A stunning, unprecedented perspective on the disciple Peter as depicted by Matthew
In this highly original book Robert Gundry argues that the ways in which Matthew portrays the apostle Peter fit the description of false disciples and apostates elsewhere in Matthew's Gospel.
After surveying various wide-ranging assessments of Matthew's portrayal of Peter, Gundry offers a brand-new analysis, examining every Matthean passage where Peter's name occurs as well as passages where Matthew apparently omitted the name though it occurs in his sources. Gundry places Matthew's portrayal of Peter within the framework of two major, distinctive themes in the First Gospel — the church as a mixed body of true and false disciples and persecution as exposing false discipleship.
Gundry uses this investigation to support his claim that Matthew portrays Peter as a false disciple and apostate, like Judas Iscariot, and that Peter's denials of Jesus rule him out of God's kingdom.
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Journal of the Evangelical Theological Society
"When a noted scholar, who combines meticulous exegesis with a strong commitment to the theological authority of Scripture, sets out to prove that the Gospel of Matthew presents Peter as an eternally lost apostate, you know you have an interesting book."
— author of Biblical Words and Their Meaning
"In this highly controversial work on Peter, Robert Gundry's intellectual gifts and remarkable powers of analysis are displayed to an even higher degree than in his previous publications. . . . One need not agree with Gundry's conclusions to acknowledge that the penetrating exegesis presented here and the nature of the argumentation as a whole demand serious reflection and engagement. Those who pay close attention to this brief but unusually weighty book will not be able to read Matthew in quite the same way that they did before."
John S. Kloppenborg
— University of Toronto
"Peter, long thought to be `prince of the apostles' and one of the heroes of the Gospel of Matthew, is shown here to be neither. This extraordinarily closely argued volume by Robert Gundry offers a compelling case that Matthew constructs the figure of Peter as a failed disciple and an apostate. . . . A courageous book that will require scholars to reassess how the Peter of Matthew came to be, in Gundry's words, `airbrushed' and turned into a model disciple and central figure in ecclesiastical memory."
Donald A. Hagner
— Fuller Theological Seminary
"If Bob Gundry is known for anything, it is for his dogged pursuit of the meaning of Scripture. Here he once again provides fresh, penetrating analysis — in the present case, leading to an unsettling conclusion. Provocative, as he can often be, Gundry is never boring but always instructive and well worth a careful reading."