A Student's Guide to
New Testament Textual Variants

The Second Letter of Peter

2 Peter 1:1-3:18


2 Peter 1:1:

TEXT: "·Simeon Peter, a slave and apostle"
EVIDENCE: S A K P 104 945 1739 1881* 2495 Byz some Lect syr(ph,h)
TRANSLATIONS: ASVn RSV NASVn NEB
RANK: C

NOTES: "·Simon Peter, a slave and apostle"
EVIDENCE: p72 B Psi 81 614 630 1241 1881c some Lect syr(pal) cop
TRANSLATIONS: KJV ASV RSVn NASV NIV TEV

COMMENTS: The two names "Simeon" and "Simon" are two forms of the same name. It seems more likely that copyists would change "Simeon" to "Simon" than vice versa, since "Simeon" is used of Peter only once elsewhere (Acts 15:14).

2 Peter 1:3:

TEXT: "the One who called us to [his] own glory and virtue."
EVIDENCE: S A C P Psi 33 81 104 614 630 945 1241 1739 1881 2495 lat vg syr(ph,h,pal) cop
TRANSLATIONS: ASV RSV NASV NIV NEB TEV
RANK: D

NOTES: "the One who called us through glory and virtue."
EVIDENCE: p72 B K L Byz Lect
TRANSLATIONS: KJV ASVn TEVn

COMMENTS: There is only one letter difference between the Greek words for "own" and "through"; in addition, the words for "glory" and "virtue" are in different cases in the readings which makes a difference in spelling of one extra letter each. The text reading seems to have a wider range of evidence from different types of ancient text.

2 Peter 1:21:

TEXT: "but men spoke from God [as they were] moved"
EVIDENCE: p72 B P 614 630 945 1241 1739 1881 2495 one lat syr(h) cop(north)
TRANSLATIONS: ASV RSV NASV NIV NEB TEV
RANK: B

NOTES: "but holy men of God spoke [as they were] moved"
EVIDENCE: S A K Psi 33 104 Byz Lect most lat vg syr(ph)
TRANSLATIONS: KJV RSVn

OTHER: "but holy men spoke from God [as they were] moved"
EVIDENCE: C 81

OTHER: "but holy men spoke [as they were] moved"
EVIDENCE: cop(south)

COMMENTS: In Greek the two readings are almost alike; there is only three letters difference between them. Further, the letters "GI" (in the word "holy") when written together in capital letters look almost like a capital "P" (in the word "from"). Thus the variation is probably due to a mistake of the eye. Since the reading with "holy" may have been prompted by the words "Holy Spirit" in the same verse, the reading "from God" is more likely to be original.

2 Peter 2:4:

TEXT: "committed [them] to chains of gloom to be kept"
EVIDENCE: p72 K P Psi 33 104 614 630 945 1241 1739 1881 2495 Byz Lect some lat vg syr(ph,h) cop(north)
TRANSLATIONS: KJV ASVn NIVn NEBn TEV
RANK: D

NOTES: "committed [them] to caverns of gloom to be kept"
EVIDENCE: S {A B C 81} one lat cop(south)
TRANSLATIONS: ASV RSV NASV NIV NEB TEVn

COMMENTS: There are only two letters' difference between "chains" and "caverns" in Greek, and the evidence in braces misspells "caverns" in such a way that there is only one letter's difference between them. Since "cavern" was a common word in Egypt, which is the source of most of the manuscripts that read it, it is likely a misreading of "chains." The use of "imprisonment" in the parallel passage of Jude 6 would also argue for the originality of "chains."

2 Peter 2:6:

TEXT: "he condemned [them] to ruin and made [them] an"
EVIDENCE: S A C2 K Psi 33 81 104 614 630 2495 Byz Lect lat vg syr(ph,h) cop(south)
TRANSLATIONS: KJV ASV RSV NASV NEB TEV
RANK: D

NOTES: "he condemned [them] and made [them] an"
EVIDENCE: p72 B C* 945 1241 1739 1881 cop(north)
TRANSLATIONS: NIV

COMMENTS: The Greek word for "to ruin" is enclosed in brackets in the UBS text because it is missing from several early manuscripts. Since both it and the word for "condemned" begin with the same three letters, it is likely that it was accidently omitted when copyists' eyes jumped from the beginning of "to ruin" (which comes first in Greek) to the beginning of "condemned."

2 Peter 2:6:

TEXT: "example to the impious of things going [to happen]"
EVIDENCE: p72 B P 614 630 2495 syr(ph,h) cop
TRANSLATIONS: NIV NEB TEV
RANK: C

NOTES: "example to those who were going to keep living impiously"
EVIDENCE: S A C K Psi 33 81 104 945 1241 1739 1881 Byz Lect lat vg
TRANSLATIONS: KJV ASV RSV NASV

COMMENTS: The difference between the two readings is that of one letter, which is enclosed in brackets in the UBS text. If included the word is a noun "the impious"; if omitted the word is an infinitive "to keep living impiously." Because of the helper word "going" copyists would be more likely to change the noun to an infinitive than vice versa.

2 Peter 2:11:

TEXT: "judgment against them from the Lord."
EVIDENCE: p72 1241 one lat syr(ph,h+)?
TRANSLATIONS: none
RANK: D

NOTES: "judgment against them before the Lord."
EVIDENCE: S B C K P 104 945 1739 Byz Lect syr(ph,h+)?
TRANSLATIONS: KJV ASV RSV NASV NIV NEB TEV

NOTES: "judgment against them."
EVIDENCE: A Psi 33 81 614 630 1881 2495 most lat vg syr(h) cop
TRANSLATIONS: none

COMMENTS: The difference in the first two readings is between the genitive case for "Lord" (text reading) or the dative case (reading in the notes). The same preposition can mean either "from" or "before" depending upon the case of the noun it modifies. Although it is possible that both were original absent, the difficulty of understanding "from the Lord" perhaps caused copyists to either change it or omit it.

2 Peter 2:13:

TEXT: "reveling in their deceitful pleasures while"
EVIDENCE: p72 S A* C K P 33 81 104 614 630 2495 Byz Lect syr(h) cop(north)
TRANSLATIONS: KJV ASV RSV NASV NIV NEB TEV
RANK: C

NOTES: "reveling in their love feasts while"
EVIDENCE: Ac B Psi lat vg syr(ph) cop(south)
TRANSLATIONS: ASVn RSVn NASVn NIVn NEBn

OTHER: "reveling in their ignorance while"
EVIDENCE: 945 1241 1739 1881

COMMENTS: There are only two letters' difference between the words translated "deceitful pleasures" and "love feasts." Since the parallel passage in Jude 12 has "love feasts," it is likely that copyists borrowed that reading from there.

2 Peter 2:15:

TEXT: "Balaam, the [son] of Beor"
EVIDENCE: p72 Sc Ac C K P Psi 048 81 104 614 630 945 1241 1739 1881 2495 Byz Lect lat most vg syr(h) cop(north)
TRANSLATIONS: KJV ASVn RSV? NASV? NIV? TEV?
RANK: B

NOTES: "Balaam, the [son] of Beor"
EVIDENCE: B some vg syr(ph) cop(south)
TRANSLATIONS: ASV RSV? NASV? NIV? NEB TEV?

OTHER: "Balaam, the [son] of Beoorsor"
EVIDENCE: S*

COMMENTS: Apparently the unusual spelling "Bosor" has been changed to the more usual spelling "Beor" by some copyists. The spelling "Beoorsor" is a combination of the two. The original reading of manuscript A is uncertain.

2 Peter 2:20:

TEXT: "knowledge of our Lord and Savior Jesus Christ"
EVIDENCE: p72 S A C P Psi 048vid 81 614 630 945 1739 2495 most lat vg syr(h) cop(south)?
TRANSLATIONS: ASVn RSV NIV NEB TEV
RANK: C

NOTES: "knowledge of the Lord and Savior Jesus Christ"
EVIDENCE: B K Byz Lect one lat
TRANSLATIONS: KJV ASV NASV

OTHER: "knowledge of our Lord Jesus Christ"
EVIDENCE: L 1881 cop(north)

COMMENTS: The word for "our" is enclosed in brackets in the UBS text. Although there was a tendency for copyists to expand the name of Jesus, Peter elsewhere used the word "our" in the title (see 1:11 and 3:18) which prompted the UBS Textual Committee to include it here.

2 Peter 3:9:

TEXT: "but is patient toward plyou"
EVIDENCE: p72 B C P 048vid 81 945 1241 1739 1881 cop(north)
TRANSLATIONS: ASV RSV NASV NIV NEB TEV
RANK: B

NOTES: "but is patient because of plyou"
EVIDENCE: S A Psi 33 614 630 2495 lat vg syr(ph,h) cop(south)
TRANSLATIONS: RSVn

OTHER: "but is patient toward us"
EVIDENCE: K L 104 Byz Lect

TRANSLATIONS: KJV
COMMENTS: In later Greek the words "plyou" and "us" were pronounced alike. Probably the reading "us" is due to a mistake of the ear. The reading "because of" or "on account of" seems to have been a change by copyists to make the passage more meaningful.

2 Peter 3:10:

TEXT: "the works that are in it will be found [out]."
EVIDENCE: S B K P 1175 1241 1739text 1881 syr(ph)
TRANSLATIONS: ASVn NASVn NIV NEB TEVn
RANK: D

NOTES: "the works that are in it will be burned up."
EVIDENCE: A 048 33 81 104 614 630 945 1739margin 2495 Byz Lect some lat later vg syr(h) cop(north)
TRANSLATIONS: KJV ASV RSV NASV NIVn NEBn TEVn

NOTES: "the works that are in it will be found dissolved."
EVIDENCE: p72
TRANSLATIONS: TEVn

NOTES: "the works that are in it will disappear."
EVIDENCE: C
TRANSLATIONS: TEV

OTHER: "the works that are in it will not be found."
EVIDENCE: cop(south)

OTHER: omit from "and the earth" to the end of the verse
EVIDENCE: Psi two lat earlier vg

COMMENTS: Probably the difficulty of understanding the meaning of the reading "be found" gave rise to the other readings. Copyists either added a word ("dissolved" or "not") or changed it to "be burned up" or "disappear."

2 Peter 3:18:

TEXT: "glory both now and to the day of eternity. Amen."
EVIDENCE: p72 S A C K P Psi 33 81 104 614 630 945 1739c 2495 Byz Lect most lat vg syr(ph,h) cop
TRANSLATIONS: KJV ASV RSV NASV NIV TEV
RANK: D

NOTES: "glory both now and to the day of eternity."
EVIDENCE: B 1175 1241 1739*vid 1881 one lat
TRANSLATIONS: NEB

COMMENTS: The word "Amen" is enclosed in brackets in the UBS text. There was a tendency for copyists to add "Amen" to the end of a book they had copied, but the fact that it is found after so many manuscripts prompted the UBS Textual Committee to include it here.


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