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Peter's conduct imposed upon the Gentiles, and for which St Paul reproved him.

As to the part which the historian ascribes to St Peter, in the debate at Jerusalem, beside that it was a different question which was there agitated from that which produced the dispute at Antioch, there is nothing to hinder us from supposing that the dispute at Antioch was prior to the consultation at Jerusalem; or that Peter, in consequence of this rebuke, might have afterwards maintained firmer sentiments.

CHAPTER VI.

THE EPISTLE TO THE EPHESIANS.

No. I.

This epistle, and the Epistle to the Colossians, appear to have been transmitted to their respective churches by the same messenger : ‘But that ye also

may

know my affairs, and how I do, Tychicus, a beloved brother and faithful minister in the Lord, shall make known to you all things; whom I have sent unto you for the same purpose, that ye might know our affairs, and that he might comfort your hearts.' Ephes. chap. vi. 21, 22. . This text, if it do not expressly declare, clearly I think intimates, that the letter was sent by Tychicus. The words made use of in the Epistle to the Colossians are very similar to these, and afford the same implication that Tychicus, in conjunction with Onesimus, was the bearer of the letter to that church; “All my state shall Tychicus declare unto you, who is a beloved brother, and a faithful minister, and fellow servant in the Lord, whom I have sent unto you for the same purpose, that he might know your estate, and comfort your hearts; with Onesimus, a faithful and beloved brother, who is one of you: they shall make known unto you all things which are done here. Colos. chap. iv. 7–9. Both Epistles represent the writer as under imprisonment for the gospel; and both treat of the same gen

the

i One

eral subject. The epistle therefore to the Ephesians, and the Epistle to the Colossians, import to be two letters written by the same person, at, or nearly at, the same time, and

upon same subject, and to have been sent by the same messenger. Now, every thing in the sentiments, order, and diction of the two writings corresponds with what might be expected from this circumstance of identity or cognation in their original. The leading doctrine of both Epistles is the union of Jews and Gentiles under the Christian dispensation; and that doctrine in both is established by the same arguments, or, more properly speaking, illustrated by the same similitudes. * head, one body,' one new man,' one temple,' are in both Epistles the figures, under which the society of believers in Christ, and their common relation to him as such, is represented.f The ancient, and, as had been thought, the indelible distinction between Jew and Gentile, in both Epistles, is declared to be now abolished by his cross. Beside this consent in the general tenor of the two Epistles, and in the run also and warmth of thought with which they are composed, we may naturally expect, in letters produced under the circumstances, in which these appear to have been written, a closer resemblance of style and diction, than between other letters of the same person, but of distant dates, or between letters adapted to different occasions. In particular we may look for many of the same expressions, and sometimes for whole sentences being alike; since such expressions and sentences would be repeated in the second letter (whichever that was) as yet fresh in the author's mind from the writing of the first. This repetition occurs in the following examples : 1

* St Paul, I am apt to believe, has been sometimes accused of inconclusive reasoning, by our mistaking that for reasoning which was only intended for illustration. He is not to be read as a man, whose own persuasion of the truth of what he taught always; or solely

. depended upon the views under which he represents it in his writings. Taking for granted the certainty of his doctrine, as resting upon the revelation that had been imparted to him, he exhibits it frequently to the conception of his readers under images and allegories, in which if an analogy may be perceived, or even sometimes a poetic reseniblance be found, it is all perhaps that is required. | Ephes. i. 22,

Colos. i. 18. + Compare iv. 15, with ii. 19. ii. 15,

iii. 10, 11.
Ephes. ii. 14, 15, Colos. ii. 14.
Also

ii. 16,
with

i. 18-21.

ii. 7. # When verbal comparisons are relied upon, it becomes necessary to state the original; but that the English reader may be interrupted as little as may be, I shall in general do this in the note.

ii. 20,

Ephes. ch. i. 7. 'In whom we have redemption through his blood, the forgiveness of sins.**

Colos. ch. i. 14. “In whom we have redemption though his blood, the forgiveness of sins.'t

Beside the sameness of the words, it is further remarkable that the sentence is, in both places, preceded by the same introductory idea. In the Epistle to the Ephesians it is the beloved' (uzanneevoo); in that to the Colossians it is "his dear Son,' (uuou trus agaTHS AUTOU) 'in whom we have redemption. The sentence appears to have been suggested to the mind of the writer by the idea which had accompanied it before.

Ephes. ch. i. 10. All things both which are in heaven and which are in earth, even in him.' I

Colos. ch. i. 20. All things by him, whether they be things in earth, or things in heaven.'

This quotation is the more observable, because the connecting of things in earth with things in heaven is a very singular sentiment, and found no where else but in these two Epistles. The words also are introduced and followed by a train of thought nearly alike. They are introduced by describing the union, which Christ had effected, and they are followed by telling the Gentile churches that they were incorporated into it.

Ephes. ch. iii. 2. The dispensation of the grace of God, which is given me to you ward.'ll

Colos. ch. i. 25. “The dispensation of God, which is given to me for you.'T

Of these sentences it may likewise be observed, that the accompanying ideas are similar. In both places they are immediately preceded by the mention of his present sufferings; in both places they are immediately followed by the mention of the mystery which was the great subject of his preaching.

Ephes. ch. v. 19. In psalms and hymns and spiritual songs, singing and making melody in your heart to the Lord.'

* Ephes. ch. 1. 7. Ευ δεχομεν την απολυτρωσιν δια τα αιματος αυτε, την αφεσιν των παραπτωμάτων.

+ Colos. ch. 1. 14. Εν ο εχομεν την απολυτρωσιν δια σε αιματος αυτε, την ADEON Tay ápagricou. However

, it must be observed that in this latter text, many copies have not δια τα αιματος αυτε. .

+ Ephes. ch. 1. 10. Τα τε εν τοις έρανους και τα επι της γης, εν αυτω. s Colos. ch. i. 20.

Λι αυτ8, είτε τα επι της γης, είτε τα εν τοις 8ρανοίς. 11 Ephes. ch. iï. 2. Την οικονομίας της χαριτος τε Θες της δοθεισης μοι εις υμας. . | Colos, chai. 25. Την οικονομίας του Θεου, την δοθεισαν μιο εις υμας.

** Ephes. ch. ν. 19. Ψαλμους και υμνοις και ωδαις πνευματικαις, αφοντες και ψαλλοντες εν τη καρδια υμων τω Κυρίω. .

***

Colos. ch. iii. 16. 'In psalms and hymns and spiritual songs, singing with grace in your hearts to the Lord.'*

Ephes. ch. vi. 22. Whom I have sent unto you for the same purpose, that ye might know our affairs, and that he might comfort your hearts.'t

Colos. ch. iv. 8. Whom I have sent unto you for the same purpose, that he might know your estate, and comfort your hearts.'t

In these examples, we do not perceive a cento of phrases gathered from one composition, and strung together in the other ; but the occasional occurrence of the same expression to a mind a second time revolving the same ideas.

2. Whoever writes two letters, or two discourses, nearly upon the same subject, and at no great distance of time, but without any express recollection of what he had written before, will find himself repeating some sentences in the very order of the words, in which he had already used them; but he will more frequently find himself employing some principal terms, with the order inadvertently changed, or with the order disturbed by the intermixture of other words and phrases expressive of ideas rising up at the time; or in many instances repeating not single words, nor yet whole sentences, but parts and fragments of sentences. Of all these varieties the examination of our two Epistles will furnish plain examples: and I should reply upon this class of instances more than upon

the last ; because, although an impostor might transcribe into a forgery entire sentences and phrases, yet the dislocation of words, the partial recollection of phrases and sentences, the intermixture of new terms and new ideas with terms and ideas before used, which will appear in the examples that follow, and which are the natural properties of writings produced under the circumstances in which these Epistles are represented to have been composed—would not, I think, have occurred to the invention of a forger; nor, if they had occurred, would they have been so easily executed. This studied variation was a refinement in forgery which I believe did not exist; or, if

* Colos. ch. iii. 16. Ψαλμους και ύμνοις και οδαις πνευματικαίς, ν χαριτι αδoντες εν τη καρδια υμων τω Κυρίω. + Ephes. ch. vi. 22. “Ον επεμψα προς υμας εις αυτο τετο,

iva

γνωσε τα περί όμων, και πορακαλεση τας καρδιας υμων.

+ Colos. ch. iv. 8. “Ον επεμψα προς υμας εις αυτο τουτο, ένα γνω τα περι υμων, και παρακαλεση της καρδιας υμων. .

we can suppose it to have been practised in the instances adduced below, why, it may be asked, was not the same art exercised upon those which we have collected in the preceding class?

Ephes. ch. i. 19. ch. ii. 5. Towards us who believe according to the working of his mighty power, which he wrought in Christ, when he raised him from the dead (and set him at his own right hand, in the heavenly places, far above all principality, and power, and might, and dominion, and every name that is named, not only in this world, but in that which is to come. And hath put all things under his feet; and gave him to be the head over all things, to the church, which is his body, the fulness of all things, that filleth all in all): and you hath he quickened, who were dead in trespasses and sins (wherein in time past ye walked according to the course of this world, according to the prince of the power of the air, the spirit that now worketh in the children of disobedience; among whom also we had all our conversation, in times past, in the lusts of our flesh, fulfilling the desires of the flesh and of the mind, and were by nature the children of wrath, even as others. But God, who is rich in mercy, for his great love wherewith he loved us), even when we were dead in sins, hath quickened us together with Christ.**

Colos. ch. ii. 12, 13. Through the faith of the operation of God, who hath raised him from the dead, and you being dead in your sins and the uncircumcision of the flesh, hath he quickened together with him.'t

Out of the long quotation from the Ephesians, take away the parentheses, and

you

have left a sentence almost in terms the same as the short quotation from the Colossians. The resemblance is more visible in the original than in our translation ; for what is rendered in one place 'the working,' and in another the operation,' is the same Greek term eyepyesa; in one place it is, τους πισευοντας κατα την ενεργειαν : in the other, δια της πιςεως

Here therefore we have the same sentiment, and

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AUTOU EV

* Ephes. ch. 1. 19, 20 ; ii. 1, 5. Τους πιςευοντας κατα την ενερλειαν του κράτους της ισχυος αυτου, ήν ενηργησεν εν τω Χρισω, εγειρας αυτον εκ νεκρων και εκαθισεν εν δεξια

τοις επουρανιοιςκαι υμας οντας νεκρους τους παραπτωμασι και ταις αμαρτίαις-και οντας ήμας νεκρους τους παραπτωμασι, συνεζωοποιησε το Χρισω.

+ Colos. ch. ii. 12, 13. Δια της πιςεως της ενεργειας του Θεου του εγείραντος αυτον EX TW Vexemov.

Και υμας νεκρους όντας εν τοις παραπτωμασι και τη ακροβυσία της σαρκος υμων συναζωοποιησε συν αυτω. .

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