The book of Ephesians is an epistle that is found as the tenth book in the New Testament. The book is strongly believed to have been written by Apostle Paul, but has later been subject to contestations that it was written in the name of Paul by someone who was heavily influenced by Paul’s line of thought. This paper discusses the historical background of the epistle, themes in the book as well as the context in which it was written.
The major theme in the epistle is the church being represented as the body of Christ (Ehrman, 2000). As a result, Paul urges in many instances for the maintenance of the unity of the body through diverse challenging circumstances. This book gives insight into a truly Christian lifestyle and how it could be holy and pure.
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According to scholars, Paul may have written this letter while in a prison in Rome around 62 AD. This would be around the same time Paul also wrote to the Colossians since the two epistles bear a lot of resemblance. With regards to the purpose of the letter, it is notable that some scholars note that Paul was not specifically referring to the church at Ephesus when writing this letter. In fact, the letter was intended as a circular for many churches for their guidance. The impersonal nature of the letter shows that Paul may have written the letter to address various issues that the churches were facing during this time. One of the issues that were pertinent in the Ephesian church was the presence of a multicultural church, which brought about issues of disunity. The Pauline apostle, among other issues, deals with this issue as the main theme in his epistle.
Ehrman, B. D. (2000). The New Testament: A historical introduction to the early Christian writings. New York: Oxford University Press, USA.