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is required of all who have received the Knowledge of Rome. Salvation.
Churches in the great cities, yet they were designed, as the in-
Dr. Lardner places the Epistle to the Ephesians at the begin-
Dr. Lardner's second argument is that already noticed, that the apostle does not express an expectation of an early release, as in the Epistle to the Philippians. Macknight, however, is of opinion, that no inference can be drawn from this circumstance. The apostle, he observes, in his Epistle to the Colossians, makes as little mention of his release as in his Epistle to the Ephesians. And yet all allow that that Epistle was written and sent with the Epistle to Philemon, in which the apostle expressed the strongest hope of that event. He did not think it necessary, it seems, to mention his enlargement in his letter to the Colossians, because he had ordered Tychicus to inform them of it (Col. iv. 27). All things concerning me, Tychicus will make known to you. For the same reason he may have omitted mentioning his release to the Ephesians, as may be inferred from Eph. vi. 21. Now that ye also may know these things relating to me, and what I am doing, Tychicus will make known to you all things.
The phraseology here deserves notice, "that ye also may know;" which he thinks implies, that at this time the apostle had ordered Tychicus to make known all things concerning him to some others; namely, to the Colossians, consequently that the two Epistles were written about the same time; and as Tychicus and Onesimus, to whom the apostle delivered his Epistle to the Colossians and to Philemon, were to take Ephesus in their way, he gave them his letter to the Ephesians likewise, and ordered them, when they delivered it, to enjoin the Ephesians to send a copy of it to the Laodiceans, with directions to send a transcript taken from their copy to the Colossians. Tychicus, therefore, and Onesimus, taking Ephesus in their way, delivered the apostle's letter to the Church in that city as they were directed; then proceeded with the letter to the Colossians and to Philemon, which, when they delivered, their commission was at an end.
Such are Dr. Macknight's arguments. It is evident, however, that this mode of reasoning is very inconclusive. I have placed the epistle therefore at this, period, and have been guided by the arguments of Dr. Lardner, which have been before consi
§ 1. EPH. i. 1-14.
Vulgar Era, After his individual and general Salutation, St. Paul breaks forth into rapturous expressions of Gratitude to God for the spiritual Blessings he has bestowed on the Gentiles; and for calling them according to his merciful Design, that they might be holy and blameless, his chosen People Predestinated to the Adoption of Children, through Faith in Jesus Christ-By his Blood they are redeemed, and their Sins pardoned-not by the Mosaic Law, but through his abundant Mercy-giving the Apostles both Wisdom in spiritual Things, and Prudence in the exercise of them-and revealing to them the Mystery of his Will (the Admission of the Gentiles into his Church, without subjecting them to the Jewish Law), and the Plan by which both Jews and Gentiles will be gathered together under Jesus Christ into one Church-Through Christ the believing Jews have obtained the spiritual Inheritance promised to the spiritual Children of Abraham, being predestinated or re-elected according to the Purpose of his own Will, through Faith in Christ; that they, who were the first who believed in Christ, should be to the Praise of his Glory, by imparting the Knowledge of Salvation to the World-In him the Gentiles also have believed, when they heard from us the Word of Truthand by him the Holy Spirit, promised by the Father, was given-which is the Earnest of the eternal Inheritance of the Jews, and now of the Gentiles, till they to
dered, and which is consistent with the order of the sacred
From the frequent use of the word mystery, and from other reasons, Macknight, Dr. Chandler, and other commentators, have supposed that St. Paul intended to illustrate the truths he enforces in this epistle, by referring to the mysteries of Diana, which were celebrated at Ephesus, in the temple of that name. Dr. Macknight has largely discussed this subject. I have not adopted his opinions, as they appear to require farther confirmation. The allusions of St. Paul to the service and ministers of the Jewish temple, seem to be made without any reference to those of Diana. See the argument of Warburton and Leland in Macknight's Preface (b).
(a) Stoch, de Epistolis Apostolorum non deperditis, pp. 101. et seq. Michaelis, vol. iv. p. 128-146. Lardner's Works, Svo. vol. vi. pp. 416 -456. 4to. vol. iii. pp. 342-362. Macknight on Col. iv. 16. Bishop Middleton on the Greek Article, pp. 508-518. who observes, that if ever there were an epistle from St. Paul to the Laodiceans, it is lost: for that, which is extant in Fabricius and Jones's work on the canon, (to which we may add Pritius) is universally allowed to be a forgery; yet the loss of a canonical writing is of all suppositions the most improbable. See Horne's Crit. Introduct. (b) Macknight's Preface, Paley's Hora Paulina, Horne, Michaelis, Bishop Tomline, Dr. Lardner, and their numerous references; not only for this, but for the introductions to each of the epistles.
Julian Period, 4774. Vulgar Æra, 61.
gether obtain the purchased Possession of Heaven, to the Rome. Praise and Glory of Christ.
1 Paul, an apostle of Jesus Christ by the will of God, to the saints which are at Ephesus, and to the faithful in Christ Jesus:
2 Grace be to you, and peace, from God our Father, and from the Lord Jesus Christ.
3 Blessed be the God and Father of our Lord Jesus Christ, who hath blessed us with all spiritual blessings in heavenly places in Christ:
4 According as he hath chosen us in him before the foundation of the world, that we should be holy, and without blame before him in love:
5 Having predestinated us unto the adoption of children by Jesus Christ to himself, according to the good pleasure of his will,
6 To the praise of the glory of his grace, wherein he hath made us accepted in the Beloved;
7 In whom we have redemption through his blood, the forgiveness of sins, according to the riches of his grace;
8 Wherein he hath abounded toward us in all wisdom and prudence:
9 Having made known unto us the mystery of his will, according to his good pleasure which he hath purposed in himself:
10 That in the dispensation of the fulness of times, he might gather together in one all things in Christ, both which are in heaven and which are on earth: even in him,
11 In whom also we have obtained an inheritance, being predestinated according to the purpose of him who worketh all things after the counsel of his own will;
12 That we should be to the praise of his glory, who first trusted in Christ.
13 In whom ye also trusted, after that ye heard the word of truth, the gospel of your salvation: in whom also, after that ye believed, ye were sealed with that holy Spirit of promise,
14 Which is the earnest of our inheritance, until the redemption of the purchased possession, unto the praise of his glory.
St. Paul thanks God for their Conversion, and prays that
Julian Period, 4774. Vulgar Era,
power Christ was raised from the Dead, and exalted to Rome.
15 Wherefore I also, after I heard of your faith in the
16 Cease not to give thanks for you, making mention of you in my prayers;
17 That the God of our Lord Jesus Christ, the Father of glory, may give unto you the Spirit of wisdom and revelation in the knowledge of him:
18 The eyes of your understanding being enlightened; that ye may know what is the hope of his calling, and what the riches of the glory of his inheritance in the saints.
19 And what is the exceeding greatness of his power to us-ward who believe, according to the working of his mighty power,
20 Which he wrought in Christ, when he raised him from the dead, and set him at his own right hand in the heavenly places,
21 Far above all principality, and power, and might, and dominion, and every name that is named, not only in this world, but also in that which is to come;
22 And hath put all things under his feet, and gave him to be head over all things to the church,
23 Which is his body, the fulness of him that filleth all in all.
§ 3. EPH. ii. 1-10.
St. Paul, to excite the Gratitude of the Ephesians, reminds
Julian Period, 4774. Vulgar Era, 61.
Hope that they through him may be received into heavenly Rome.
1 And you hath he quickened, who were dead in tres-
2 Wherein in time past ye walked according to the course of this world, according to the prince of the power of the air, the spirit that now worketh in the children of disobedience :
3 Among whom also we all had our conversation in times past in the lusts of our flesh, fulfilling the desires of the flesh and of the mind; and were by nature the children of wrath, even as others.
4 But God, who is rich in mercy, for his great love wherewith he loved us,
5 Even when we were dead in sins, hath quickened us together with Christ, (by grace ye are saved :)
6 And hath raised us up together, and made us sit together in heavenly places in Christ Jesus;
7 That in the ages to come he might shew the exceeding riches of his grace, in his kindness toward us through Christ Jesus.
8 For by grace are ye saved through faith; and that not of yourselves; it is the gift of God:
9 Not of works, lest any man should boast.
10 For we are his workmanship, created in Christ Jesus unto good works, which God hath before ordained that we should walk in them.
§ 4. EPH. ii. 11, to the end.
The Apostle, after having described the fallen State of the