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Moreover, the unity of the letters is questioned by some scholars.
First and Second Corinthians have garnered particular suspicion, with some scholars, among them Edgar J.
A consistent point of view implies a common author; contradictory or unrelated teachings imply multiple authors. Michaelis saw the Christological likeness between the Pastoral Epistles and some of Paul's undisputed works, and argued in favor of Pauline authorship.
A problem with this method is analyzing the coherence of a body of diverse and developing teachings. For example, with the same epistles mentioned above, B. Easton argued their theological notions disagreed with other Pauline works, and rejected Pauline authorship.
The church father Origen of Alexandria rejected the Pauline authorship of Hebrews, instead asserting that, although the ideas expressed in the letter were genuinely Pauline, the letter itself had actually been written by someone else.
See also Radical Criticism, which maintains that the external evidence for attributing any of the letters to Paul is so weak, that it should be considered that all the letters appearing in the Marcion canon were written in Paul's name by members of the Marcionite Church and were afterwards edited and adopted by the Catholic Church. Holtzmann (1885) instead accepted the seven letters listed above, adding Philemon, 1 Thessalonians, and Philippians.Although Colossians is witnessed by the same historical sources as the undisputed texts, Pauline authorship of Colossians has found some critics. The basis for the early objection was that the letter aimed at refuting Gnosticism, a heresy which had not reached its ascendancy until the early 2nd century.This thesis was questioned in an analysis of Gnosticism by R.Scholarly opinion is sharply divided on whether or not Colossians and 2 Thessalonians are genuine letters of Paul.The remaining four contested epistles – Ephesians, as well as the three known as the Pastoral epistles (1 and 2 Timothy, and Titus) – have been labeled pseudepigraphical works by most critical scholars.are analyzed for consistency with the author’s other known works. Goodspeed argued that the vocabulary of the Epistle to the Ephesians showed a literary relationship with the First Epistle of Clement, written around the end of the 1st century.A similar style implies common authorship, while a radically divergent vocabulary implies different authors. Of course, style and language can vary for reasons other than differing authorship, such as the subject of the letter, the recipient, the circumstances of the times, a different amanuensis, or simply maturation on the part of the author.Similar to internal evidence, doctrinal consistency and development are examined against the author's other known works.Theological themes like the eschaton or the Mosaic Law could reappear in different works, but in a similar manner.Unfortunately, these witnesses are often either damaged or too late in date to provide much help.Implicit references are quotation from Paul, especially indirect or unattributed, or expressing ideas and phrases that appear in his works.