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riches of the spiritual blessing with which its members are blessed in heavenly places in Christ. 1
The first half of the epistle is thus for the most part a hymn of praise for the grace of God, manifested “according to His good pleasure which He purposed in him ” (i.e. Christ),-accompanied with the apostle's prayer for his readers that they may realise the glory of their calling: Hence it was Calvin's favourite epistle, as Galatians was of Luther.
In the second part the apostle descends by a swift and beautiful transition to the duties of common life, “I therefore, the prisoner in the Lord, beseech you to walk worthily of the calling wherewith ye were called.” 2 He thus introduces a series of practical exhortations, based on the ideal unity of the Church as the harmonious body of Christ, and embracing the various forms of social and domestic duty to which “the new man” is called in the ordinary relations of life. Finally there is a stirring call to put on the whole armour of God for the conflict with the powers of evil,—expressed in the language of a metaphor which may have been suggested to Paul by his military surroundings at Rome, and forming a passage of great force and beauty, which of itself would make this epistle a precious heritage of the Church.4
The catholic nature of this epistle shows that the apostle's education was well-nigh complete. The Saviour, whom he only knew at his conversion as the Risen One dwelling in another world, has become to him as an all-pervading Presence which may be realised even now
caution’; Ephesians is instruction passing into prayer, a Creed soaring into an impassioned Psalm” (Farrar). Findlay (The Epistles of Paul, p. 180) suggests that this amplitude of style which is a new feature in the apostle's manner as a writer" was due perhaps to the leisure of prison and the habit of meditation which it fostered"; and he points out that it is not altogether absent from Colossians (i. 9-11, 16-20, 27-29).
1 The word “spirit” or “spiritual and “the grace of God” occur, each of them, 13 times in this epistle; the expression “in Christ" (or equivalent) still more frequently; and the heavenlies” 5 times, this being emphatically the Epistle of the Ascension."
3 iv. 1-16 (church life); iv. 17 - v.21 (life in the world); v.22 — vi.9 (life_in the family).
2 iv. I.
4 vi. Io, seq.
in the sphere of common life, as the type of all affection and the centre of all authority, in the State and in the family as well as in the Church. During his residence at Rome, the seat of empire and the centre of the world's secular life, Paul learned, as he had never yet done, the meaning of the Saviour's prayer, “Thy kingdom come. Thy will be done on earth as it is in heaven.” 2
i Compare, for example, his view of marriage, the original and central relationship of human life, in this epistle (v. 22-33), and in 1 Cor. (xi.) written about five years before. "He had all along maintained the lawfulness of the matrimonial state : he had in certain cases asserted its expediency. But at the stage of the Roman captivity marriage has become to him not only in some cases expedient, but in every case sacramental.
It has become in Paul's sight the shadow and the type on earth of that which he regarded as the central fact of heaven,-the union between the Christ of love and the Church which He had purchased with His blood” (Matheson, Spiritual Development of St. Paul).
2°" His vision of divine truth at Corinth had partaken somewhat of the manner of Greece. Just as the Greek
beheld the divine influence only where he beheld the human beauty, so Paul in the Corinthian stage of his history had recognised the sacramental headship only where he saw the union of the ecclesiastical members. But when Paul reached Rome, he began to see after the manner of Rome. The kingdom of God to him took that form which the kingdom of Cæsar assumed to the Latin race—the form of a membership which was connected with all other memberships. . . . What the citizens of the empire beheld merely as a coin bearing the superscription of Cæsar was reflected to his gaze with the stamp and impress of the Son of man. Instead of contemplating, as in days of yore, the dissolution of its life, he began to contemplate the Christianising of its life.” (Matheson, ibid.)
THE PASTORAL EPISTLES.
and 2 Timothy and Titus are known as the Pastoral Epistles, because they relate chiefly to the qualifications and duties of office-bearers entrusted with the pastoral care of the Church.1
They are distinguished from all the other epistles of Paul by their want of historical agreement with any period in the life of the apostle as recorded in the Book of Acts, and also by their strongly-marked individuality alike in style and substance. Hence their genuineness has been more called in question than any of the other epistles of Paul ? — notwithstanding a large amount of external testimony in their favour.4
i The name is less applicable, how- mon problem which must be dealt with ever, to 2 Timothy, which turns largely as a whole, although there are still some on the personal relations between St. comparatively recent writers (Bleek, Paul and Timothy.
Reuss, Ewald, Renan, Hausrath) that 2 Ingenious attempts have been made reject 1 Timothy, but are disposed to by Wieseler and others to find a place admit the genuineness of 2 Timothy, or for them in the period embraced by the even of 2 Timothy and Titus, in whole Book of Acts, but without success. or in part. “Some passages of these
3 The question was raised by Schmidt letters," says Renan (who dates them (1804), followed by Schleiermacher about 100 A.D.), “are so beautiful that (1807), who admitted the genuineness of one may well ask whether the forger 2 Timothy and Titus, but pronounced had not in his hands some authentic 1 Timothy to be a forgery. A little notes of Paul which he fitted into his later all three epistles were rejected by apocryphal composition.”
" You can Eichhorn and De Wette.
perceive the influence of Paul: a sort of Baur opened his assault on the New sobriety in mysticism: and amid the Testament by his treatise on “the so- strangest excesses of faith in the supercalled Pastoral Epistles of the Apostle natural a great fund of rectitude and Paul,” in which he assigned them to the sincerity.” Among English writers middle of the second century, as occa- excellent statements for the defence have sioned by the heresies of Marcion, which been furnished by Dr. Salmon, Canon they were intended to
counteract. Farrar, Dr. Wace (Speaker's CommenMore recently this opinion has been tary), Rev. G. G. Findlay (in Sabatier's maintained by Holzmann, Hilgenfeld, “The Apostle Paul"), Dr. Dodds and and Pfleiderer; but the general ten- others. dency, even among negative critics, has 4 There are several echoes, more or been to concede an earlier date. It has less distinct, in Clement of Rome and also come to be generally acknowledged Ignatius; and in Polycarp the resemthat the three epistles present one com- blances to passages in 1 and 2 Timothy
The objections taken to them, however, on these grounds are almost entirely obviated if we suppose them to have been written subsequently to the events narrated in the Book of Acts. This is a supposition that in itself involves no improbability. It was Paul's own expectation that he would be released from the imprisonment in which the Book of Acts leaves him; and for this expectation he seems to have had sufficient grounds in the inadequacy of the evidence brought against him, as well as in the tolerant attitude of the Roman Government previous to the great fire in Rome (64 A.D.), which was
alsely attributed to the Christians and brought terrible persecutions in its train. Moreover, there is an early and general tradition to the effect that he was released. 3 Assuming that his liberation did take place, the difficulty of harmonising the epistles with his life disappears; while
are too marked to have been due to accident. This indirect evidence of Polycarp is confirmed by the express testimony of his disciple Irenæus, who attributes all three epistles to Paul; and their testimony is the more valuable, because both writers were well acquainted with Ephesus, where Timothy was stationed when he received the two epistles that bear his name. There are also apparent quotations from one or more of the epistles in Justin
Martyr, Athenagoras, the letter of the Churches of Vienne and Lyons, and Theophilus —the last named quoting 1 Tim. ii. 1, 2, as "the Divine word.” The three epistles are also found in the oldest Versions and the Muratorian Canon, and were considered genuine by the Church Fathers who wrote at the close of the second century. It is true that they were rejected by Marcion and Basilides, and, in part, by Tatian; but this, as Clement of Alexandria and Jerome tell us, was owing to the difficulty these heretics had in reconciling the teaching of the epistles with their peculiar tenets. Even such a hostile critic as Dr. S. Davidson admits that “the early heretical opposition to the epistles seems to have been prompted by doctrinal prepossessions, and cannot overbalance other testimonies."
1 Philippians ii. 24 : “but I trust in the Lord that I myself also shall come
shortly.” Philemon, ver. 22:
2 If Paul's trial had resulted in conviction and punishment, it would have formed a precedent which must have been followed in other cases for a considerable time previous to 64 A.D.-all the more so because he was a Roman citizen. But this is inconsistent with the statements of Tacitus.-Prof. Ramsay, Expositor, July 1893.
3 Our earliest informant is Clement of Rome (i. 5), who speaks of the apostle as “having taught righteousness unto the whole world and having reached the boundary of the West" (ÉTT το τέρμα της δύσεως ελθών). Lightfoot interprets this latter clause, coming from the pen of one resident in Rome, as referring to “the western extremity of Spain, the pillars of Hercules,” which is also the view taken by Gebhardt and Harnack. It finds important confirmation in the Muratorian Fragment, where Luke is stated to have omitted, in the Book of Acts, the departure of Paul from the city when setting out for Spain" (profectionem Pauli ab urbe ad Spaniam proficiscentis), because he confined himself to what fell under his own observation. Eusebius, a century or two later, mentions that St. Paul, “after having defended himself, is said
the late date of their composition possibly some years after his release—would go far to account for the peculiarity of their contents. It is no wonder that questions of discipline and government as well as of orthodoxy should now receive from the apostle a larger measure of attention than they had done hitherto, considering the growing needs of the Church arising from the gradual expansion of its organisations as a corporate body held together by a common creed. The Church had now been for many years a visible institution ith office-bearers of its own ; and important doctrines had been vindicated and established. To conserve these doctrines and to provide for the regular superintendence of the Church after he and the other apostles had passed away, was Paul's great object in writing these epistles.
The large infusion of new words in these epistles has been represented as a mark of spuriousness. But on the whole their introduction is only in accordance with the gradual expansion of the apostle's vocabulary, which is evident on a comparison of his successive writings;? and, in particular, many of these words are new simply because the things they signify had not previously come within the
to have set forth again upon the ministry of preaching, and to have entered the same city a second time, and to have there ended his life by martyrdom.”. In the face of these statements, accepted by many subsequent writers, it is surely too much for Dr. S. Davidson to say that Paul's release is “historically baseless." But even this is not sufficient for his purpose; he would require to show that it is historically false. Otherwise it is a legitimate hypothesis in the case for the defence.
1 Among other interesting computations, Findlay mentions that "in the two Thessalonian epistles, forming the first group of Paul's writings, there is an average of five hapax-legomena (i.e. words not elsewhere used in the New Testament) to the chapter ; in Romans, of the second group, the average is nearly seven ; in Ephesians and Colossians taken together, eight; in Philippians, a little later,-although the subject matter is of so general a purport--the figure
reaches ten. It is not surprising, therefore, that the Pastorals furnish thirteen hapax-legomena to the chapter, especially when it is considered that this is the last group of the four, and that if later writings from the same hand had been extant, the list of its peculiarities would in all likelihood have been reduced.” Moreover, there are special links of connection between the Pastoral Epistles and the immediately preceding group of the Imprisonment. As regards expression, compare e.g. 2 Tim. iv. 6-8 : “For I am already being offered, and the time of my departure is come. I have fought the good fight, I have finished the course, I have kept the faith : henceforth there is laid up for me the crown of righteousness, which the Lord, the righteous judge, shall give to me at that day," with Phil. i. 23: “having the desire to depart" ; i. 30: "the same conflict which ye saw in me"; ii. 17: “Yea, and if I am offered upon the sacrifice and service of your faith, I joy,