1 Peter 1 – 2:17: Greek Text Commentary by Fenton Hort

Fenton John Anthony Hort [1828–1892], The First Epistle of St Peter I.I-II.17. The Greek Text with Introductory Lecture, Commentary, and Additional Notes

Fenton J.A. Hort died before completing this commentary on 1 Peter, which was intended to be published as part of the old MacMillan series. Nevertheless, as John F. Evan’s notes in his commentary survey, it is still worth consulting for its detailed exegesis.

My thanks to Book Aid for making this public domain title available for digitisation.

Fenton John Anthony Hort [1828–1892], The First Epistle of St Peter I.I-II.17. The Greek Text with Introductory Lecture, Commentary, and Additional Notes. London: Macmillan & Co. Ltd., 1898. Hbk. pp.188. [Click to visit the download page for this title]

Table of Contents

  • Preface
  • Introductory Lecture
  • Analysis of the Epistle
  • Text and Notes
  • Additional Notes
    1. The Names of St. Peter
    2. The Biblical Terms for Sojourning
    3. The Provinces of Asia Minor Included in St. Peter’s Address
  • Index

Additional Note 3: The Provinces of Asia Minor Included in St. Peter’s Address

The dispersed Christians to whom St Peter wrote his Epistle were sojourners in certain specified regions of the land now called Asia Minor. These regions are designated as ”Pontus, Galatia, Cappadocia, Asia, and Bithynia.” The list of names deserves careful study, both as to its contents and as to its order.

Each of the names in the list admits of different interpretations, according to variations of political or other usage and to successive changes of geographical limits. But the five names coincide precisely with the five names that make up the titles of the four provinces of the Roman empire into which Asia Minor, the southern littoral eventually excepted, was divided in and after the reign of Tiberius; and it would need strong positive evidence to refute the consequent presumption that the territory denoted by the list in the Epistle was the territory of these four Roman provinces. This presumption is strengthened by the change from compactness to inexplicable dispersion which takes place when the names in the list are interpreted by their national or popular instead of their Roman sense. No stress indeed can be laid on the absence of the names Mysia, Garia, and Lydia, the three regions which made up the Roman province of Asia according to its original constitution of B.C. 129: the. Acts of the Apostles, which habitually uses the national names in Asia Minor, twelve times designates this long established province by its Roman name Asia, though it also speaks of Mysia in a single passage where it was necessary to distinguish the northern part of Asia. But this explanation will not account for the absence of Paphlagonia between Bithynia and Pontus, the very district which was more likely to contain Christian converts than any other on the northern coast, or of Phrygia between Galatia and Asia, or of Lycaonia and Pisidia between Cappadocia and partly Phrygia, partly Asia, these three regions being known scenes of St Paul’s missionary activity.

The three southern regions of Asia Minor, Cilicia, Pamphylia, and Lycia, require separate consideration. The true or eastern Cilicia, Cilicia Campestris, St Paul’s native land, has a somewhat obscure history after the close of the civil war in B.C. 29. In the distribution of provinces made B.C. 27 Cilicia fell to the emperor. Cyprus is supposed to have been then, as formerly, combined with it, and to have so remained for five years, after which the island is known to have been transferred to the Senate: but the other regions formerly combined with Cilicia Campestris were at this time otherwise assigned. How the little district thus left was administered between B.C. 22 and some time in Hadrian’s reign (A.D. 117-138), is as yet but imperfectly known. For at least a considerable part of this period it was governed by the imperial legate of Syria, as was undoubtedly the case in B.C. 3-2, A.D. 17-21, 36, 52, and 72. In A.D. 74 Cilicia Campestris was reunited by Vespasian to the various mountainous districts of Cilicia (see below, p. 160), which had been detached from it in Augustus’s reign or yet earlier and Cilicia as a whole was apparently formed into a separate province: under Hadrian and his successors this was certainly its condition….

Pages 157-159.

Cambridge Greek Testament Commentary on John by Alfred Plummer

lfred Plummer [1841-1926], The Gospel According to John with Maps, Notes and Introduction

The Cambridge Greek Testament Commentary series was written for students learning Greek in Schools and Colleges in the United Kingdom. I plan to make the rest of the series available as I get access to hard copies. The notes on the Greek text in this volume are by Alfred Plummer. Plummer wrote commentaries on most of the books of the New Testament, including the International Critical Commentaries on Luke and 2 Corinthians. A list of other books by this author hosted on this site can be found here.

My thanks to Book Aid for providing a copy of this public domain title for digitisation. The maps at the end of the commentary are particularly nice.

Alfred Plummer [1841-1926], The Gospel According to John with Maps, Notes and Introduction. Cambridge Greek Testament for Schools and Colleges. Cambridge: Cambridge University Press, 1913. Hbk. pp.382. [Click to visit the download page for this book]

Table of Contents

  • Preface by the General Editor
  • On the Greek Text
  • Introduction
    1. The Life of S. John
    2. The Authenticity of the Gospel
    3. The Place and Date
    4. The Object and Plan
    5. The Characteristics of the Gospel
    6. Its Relation to the Synoptic Gospels
    7. Its Relation to the First Epistle
    8. The Text of the Gospel
    9. The Literature of the Gospel – Analysis of the Gospel in Detail
  • Text and Notes
  • Appendices
  • Maps

The Life of St John

The life of S. John falls naturally into two divisions, the limits of which correspond to the two main sources of information respecting him. (1) From his birth to the departure from Jerusalem after tho Ascension; the sources for which are contained in N.T. (2) From the departure from Jerusalem to his death; the sources for which are the traditions of the primitive Church. In both cases the notices of S. John are fragmentary, and cannot be woven together into anything like a complete whole without a good deal of conjecture. But the fragments are in the main very harmonious, and contain definite traits and characteristics, enabling us to form a portrait, which though imperfect is unique.

(i) Before the Departure from Jerusalem.

The date of S. John’s birth cannot be determined. He was probably younger than his Master and than the other Apostles. He was the son of Zebedee and Salome, and brother of James, who was probably the older of the two. Zebedee was a fisherman of the lake of Galilee, who seems to have lived in or near Bethsaida (i. 44), and was well enough off to have hired servants (Mark i. 20). He appears only once in the Gospel-narrative (Matt. iv. 21, 22; Mark i. 19, 20), but is mentioned frequently as the father of S. James and S. John. Salome (see on xix. 25) was probably the sister of the Virgin, and in that case S. John was our Lord’s first cousin. This relationship harmonizes well with the special intimacy granted to the beloved disciple by his Lord, with the fact of S. James also being among the chosen three, and with the final committal of the Virgin to S. John’s care. Salome was one of those women who followed Christ and ‘ministered to Him of their substance’ (Mark xv. 40; comp. Matt. xxvii. 55 ; Luke viii. 3). This was probably after Zebedee’s death. S. John’s parents, therefore, would seem to have been people of means; and it is likely from xix. 27 that the Apostle himself was fairly well off, a conclusion to which his acquaintance with the high-priest (xviii. 15) also points.

pp.xi-xii

F.F. Bruce on the Scriptures and the Christian Faith

The Scriptures

In this little-known article within a Symposium presenting key elements of the Christian Faith, F.F. Bruce writes on the importance of the Scriptures for the Christian. I came across this at Book Aid and noted that it was not included in many of the standard bibliographies of Bruce’s works. My thanks to F.F. Bruce Copyright International for this kind permission to digitise and host it.

F.F. Bruce, “The Scriptures,” Frederick A. Tatford, ed., The Faith. A Symposium. London: Pickering & Inglis Ltd., 1952. Hbk. pp.13-27. [Click to download this article as a PDF]

Three hundred years ago the Assembly of Divines at Westminster introduced their best-known summary of Christian doctrine, the Westminster Shorter Catechism, with the following three propositions: (1) ‘Man’s chief end is to glorify God, and to enjoy Him for ever’; (2) ‘The Word of God, which is contained in the Scriptures of the Old and New Testaments, is the only rule to direct us how we may glorify and enjoy Him’; (3) ‘The Scriptures principally teach what man is to believe concerning God, and what duty God requires of man.’

If it be true, as these three propositions declare, that the Bible is the only means by which we can know and achieve the true purpose of our being, then no special argument is needed to justify giving a statement of the Bible’s authority a prominent place in a symposium on the Christian faith. For the Holy Spirit speaking through the Bible is acknowledged by us, in common with all heirs of the Protestant Reformation, as the supreme judge by whom all questions of doctrine are to be adjudicated, and as the only infallible rule of faith and practice.

It might have been expected a priori that if God wished to communicate a knowledge of His will and character to men He might have done so in a series of propositions. But in fact He has not done so. We may draw up statements of doctrine and confessions of faith, article by article in logical sequence, and base them firmly on the Bible; but the Bible itself does not take this form. At first glance, the Bible is seen to fall into two parts of unequal length, known respectively by the not very illuminating names of the Old Testament and the New Testament. But if for the misleading word Testament we substitute the word Covenant, and then think of the Bible as divided into the Books of the Old Covenant and the Books of the New Covenant, we shall come to a much closer realization of what the Bible is. It is, in fact, a record of God’s revelation of Himself among men, culminating in the incarnation, death and exaltation of Jesus Christ His Son, and intimately bound up with the relations established by God with His covenant-people-the nation of Israel in earlier times, and the Christian community in the new age which was inaugurated by Christ. There is an organic unity between these two groups of people, in that Jesus (who i-s the very embodiment of God’s revelation) is both Israel’s Messiah and Head of the Christian Church, while His first followers represent both the last faithful remnant of the old covenant-people and the nucleus of the new covenant people….

Pages 13-14.