρατριβή, 1 Timothy 6:5


[182]διδακτικός, 1 Timothy 3:2; 2 Timothy 2:24

διδασκαλία, 1 Timothy 1:10 (where see note)

διδαχή, 2 Timothy 4:2; Titus 1:9

δικαιοῦν, 1 Timothy 3:16; Titus 3:7


[184]δίλογος, 1 Timothy 3:8

διωγμός, 2 Timothy 3:11


[187]διώκτης, 1 Timothy 1:13

δοκιμάζειν, 1 Timothy 3:10

δόκιμος, 2 Timothy 2:15

ἐγκαταλείπειν, 2 Timothy 4:10; 2 Timothy 4:16


[192]ἑδραίωμα, 1 Timothy 3:15


[197]ἐκζήτησις, 1 Timothy 1:4

ἐκλεκτός, 1 Timothy 5:21; 2 Timothy 2:10; Titus 1:1

ἐκχέειν, Titus 3:6

ἐλέγχειν, 1 Timothy 5:20; 2 Timothy 4:2; Titus 1:9; Titus 1:13; Titus 2:15

ἐνδυναμοῦν, 1 Timothy 1:12; 2 Timothy 2:1; 2 Timothy 4:17

ἐντρέπειν, Titus 2:8


[210]ἐντρέφεσθαι, 1 Timothy 4:6

ἐπαγγελία, 1 Timothy 4:8; 2 Timothy 1:1

ἐπαγγέλλεσθαι, 1 Timothy 2:10; 1 Timothy 6:21; Titus 1:2

ἐπέχειν, 1 Timothy 4:16

ἐπιγινώσκειν, 1 Timothy 4:3

ἐπίγνωσις, 1 Timothy 2:4; 2 Timothy 2:25; 2 Timothy 3:7; Titus 1:1


[216]ἐπιδιορθοῦν, Titus 1:5

ἐπιεικής, 1 Timothy 3:3; Titus 3:2; Philippians 4:5; cp. 2 Corinthians 10:1

ἐπιθυμία, 1 Timothy 6:9; 2 Timothy 2:22; 2 Timothy 3:6; 2 Timothy 4:3; Titus 2:12; Titus 3:3


[222]ἐπιπλήττειν, 1 Timothy 5:1; cp. 2 Maccabees 7:33

ἐπιποθεῖν, 2 Timothy 1:4

ἐπίσκοπος, 1 Timothy 3:2; Titus 1:7


[226]ἐπιστομίζειν, Titus 1:11 (where see note)


[228]ἐπισωρεύειν, 2 Timothy 4:3

ἐπιτρέπειν, 1 Timothy 2:12

ἐπουράνιος, 2 Timothy 4:18


[236]ἑτεροδιδασκαλεῖν, 1 Timothy 1:3; 1 Timothy 6:3


[241]εὐμετάδοτος, 1 Timothy 6:18

εὐχαριστία, 1 Timothy 2:1; 1 Timothy 4:3-4


[247]ζήτησις, 1 Timothy 6:4; 2 Timothy 2:23; Titus 3:9


[252]ἤπιος, 2 Timothy 2:24


[256]θεόπνευστος, 2 Timothy 3:16

θλίβειν, 1 Timothy 5:10

ἴδιος, 1 Timothy 2:6 &c.; (very often in Paul; 15 times in 1 Cor.)


[263]Ἰουδαϊκός, Titus 1:14; cp. Galatians 2:14

καθαρίζειν, Titus 2:14

καθαρός, 1 Timothy 1:5; 1 Timothy 3:9; 2 Timothy 1:3; 2 Timothy 2:22; Titus 1:15; Romans 14:20

κακία, Titus 3:3


[267]καλοδιδάσκαλος, Titus 2:3

καλός, 1 Timothy 1:8 (where see note)

καταργεῖν, 2 Timothy 1:10 (24 times in Paul)


[272]καταστρηνιάζειν, 1 Timothy 5:11

καταφρονεῖν, 1 Timothy 4:12; 1 Timothy 6:2


[276]κατηγορία, 1 Timothy 5:19; Titus 1:6. Cp. Romans 2:15


[278]καυστηριάζεσθαι, 1 Timothy 4:2


[280]κενοφωνία, 1 Timothy 6:20; 2 Timothy 2:16


[282]κέρδος, Titus 1:11; Philippians 1:21; Philippians 3:7

κήρυγμα, 2 Timothy 4:17; Titus 1:3

κηρύσσειν, 1 Timothy 3:16; 2 Timothy 4:2

κληρονόμος, Titus 3:7

κλῆσις, 2 Timothy 1:9


[285]κνήθειν, 2 Timothy 4:3

κοινωνεῖν, 1 Timothy 5:22


[287]κοινωνικός, 1 Timothy 6:18

κοπιᾷν, 1 Timothy 4:10; 1 Timothy 5:17; 2 Timothy 2:6

κοσμεῖν, 1 Timothy 2:9; Titus 2:10


[289]κοσμικός, Titus 2:12; Hebrews 9:1


[291]κόσμιος, 1 Timothy 2:9; 1 Timothy 3:2

κόσμος, 1 Timothy 1:15; 1 Timothy 3:16; 1 Timothy 6:7

κρίμα, 1 Timothy 3:6; 1 Timothy 5:12

κρίσις, 1 Timothy 5:24; 2 Thessalonians 1:5

κτίζειν, 1 Timothy 4:3

κυριεύειν, 1 Timothy 6:15

λαός, Titus 2:14

λατρεύειν, 2 Timothy 1:3

λογίζεσθαι, 2 Timothy 4:16


[296]λογομαχεῖν, 2 Timothy 2:14


[298]λογομαχία, 1 Timothy 6:4

λοιπόν, 2 Timothy 4:8

μακάριος, 1 Timothy 1:11; 1 Timothy 6:15; Titus 2:13

μακροθυμία, 1 Timothy 1:16; 2 Timothy 3:10; 2 Timothy 4:2


[304]μαργαρίτης, 1 Timothy 2:9

μαρτύριον, 1 Timothy 2:6; 2 Timothy 1:8

μάρτυς, 1 Timothy 5:19; 1 Timothy 6:12; 2 Timothy 2:2


[307]ματαιολογία, 1 Timothy 1:6


[309]ματαιολόγος, Titus 1:10

μάχη, 2 Timothy 2:23; Titus 3:9; 2 Corinthians 7:5; James 4:1, only


[313]μεμβράνα, 2 Timothy 4:13

μεσίτης, 1 Timothy 2:5; Galatians 3:19; Hebrews 8:6 &c.


[317]μετάλημψις, 1 Timothy 4:3


[320]μητρολῴας, 1 Timothy 1:9


[324]μονοῦσθαι, 1 Timothy 5:5


[326]μὀρφωσις, 2 Timothy 3:5; Romans 2:20

μυστήριον, 1 Timothy 3:9; 1 Timothy 3:16


[329]ναυαγεῖν, 1 Timothy 1:19; 2 Corinthians 11:25


[334]νηφάλιος, 1 Timothy 3:2; 1 Timothy 3:11; Titus 2:2

νήφειν, 2 Timothy 4:5

νομίζειν, 1 Timothy 6:5; 1 Corinthians 7:26; 1 Corinthians 7:36


[340]νομοδιδάσκαλος, 1 Timothy 1:7; Acts 5:34; Luke 5:17

νοῦς, 1 Timothy 6:5; 2 Timothy 3:8; Titus 1:15


[345]ξενοδοχεῖν, 1 Timothy 5:10


[351]οἰκοδεσποτεῖν, 1 Timothy 5:14, but οἰκοδεσπότης is common in the Synoptic Gospels

οἰκονομία, 1 Timothy 1:4

οἰκονόμος, Titus 1:7


[353]οἰκουργός, Titus 2:5 or [354]


ὁμολογεῖν, 1 Timothy 6:12; Titus 1:16

ὁμολογία, 1 Timothy 6:12-13

ὀνειδισμός, 1 Timothy 3:7

ὄπτεσθαι, 1 Timothy 3:16


[360]ὀρέγεσθαι, 1 Timothy 3:1; 1 Timothy 6:10; Hebrews 11:16

παγίς, 1 Timothy 3:7; 1 Timothy 6:9; 2 Timothy 2:26


[365]παλινγενεσία, Titus 3:5; Matthew 19:28

παράβασις, 1 Timothy 2:14

παραγίνεσθαι, 2 Timothy 4:16

παρακαλεῖν, 1 Timothy 1:3; 1 Timothy 2:1; 1 Timothy 5:1; 1 Timothy 6:2; 2 Timothy 4:2; Titus 1:9; Titus 2:6; Titus 2:15

παράκλησις, 1 Timothy 4:13

παρέχειν, 1 Timothy 1:4; 1 Timothy 6:17; Titus 2:7


[373]πάροινος, 1 Timothy 3:3; Titus 1:7


[375]πατρολῴης, 1 Timothy 1:9

πειρασμός, 1 Timothy 6:9


[378]περίεργος, 1 Timothy 5:13; Acts 19:19


[383]περιπείρειν, 1 Timothy 6:10

περιτομή, Titus 1:10

πίστις, 1 Timothy 1:2; 1 Timothy 1:19 (where see note)

πιστός, 1 Timothy 1:12 &c.

πλανᾷν, 2 Timothy 3:13; Titus 3:3

πλάνος, 1 Timothy 4:1


[389]πλέγμα, 1 Timothy 2:9; cp. 1 Peter 3:3


[391]πλήκτης, 1 Timothy 3:3; Titus 1:7

πληροῦν, 2 Timothy 1:4

πληροφορεῖν, 2 Timothy 4:5; 2 Timothy 4:17

πλουτεῖν, 1 Timothy 6:9; 1 Timothy 6:18

πλοῦτος, 1 Timothy 6:17

πονηρός, 1 Timothy 6:4; 2 Timothy 3:13; 2 Timothy 4:18

πόρνος, 1 Timothy 1:10


[397]πραϋπαθία, 1 Timothy 6:11

πραὔτης, 2 Timothy 2:25; Titus 3:2

πρεσβύτερος, 1 Timothy 5:1-2; 1 Timothy 5:17; 1 Timothy 5:19; Titus 1:5

πρεσβύτης, Titus 2:2

πρόθεσις, 2 Timothy 1:9; 2 Timothy 3:10


[408]πρόκριμα, 1 Timothy 5:21

προσδέχεσθαι, Titus 2:13

προσεύχεσθαι, 1 Timothy 2:8

προσευχή, 1 Timothy 2:1; 1 Timothy 5:5


[414]πρόσκλισις, 1 Timothy 5:21; cp. 2 Maccabees 4:14; 2 Maccabees 14:24

προφητεία, 1 Timothy 1:18; 1 Timothy 4:14

προφήτης, Titus 1:12


[418]ῥητῶς, 1 Timothy 4:1

σάρξ, 1 Timothy 3:16

σατανᾶς, 1 Timothy 1:20; 1 Timothy 5:15


[422]σκέπασμα, 1 Timothy 6:8

σκεῦος, 2 Timothy 2:20-21

σπέρμα, 2 Timothy 2:8

σπουδάζειν, 2 Timothy 2:15; 2 Timothy 4:9; 2 Timothy 4:21; Titus 3:12

σπουδαίως, 2 Timothy 1:17; Titus 3:13

στέφανος, 2 Timothy 4:8

στόμα, 2 Timothy 4:17


[429]στόμαχος, 1 Timothy 5:23

στρατεύεσθαι, 1 Timothy 1:18; 2 Timothy 2:4


[433]στρατολογεῖν, 2 Timothy 2:4


[435]στυγητός, Titus 3:3

στύλος, 1 Timothy 3:15

συναποθνήσκειν, 2 Timothy 2:11

συνείδησις 1 Timothy 1:5 (where see note)

σύνεσις, 2 Timothy 2:7


[438]συνζῆν, 2 Timothy 2:11


[440]συνκακοπαθεῖν, 2 Timothy 1:8; 2 Timothy 2:3

σφραγίς, 2 Timothy 2:19

σωτήρ, 1 Timothy 1:1; 1 Timothy 2:3; 1 Timothy 4:10; 2 Timothy 1:10; Titus 1:3; Titus 2:10; Titus 2:13; Titus 3:4; Titus 3:6

σωτηρία, 2 Timothy 2:10; 2 Timothy 3:15


[446]σωφρονίζριν, Titus 2:4


[448]σωφρονισμός, 2 Timothy 1:7

ταχέως, 1 Timothy 5:22; 2 Timothy 4:9

τάχιον, 1 Timothy 3:14


[453]τεκνογονεῖν, 1 Timothy 5:14


[455]τεκνογονία, 1 Timothy 2:15


[457]τεκνοτροφεῖν, 1 Timothy 5:10

τηρεῖν, 1 Timothy 5:22; 1 Timothy 6:14; 2 Timothy 4:7

τιμή, 1 Timothy 1:17 &c.

τύπος, 1 Timothy 4:12; Titus 2:7


[459]τυφοῦσθαι, 1 Timothy 3:6; 1 Timothy 6:4; 2 Timothy 3:4

ὑπερήφανος, 2 Timothy 3:2


[466]ὑπερπλεονάζειν, 1 Timothy 1:14

ὑπόκρισις, 1 Timothy 4:2

ὑπομένειν, 2 Timothy 2:10; 2 Timothy 2:12

ὑπομονή, 1 Timothy 6:11; 2 Timothy 3:10; Titus 2:2

ὑποτάσσειν, Titus 2:5; Titus 2:9; Titus 3:1


[473]ὑποτύπωσις, 1 Timothy 1:16; 2 Timothy 1:13

ὑποφέρειν, 2 Timothy 3:11


[476]ὑψηλοφρονεῖν, 1 Timothy 6:17; Romans 11:20

φανερός, 1 Timothy 4:15

φανεροῦν, 1 Timothy 3:16; 2 Timothy 1:10; Titus 1:3

φαῦλος, Titus 2:8


[478]φελόνης, 2 Timothy 4:13

φθόνος, 1 Timothy 6:4; Titus 3:3


[481]φίλανδρος, Titus 2:4


[486]φίλαυτος, 2 Timothy 3:2

φιλεῖν, Titus 3:15


[488]φιλήδονος, 2 Timothy 3:4


[490]φιλόθεος, 2 Timothy 3:4


[492]φιλόξενος, 1 Timothy 3:2; Titus 1:8

φιμοῦν, 1 Timothy 5:18 (from Deuteronomy 25:4)


[496]φρεναπαπάτης, Titus 1:10

φῶς, 1 Timothy 6:16

φωτίζειν, 2 Timothy 1:10

χαρά, 2 Timothy 1:4

χάρισμα, 1 Timothy 4:14; 2 Timothy 1:6

χήρα, 1 Timothy 5:3 ff.

χρεία, Titus 3:14

χρῆσθαι, 1 Timothy 1:8; 1 Timothy 5:23

χρόνος, 2 Timothy 1:9; Titus 1:2

ψεύδεσθαι, 1 Timothy 2:7


[507]ψευδολόγος, 1 Timothy 4:2


[509]ψευδώνυμος, 1 Timothy 6:20

ψεύστης, 1 Timothy 1:10; Titus 1:12

ὡσαύτως, 1 Timothy 2:9; 1 Timothy 3:8; 1 Timothy 3:11; 1 Timothy 5:25; Titus 2:3; Titus 2:6


[511]ὠφέλιμος, 1 Timothy 4:8; 2 Timothy 3:16; Titus 3:8