The Gospel of Peter as a Jewish Christian document
The second half of the Akhmîm fragment of the Gospel of Peter distinguishes the recalcitrant Jewish leaders, who suppress the truth of Jesus' resurrection, from the Jewish people, who regret their murder of Jesus the moment he dies- A distinction best explained by the thesis that the document was produced by and for Jewish Christians living in second-century Syria. Other Christian documents related to the Gospel of Peter and written or influenced by second- A nd third-century Jewish Christians, especially the Didascalia Apostolorum, show a similar combination of philo- A nd anti-Judaism. The Gospel's reference to the disciples fasting during the interim between Jesus' crucifixion and resurrection may refer to the practice, attested in the Didascalia and elsewhere, of liturgical fasting for the Jews. Apocalypse of Peter 2, which was probably an original part of the Gospel, holds out hope for Israel's restoration. As the Akhmîm scribe excised this hopeful chapter from the Apocalypse, so he probably excised the hopeful ending of the Gospel, in which the risen Jesus commissioned the disciples to continue the work of separating the people from their recalcitrant leaders and thereby converting them to faith in the one they had crucified.
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