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This month’s Plus One is the Paideia Commentaries on the New Testament: Ephesians and Colossians. As Dr. Talbert notes in his introduction, Paul’s letters to the Ephesians and Colossians are strikingly similar. While some commentary series split these two books up into separate commentary volumes, Paideia does not:
In this commentary series, however, Ephesians and Colossians are treated together because of their similarities. Paul writes from prison in both (Eph 3:1; 4:1; 6:20; Col 4:3; 4:10; 4:18). Tychicus delivers both letters (Eph 6:21–22; Col 4:7–9). The style shared by the two letters is more elaborate than the rest of the canonical Pauline writings (numerous relative clauses and parallel expressions, genitival constructions, etc.). Their contents are similar, sometimes in the same order.
Extensive speculation has arisen to explain the similarities in content: was Ephesians dependent upon Colossians? Or vice versa? Or perhaps, as some have suggested, were both based on a third, non-extant manuscript? Regardless of your position, it is important to discuss these two letters in tandem. Dr. Talbert expertly navigates the various theories, both in presenting the various views, and arguing for a simple answer.
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