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Deutero-Pauline Literature


The term "Deutero-Pauline" refers to New Testament letters that are included in the Pauline corpus but are now viewed by most critical scholars as products, not of the apostle Paul, but of Paul's followers or perhaps of a Pauline school. The letters thus designated are 2 Thessalonians, Colossians, Ephesians, and the Pastoral Epistles1 and 2 Timothy and Titus. In previous volumes they are treated under individual headings (q.v.), but in this article they are dealt with as a group. For 1 and 2 Timothy and Titus, however, see pastoral epistles.

In the New Testament, 2 Thessalonians, Colossians, and Ephesians purport to be from the hand of Paul (2 Thes 1:1: 2:17; Col 1:1; 4:18; Eph 1:1), and the tradition has regarded them as authentic Pauline writings (e.g., Polycarp, Justin, Marcion, Irenaeus, Muratorian Canon, Hippolytus of Rome, and Tertullian). Modern scholars have challenged the authenticity of these letters chiefly for the following reasons: the letters show differences in style, vocabulary, and theology from the undisputed Pauline letters, and they address issues and situations that do not correspond to those of Paul's lifetime, but seem to reflect a later period. Some scholars have seen in the Deutero-Pauline letters, especially in Colossians and Ephesians, evidence for a Pauline school, perhaps centered in Ephesus, that preserved, developed, and applied the Pauline teachings.

Bibliography: j. a. bailey, "Who Wrote II Thessalonians?" New Testament Studies 25 (1979) 13145. m. barth, Ephesians (Garden City, N.Y. 1974). e. best. The First and Second Epistles to the Thessalonians (New York 1972). w. bujard, Stilanalytische Untersuchung zum Kolosserbrief als Beitrag zur Methodik von Sprachvergleichen (Göttingen 1973). g. b. caird, Paul's Letters from Prison (London 1976). j. e. crouch, The Origin and Intention of the Colossian Haustafel (Göttingen 1973). n. a. dahl, "Interpreting Ephesians: Then and Now." Theology Digest 25 (1977) 305315. r. deichgrÄber, Gotteshymnus und Christushymnus in der frühen Christenheit (Göttingen 1967). k.g. eckart, "Der Zweite echte Brief des Apostel Paulus an die Thessalonicher," Zeitschrift für Theologie und Kirche 58 (1961) 3044. k.-m. fischer, Tendenz und Absicht des Epheserbriefes (Göttingen 1973). c. h. giblin, The Threat to Faith: An Exegetical and Theological Re-examination of 2 Thessalonians 2 (Rome 1967). j. gnilka, Der Epheserbrief (3rd ed. Freiburg 1982). e. j. goodspeed, The Meaning of Ephesians (Chicago 1933). l. e. keck and v. p. furnish, The Pauline Letters: Interpreting Biblical Texts (Nashville 1984). e. lohse, Colossians and Philemon (Philadelphia 1971). r. p. martin, Colossians and Philemon (London 1981). w. a. meeks, The First Urban Christians: The Social World of the Apostle Paul (New Haven and London 1983). b. rigaux, Saint Paul: Les Epîtres aur Thessaloniciens (Paris 1956). a. van roon, The Authenticity of Ephesians (Leiden 1974).

[m. p. horgan]

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