Talk:Epistle to the Ephesians

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Looking to Revamp this article[edit]

I am looking to revamp this page with more scholarship and would like help if anyone is able. Leave me a note if you are able to help coldfire136

Quite a lot has been added since you posted your note. A Georgian (talk) 15:21, 5 August 2008 (UTC)

NPOV - Authorship[edit]

The section on Authorship I think is quite unbalanced, failing to present a NPOV. It is pretty inconceivable that Paul could have written both Collossians and Ephesians at the same time but yet have such a marked difference in Theology. Furthermore the language used by the author, referring to a Universal 'Church' ekkleisia, is unlike him. Reference to the ascension and the descension actually make it seem more akin to Luke than Paul, as well as the fact that 25 of the 40 words in Ephesians not found elsewhere in the Pauline corpus are found in Luke. Also, reference to "Holy Apostles and Prophets" found in Luke and Revelation, while Paul certainly did not think of himself as holy, being otherwise quite modest. Problem with calling the Holy Apostles and Prophets the foundation of the Church, going directly against 1 Cor, where Jesus is the only Foundation of the Church...

Anyway, the arguments are extensive against Pauline authorship. I think the argument against Pauline authorship be strengthened on this page. Perhaps also there should be a bit on other hypotheses - such as Onesimus, bishop of Ephesus as suggested by Goodspeed, or Tychicus as suggested by Mitton. Or even the writer of Luke-Acts as suggested by Martin? --Chopz 17:50, 1 March 2007 (UTC)

I should just add, I think the hypothesis of a "round robin" is incredibly unlikely. As has been recognised by numerous scholars, in the days before printing writing was a laborious process. I think a more likely defense of Pauline authorship would be evidence (such as by Coutts) that Colossians is dependent on Ephesians. The argument that the letter was sent to the Laodiceans falls down simply because it stems from the reference to a letter in Col 4, sent to Laodicea, a larger neighbouring town to Colossae, as noted by Marcion. One can just as easily argue that the Ephesian letter is genuine because of the letter mentioned in 2 Timothy 4:12, which Tertulian saw to be the Ephesian letter. So either way that argument doesn't hold.

I cannot currently properly reference all the material so I cannot edit the article myself - I can though draw upon the article. When I can I will edit that section. Any Thoughts? Chopz 18:01, 1 March 2007 (UTC)

I am not an NT scholar, but certainly my impression from an undergrad introduction (including my textbook,

Norman Perrin's The New Testament, an introduction), the books and papers that I've read, and a look in top hits on Google and Google Scholar with the search {ephesians pauline OR deutero} indicate that Ephesians is widely accepted to be deutero-Pauline (ie, not written by Paul of Tarsus). The churches the apostles left behind, by conservative scholar Raymond E. Brown, asserts that "about 80% [of critical scholarship judges] that he [Paul] did not write Ephesians". It seems this page is far from NPOV, or at least, very far indeed from representing the field. Mikalra (talk) 20:47, 1 January 2010 (UTC)

Thanks, Mikalra, for your attentiveness to the authorship issue, and for taking the time to research the matter. I agree with your assessment and have included your research. Best to you in your studies! Afaprof01 (talk) 04:04, 2 January 2010 (UTC)

Sir, I am upset about the way that you put accross the view of non Pauline authorship, and even describe the possibility of Pauline authorship as being plagued with "insurmountable difficulties". The true picture is quite the reverse! The person who argues about words used by Paul and Luke misses the point that for many years Luke and Paul were best of friends and close travelling companions. Their use of language would not be as different as supposed. A non Pauline author would have to write, in the first person, pretending to be Paul, chained up in Rome because of his ministry as apostle to the Gentiles, without further explanation, at a time when all of the churches knew Paul to be dead! Can you imagine such a lying text being accepted as Canon? I cannot! As for differences in theology betweeen Colossians and Ephesians, this really is the stuff of nonsense, with whole sections being virtually identical, it is reasonable to suppose that Paul dictated them both to different amenuensis at approx. the same time. The personal greetings given in Ephesians, its theology and its pastoral prayers, are entirely Pauline. If 80% of scholars disagree then 80% of scholars are not worth their bursaries. In view of my concerns, might it be possible to add some balance to this article's introduction, please? —Preceding unsigned comment added by Mathew Bartlett (talkcontribs) 09:32, 7 August 2010 (UTC)

I'd also like to point out that with Wikipedia's summary style, the introduction is supposed to summarize the content of the article. Instead, that majority of the introduction is dedicated with emphasizing a particular POV regarding authorship (aparently widely-accepted, but POV nonetheless). Whether or not those statements are accurate is not the point though, most of that belongs in the Authorship section, leaving a brief mention in the introduction to lead into the section. A reader interested in authorship will pursue the more detailed Pauline authorship article, the average reader is more likely wanting a more well-rounded summary of all aspects of this topic. --Kraftlos (Talk | Contrib) 19:17, 25 April 2011 (UTC)
Hmmm.... the mobile version makes the introduction look a lot longer. On second thought, we could just add more summary from the rest of the article to balance it a bit. Like I said before, it's too focused on the authorship issues without addressing what the epistle actually talks about and its cultural and religious impact. --Kraftlos (Talk | Contrib) 05:39, 26 April 2011 (UTC)
Sorry to say but Chopz's emphasis on a "marked difference in theology" from Colossians is an overstatement. There's practically nothing aside from a couple of words and phrases such as "mysterion" "ekklesia" (aren't we all tired of that one being brought up), and phrases such as Eph. 3:5 and 2:20f., which I think are adequately explained by some of the links defending authorship. Please don't overstate your case with empty words. Cornelius (talk) 19:49, 21 September 2011 (UTC)


I removed the following:

The Epistle to Ephesians is important as it outlines the role of marriage in Christian life. A central passage is the following: Wives, submit to your own husbands, as to the Lord. For the husband is head of the wife, as also Christ is head of the church. (Ephesians 5:22-24.) This serves as a spirtual basis for the the concept of a Christian wife.

I have the following objections to the above:

  1. This is not a unique significance of the book of Ephesians. This is stated almost identically in Colossians 3:18. 1 Corinthians 11:3 is also somewhat similar.
  2. The author failed to properly explain the Scriptural relationship between husband and wife. Instead, a tiny portion of Scripture was quoted out of context. The section of Scripture in which this appears speaks of several commonplace relationships and shows the ways in which BOTH parties in the relationship ought to submit. That is why it begins with the general statement "be subject to one another in the fear of Christ" (5:21).
  3. A proper explanation of this relationship would require it's own article which, IMHO, has no place in an encyclopedia. If it does have a place then it is not in an article on the Epistle to the Ephesians or an article entitled "Christian Wife" (surely THAT is not an article title we need in wikipedia?). Perhaps there is an article, or group of articles, on marriage in wikipedia. This would be a much more appropriate place for this discussion.
  4. The author failed to fit this section in with the flow and organization of the article and instead simply inserted it at the top. If it couldn't be properly merged it should at least have been inserted in its own section at the bottom.

-- kpearce

Agreed. This passage was handled badly and should have been removed the way it was. However, the ideas contained in this particular passage, while not totally unique to Ephesians, are an important part of the book and provide the basis for many sermons and scriptural teachings. On this basis, I believe it warrants its own section.

The passage is not about the concept of a "Christian Wife". This passage describes two relationships by comparing them: that between Husband and Wife and between Christ and the Church. On one level, it's a picture that is recurrant throughout the New Testament: that of Christ as a Bridegroom and the Church as His Bride. The Church should honor Christ with faithfulness, obedience and service. Christ listens to prayers, protects, guides and provides for the Church with an undying, selfless, self-sacrificing love.

On the other level, it's a picture of the ideal relationship between husband and wife. "For the husband is head of the wife, as also Christ is head of the Church." The husband's role in the marriage covenant is supposed to mirror Christ's love for the Church ie. listen to, protect, guide and provide for his wife with undying, selfless, self-sacrificing love. His wife should return this love with faithfulness, honor and the practical manifestations of obedience and service. These last two, because of the modern connotations, can cause controversy, but they do not mean that the wife is supposed to be submissive or subservient to the husband. In fact, the Book of Proverbs and many other sections of Scripture describe a "Godly Woman" or "Godly Wife" as strong, assertive, capable of conducting business, etc. "Obedience" is simply not subverting the Husband's authority as Head of the Family and "Service" means the little (and sometimes not so little) things/chores that one enjoys doing for the one they love.

It must also be said that while Christ is divine and ONLY capable of the love necessary to make this kind of relationship work, Man is obviously not. But it is a husbands duty as a Christian to strive for this type of love for his wife. And it is his wife's duty as a Christian to "obey" and "serve" only to the extent to which her husband's love and care resembles Christ's. That is to say, if a man is treating his wife disrespectfully, or leading her to do things that are detrimental to her health or spiritual well-being or, worse yet, physically harming her, he has strayed from the Biblical mandate to love her as Christ loves the Church and she is obviously not bound to obey. WilliamThweatt 02:12, 7 February 2006 (UTC)

NPOV dispute[edit]

User:CheeseDreams added the NPOV disclaimer to this article, which says "Please see its talk page." The edit summary was "If collossians is one of the disputed texts and ephesians isn't then the description of ephesians being the copy from collossians isn't NPOV" I'm afraid I don't follow. What part of the article is disputed? Quadell (talk) (help)[[]] 01:19, Dec 8, 2004 (UTC)


It seems like theology is a rather awkward title for the section on wives submitting to husbands. Would not ethics be a better word? —Preceding unsigned comment added by (talk) 05:35, 16 January 2008 (UTC)

TfD nomination of Template:Bibleref[edit]

Template:Bibleref has been nominated for deletion. You are invited to comment on the discussion at the template's entry on the Templates for Deletion page. Thank you. Jon513 19:28, 17 May 2006 (UTC)

Adding new links[edit]

I would like to suggest a link be added to this site: Ephesians Reading Room Tyndale Seminary Neufast (talk) 11:19, 24 March 2009 (UTC)

May I suggest the following links to be added to the site: - Expository Messages on Ephesians by Ray Stedman This is a very good sermons by Ray Stedman containing both text (PDF files) and audio version (MP3). - Piercing Words Ephesian Performance Part I Youtube video - Piercing Words Ephesian Performance Part II Youtube video This is a very good performance with Ephesians as the text.

Danny Sutanto —Preceding unsigned comment added by Eesutant (talkcontribs) 08:09, 27 March 2008 (UTC)

Ephesus as Original Audience[edit]

It is quite likely that a letter written with a primary audience of Asia Minor would have first traveled through Ephesus, it being a primary port into Asia Minor. While some early manuscripts do not specifically refer to Ephesus, one can assume that any letter from Rome would first travel to Ephesus be read there and then commence its travels through Asia Minor. It is also likely that the letter would have been addressed to them in practicality, if not doctrinal necessity, as a first stop in its travels throughout the Church world. The possibility that the letter was not first addressed to the Ephesians is overshadowed by the probability that they were the first congregation in Asia Minor to see the letter. A quick review of any Asia Minor map of the first century will collaborate this information and make this a very distinct possibility. —Preceding unsigned comment added by (talk) 19:40, 13 April 2011 (UTC)


How come the picture in the infobox is from Corinthians, and not Ephesians? The P46 includes Ephesians, so can we get a more appropriate image? Graeme Bartlett (talk) 05:35, 9 June 2012 (UTC)

That's not an infobox - it's a template: Template:Books of the New Testament. StAnselm (talk) 06:10, 9 June 2012 (UTC)
I suppose you are right about that. Perhaps we need an infobox then. Or would people find it too hard to agree on one word facts that could be placed there? Graeme Bartlett (talk) 08:22, 9 June 2012 (UTC)