Page:An Exposition of the Old and New Testament (1828) vol 6.djvu/544

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and uprightness in religion. We need desire no more to make us happy than the grace of our Lord Jesus Christ. This the apostle begs for these Christians, and therein shews us what we are chiefly concerned to obtain ; and, both for their and our encourage ment to hope for it, he adds his amen.







Completed by Mr. Roswell.

SOME think that this epistle to the Ephesians was a circular letter sent to several churches ; and that the copy directed to the Ephesians, happened to be taken into the canon, and so it came to bear that par- ticular inscription. And they have been induced the rather to think this, because it is the only one of all St. Paul's e])istles, tliat has nothing in it peculiarly adajited to the state or case of that particulai church ; but it has much of common concernment to all Christians ; and especially to all who, having been Gentiles in times past, were converted to Christianity. But then it may be observed, on i he other hand, that the epistle is expressly inscribed {ch. 1. 1.) to the saints 'which are at Jt/ihemis ; and in the close of it he tells them that he had sent Tychicus unto them, whom, in 2 Tim. 4. 12. he says, he had sent to Ephesus. It is an epistle that bears date out of a prison : and some have observed that what this apostle wrote when he was a y)risoner, had the greatest relish and savour in it of the things of God. When his ti-rbulations did abound, his consolations and experiences did much more abound. Whence we may obsei-e, that the afflictive exercises of God's fieofile, and particularly of his ministers, often tend to the advantage of others as ivell as to their own. 'i'he apostle's design is, to settle and establish the Ephesians in the truth ; and further to acquaint them with the mystery of the gospel, in order to it. In the foiTner part he represents the great priilege of the Ephesians, who, having been in time past idolatrous heathens, were now converted to Christianity, and rect'i'ed into covenant with God, which he illustrates from a view of their de])lorable state before their conversion, ch. 1 — 3. In the latter part (which we have in the 4th, 5th, and 6th chapters) he in- structs them in the principal duties of religion, both personal and relative; and exhorts ai.d quickens them to tiie faithful discharge of them. Zanchy observes, that we have here an epitome of the whole Christian doctrine, and of almost all the chief heads of divinity



(n this chapter, we liave, I. The introduction to the whole epistle, which is much the same as in others, v. I, 2. II. The apostlie's thank?frivin^s and praises to God for his in- estimable hh^ssin^s bestowed on the believing Ephesians, V. 3 . . 14. III. Mis earnest prayers to God in their behalf, V. 15.. 23. This great apostle was wont to abound in prayers and in thanksgivings to almighty God ; which he penerally so disposes and orders, that at the same time they carry with thnm and convey the great and important doctrines of the Christian relij?ion, and the most weighty instructions to all those who seriously peruse them.

1.PAUL, an apostle of Jesus Christ by X the will of God, to the saints which are at Ephesus, and to the faithful in Christ Jesus : 2, Grace he to you, and penre, from God our Father, and from the T.ord Jesus Christ. Here is, 1. The title S". Pan' takes to himsHf, a.s belonging to him — Paul, an (if<os'le rf.fri.vs Chri.'i', &c. He ix'ckoned it a great honuir to be employ m1