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Introduction to Revelation

Author and Title Revelation 1:1 announces both the book’s title (it is a “revelation”) and its divine author (“Jesus Christ”). The book is an “unveiling” of unseen spiritual forces operating behind the scenes in history and controlling its events and outcome. This disclosure is conveyed in a series of symbolic visions that exhibit the influence of […]

Introduction to Jude

Author and Title As its title implies, the book was written by Jude, brother of James and Jesus (cf. Matt. 13:55; Mark 6:3, where Gk. “Judas” is the same as “Jude” in Jude 1). There is little debate regarding the authenticity of the letter because of the strength of internal evidence (e.g., v. 1). Some have claimed that an […]

Introduction to 3 John

Author and Title See Introductions to 1 John and 2 John. Like 2 John, 3 John claims to have been written by “the elder,” most likely the apostle John. In NT times and into the post-apostolic era, “elders” (Gk. presbyteroi) could refer to the pastoral leaders of local congregations. They appear by this title first in Acts 11:30, which speaks […]

Introduction to 2 John

Author and Title Ancient manuscripts uniformly identify this as a second letter by “John.” Due to the writing style, position in the Canon, and theological outlook, it is best viewed as written by the apostle John (seeIntroduction to 1 John: Author and Title). The document itself identifies its author as “the elder” (v. 1). Theories […]

Introduction to 1 John

Author and Title Manuscript evidence is unanimous that someone named “John” wrote this little treatise, which is consistently labeled the “first” of his extant letters in titles found in ancient copies. But who is this “John”? For a number of reasons, John the son of Zebedee, author of the Fourth Gospel, is the most likely […]

Introduction to 2 Peter

Author and Title Within 2 Peter itself there is strong evidence for authorship by the apostle Peter. In 1:1 the author claims to be “Simeon Peter … apostle of Jesus Christ.” Moreover, he claims to have been an eyewitness of the transfiguration (1:16–18; cf. Matt. 17:1–8), an event where Peter is featured prominently in the Gospel accounts. If someone […]

Introduction to 1 Peter

Author and Title That this letter was written by the apostle Peter is explicitly affirmed by 1:1 and by the author’s claim to be an “eyewitness of the sufferings of Christ” (5:1). The title of the letter, The First Letter of Peter, functions as early external evidence for the view that the letter was written by Peter. […]

Introduction to James

Author and Title The title of this book derives from the name of its author, James the Just (as he was called), the brother of Jesus (Matt. 13:55) and leader of the Jerusalem church (Acts 15). There is general consensus regarding his authorship, though some have challenged this on the grounds that: (1) the Greek […]

Introduction to Hebrews

Author, Audience, and Title The author of Hebrews neither names himself nor clearly designates his audience. The traditional title “to the Hebrews” reflects the ancient assumption that the original recipients were Jewish Christians. The author’s identity has been a matter of significant conjecture throughout church history. In antiquity, authorship was attributed to figures such as […]

Introduction to Philemon

Author and Title Paul and Timothy are explicitly named as the authors in verse 1. It becomes apparent, however, that the apostle Paul is the principal author when the first person singular (“I”) is used from verse 4 throughout the rest of the letter. The title indicates that it is a personal letter to a man named Philemon. […]