The Christ in Prophecy Journal

Rhodes Responds to Newsweek: 1 Timothy and 2 Peter Are Forgeries


Are 1 Timothy and 2 Peter in the Bible forgeries?

On our television program Christ in Prophecy, we asked this question of Dr. Ron Rhodes, the founder and director of a ministry called Reasoning from the Scriptures, located in Frisco, Texas. His ministry specializes in defending Christianity against Atheists, Agnostics, Skeptics, the cults, world religions, and about any group that teaches false doctrine. He is a seminary professor and an excellent writer who has written more than 70 books! His latest one is titled, The 8 Great Debates of Bible Prophecy.

Dr. Rhodes addressed some of the outlandish statements Newsweek magazine had made in a recent article that distort the Bible and treat Christianity with contempt.

The Pauline Forgeries Argument

“It is the universal opinion of biblical scholars that both 1 Timothy and 2 Peter are forgeries.”

Everyone believes it, he is saying, right? What doctor is the author again? What professors did he ask?

Well, that is just nonsense! These guys offer some arguments that they think are just killer arguments, like claiming that Paul didn’t write 1 Timothy, but they aren’t.

Do you know what their arguments are? First of all, they’ll claim the style of writing is a little different in 1 Timothy, so Paul couldn’t have written it. Not only that, they’ll point out that Paul likes to talk about big theological themes in his books, and 1 Timothy doesn’t have any big theological themes, and so therefore Paul could not have written it. They will also go on to say that they think the book was written in the Second Century, and if 1 Timothy was written in the Second Century, Paul couldn’t have written it because he died in the First Century. Then they’ll claim that the error that Paul was dealing with in 1 Timothy was Second Century Gnosticism.

These are the kinds of weak arguments that they offer. So, let’s just evaluate them real quickly.

First of all, let’s look at the style. In Romans, Paul was writing to the Church at Rome theology about justification and sanctification. When he was writing to Timothy, his young friend who started up a church, He’s writing like to one of his little pals. Timothy was one of Paul’s close, intimate friends. Obviously, the style is going to be a little bit different.

Really, there are no theological themes in 1 Timothy? That’s what you’re bringing to the table, Newsweek, really? The fact is that what you find in 1 Timothy is a discussion of the atonement of Jesus Christ. Is there any bigger theological theme than the atonement of Christ?

Paul also talks about Christ being the mediator between God and man.

By the way, 1 Timothy is not dealing with Second Century Gnosticism. Its dealing with First Century Jewish legalism. So, Newsweek got it wrong from beginning to end.

As for 2 Peter being a supposed forgery, this is another one of those comical things where they just didn’t reading the text very carefully. The reason these skeptics claim that 2 Peter is not given the evidence of being written by Peter is because the style is completely different from 1 Peter. If you look at the book, it’s got different words and different style than 2 Peter does. They are just different.

Have they even read 1 Peter? If you read 1 Peter and you come to chapter 5 verse 12, what does Peter say there? Peter says, “This letter has actually been written down for me by my scribe Silvanus.” He was a stylist. He was an expert in Greek linguistics who wrote this down for Peter. Peter then would have checked what Silvanus recorded over to make sure it was exactly right before it then went out to the churches.

In 2 Peter, Peter didn’t use a stylist. He wrote it by himself, and he is a little more sloppy than the scribe who recorded 1 Peter. But, both of them came from Peter.

My point is that these skeptics’ arguments are ridiculous! The sad thing is that most Christians are too illiterate to even know this stuff, and so therefore there will be a lot of Christians who will believe the lies that are set forth in this article.

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ABOUT AUTHOR View all posts Author Website

Dr. Nathan E. Jones

As the Internet Evangelist at Lamb & Lion Ministries, Nathan reaches out to the over 4.5 billion people accessible over the Internet with the Good News of Jesus Christ. He also co-hosts the ministry's television program Christ in Prophecy and podcast The Truth Will Set You Free.

6 CommentsLeave a Comment

  • Dear Lord, I will let go of my hate and anger. I know You are angrier at our nation than ever before because of the actions of SCOTUS on gay marriage. But I will yield to "Vengeance is mine". Vengeance is in Your hands.

    I pray for you to please bring the souls of these poor confused and currently lost souls that are practicing a gay lifestyle that they will come to know You and the truth and turn from their wicked ways and find salvation.

    I also pray that You let we, your church, your bride, escape the wrath that must now come upon our nation. Please Lord, if possible, please remove us from this Earth before your wrath is poured out because of what SCOTUS did this day.

    Thy will be done. Amen.

  • Dear Lord, Please give us the strength and courage also to stand up for our beliefs which are Your truths. Please help us to be brave in a world which will now become increasingly hostile. Please give encouragement and empowerment to pastor that may now be jailed for preaching the truth. Finally, please give us the strength to turn from any last entanglements that we may be ensnared by and help us to overcome evil. Let us truly begin to live holy lives that we may wear the armor of truth to stand strongly for The Word.


  • Although…I must add to my two post above, though vengeance is NOT mine, I trust in God that vengeance WILL BE DONE. And since this vengeance is just I can celebrate it…and I will.

    After Jesus returns to Earth and reverses today's court decision on gay marriage and sets up his eternal Kingdom, which the Bible says will have NO gays in it (along with all other forms of evil), I SHALL enjoy watching the 5 supreme court justices (along with all unrepentant gays) bend donw on their knees and proclaim Jesus to be Lord and then be sent off to their fate.

    Yes, part of my wants to take pleasure in that (though, honestly, after typing this, part of me is still very sad of their choice and fate…BUT…it was THEIR choice made of their own FREE WILL).

  • Comment on my last comment above…even now however, don't get me wrong, I still pray they will repent and change their ways and join us as Christians in eternity with our Lord Jesus Christ. If that happens I will greet them will a huge smile and sing praises for their salvation!!!!!!!

  • Jesus Christ will return soon to Earth to overturn the Supreme Court, the liberals, the secularist, the aethists, the satanist and all other evil on all matters such as prayer in school (all eduation in the future will be "Sunday School"); abortion, gay marriage, etc.

    Praise the Lord and please come quickly!!!

    p.s. Those food based verification photos are making me hungry…


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