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Polycarp, Paul, and the Letters to Timothy

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Building on recent discussions of the Paulusbild in the second century, this study argues that Polycarp’s image of Paul is framed by his use of 1-2 Timothy. The essay first examines Polycarp’s allusions to 1 Tim 6:7, 10, similarities to the household code in 1 Tim 2:8-3:13, and the reversal of a phrase in 2 Tim 4:10. Two conclusions are then drawn. First, Polycarp’s use of language from 1-2 Timothy fits loosely within the standards of ancient quotation. Second, Polycarp’s depiction of Paul as a suffering, pastoral figure is closely tied to his use of language from 1-2 Timothy.

Affiliations: 1: University of Otago DunedinNew Zealand


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