Carson, D.A., and Douglas Moo An Introduction to the New Testament - Second Edition. Grand Rapids: Zondervan, 2005. "New Testament Letters" Carson & Moo pp. 331-353
“2 Peter” Carson & Moo pp. 654-668
In the second epistle of Peter we are struck by his encouragement to spiritual growth. Yet at the same time, Peter seems to use a forceful negative argument to make this encouragement. He tells about all the dangers of false teachers.
One of the important areas of commentary on 2 Peter is the similarity between this letter and the letter of Jude. The concepts discussed are very similar and some of the language used is very rare elsewhere in the Bible. Carson and Moo discuss various ways the two letters could be related and finally say they do consider that one of the letters was influenced by the other but do not have adequate data to decide which way the influence went.
2 Peter claims to be written by the apostle Peter. However, modern scholars give six reasons for rejecting this claim. The Greek is very different from 1 Peter. The teaching discussed is similar to Gnosticism of the 2nd century. The author suggests that Paul’s letters, possibly collected, are recognized as Scripture. The hope of the coming of Christ seems to be less immediate than it is in the apostolic age. The letter does not seem to be known at an early time. Finally, the form of the letter is similar to some pseudonymous writings. However, Carson and Moo answer each of these arguments, observing that they are unconvincing. This leaves us either accepting unconclusive arguments or the idea that the letter is genuine.
If Peter wrote the letter it has to be dated before Peter’s death in the mid sixties. The author suggests that death is impending, so we would place the time close to Peter’s death. Though the letter does not state a specific destination it seems to be addressed to Christians who are threatened by something quite specific, so it does not seem to be a general epistle, simply one which does not state the recipient.
2 Peter is often neglected in scholarship, with little work being done with it in recent years. Carson and Moo observe contributions in three areas. First, the letter warns us of how serious it is to deviate from the Christian faith. Second, the day of the Lord is an event to be hoped for. Finally, the letter addresses the idea of memory in the Christian walk, contrasting memory with forgetfulness. Remembering Jesus results in a life dedicated to Christ, while forgetting him results in departure from the faith.