I thought I was done. However . . .
Upon further research, I now think that 2 Timothy was not written by Paul,
but belongs to the genre of an Epistolatory Novella.
It does indeed seem to be based upon are reading of Acts, where both Mark
and Luke are prominent associates of Paul. The details that I mentioned in
the conclusion now look to me like a deliberate attempt to be "dramatic" in
a portrayal of Paul on the eve of his death. Yes, the themes of church
order and the problem of heterodoxy would have been live issues that needed
to be addressed, but overall it seems to aim at a very positive portrayal of
the Apostle to the Gentiles. Thus there is a certain reader interest in the
very cloak of Paul and his scrolls (reading material?) and his most
important parchments, wherein were "more letters" that he had or was working
on. The names of various people and location also seem to be deliberately
fascinating details. Demas to Thessalonika, Crescens to Galatia, Titus to
Dlamatia, Tycchicus to Ephesus, Carpus in Troas, and the villain Alexander
the coppersmith (making idols?). Also in the early part of the letter, the
fascinating mentions of Phygelus and Hermongenes as well as "the family of
All very fascinating and dramatic details about the Apostle and his ministry
and acquaintances, both negative and positive, and his thoughts in the face
of an impending death. Indeed, these details now seem to me to be too much
detailed and too much fascinating to be authentic, and based upon Acts, as
though they are not only based upon Acts, but also supply an end to the
story that Acts does not contain and begs for resolution.
The dramatic portrayal of Paul is best summed up in 2 Tim 4:6-8:
4:6 For I am already being poured out as an offering, and the time for me to
depart is at hand. 4:7 I have competed well; I have finished the race; I
have kept the faith! 4:8 Finally the crown of righteousness is reserved for
me. The Lord, the righteous Judge, will award it to me in that day and not
to me only, but also to all who have set their affection on his appearing.
A most happy ending and pre-eulogy of Paul and his ministry!
As for Titus, my impression that it was the work of the same author of 2
Timothy, and that the two letters were meant to be read and presented
sequentially, with Titus first and 2 Timothy next. On the other hand, 1 Tim
A and B do not belong to these letters. 1Tim A is not a epistolatory
novella, lauding Paul. It is very much a practical, real instructions
toward a Pastoral house cleaning of the "Household of God." Instructions
are quite specific and addressed concrete, real circumstances that needed
authoritative direction. And as I mentioned earlier, there is a quite
developed church hierarchy. If the fictional Timothy is part of that
hierarchy, then he would be an arch-bishop, over a bishop; they over the
elders and they above the deacons.
1 Tim B is hardly a apostolic, epistolatory novella. Professor Brooks
called it an "Encyclical" and that does not seem to describe the life of
Paul. Rather, this genre is one of a most passionate and grim communication
regarding a most serious threat of heterodox "doctrines of demons." So as
much as Titus and 2 Timothy should be read together in sequence of Titus-2
Timothy, 1 Tim A and 1 Tim B are to the same degree to be read separately
from them and not necessarily together. Yet it is understandable, due to
the two themes of church order and the problem of heterodoxy being in Titus
and 2 Timothy, the two letters, most likely contemporary 2nd century
compositions, should have been conflated and then later associated with the
Titus-2 Timothy complex, and so creating a somewhat symmetrical and thus
satisfying" collection of three Pastoral Epistles. But I rather think we
are dealing with not a collection of three but rather of two plus two.
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