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January 20    Scripture

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Bible Books: Ephesians
The Book of Ephesians in the Bible

Ephesians in the Bible. The Unity of the Church. The believerís position in Christ and information on Spiritual warfare. -Outline of the Books of the Bible


Ephesians in Wikipedia The Epistle of Paul to the Ephesians, usually referred to simply as Ephesians, is the tenth book of the New Testament. Its authorship has traditionally been credited to Paul, but it is now widely accepted by critical scholarship to be "deutero- Pauline," that is, written in Paul's name by a later author strongly influenced by Paul's thought.[1][2][2][3][3][4] Bible scholar Raymond E. Brown asserts that about 80% of critical scholarship judges that Paul did not write Ephesians.[5]:p.47, and Perrin and Duling[6] say that of six authoritative scholarly references, "four of the six decide for pseudonymity, and the other two (PCB and JBC) recognize the difficulties in maintaining Pauline authorship. Indeed, the difficulties are insurmountable."...

Epistle to Ephesians in Easton's Bible Dictionary was written by Paul at Rome about the same time as that to the Colossians, which in many points it resembles. Contents of. The Epistle to the Colossians is mainly polemical, designed to refute certain theosophic errors that had crept into the church there. That to the Ephesians does not seem to have originated in any special circumstances, but is simply a letter springing from Paul's love to the church there, and indicative of his earnest desire that they should be fully instructed in the profound doctrines of the gospel. It contains (1) the salutation (1:1, 2); (2) a general description of the blessings the gospel reveals, as to their source, means by which they are attained, purpose for which they are bestowed, and their final result, with a fervent prayer for the further spiritual enrichment of the Ephesians (1:3-2:10); (3) "a record of that marked change in spiritual position which the Gentile believers now possessed, ending with an account of the writer's selection to and qualification for the apostolate of heathendom, a fact so considered as to keep them from being dispirited, and to lead him to pray for enlarged spiritual benefactions on his absent sympathizers" (2:12-3:21); (4) a chapter on unity as undisturbed by diversity of gifts (4:1-16); (5) special injunctions bearing on ordinary life (4:17-6:10); (6) the imagery of a spiritual warfare, mission of Tychicus, and valedictory blessing (6:11-24). Planting of the church at Ephesus. Paul's first and hurried visit for the space of three months to Ephesus is recorded in Acts 18:19-21. The work he began on this occasion was carried forward by Apollos (24-26) and Aquila and Priscilla. On his second visit, early in the following year, he remained at Ephesus "three years," for he found it was the key to the western provinces of Asia Minor. Here "a great door and effectual" was opened to him (1 Cor. 16:9), and the church was established and strengthened by his assiduous labours there (Acts 20:20, 31). From Ephesus as a centre the gospel spread abroad "almost throughout all Asia" (19:26). The word "mightily grew and prevailed" despite all the opposition and persecution he encountered...

Epistle to the Ephesians in the Bible Encyclopedia - ISBE LITERATURE I. Authenticity. 1. External Evidence: None of the epistles which are ascribed to Paul have a stronger chain of evidence to their early and continued use than that which we know as the Epistle to the Ephesians. Leaving for the moment the question of the relation of Eph to other New Testament writings, we find that it not only colors the phraseology of the Apostolic Fathers, but is actually quoted. In Clement of Rome (circa 95 AD) the connection with Ephesians might be due to some common liturgical form in xlvi.6 (compare Eph 4:6); though the resemblance is so close that we must feel that our epistle was known to Clement both here and in lxiv (compare Eph 1:3- 4); xxxviii (compare Eph 5:21); xxxvi (compare Eph 4:18); lix (compare Eph 1:18; 4:18). Ignatius (died 115) shows numerous points of contact with Ephesians, especially in his Epistle to the Ephesians. In chap. xii we read: "Ye are associates and fellow students of the mysteries with Paul, who in every letter makes mention of you in Christ Jesus." It is difficult to decide the exact meaning of the phrase "every letter," but in spite of the opinion of many scholars that it must be rendered "in all his epistle," i.e. in every part of his epistle, it is safer to take it as an exaggeration, "in all his epistles," justified to some extent in the fact that besides Ephesians, Paul does mention the Ephesian Christians in Rom (16:5); 1 Cor (15:32; 16:8,19); 2 Cor (1:8 f); 1 Tim (1:3) and 2 Tim (1:18). In the opening address the connection with Eph 1:3-6 is too close to be accidental. There are echoes of our epistle in chap. i (Eph 6:1); ix (Eph 2:20-22); xviii (oikonomia, Eph 1:10); xx (Eph 2:18; 4:24); and in Ignat. ad Polyc. v we have close identity with Eph 5:25 and less certain connection with Eph 4:2, and in vi with Eph 6:13-17. The Epistle of Polycarp in two passages shows verbal agreement with Eph: in chap. i with Eph 1:8, and in xii with Eph 4:26, where we have (the Greek is missing here) ut his scripturis dictum est. Hermas speaks of the grief of the Holy Spirit in such a way as to suggest Ephesians (Mand. X, ii; compare Eph 4:30). Sim. IX, xiii, shows a knowledge of Eph 4:3-6, and possibly of 5:26 and 1:13. In the Didache (4) we find a parallel to Eph 6:5: "Servants submit yourselves to your masters." In Barnabas there are two or three turns of phrase that are possibly due to Ephesians. There is a slightly stronger connection between II Clement and Ephesians, especially in chap. xiv, where we have the Ephesian figure of the church as the body of Christ, and the relation between them referred to in terms of husband and wife...

The Epistle to the Ephesians in Fausset's Bible Dictionary By Paul, as Ephesians 1:1; Ephesians 3:1 prove. So Irenaeus, Haer. 5:2-3; 1:8, 5; Clemens Alex., Strom. 4:65, Paed. 1:8; Origen, Celsus 4:211. Quoted by Valentinus A.D. 120, Ephesians 3:14-18, as we know from Hippolytus, Refut. Haeres., p. 193. Polycarp, Epistle to Phil., 12, witnesses to its canonicity. So Tertullian, Adv. Marcion, 5:17, Ignatius, Ephesians 12, refers to Paul's affectionate mention of the Christian privileges of the Ephesians in his epistle. Paul, in Colossians 4:16, charges the Colossians to read his epistle to the Laodiceans, and to cause his epistle to the Colossians to be read in the church of Laodicea, whereby he can hardly mean his Epistle to the Ephesians, for the resemblance between the two epistles, Ephesians and Colossians, would render such interchange of reading almost unnecessary. His greetings sent through the Colossians to the Laodiceans are incompatible with the idea that he wrote an epistle to the Laodiceans at the same time and by the same bearer, Tychicus (the bearer of both epistles, Ephesians and Colossians), for the apostle would then have sent the greetings directly in the letter to the party saluted, instead of indirectly in his letter to the Colossians. The epistle to Laodicea was evidently before that to Colosse. Ussher supposed that the Epistle to the Ephesians was an encyclical letter, headed as in manuscripts of Sinaiticus and Vaticanus, "To the saints that are ... and to the faithful," the name of each church being inserted in the copy sent to it; and that its being sent to Ephesus first occasioned its being entitled the Epistle to the Ephesians. But the words "at Ephesus" (Ephesians 1:1) occur in the very ancient Alexandrinus manuscript and the Vulgate version. The omission was subsequently made when read to other churches in order to generalize its character. Its internal spirit aims at one set of persons, coexisting in one place, as one body, and under the same circumstances. Moreover, there is no intimation, as in 2 Corinthians and Galatians, that it is encyclical and comprising all the churches of that region. After having spent so long time in Ephesus, Paul would hardly fail to write an epistle especially applying to the church there. For personal matters he refers the Ephesians to Tychicus its bearer (Ephesians 6:21-22); his engrossing theme being the interest...

The Epistle to the Ephesians in Smiths Bible Dictionary was written by the apostle St. Paul during his first captivity at Rome, Ac 28:16 apparently immediately after he had written the Epistle to the Colossians [COLOSSIANS, EPISTLE TO], and during that period (perhaps the early part of A.D. 62) when his imprisonment had not assumed the severer character which seems to have marked its close. This epistle was addressed to the Christian church at Ephesus. [EPHESUS] Its contents may be divided into two portions, the first mainly doctrinal, ch. 1- 3, the second hortatory and practical.

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