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matter of fact. Michaelis has produced another, more sim- remark, that this Epistle was acknowledged to be genuine by ple and natural, viz. that Paul, on his return from Crete, the heretic Marcion, who reckoned it the earliest written of visited Corinth a second time before he went to winter at all Saint Paul's Letters, and accordingly placed it first in his Nicopolis. This second visit is unnoticed in the Acts, Apostolicon, or Collection of Apostolical Writings.15 because the voyage itself is unnoticed. The third visit 'IV. The Churches in Galatia, as in most other countries, promised in 2 Cor. xii, 14. and xiii. 1, 2. was actually paid were composed partly of converted Jews and partly of Genon the apostle's second return to Rome, when he took tile converts, but the latter seem to have been most numeCorinth in his way. (2 Tim. iv. 20.) "Thus critically does rous. It appears from the contents of this Epistle, that, not the book of the Acts harmonize, even in its omissions, with long after the Galatians had embraced Christianity, a certain the Epistles : and these with each other, in the minute in- judaizing teacher or false apostle had either crept in or risen sidental circumstance of the third visit."2
up among them, who, to advance his own doctrine, quesOn the undesigned coincidences between this Epistle and tioned Saint Paul's apostolical authority, insinuating that the Acts of the Apostles, see Dr. Paley's Horæ Paulinæ, Peter and the apostles of the circumcision were superior to
him, and consequently much more to be regarded. It was further insinuated that they never preached against the circumcision of Gentile converts : but that it was a doctrine pecu
liar to Paul, who was only an apostle of men, and had not SECTION VI.
such extraordinary powers and illumination as had been conferred on the other apostles. The false teacher seems even
to have intimated, that Saint Paul did himself secretly, and ON THE EPISTLE TO THE GALATIANS.
at some times, preach the necessity of circumcision to the I. Notice of the Christian church in Galatia.—II. Date.—III. insisted on the contrary. In short, the false apostle was de
Gentile converts; though generally, and at other times, he Genuineness and authenticity of this Epistle.-IV. Its occa- sirous that all Gentile Christians should submit themselves sion and scope.-V. Synopsis of its contents.-VI. Obser- to circumcision, and consequently oblige themselves to obvations on this Epistle.
serve the whole law of Moses, as it the Gospel of Jesus I. CHRISTIANITY was very early, planted in Galatia by so successful
was this teacher in propagating this error, that
Christ alone were insufficient to justify and save them. And Paul himself, and it appears from the Acts of the Apostles some of the Galatians actually submitted to be circumcised. that he visited the churches in this country more than once.(Gal. v. 2–12.) From the expression of Saint Paul in Gal. Two distinct visits are clearly marked, viz. the first about the v. 9—10., it is probable that this disturbance in the Galatian year 50 (Acts xvi. 6.), and the second about the year 51 or churches was made by one judaizing teacher only, and not 55. (xviii. 23.)
by several zealots, as some commentators have supposed; II. There is great diversity of opinion among learned men and, from what is said in vi. 12, 13., it appears that he was concerning the date of the Epistle to the Galatians. Wein- a man of immoral character, who acted not from any religart supposes it to have been written so early
as the year 48; gious views or motives, but from vain-glory and fear; that Michaelis, in 49 ; Cappel, in 51; Bishop Pearson, in 57; he might conciliate the favour of the Jews by increasing the Mill, Fabricius, Moldenhawer, and others, in 58; Van Til number of proselytes, and so escape the persecutions raised and Dr. Doddridge, in 53 ; Hottinger, in 54, Lord Barrington, by the unbelieving Jews against Saint Paul, and those who Drs. Benson and Lardner, in 53'; Beausobre, Rosenmuller, adhered to his doctrines. and Dr. A. Clarke, in 52 or 53; Bishop Tomline, in 52. Such were the circumstances that occasioned Saint Paul Theodoret, who is followed by Dr. Lightfoot and some to write this Epistle with his own hand (Gal. vi. 11.), conothers, imagine that it was one of those Epistles which Saint trary to his usual practice of dictating his letters. Accordo Paul wrote from Romne during his first confinement ; but this ingly, its Scope is, to assert his apostolical character and opinion is contradicted by the apostle's silence concerning his authority, and the doctrine which he taught, and to confirm bonds, which he has often mentioned in the letters that are the Galatian churches in the faith of Christ, especially with known to have been written at that time.
It is evident that the Epistle to the Galatians was written respect to the important point of justification by faith alone; early, because he complains in it of their speedy apostasy them, by demonstrating to them the true nature and use of
expose the errors which had been disseminated among from his doctrine, (Gal. i. 6.), and warns them in the strong- the moral and ceremonial law; and to revive those priuest and most forcible terms against the judaizing teachers, ciples of Christianity which he had taught when he first who disturbed the peace of the churches in Syria and Asia preached the Gospel to them. Minor. (i. 7–9. iii. 1.) The warmth of the apostle's expressions led Tertullian to conclude that Saint Paul was him- three parts, víz.
V. The Epistle to the Galatians, therefore, consists of self a neophyte or novice in the Christian faith at the time of writing this Epistle. And as no intimation is given through Part I. The Introduction. (i, 1–5.) the whole of it that he had been with them more than once, Part II. The Discussion of the Subjects which had occasioned we are authorized to conclude, that he wrote this letter from this Epistle: in which Corinth about the end of 52, or early in the year 53. The Sect. 1. is a vindication of Saint Paul's apostolical doctrine subscription, indeed, states it to have been written from Rome: but this is evidently spurious, for Saint Paul's first
and authority, and shows that he was neither a missionary
from the church at Jerusalem, nor a disciple of the apostles, journey to Rome did not take place until at least ten years after the conversion of the Galatians.
but an immediate apostle of Christ himself, by divine reveIII. The genuineness of this Epistle was never doubted.
lation; consequently that he was in no respect inferior to It is cited by the apostolic fathers, Clement of Rome, Her
Saint Peter himself. (i. 6—24. ii.) mas, Ignatius, and Polycarp ;' and is declared to be authen- Sect. 2. The apostle disputes against the advocates for cirtic by Irenæus, 1o Clement of Alexandria, Tertullian,12 Caius, 13 cumcision and the observance of the law of Moses, and Origen,14 and by all subsequent writers. It is worthy of
$ i. That justification is by faith in Christ, and not by the works of the 1 Michaelis, vol. iv. p. 37.
Mosaic law. (iii, 1–18.) Dr. Hales's Chronology, vol. il. book il. p. 1123.
$ ii. That the design of God in giving the law was, not to justify but to : Calinet, Preface sur la seconde Epitre aux Corinthieng. Lardner's
convince of sin, as well as to restrain from the commission of il; and Works, 8vo. vol. vi. pp. 324, 325. ; 4to. vol. iii. p. 296. Rosenmüller, Scho. that being intended only for a temporary institution, instead of vacatlia in N. T. tom. iv. pp. 251, 252. ; Bloch, Chronotaxis Scriptorum Pauli, pp. ing the promise, it was designed to be subservient to it, by showing 192–203. : Hug's Introduction, vol. ii. Pp. 335–392 Michaelis, vol. iv. pp.
the necessity of a better righteousness than that of the law, and so to 3-75. Whitby's and Macknight's Prefaces to 2 Corinthians.
lead convinced souls to Christ; that, being jus.ified by faith in hiin, • Coinpare Gal. i. 8. 11. iii. i. et seq.
they might obtain the benefit of the promise. (iii. 19-24.) Such being Cont. Marcion, lib. i. c. 20.
the end and design of the law, the apostle infers froin it, that now, • Lardner's Works, 8vo. vol. ii. p. 37. ; 4to. vol. i. p. 298.
under the Gospel, we are freed froin the law (25-29.); and illustrates Ibid. 8vo. vol. ii. p. 57. ; 4to, vol. I. p. 309.
his inference by God's treatment of the Jewish church, which he • Ibid. 8vo. vol. ii. p. 76. ; 4to. vol. i. p. 319.
put under the law, as a father puts a minor under a guardian. (iv. • Ibid. 8vo. vol. ii. p. 95.; 4to. vol. i. p.
1-7.) 10 Ibid. 8vo. vol. ii. pp. 163, 164. ; 4to. vol. i. p. 368.
Secr. 3. shows the great weakness and folly of the Galatians 11 Ibid. 8vo. vol. ii. p. 223. ; 4to. vol. 1. p. 401. 15 Ibid. 8vo, vol. ii. p. 264. ; 4to. vol. i. p. 423.
in going about to subject themselves to the law, and that 13 Ibid. 8vo. vol. ii. p. 374. ; 4to. vol. I. p. 482 1. Ibid. 8vo. vol. il. p. 471. ; 40. vol. I. p. 535.
1 Epiphanius, Hæres. 42. VOL. II.
by submitting to circumcision they became subject to the whole law, and would forfeit the benefits of the covenant of
SECTION VII. grace. (iv. 8—21. v. 1—9.)
ON THE EPISTLE TO THE EPHESIANS. Sect. 4. contains various instructions and exhortations for
Christian behaviour, and particularly concerning a right (I. Account of the church at Ephesus.-II. Genuineness and use of their Christain freedom. (v. 10–16. vi. 1–10.)
authenticity of this Epistle, which was addressed to the Part III. The Conclusion, which is a Summary of the Topics Ephesians, and not to the church at Laodicea.—III. Date.
discussed in this Epistle, terminates with an Apostolical Bene- IV. Occasion and scope.-V. Synopsis of its contents. diction. (vi. 11—18.)
VI. Observations on its style. VI. Although the subject discussed in the Epistle to the 1. CHRISTIANITY was first planted in this city by Saint Paul, Galatians is the same that is treated in the Epistle to the Ro- about A. D. 54, when he reasoned with the Jews in their symans, viz. the doctrine of justification by faith olone, yet the nagogues for the space of three months; he did not, however, two Epistles differ materially in this respect. The Epistle to continue long there at that time, but hastened to keep the feast the Galatians (which was first written) was designed to prove at Jerusalem, promising
to return again to his hearers. (Acts against the Jews, that men are justified by faith without the xviii. 19–21.) Accordingly he came to Ephesus early the works of the law of Moses, which required perfect obedience following year (Acts xix. 1. et seq.), and preached the word to all its precepts, moral and ceremonial, under the penalty of with such success, and performed such extraordinary miracles the curse, from which the atonements and purifications pre- among them, that a numerous church was formed there, chiefly scribed by Moses had no power to deliver the sinner. On the composed of Gentile converts; whose piety and zeal were contrary, in his Epistle to the Romans, Saint Paul treats of so remarkable, that many of them, in abhorrence of the curious justification on a more enlarged plan; his design being to arts which they had used, burnt their magical books, to a great prove against both Jews and Gentiles, that neither the one nor value. (xix. 19.) And such was the apostle's concern for their the other can be justified meritoriously, by performing works spiritual welfare, that he did not leave them until A. D. 56, of law,—that is, the works enjoined by the law of God, when he had been about three years among them. (xx. 31.) which is written on men's hearts; but that all must be justi- After this he spent some time in Macedonia and Achaia; fied gratuitously by faith through the obedience of Christ. and on his return to Jerusalem (A. D. 57) he sent for the elders The two Epistles, therefore, taken together, form a complete of the Ephesian church to meet him at Miletus. There he proof, that justification is not to be obtained meritoriously, took an affectionate leave of them, as one that should see either by works of morality, or by rites and ceremonies, though them no more ; appealing to them with what fidelity he had of divine appointment; but that it is a free gift, proceeding discharged his ministry among them, and exhorting them to entirely from the mercy of God, to those who are qualified by " take heed unto themselves, and unto the flock” committed faith to receive it.2
to their care, lest they should be corrupted by seducing This Epistle is written with great energy and force of lan- teachers who would rise among them, and artfully endeavour guage, and at the same time affords a fine instance of Saint to pervert them. (xx. 17–38.) Paul's skill in managing an argument. The chief objection, II. The apostle Paul is universally admitted to be the author which the advocate or advocates for the Mosaic law had of the Epistle to the Ephesians. It is expressly cited as his urged against him, was, that he preached circumcision. In production by Ignatius, who has not fewer than seven disthe beginning of the Epistle he overturns this slander by a linct allusions to it ;6 and as he was contemporary with Saint statement of facts, without taking any express notice of it; Paul, his testimony alone is sufficient to determine its genubut at the end he fully refutes it, that he might leave a strong ineness. This Epistle is likewise alluded to by Polycarp,? and lasting impression upon their minds.
and is cited by name by Irenæus, Clement of Alexandria, Though the erroneous doctrines of the judaizing teacher Tertullian, io Origen," and by all subsequent writers without and his followers,
as well as the calumnies which they spread exception. Most of the ancient manuscripts, and all the anfor the purpose of discrediting him as an apostle, doubtless cient versions, have the words ev Epsow, " at Ephesus,” in the occasioned great uneasiness of mind to him and to the faith- first verse of this Epistle, which is an evident proof that the ful in that age, and did considerable injury among the Gala- Epistle was written to the Ephesians. But Grotius, Mill, tians, at least for some time: yet, ultimately, these evils Wetstein, Vitringa, Venema, Benson, Paley, and other learnhave proved of no small service to the church in general. ed men, have doubted or denied that this Epistle was written For, by obliging the apostle to produce the evidences of his to the Ephesians, and have argued that it must have been apostleship, and to relate the history of his life, especially written to the Laodiceans. They rest this opinion, first, on after his conversion, we have obtained the fullest assurance the assertion of Marcion, a heretic of the second century, that he really was an apostle, called to be an apostle by Jesus who affirmed the same thing, but his testimony is of no Christ himself, and acknowledged to be such by those who weight; for Marcion altered and interpolated the writings of were apostles before him; consequently, we are assured that the New Testament, to make them favourable to his sentiour faith in the doctrines of the Gospel as taught by him ments, and upon this very account he is censured by Tertul(and it is he who has taught the peculiar doctrines of the lian (A. D. 200), as setting up an interpolation of his own Gospel most fully) is not built on the credit of men, but on with regard to the Epistle in question, in opposition to the the authority of the Spirit of God, by whom Saint Paul was true testimony of the church. They further appeal to a inspired in the whole of the doctrine which he has delivered passage in Basil's second book against Eunomius, in which to the world.
he thus cites Eph. i. 1. “And writing to the Ephesians, as As this letter was directed to the churches of Galatia, Dr. truly united to him who is' through knowledge, he called Macknight is of opinion, that it was to be read publicly in them in a peculiar sense such who are,' saying; "to the them all. He thinks, that it was in the first instance sent saints who are' (or even) to the faithful in Christ Jesus.' by Titus to the brethren in Ancyra, the chief city of Galatia, For so those before us have transmitted it, and we have with an order to them to communicate it to the other churches, found it in ancient copies."'!3 From the concluding sentence in the same manner as the first Epistle to the Thessalonians of this quotation it is inferred that certain manuscripts, which was appointed to be read to all the brethren in that city, and Basil had seen, omitted the words ev Epuw," at Ephesus.” in the province of Macedonia.3
Michaelis, however, has shown at considerable length, that On the undesigned coincidences between this Epistle and the omission of the word cuor “ who are,” was the subject the Acts of the Apostles, see Dr. Paley's Horæ Paulinæ, of Basil's implied censure, as being hostile to the inference Chap. V. In critically studying this Epistle, much assist- he wished to deduce, and not the omission of the words a ance will be obtained from Dr. Bloomfield's Recensio Synop- Eperw. And, as this father, in ancther passage of his writings, tica, vol. vii. pp. 311—509.
Lardner, 8vo. vol. ii. p. 70.; 4to. vol. i. p. 316.
. Ibid. 8vo. vol. ii. p. 78. ; 4to. vol. i. p. 320. Compare, among other passages, Gal. iii. 2, 3.5. iv. 21. v. 144.
• Ibid. 8vo. vol. ii. p. 95. ; 4to. vol. i. p. 330. Dr. Macknight's Preface to the Epistle to the Galatians, sect. 3.
• Ibid. 8vo. vol. ii. p. 163.; 4to. vol. i. p. 368. 3 Ibid.
Ibid. 8vo. vol. ii. p. 223., 410. vol. i. p. 401. • Calmet, Preface sur l'Epitre aux Galates. Rosenmüller, Scholia in N. 10 Ibid. 8vo. vol. ii. pp. 263, 264. ; 4to. vol. i.
423. T. tom. iv. pp. 391–396.; Bloch, Chronotaxis Scriptorum Pauli, pp. 131- 11 Ibid. 8vo. vol. ii. p. 472. 4to. vol. i. p. 535. 159.; Lardner's Works, 8vo. vol. vi. pp. 305—314.; 4to. vol. iii. pp. 287– 13 Ibid. 8vo. vol. ii. pp. 263, 264.; 4to. vol. i. p. 423. 291.; Whitby's Preface; Hug': Introduction, vol. il. pp. 361-367.; Michae. 13 See the original passage in Lardner, 8vo. vol. iv. p. 401. ; 4to. vol. ï. p. lis. vol. iv. pp 22
466. ; or in Michaelis, vol. iv. pp. 142–146.
expressly cites the Epistle to the Ephesians' without any III. The subscription to this Epistle states, that it was hesitation, it is evident that in his uime (the latter part of written from Rome, and sent to the Ephesians by Tychicus, the fourth century) this Epistle was not considered as being who was also the bearer of the Epistle to the Colossians, addressed to the Laodiceans.
the similarity of which in style and subject shows that it was Thirdly, it is contended that there are no allusions in this written at the same time. That this Epistle was written Epistle to St. Paul's having resided among the persons to during Saint Paul's first imprisonment at Rome, is evident whom it is addressed ; and that the expressions in Eph. i. 15. from its allusions to his confinement (iii. 1. iv. 1. vi. 20.); iii. 2. and iv. 21. appear to be more suitable to persons whom and as he does not express in it any hopes of a speedy rehe had never seen (which was the case of the Christians at lease (which he does in his other Epistles sent from that Laodicea), than to the Ephesians, among whom he had re- city), we conclude with Dr. Lardner, Bishop Tomline, and sided about three years. (Acts xx. 31.) But these passages others, that it was written during the early part of Saint admit of easy and satisfactory interpretations, which directly Paul's imprisonment, and probably in the year 61, soon after refute this hypothesis. It will be recollected that four or five he arrived at Rome. years had elapsed since Saint Paul had quitted Ephesus : he IV. As Saint Paul was, in a peculiar manner, the apostle might, therefore, with great propriety, express (in i. 15.) his of the Gentiles, and was now a prisoner at Rome in concomplacency on hearing that they continued steadfast in the sequence of his having provoked the Jews, by asserting that faith, notwithstanding the various temptations to which they the observance of the Mosaic law was not necessary to obtain were exposed. Again, the expression in iji
. 2. (97€ nxcusute the favour of God, he was apprehensive lest advantage should THV OLXcVquiry) which many translate and understand to mean, be taken of his confinement to unsettle the minds of his if ye have heard of the dispensation,-more correctly means, Ephesian converts, who were almost wholly Gentiles. Hearsince
ye have heard the dispensation of the grace of God, which ing, however, that they stood firm in the faith of Christ, he had been made known to them by Saint Paul himself. Con- wrote this Epistle in order to establish them in that faith, and sequently this verse affords no countenance to the hypothesis to give them more exalted views of the love of God, and above mentioned. The same remark applies to iv. 21., where of the excellency and dignity of Christ; and at the same a similar construction occurs, which ought in like manner to time to fortify their minds against the scandal of the cross. be rendered, since indeed ye have heard him, &c. But most With this view, he shows them that they were saved by stress has been laid upon the direction given by Saint Paul grace; and that, however wretched they once were, now they in Col. iv. 16.—that the Colossians should cause the Epis- had equal privileges with the Jews. He then proceeds to tle which he wrote to them to be read also in the church of encourage them to persevere in their Christian calling, by the Laodiceans, and that they should likewise read the declaring with what steadfastness he suffered for the truth, Epistle from Laodicea ;"-whích (it is contended) affords a and with what earnestness he prayed for their establishment plain proof that the Epistle, in our copies inscribed to the and continuance in it; and urges them to walk in a manner Ephesians, must be that which is intended in Col. iv. 16., becoming their profession, in the faithful discharge both of and consequently was originally written to the Laodiceans the general and common duties of religion, and of the special But this conclusion does not necessarily follow : for it is duties of particular relations. most probable, that by “the Epistle from Laodicea,” Saint V. In this Epistle we may observe the following par. Paul meant the Epistle to the Ephesians, a copy of which ticulars, besides the inscription (i. 1, 2.); viz. was sent by the apostle's directions to the Laodiceans, whose Part I. The Doctrine pathetically expluined, which concity lay between Ephesus and Colosse; and, as it was
tuins, within the circuit of the Ephesian church (which was the metropolitan of all Asia, as Ephesus was the chief city of
Sect. 1. Praise to God for the whole Gospel-blessing (i. 3— proconsular Asia), the Epistle to the Ephesians, as already
14.), with thanksgiving and prayer for the saints. (i. 15– remarked, may refer to the whole province.
23. ii. 1-10.) Michaelis, Haenlein, Hug, and Cellérier, after Archbishop
Sect. 2. A more particular admonition concerning their once Usher and Bengel, get rid of all the difficulties attending this
wretched but now happy condition. (ii. 11–22.) question, by supposing the Epistle to have been encyclical or circular, and addressed to the Ephesians, Laodiceans, and Sect. 3. A prayer for their establishment. (iii.) some other churches in Asia Minor. But it could hardly be Part II. The Exhortation, circular in the sense in which Michaelis understands that term: for he supposes that the different copies transmitted Sect. 1. General, to walk worthy of their calling, agreeable to by Saint Paul had er Epew, at Ephesus, ev Adedinuz, at Laodicea, (1.) The unity of the Spirit, and the diversity of his gifts. (iv. 1-16.) &c. as occasion required, and that the reason why all our (2.) The difference between their former and present state. (iv. manuscripts read & Eqerw is, that when the books of the New 17-24.) Testament were first collected, the copy used was obtained Sect. 2. Particular, from Ephesus; but this, Bishop Middleton observes, seems to imply-what cannot be proved—that the canon was esta
(1.) To avoid lying, anger, theft, and other sins (iv. 25—31. v. 1-21.), with
a commendation of the opposite virtues. blished by authority, and that all copies of this Epistle, not (2.) To a faithful discharge of the relative duties of wives and husband.s agreeing with the approved edition, were suppressed.
(v. 22–23.), of children and parents (vi. 1-4.), and of masters and ser. Dr. Macknight is of opinion, that Saint Paul sent the
vants. (vi. 5–9.) Ephesians word by Tychicus, who carried their letter, to Sect. 3. Final.—To war the spiritual warfare. (vi. 10—20.) send a copy of it to the Laodiceans, with an order to them to communicate it to the Colossians. This hypothesis will Part III. The Conclusion. (vi. 21—21.) account, as well as that of Michaelis, for the want of those VI. The style of this Epistle is exceedingly animated, marks of personal acquaintance which the apostle's former and corresponds with the state of the apostle's mind at the residence might lead us to expect, and on which so much time of writing. Overjoyed with the account which their stress has been laid: for every thing local would be pur- messenger had bronght him of their faith and holiness (i. 15.), posely omitted in an Epistle wřich had a further destination. and transported with the consideration of the unsearchable
The reader will adopt which of these hypotheses he may wisdom of God, displayed in the work of man's redemption, deem the best supported : we think the solution last stated, and of his astonishing love towards the Gentiles in making the most natural and probable; and that, when the united them partakers, through faith, of all the benefits of Christ's testimonies of manuscripts, and all the fathers, with the ex- death, he soars high in his sentiments on these grand subception of Basil, are taken into consideration, we are fully jus-jects, and gives his thoughts utterance in sublime and copious tified in regarding this Epistle as written to the Ephesians.3 expressions. Many of them contain happy allusions to the · Lardner, 8vo. vol. iv. p. 404.; 4to. vol. ii. p. 467.
temple and statue of Diana at Ephesus. "No real Chris» See Vol.' I. p. 58.
tian," says Dr. Macknight, “ can read the doctrinal part of • Stosch, de Epistolis Apostolorum non deperditis, p. 101. et seqm Calmet, the Epistle to the Ephesians, without being impressed and spective Prolegomena to this epistle. Michaelis, vol. iv. pp. 128–146. roused by it, as by the sound of a trumpet." Lardner's Works, 8vo. vol. vi. pp. 416-456.; 4to. vol. iii. pp. 342–362. On the undesigned coincidences between this Epistie and Macknight on Col. iv. 16. Cellerier, Introd. au Nouv. Test. p. 423. Hug's the Acts of the Apostles, see Dr. Paley's Horæ Paulinæ, 508–518. (first edit.), who observes, that if ever there were an epistle from Chap. VI. Saint Paul to the Laodiceans, it is lost ; for that which is extant in Fabri- For a table of the corresponding passages in this Epistle, cius and in Mr. Jones's work on the canon (and of which we have given a and in that of the Colossians, see page 37. infra. translation in Appendix I to Vol. I. Sect. II.) is universally admitted to be a forgery; yet the loss of a canonical writing is of all suppositions the most improbable.
• Preface to Ephesians, sect. 6.
Christ; and to work out their own salvation with fear and
trembling, that he may rejoice in the day of Christ on their ON THE EPISTLE TO THE PHILIPPIANS.
account (i. 21—30. ii. 1–17.); and promises to send
Timothy and Epaphroditus, of whom he makes a very I. Account of the church at Philippi.-II. Date.—III. Occa
affectionate mention. (19–30.) sion.-IV. Scope and synopsis of its contents.
Sect. 3. He solemnly cautions them against judaizing teach
ers, who preached Christ through envy und strife. (iii. I. CHRISTIANITY was first planted at Philippi, in Mace- iv. 1.) donia, by Saint Paul, A. D. 50, the particulars of which are Secr. 4. After some admonitions to particular persons (iv. 2, related in Acts xvi. 9-10.; and it appears from Acts xx. 6. 3.), and some general exhortations to Christian cheerful. that he visited them again A. D. 57, though no particulars are ness, moderation, and prayer (4_7.), he proceeds to recomrecorded concerning that visit. Of all the churches planted mend virtue in the most extensive sense, mentioning all the by Saint Paul, that at Philippi seems to have cherished the different bases on which it had been placed by the Grecian most tender concern for him; and though it appears to have philosophers. (8, 9.) Towards the close of his Epistle, he been but a small community, yet its members were particu- makes his acknowledgments to the Philippians for their sealarly generous towards him. For when the Gospel was sonable and liberal supply, as it was a convincing proof of first preached in Macedonia, no other church contributed any their affection for him, and of their concern for the support thing to his support, except the Philippians; who, while he of the Gospel, which he preferred far before any secular was preaching at Thessalonica, the metropolis of that coun
interest of his own, expressly disclaiming all selfish mercetry, sent him money twice, that the success of the Gospel nary views, and assuring them, with a noble simplicity, that might not be hindered by its preachers becoming burden- he was able upon all occasions to accommodate his temper some to the Thessalonians. (Phil. iv. 15, 16.) The same
to his circumstances; and had learned, under the teachattention they showed to the apostle, and for the same rea
ings of divine grace, in whatever station Providence might son, while he preached the Gospel at Corinth. (2 Cor. xi. 9.)
see fit to place him, therewith to be content. (10—18.) And when they heard that Saint Paul was under confiné- After which the apostle, having encouraged them to expect ment at Rome, they manifested a similar affectionate con
a rich supply of all their wants from their God and Father, cern for him ; and sent Epaphroditus to him with a present, lest he should want necessaries during his imprisonment.
to whom he devoutly ascribes the honour of all (19.),
concludes with salutations from himself and his friends at (ii. 25. iv. 10. 14—18.), II. It appears from Saint Paul's own words, that this
Rome to the whole church, and a solemn benediction. Epistle was written while he was a prisoner at Rome (i. 7.
(21—23.) 13. iv. 22.); and from the expectation which he discovers,
It is remarkable that the Epistle to the church at Philippi of being soon released and restored to them, as well as from is the only one, of all Saint Paul's letters to the churches, in the intimations contained in this letter (i. 12. ii. 26.), that
he which not one censure is expressed or implied against any of had then been a considerable time at Rome, it is probable its members; but, on the contrary, sentiments of unqualithat he wrote the Epistle to the Philippians towards the close fied commendation and confidence pervade every part of this of his first imprisonment, at the end of A. D. 62, or perhaps Epistle. Its style is singularly animated, affectionate, and at the commencement of 63. The genuineness of this letter pleasing. was never questioned.
On the undesigned coincidences between this Epistle and III. The more immediate occasion of the Epistle to the the Acts of the Apostles, see Dr. Paley's Horæ Paulinæ, Philippians was the return of Epaphroditus, one of their pas- Chap. VII.3 tors, by whom Paul sent it, as a grateful acknowledgment of their kindness in sending him supplies of money. From the manner in which Paul expressed himself on this occasion, it appears that he was in great want of necessaries be
SECTION IX. fore their contributions arrived; for as he had not converted the Romans, he did not consider himself as entitled to receive
ON THE EPISTLE TO THE COLOSSIANS. supplies from them. Being a prisoner, he could not work as formerly; and it was his rule never to receive any thing I. Account of the church at Colosse.—II. Date.—III. Occa from the churches where factions had been raised against sion of this Epistle.—IV. Scope and analysis. him. It also appears that the Philippians were the only church from whom he received any assistance, and that he
I. By whom or at what time Christianity was planted at conferred this honour upon them, because they loved him ex- Colosse, we have no certain information. Dr. Lardner, ceedingly, had preserved the Christian doctrine in purity, and Bishop Tomline, Boehmer, and others, are of opinion that the had always conducted themselves as sincere Christians.
church at Colosse was founded by Paul; and they ground IV. The scope of this Epistle, therefore, is to confirm the this opinion principally on the following considerations; viz. Philippians in the faith, to encourage them to walk in a man. the cities of Colossa, Laodicea, and Hierapolis,—that he
That Paul' was twice in Phrygia, in which country were ner becoming the Gospel of Christ,
to caution them against does in effect say that he has dispensed the Gospel to the the intrusion of judaizing teachers, and to testify his gratitude Colossians (i. 21_25.),—and that it appears from the terms for their Christian bounty.
Accordingly, after a short introduction (i. 1, 2.), he pro- of affection and authority discoverable in this Epistle, that he ceeds,
did not address them as strangers, but as acquaintances,
friends, and converts. It is true that Paul was twice in Sect. 1. To express his gratitude to God for their continuing Phrygia, but he does not seem to have visited the three cities
steadfast in the faith, and prays that it may continue (i. 3— above mentioned; for his route lay considerably to the north11.); and, lest they should be discouraged by the tidings ward of them, from Cilicia and Derbe to Lystra, and thence of his imprisonment, he informs them that his sufferings through Phrygia and Galatia to Mysia and 'I'roas. (Acts xvi. and confinement, so far from impeding the progress of the 6.). Ånd in his second tour he also passed throughi Galatia Gospel, had “ rather fallen out to its furtherance ;” and and Phrygia to Ephesus and Troas (Acts xviii. 23.), and so assures them of his readiness to live or die, as should be through the upper parts, or northern districts, of Asia Minor. most for their welfare and the glory of God. (12—20.)? (xix. 1.) That Paul did not plant the church at Colossæ, is Sect. 2. He then exhorts them, in a strain of the most sublime and pathetic eloquence, to maintain a conduct worthy face sur l'Epitre aux Philippiens; Michaelis's Introduction, vol. iv. pp. 152
: Rosenmüller, Scholia in Nov. Test. tom. iv. pp. 472–475. ; Calmet, Preof the Gospel, and to the practice of mutual love and can- -100. Tug's Introduction, vol. ii. pp. 483-187 ; Lardner's Works, Svo. dour, enforced by the highest of all examples,-that of Jesus vol. vi. pp. 132-161.; Macknight's Preface to this epistle. But the
fullest view of the epistle to the Philippians will be found in Hoog's Specimen
Acadeinicum inaugurale de Coelus Christianorum Philippensis Conditione 1 M. Oeder, in a prograınma published in 1731, contended that this Epis- primævå, ex epistuli iis ab apostolo Paulo scriptâ, præcipuè dijudicanda. tle was written at a much earlier period at Corinth, and shortly after the Lugd. Bat. 1825. 8vo. planting of the church at Philippi: this hypothesis was examined and re- In Col. i. 2. instead of ev K5205745, at Colosse, the Alexandrian, Vati. luted by Wolfius in his Curæ Philologicæ, vol. iii. pp. 168. et seq. and 271. can, Codex Ephrem, and several other ancient manuscripts, read ev K.Arr. et seq. 'In 1799 the celebrated Professor Paulus published a programma, 4, at Colasse, or anong the Colassians. With them agree the Syriac, de Tempore scriptæ prioris ad Timotheum atque ad Philippenses
Epistolæ Coptie, and Sclavonic
versions, as well as Origen, Gregory of Nyssa, and Paulina; in which he endeavours
to show that it was written at Cæsarca; many other learned fathers; but as the coins of this city are stamped but his hypothesis has been refuted by Heinrichs in his notes on this Epistle. KOA OECHNOI, and AHMOE KOAOXEHNAN (Eckel, Doctrina Nummorum
2 Verses 15–18. are a parenthesis, though not so marked in any editions Veterum, part i. vol. iii. p. 98.), Colossæ appears to be the more correct or translations which we have seen.
evident from his own declaration in ii. 1. where he says that principalities or powers.—that he alone was the head of the neither the Colossians nor the Laodiceans had then“ seen church, and had reconciled men to the Father. (15—20.) The his f ce ia the flesh.” But though Paul had never been in inference from this description is evident, that Jesus was superior Colossæ when he wrote this Epistle, yet Christianity had to angels; that they were created beings, and ought not to be evidently been taught, and a church planted there. Rosen- worshipped. In verse 21. Paul returns from this digression to m ller is of opinion, that the Gospel was introduced into that the sentiments with which he had introduced it in the thirteenth ci:y by Epaphras. It is not improbable that Epaphras, who and fourteenth verses; and again expresses his joy, that the is mentioned in i. 7. iv. 12, 13., was one çf the earliest Colossians remained faithful to the Gospel, which was to be •eachers; but it does not necessarily follow that he was the preached to the Gentiles, without the restraints of the ceremonial person who first planted Christianity there. Indeed, it is law. From this view of the excellency of Christ's person, and not likely that the Colossians would send away the founder the riches of his grace, the apostle takes occasion to express the of their church while it was yet in an infant state. As it ap- cheerfulness with which he suffered in the cause of the Gospel, pears from Acts xix. 10. that, during Paul's residence at and his earnest solicitude to fulfil his ministry among them in Ephesus, many persons, both Jews and Greeks, came from the most successful manner; assuring them of his concern for various parts of Asia to hear the Gospel, Michaelis supposes them and for the other Christians in the neighbourhood, that that several Colossians, particularly Philemon, were of this number. He also thinks that Timothy might have taught they might be established in their adherence to the Christian them the Christian faith ; as Paul subjoins his name to his faith. (i. 21—29. ii. 1—7.) own (i. 1.), and throughout the first chapter speaks in their
II. Having given these general exhortations, he proceeds joint names, except where the subject relates to his own
directly to caution them against the vain and deceitful philosophy imprisonment, and where Timothy of course could not be of the new teachers, and their superstitious adherence to the law; included.
shows the superiority Christ to angels, and warns Christians 11. But though it is impossible now to ascertain the against worshipping them. He censures the observations of founder of the church at Colossæ, the Epistle itself furnishes Jewislı sabbaths and festivals, and cautions the Colossians against us with a guide to its date. In Col. iv. 3. the apostle alludes those corrupt additions which some were attempting to introduce, to his imprisonment, from which circumstance, as well as especially by rigours and superstitions of their own devising. from its close affinity to the Epistle addressed to the Ephe- (ii. 8—23.), To these doctrinal instructions succeed precepts sians, it is evident that it was written nearly at the same concerning the practical duties of life, especially the relative time. Accordingly most commentators and critics refer it to duties of husbands and wives, parents and children, servants and the year 62. Its genuineness was never disputed.
masters. (iii. iv. 1–6.) The Epistle concludes with matters 111. At the time of writing this Epistle, Paul was “an chiefly of a private nature, except the directions for reading it in ambassador in bonds," for maintaining the freedom of the the church of Laodicea, as well as in that of Colossæ. (iv. 7—18.) Gentile converts from all subjection to the law of Moses. For an illustration of iv. 16. see Vol. I. p. 58. Its immediate OCCASION was, some difficulties that had
Whoever, says Michaelis, would understand the Epistles arisen among the Colossians, in consequence of which they to the Ephesians and Colossians, must read them together, sent Epaphras to Rome, to acquaint the apostle with the The one is in most places a commentary on the other; the state of their affairs ; to which we may add the letter (Col. meaning of single passages in one Epistle, which, if coniv. 16.) sent to him by the Laodiceans, who seem to have sidered alone, might be variously interpreted, being deterwritten to him concerning the errors of the false teachers, and mined by the parallel passages in the other Epistle. Yet, to have asked his advice. Paul, therefore, replies in the though there is a great similarity, the Epistle to the Colospresent Epistle, which he sent to the Colossians as being sians contains many things which are not to be found in that the larger church, and also because the false teachers had to the Ephesians; especially in regard to the worship of probably caused greater disturbances among the Colossians; angels, and many single points, which appear to be Essene, but desired that they would send the same Epistle to the Lao- and might prevail at Colossæ. diceans, and ask them for a copy of their
letter to Paul, in The following Table exhibits the corresponding passages order that they might the better understand his answer.
of the Epistles to the Ephesians and Colossians. Who the false teachers were, is a point not satisfactorily
COLOSSIANS. EPHESIANS. COLOSSIANS. determined. Michaelis is of opinion that this Epistle was
CHAP. iv. 22-25. CHAP. iii. 9, 10. directed against the tenets and practices of the Essenes, of Caap. : 1 2. Chap. i. 1, 2.
i. 6, 7.
1. 21. ii.6. iii.8–16. which sect an account has been given in the early part of this
i. 19, 20, volume. But it is more probable that they were partly super
iii. 12, 13 stitious judaizing teachers, who diligently inculcated not
i. 22. iii. 10, 11. i. 16-18. only the Mosaic law, but also the absurd notions of the rabbins, and partial converts from Gentilism who blended Pla
v. 15, 16. tonic notions with the doctrines of the Gospel. It is well known that the Platonists entertained singular ideas concern- iii. 3, &c.
v. 21-23. vi. 1-9. iii. 18-25. iv. I. ing demons, whom they represented as carrying men's
vi. 21, 22. prayers to God, from whom they brought back the blessings supplicated; and the doctrines of the Jews concerning angels On the undesigned coincidences between this Epistle and were nearly the same as that of the Platonics concerning de- the Acts of the Apostles, see Dr. Paley's Horæ Paulinæ, mons. It appears from Col. ii. 16—23. that the false teach- Chap. VIII. ers inculcated the worship of angels, abstinence from animal food, the observance of the Jewish festivals, new moons and Sabbaths, the mortification of the body by long-continued
SECTION X. fastings, and, in short, the observance of the Mosaic ritual law, as absolutely necessary to salvation.
ON THE FIRST EPISTLE TO THE THESSALONIANS. IV. The Scope of the Epistle to the Colossians is, to show 1. Account of the Christian church there.-11. Genuineness that all hope of man's redemption is founded on Christ our Redeemer, in whom alone all complete fulness, perfections,
of this Epistle.—III. Its occasion and scope-Synopsis of and sufficiency, are centered: to caution the Colossians
its contents. against the insinuations of judaizing teachers, and also I. CHRISTIANITY was first planted at Thessalonica by against philosophical speculations and deceits, and human Saint Paul, A. D. 50, who formed a church, composed both traditions, as inconsistent with Christ and his fulness for our of Jews and Gentiles, but the latter were most numerous. salvation; and to excite the Colossians, by the most persua- (Acts xvii. 2—4.) The unbelieving Jews, however, having sive arguments, to a temper and conduct worthy of their stirred up a persecution against him and his company, they sacred character. The Epistle, therefore, consists of two were forced to flee to Beræa, and thence to Athens (xvii. 5 principal parts besides the introduction and conclusion. -15.), from which city he proceeded to Corinth. Being I. After a short inscription or introduction (i. 1, 2.) Paul
thus prevented from visiting the Thessalonians again as he begins with expressing great joy for the favourable character vEpitre : les Culossiens, Michaeli's Introd. vol. iv. pp. 116.–124.;
1 Boehmer, Isagoge in Epistolam ad Colossenses; Calmet, Preface sur which he had heard of them, and assures them that he daily Introd. vol. ii. pp 433-435. ; Macknight's Preface; Rosenniuller, Scholia, prayed for their further improvement. (3–14.) He then makes tom. iv. pp. 134--136. In instituting a collation
of these two epistles the a short digression in order to describe the dignity of Jesus Christ, student will find a very valuable help in M. Van Bemmelen's
Dissertatio who, he declares, created all things, whether thrones or dominions, collatis. 8vo. Lugd. Bat. 1903.
Exegetico-Critica de epistolas Pauli ad Ephesios et Colossenses inter se
1. 3, 4.
i. 19. ii. 1-5. ii. 12, 13.
i. 21, 25.
i. 26-29. iv. 2–4. ii. 12-15. iv. 16.
iv. 2-4. iv. 7-9.