Recently I was asked by a Christian young lady about the translation of the first sixteen verses of the eleventh chapter of 1 Corinthians. She had been discussing the passage with another Christian young woman, and somehow the question of how this passage is translated came up.
She didn’t tell me much more than that, so I don’t know just why the aspects of translating this passage became a point of discussion. I don’t know for certain, but I think these two young ladies normally read from different Bible versions. If so, perhaps that explains why they were curious about the translation of 1 Corinthians 11:1-16.
More than a dozen years ago, I had translated the passage, and so I decided to revisit my translation, double-check my work and retranslate if necessary. I have since finished my current translation of 1 Corinthians 11:1-16 and made it available on my website. And I believe it is an accurate one; I have certainly tried my best to make it so.
However, there is more to understanding this passage than reading an accurate translation of it. Matters such as interpretation and cultural application must be taken into account. Of course, one must start with the reading of the passage, and so for the purposes of discussion I include my translation of 1 Corinthians 11:1-16 here.
11:1 You must be imitators of me, to the degree that I also imitate Christ. 2 Now I praise you, brothers, that you have remembered me in all things and hold to the traditions just as I delivered them to you.
3 Now I want you to know that the head of every man is Christ, and the head of woman is the man, and the head of Christ is God. 4 Every man praying or prophesying having something down over his head brings shame to his head. 5 But every woman praying or prophesying with the head uncovered brings shame to her own head; for it is one and the same as having been shaved. 6 For if a woman is not covered, she should also cut off her hair. But if it is shameful for a woman to cut off or shave her hair, she should be covered. 7 For a man indeed ought not to cover the head, being the image and glory of God; but woman is the glory of man. 8 For man is not out of woman but woman out of man. 9 For also man was not created for the sake of the woman, but woman for the sake of the man. 10 Because of this the woman ought to have authority on her head, because of the messengers.
11 However, neither is man apart from woman nor woman apart from man in the Lord. 12 For just as the woman is out of the man, so also the man is through the woman. But all things are of God. 13 You judge among yourselves: is it proper for a woman to pray to God uncovered? 14 Or does not even custom itself teach you that if indeed a man should wear long hair, it is a shame to him? 15 But if a woman wears long hair, it is a glory to her? For long hair has been given as a covering. 16 But if anyone seems to be contentious, we have no such custom, nor do the assemblies of God.
Before moving on to discuss certain relevant and key points, I want to point out that I have not included all of the footnotes that I supplied in my translation posted elsewhere on my site. In the context of this article I have supplied only those notes that directly impact the discussion at hand. I refer you to my translation page if you are interested in more detail.
Alright, moving on. After finishing the above translation, I asked my wife to look it over and give me her impressions. Her response was “It doesn’t read as smoothly as the NIV.” She’s right: it doesn’t. However, that comment did not send me back to the drawing board—or, more precisely, my desktop—in order to refine my translation. On the contrary, that comment assured me that I was on the right track regarding my task of translation.
You see, this passage in 1 Corinthians is difficult. There are a number of ambiguities in this passage in the text of the Greek New Testament (hereafter, GNT), and if those ambiguities don’t come through in translation, then the version you are reading from has rendered them interpretatively. And while I am aware of the fact that interpretation and translation go hand in hand, reflecting one’s interpretation in the actual text of a translation can be a dangerous thing. If a translator’s interpretation is flawed, then his fallacy has been incorporated into the text of a Bible translation.
And so I intentionally attempted to bring out in my own translation the ambiguities present in the text. “What ambiguities? What are you talking about?” you may well ask. That is a fair question. Let’s take a closer look at the wording of specific verses in this passage, and notice some of these ambiguities to which I have been referring.
Man or Husband?/Woman or Wife?
As I said in my footnote to my translation of verse 3, in that verse and throughout this passage, the nouns for “man” anēr and andros [ἀνήρ, ἀνδρός] and “woman” gunē and gunaikos [γυνή, γυναικός] can also be translated as “husband” and “wife,” respectively. That makes a difference in this context. That could limit Paul’s stipulations here to just the married individuals, or open them up to everyone, regardless of marital status. And there are places in this passage that can legitimately be rendered either way, so it’s something of a judgment call to the translator. This definitely qualifies as one of those ambiguities I referred to.
Verse three informs us that Christ is the “head” of every man, that man is the “head” of woman, and that the “head” of Christ is God. The Greek word is the noun kephalē [κεφαλή]. As in English, so too the Greek term can be used literally, or in a non-literal sense, as pertaining to “one in a place of leadership, honor or command.”
Obviously, the word “head,” as it is used three times in this verse, is applied in a non-literal sense. Paul is not saying that Christ is the “the upper division of the body containing the brain, the chief sense organs, and the mouth” of every man, or that man is the “uppermost portion of the body” of woman. He is saying that Christ is in position of leadership over man, and that man occupies a place of leadership over woman.
However, in the verses that follow, the word “head” can be taken in either literal or non-literal ways. Verse four states that a man praying or prophesying “having something down over his head brings shame to his head.” The first occurrence of the word “head” in that sentence is clearly literal, but second occurrence of the word can be taken more than one way. The phrase “brings shame to his head” can be construed literally (i.e., to his own literal head), with a meaning of something like “he shames himself.” For example, John Wesley took this view, as did Jamieson, Fausset and Brown. But it could also be taken non-literally or figuratively (i.e., to the one over him), meaning Christ.
The same may be said of verse five. Paul says that the “woman praying or prophesying with the head uncovered brings shame to her head.” The first occurrence of “head” in this sentence is clearly literal, while the second can be interpreted to mean either “she shames herself” or “she brings shame to the one over her,” as in the previous verse.
Verses seven and ten also employ the word “head” (kephalē), and in both cases the sense is literal. In verse seven the man should not cover his head; that’s clear enough. However, verse ten is more complicated; more on that in a moment. Still, I believe the reference in verse ten is to the woman having “authority on her [literal] head.”
In verse four, a number of English versions read essentially like the KJV: “having his head covered.” Other versions render this into English as “who has something on his head” or “with something on his head.”
This phrase in Greek is kata kephalēs echōn [κατὰ κεφαλῆς ἔχων], which, when translated into English literally, reads “down over head having.” Yes, that’s awkward; it sounds a little like Yoda, backwards talking. In my own translation, I have changed the word order and added a couple of words in italics (to indicate that they are supplied words) to better give the sense of the original. So, I have rendered it, “having something down over his head.” But again, this Biblical phrase is pretty generic; no specific type of headdress is named.
In verses 5 and 13, the adjective akatakaluptos [ἀκατακάλυπτος] is used, which translates as “uncovered,” the rendering found in most English versions (though a few versions render it “unveiled”). In verses 6 and 7, the verb katakaluptō [κατακαλύπτω] preceded by the negative particle (ou and ouk [οὐ and οὐκ], respectively) is equivalent to the adjective, i.e., “not covered.”
Okay, verse 10 is especially problematic. There are two issues of translation here; the first is in the phrase “authority on her head.” The general understanding/interpretation of this is reflected in the various English Bible translations that have been produced from the seventeenth century (i.e., the King James Version of 1611) on down to the twenty-first (the English Standard Version of 2007). So let’s look at how this has been rendered into English.
The KJV reads “For this cause ought the woman to have power on her head…” Most every English translation since the KJV has more accurately rendered the Greek noun exousia [ἐξουσία] as “authority.” Even so, this is still more than a little unclear. What exactly does having “authority on her head” mean? Most English Bible versions supply some words they think completes the sense. Sometimes the supplied words are placed in italics; unfortunately, sometimes not.
Young’s Literal Translation reads “…the woman ought to have a token of authority upon her head…”
The American Standard Version reads “…the woman ought to have a sign of authority on her head…”
The New American Standard Bible, New King James Version, Holman Christian Standard Bible and the English Standard Version all read “…the woman ought to have a symbol of authority on her head…”
The consensus of opinion seems to be that a veil or some sort of head covering was seen culturally as a sign or token or symbol of a woman’s submission to male authority (or a wife’s submission to her husband’s authority). As the Revised Standard Version reads, “a woman ought to have a veil on her head…”
The second translation issue in verse 10 is a doozy: the woman (or wife) ought to have authority on her head “because of the angels.” There has been a lot of debate about this over the centuries. Most assume that the word “angels” refers to created celestial beings, but proponents of this interpretation are divided as to whether evil or good angels are meant here. And obviously, either “angel” interpretation presents serious difficulties.
If evil “angels” are meant here, first of all the language is atypical. The terms demons, evil or unclean spirits are more consistently used to describe them. Even where the term angelos is used of demons, it is still qualified by connecting them to the Devil (see Matthew 25:41).
But even more problematic is what this interpretation implies here, that “angels” have a perverse sexual attraction to human women. Those believing this here see a connection to Genesis 6:2, but the sexual interpretation read into in that passage is also highly suspect. Connecting one highly speculative interpretation to another highly speculative interpretation is hardly a strong argument. Furthermore, it makes no sense that evil angels would only be tempted when a woman is praying or prophesying with her head uncovered.
If, on the other hand, good “angels” are meant here, what in the world (pun intended) do angels have to do with women on earth and their head coverings (or lack thereof) as they pray or prophesy? According to some, the interpretation of this verse sees these “celestial observers” as being present at times of worship to judge and even punish “unseemly” behavior. This concept of created heavenly beings was popular among some separatist Jewish groups in the first century AD, and among ancient Gnostic groups, as well as Roman Catholics and other cult groups today. But it is not the Biblical view of supernatural beings created to serve mankind (Hebrews 1:14).
I’m going to cut through the speculation and get down to what I know to be fact. The word “angels” is a mistranslation. In fact, it is not a translation at all, but a transliteration. The Greek noun ἄγγελος, represented in English characters is aggelos, and is pronounced angelos. But while centuries ago English speakers came up with and used the transliteration “angel” to refer to a celestial being, that is not what the Greek term meant.
So, what did angelos mean in ancient Greek? As may be determined from its usage in ancient Greek literature from Homer and Herodotus on down, it meant “messenger; envoy.” Throughout the centuries before Christ, Greek writers used angelos to refer to messengers, emissaries and envoys.
This also applied to those translating the Hebrew Scriptures into Greek. The Hebrew term for “messenger” in that Bible was mal’ach [מַלְאָךְ], and it was used of human messengers as well as heavenly messengers. In the Greek translation known as the Septuagint (often referred to by the abbreviation LXX), the translators used the Greek term angelos to translate the Hebrew term mal’ach.
So, returning to our reference to “angels” in 1 Corinthians 11:10, while the underlying Greek word angelous (the accusative masculine plural form of the noun angelos) can refer to a heavenly messenger, the word does not inherently mean that. So, an accurate translation is called for here, namely “messengers.” And while that still doesn’t explain just who these (human) messengers in Corinth were, it does clear up the confusion caused by the interpretation that heavenly messengers (“angels”) were offended by (or according to some, attracted to) women in Corinth who might pray or prophesy in an assembly without covering their heads.
Verse 11 starts with “However” (or in some versions, “Nevertheless”), a translation of the Greek adverb Plēn [Πλὴν]. It is used as a conjunction, either as an adversative (equivalent to but) or to restrict or expand on a previous statement. Some interpret verses 11-12 as a parenthetical break between verses 2-10 and 13-16, as though Paul’s comments concerning the headship of the husband is somehow at odds with the comments of mutual dependence in these two verses. Many see these verses as part of a cohesive whole, weaving together the Biblical concepts of headship and authority in Christ with equality of worth and mutual dependence of man and woman. I agree.
“You judge among yourselves”
This first clause of verse 13 is quite significant. For one thing, it is not ambiguous; quite the contrary; it reads quite clearly. Furthermore, it is emphatic, both in terms of the word order and the grammatical forms of the words used.
The Greek reads En humin autois krinate [Ἐν ὑμῖν αὐτοῖς κρίνατε]. A quite literal rendering would read “Among you yourselves you judge.” The verb krinate, given last here, is in the imperative mood. Normally in English an imperative verb might start a sentence or clause, often with an “understood” You as the subject. However, krinate in Greek is the second person plural form of the verb krinō [κρίνω], to judge, so the subject is not assumed or “understood” here; it is explicitly stated in the very form of the verb.
The preposition en is the most common preposition in all of the GNT, with the basic meaning of in. A number of early English versions (KJV, the English Revised Version of 1881, the American Standard Version of 1901) chose the rendering “in,” although most have “for.” But the preposition en can also mean among. (To my knowledge, only the New King James Versions renders it “among” in the text of its translation. However, the aforementioned ERV and ASV, though translating it “in,” have a marginal note that reads “Or, among.”)
Now consider that preposition in light of the plural forms in this clause. The verb is in the second person plural form, and both pronouns are second person plural (humin autois = “you yourselves”). If the preposition is rendered “in,” then Paul’s command is “You judge in you yourselves.” While that is grammatically possible, such a rendering would seem to charge each individual Corinthian to judge these matters for himself. That sense doesn’t fit the overall context. “You judge among you yourselves” is the best rendering here. It is an accurate translation, and suits the context of this being a matter of Corinthian culture.
So, the command Paul gave here (remember, the verb is in the imperative mood) was for the Corinthians collectively to decide or judge, not just “for” themselves, as the preposition en is often translated here, but “among” themselves. Paul in this passage was pointing out various Biblical principles that applied to the underlying issues of propriety and relational status. But the application of those principles to matters of customary hair lengths for the sexes and cultural standards of appropriate attire, was for them to judge among themselves.
Though earlier verses (5-6) implied long hair on women, it did not expressly say so. Rather, it was simply stated that a woman with her head uncovered while praying or prophesying was the same as having her hair cut or shaved off. No mention at that point was made of the men and long hair. In verses 14 and 15, having or wearing long hair is specifically mentioned, first in relation to the man (v. 14), then in relation to the woman (v. 15).
But once again, there are ambiguities here. How long is long? The Greek verb used in both verses is komaō [κομάω], which according to the Liddell-Scott lexicon, is defined as “to let the hair grow long, wear long hair.” However, the term does not actually define what qualifies as “long.” And without precise lengths of locks specified, then what is described as “long hair” is culturally perceived and subjectively assessed.
In the same entry in the Liddell-Scott lexicon cited above, it is pointed out that according to evidence from the writings of Homer and Herodotus, as a general rule the ancient Greeks wore their hair long, but as time progressed, the customs for some of the Greek city-states changed, while for others (like the Spartans) it continued to be the custom for both men and women to wear their hair long. At some point in Athens, male youths wore their hair long up to their eighteenth year, when they were enrolled in the list of citizens. At that age, they cut off their long locks and offered them to some deity. So the customs in the ancient Greek culture regarding long hair varied, and at times changed. No doubt the Corinthians in their day had cultural norms that were well known to them and commonly accepted, and they would certainly have interpreted Paul’s words in light of those customs.
“Nature” vs. “Custom”
Another observation of a difficulty in this passage pertains to the word in verse 14 traditionally translated “nature,” which I have translated “custom.” The Greek noun here is phusis [φύσις], and it can and does indeed convey the sense of nature, natural. But translating phusis here as “nature” would convey an idea that is self-contradictory, namely, that what occurs naturally, the natural phenomenon of hair growth left unchecked (uncut) is somehow a natural and yet shameful thing for the human male.
However, another meaning of the word phusis is possible. In usage, it can also refer to: “a mode of feeling and acting which by long habit has become nature”; “inherited or habituated characteristics natural to man.” So, the Greek word phusis can refer to what has become natural, something that by long-standing custom has become “second nature,” if you will.
Furthermore, shortly after Paul uses the term phusis, in verse 16 he states that “we have no such custom, nor do the assemblies of God.” The word “custom” in this verse is sunētheia [συνήθεια], which means habit, custom, being or becoming accustomed; as an established practice.
The “Anti” Covering
One other ambiguity in the text needs to be mentioned. There is one pesky preposition in 1 Corinthians 11:15 that can be taken several different ways.
Most translations of verse 15 down through the centuries have read similarly to the NKJV: “her hair is given to her for a covering.” (Emphasis mine.) Now the English preposition “for” can have a wide range of meanings. It can indicate: purpose, cause, suitability, replacement, equivalence, etc. Which meaning did Paul intend? What is the Greek term behind the English preposition “for”?
The Greek preposition here is anti [ἀντί], and it too has a wide range of meanings. Anti originally was used in a local sense of over against, opposite, but is used figuratively in the GNT “to indicate a replacement, instead of, in place of.” It may also indicate equivalence, for, as, in place of.
So the translation of anti as the English preposition “for” is a valid rendering, but is ambiguous. Does it mean that a woman’s hair is given to her for the purpose of a covering? Or that it is suitable for a covering? And both the Greek and English prepositions can have a sense of replacement, so did Paul mean to say that “hair is given to her for/instead of a covering”? Also, both prepositions can have the sense of equivalence, so did Paul mean that “hair is given to her for/as equivalent to a covering”?
Although the majority of versions translate anti as “for,” I am aware of two English Bible versions that have translated anti here according to the replacement sense. The John Nelson Darby translation (1884, 1890) reads “for the long hair is given to her in lieu of a veil.” Young’s Literal Translation (1862, 1898) reads “because the hair instead of a covering hath been given to her.”
Also, a couple of recent translations (David H. Stern’s Complete Jewish Bible and the Holman Christian Standard Bible) have rendered anti in that last phrase of 1 Corinthians 11:15 as indicating equivalence, i.e., “her hair has been given to her as a covering.” (Emphasis mine.)
Personally, I struggled with how best to translate this verse, particularly this preposition. Since the word originally had a sense of opposition, I tended at first toward the rendering “instead of a covering.” However, if that is what Paul meant, then it seems at odds with the context, particularly verse six: “For if a woman is not covered, she should also cut off her hair.” In the end, I decided that the sense of equivalence best fit the passage. But, frankly, it’s a judgment call.
Principles of Interpretation
What is the point of all this analysis? I’ve gone through these verses presenting the facts concerning this passage. In doing so, I have pointed out numerous places where the meaning is ambiguous, and the interpretation can therefore be taken more than one way.
So, if anyone tells you that this passage is plain and straightforward, and that its message easy to interpret, run. They aren’t telling you the truth. They may not be lying to you in the sense that they are deliberately telling you things they know to be untrue, but the fact remains: they aren’t telling you the truth.
Many religious people—sincere, well-meaning people—have been taught that this passage gives us a set of rules. This legalistic approach to the passage is taken not only by individuals, but also by whole congregations and even whole denominations. The specific list of rules may vary slightly from group to group, but generally speaking the rules go something like this: men must have short hair, women must have long hair, and wives in particular (or women in general) must wear some kind of head covering to show their submission to the authority of their husbands (and/or men in general).
When interpreting Scripture, certain Biblical and common sense principles can guide us to interpret correctly. One such principle is to base interpretations and doctrines derived from interpretations on all of the word of God, not just an isolated passage. Psalm 119:160 states “The sum of Your word is truth.” This does teach that “All of your words are true,” as the NIV renders it, but it teaches more than that. The sum or entirety of the Word of God teaches the truth of God’s revelation to mankind on any given Biblical doctrine. By this principle, then, you should consider a doctrinaire teaching based on the interpretation of a single passage highly suspect.
Another common-sense principle that is also alluded to in Scripture is to interpret difficult passages in the light of clearer ones. In 2 Peter 3:15-16, the apostle Peter refers to Paul’s letters containing things that “…are hard to understand, which the ignorant and unstable twist as also the rest of the Scriptures…” Down through the centuries, many a false doctrine has been based on obscure (“proof”) texts.
So, both of these principles teach us that when we are faced with a passage like 1 Corinthians 11:1-16, we should admit that it is difficult for us to interpret, since we lack all of the pertinent details on the issue, and even things revealed in the passage are ambiguous. We should look to all of God’s Word to instruct on these matters, and to interpret this difficult passage in light of clearer ones.
Another principle that applies is that while all Scripture was written for our instruction (Romans 15:4), not every word of Scripture was meant to be a commandment for all humanity in every culture for all of time. This passage was written to the Corinthians about their customs (see again comments above about the wording in verses 14 and 16). The comments Paul made here about hair lengths and coverings do not reflect the customs of every culture regarding hair lengths or attire. Among the ancient Greeks before this time in Corinth, both men and women wore their hair long, as did the Jews throughout Biblical history. And amongst the Jews today, both men and women cover their heads when they pray, while in Texas culture it’s considered proper to remove your hat before you pray. So this passage is best interpreted for what it is, a localized question in time about matters of culture and custom, and not some overarching command that spans all of time and crosses all national and cultural boundaries.
One more commonsense principle I’ll mention that will serve us well in this discussion is consistency of application. For example, many of the religious groups interpreting and even binding their interpretation of this passage on their worshipers apply only selected parts of the passage. So, if they insist on women or wives wearing head coverings of some kind, but they don’t let said women pray or prophesy in their church services, then that is an inconsistency of application. This passage specifically addressed women/wives being covered in the context of their participation in publicly praying and prophesying. If this passage is seen as a collection of binding commandments for all, then if they do not implement them all they are selectively obeying only those verses with which they are comfortable.
If my take on this passage isn’t already obvious, I’ll spell it out now, and give you my conclusions. 1 Corinthians 11:1-16 is a difficult passage. It is difficult because it does not give us all the information we need to know, and many of the details that are given are ambiguous. So I believe we can come to a general understanding about what it says, but we are not able to unequivocally interpret every aspect of the passage. I therefore believe we should not bind on others our interpretation of this passage.
And by the way, I’m no advocate of religious egalitarianism. I do not believe in female leadership in the body of Christ. I do believe in the headship of man in the home. (And for the record, male leadership/headship is about role and function, and not about the Biblical truth of equality of personhood in Christ.) This position I’m taking on this passage is because the facts revealed in the text warrant it. It’s that simple.
 Verse 3 – Both here and throughout this passage, the Grk words for woman…man (γυναικὸς ὁ ἀνήρ) can also be translated as wife and husband, respectively.
 Traditionally rendered angels, which is a transliteration (rather than a translation) of the Grk ἀγγέλους.
 Verse 11 – The translation is based on the reading in Byz, M & TR: Πλὴν οὔτε ἀνὴρ χωρὶς γυναικός, οὔτε γυνὴ χωρὶς ἀνδρός, ἐν Κυρίῳ. Tis, WH & NU, following a couple dozen Grk MSS, read Πλὴν οὔτε γυνὴ χωρὶς ἀνδρὸς οὔτε ἀνὴρ χωρὶς γυναικὸς ἐν κυρίῳ, However, neither is woman apart from man nor man apart from woman in the Lord.
 Traditionally translated nature.
 As much as I would like to get into the last phrase of verse three (“the head of Christ is God”), a detailed discussion of the Christology and theology reflected in this verse is beyond the scope of this study. Suffice it to say here that this phrase does not teach a view of Christ similar to ancient Arianism or modern day Jehovah’s Witnesses or Unitarians.
 See John Wesley’s comments on this verse in his Explanatory Notes on the Whole Bible.
 See comments on this verse in Commentary Critical and Explanatory on the Whole Bible by Robert Jamieson, Andrew Robert Fausset and David Brown.
 See Henry Alford’s The Greek Testament. Volume II, p. 565.
 To create a transliteration, to transliterate, is to take a word from one language (in our case, of course, Biblical Greek) and spell it in the characters of another language (again, in our case, English). It is not the translating of meaning but the rendering of the word (more or less letter for letter) in a different language. For more details on the subject of transliterations in Bible versions, see my article Irregularities of Translation in English Bible Versions – Part I: Transliterations.
 Henry George Liddell & Robert Scott, A Greek-English Lexicon. Seventh edition, p. 7. See also Joseph Henry Thayer, A Greek-English Lexicon of the New Testament, pgs. 5-6; G. Abbott-Smith, A Manual Greek Lexicon of the New Testament, p. 4; Walter Bauer, William F. Arndt, F. Wilbur Gingrich & Frederick W. Danker [BAGD], A Greek-English Lexicon of the New Testament and Other Early Christian Literature, pgs. 7-8.
 BAGD, p. 669; Thayer, p. 517; Barbara Friberg, Timothy Friberg Neva F. Miller, Analytical Lexicon of the Greek New Testament. Electronic edition. #22145, πλήν.
 The translation committee of the Revised Standard Version (1946, 1952) actually placed verses 11-12 in parentheses in the text of that version.
 Liddell-Scott, p. 827.
 Thayer, p. 660.
 Friberg, #28375, φύσις.
 BAGD, p. 789; Friberg, #25780, συνήθεια. Cf. Thayer, p. 604; Liddell-Scott, pgs. 1491-92; Abbott-Smith, p. 429.
 BAGD, pgs. 73f; Friberg, #2262, ἀντί. Cf. Liddell-Scott, pgs. 140; Thayer, p. 49-50; Abbott-Smith, pgs. 40f.
 This is also the English translation found in Darby, Young’s, ASV, RSV, NASB, NRSV, ESV. Some translations (NKJV, HCSB) render this “The entirety of Your word is truth.”
 Did you catch that last phrase “…the rest of the Scriptures…”? I’m a little off-topic here, but I can’t resist pointing this out. At the time these two apostles were still alive, Peter refers to Paul’s letters (which make up a good percentage of the New Testament text) as equal to “the rest of the Scriptures.” Since both of these apostles were martyred before 70 AD, this is clear evidence from the New Testament itself that long before the close of the first century, these letters by Paul and Peter were written, circulated among believers and received as equal to “the rest of the Scriptures.” Don’t let some propaganda from the so-called “History” Channel or National Geographic tell you different.