First Epistle of Peter

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The First Epistle of Peter, usually referred to simply as First Peter and often written 1 Peter, is a book of the New Testament. It has traditionally been held to have been written by Saint Peter the apostle during his time as bishop of Rome or Bishop of Antioch, though neither title is used in the epistle. The letter is addressed to various churches in Asia Minor suffering religious persecution. Most contemporary scholars conclude that Peter was not the true author of this epistle.[1]



Simon Peter[2] wrote two epistles which are called Catholic, the second of which, on account of its difference from the first in style, is considered by many not to be by him. Then too the Gospel according to Mark, who was his disciple and interpreter, is ascribed to him. On the other hand, the books, of which one is entitled his Acts, another his Gospel, a third his Preaching, a fourth his Revelation, a fifth his Judgment are rejected as apocryphal.

Authorship and date

The author identifies himself in the opening verse as "Peter, an apostle of Jesus", and the view that the epistle was written by St. Peter is attested to by a number of Church Fathers: Irenaeus (140-203), Tertullian (150-222), Clement of Alexandria (155-215) and Origen of Alexandria (185-253). Some scholars believe the author was not Peter, but an unknown author writing after Peter's death.[3] These scholars estimate the date of composition to range from 75 to 112 AD. The traditional view, and that of the original church fathers, was that the book was written by Peter. There is no substantive evidence to disprove this and so traditionally the book is thought to have been written sometime before 64 AD by Peter himself.First Peter: Introduction, argument, and outline


This epistle is addressed “to the strangers dispersed through Pontus, Galatia, Cappadocia, Asia and Bithynia, elect,” (five provinces of Asia Minor) though it otherwise appears to be addressed to Gentiles rather than to the Jews of the Diaspora. Some of these areas were evangelized or re-evangelized, by Paul of Tarsus according to Acts 16:6-7, 18:23.

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