Findlay Expositor Ephesians Commentary

THE EXPOSITOR’S BIBLE.

EDITED BY THE REV.
W. ROBERTSON NICOLL, M.A., LL.D.
Editor of “The Expositor,” etc.

THE EPISTLE TO THE EPHESIANS

BY THE REV. PROFESSOR
G. G. FINDLAY, B.A.
Headingley College, Leeds

London
HODDER AND STOUGHTON,
27, PATERNOSTER ROW


MDCCCXCVIII


[iii]

THE
EPISTLE TO THE EPHESIANS

BY THE REV. PROFESSOR
G. G. FINDLAY, B.A.
Headingley College, Leeds

THIRD EDITION

London
HODDER AND STOUGHTON,
27, PATERNOSTER ROW


MDCCCXCVIII


[iv]Printed by Hazell, Watson, & Viney, Ld., London and Aylesbury.


[v]

CONTENTS.

INTRODUCTION.
Chapter i. 1, 2.
CHAPTER I.
THE WRITER AND READERS.
PAGE
Contrast of Galatians and Ephesians—Pauline qualities of Ephesians: intellectual, historical, theological, spiritual, ethical—The Idea of the Church—The Person of Christ—Ephesians and Colossians—Style of Ephesians—Circular Hypothesis—Epistle from Laodicea—Designation of the Readers—Faithful Brethren 3
PRAISE AND PRAYER.
Chapter i. 3–19.
CHAPTER II.
THE ETERNAL PURPOSE.
The Apostle’s Hymn of Praise—Blessed be God!—Blessing spiritual, heavenly, Christian—In the Beginning the Election of Grace—The World and its Founder—Redemption embedded in Creation—God’s prescient Choice—Our Holiness His Purpose—Divine Adoption—Who are the Elect? 21
CHAPTER III.
THE BESTOWMENT OF GRACE.
[vi]Structure of the Paragraph—Grace an Experience—Christ the Beloved—Forgiveness and its Price—The Value of Forgiveness—Wisdom a Gift of Grace—The Gospel as an intellectual Force—God’s Will the Goal of human Thought—Sonship and Heritage—The Fulness of the Times—The Christian Inventory of the Universe—Reconciliation and Reconstitution—Gathering in and Gathering out 34
CHAPTER IV.
THE FINAL REDEMPTION.
Mutual Inheritance—Jewish and Gentile Heirs—Uses of the Seal—The Stamp of Sanctity—Promise fulfilled and to be fulfilled—Hearing and Believing—Salvation by the Truth—Salvation for the Gentiles—Faith and the Holy Spirit—The two Redemptions—The encumbered Property—The Earnest of our consummate Life 50
CHAPTER V.
FOR THE EYES OF THE HEART.
Thanksgiving for the Readers—The God of Christ, the Father of Glory—Christian Enlightenment—Seeing with the Heart—What is our Hope?—God’s Wealth in Men—The true Standard of Value—The Power of Christ’s Resurrection 65
THE DOCTRINE.
Chapter i. 20—iii. 13.
CHAPTER VI.
WHAT GOD WROUGHT IN THE CHRIST.
Prayer and Teaching—Historical Effect of Christ’s Resurrection—The Stages of His Exaltation—Christianity without Miracles—The efficient Cause of Christianity—The perfect Resurrection—The First-begotten out of the Dead—The Risen One, the Holy One—Resurrection and Ascension—Ascension to Rule—Christ and the Angels—Christ glorified God’s Gift to the Church—Christ [vii]the Fulness of God 81
CHAPTER VII.
FROM DEATH TO LIFE.
Raised with Christ—Sin is Death—Jesus Christ in a dead World—Alive in Body, dead in Spirit—Religious Difficulties—Antipathy to God—The Power of the Air—God’s Anger against Sinners—The Soul’s Awaking—Consciousness of God—Fellowship in Salvation 95
CHAPTER VIII.
SAVED FOR AN END.
Beginning and End of God’s Plan—Mercy, Love, Kindness, Grace and Gift—Not of Works—Boasting excluded—Evangelical Assurance—In the heavenly Places—Grace a Task-master—Creation and Redemption—The apostolic Church and the coming Times 109
CHAPTER IX.
THE FAR AND NEAR.
Wherefore remember!—Sudden and gradual Conversion—The Gentile World: Godless, hopeless, Christless—Away with the Atheists!—The double Pessimism—The Uncircumcision—Nigh in the Blood of Christ—Reunion in Guilt and in Pardon 120
CHAPTER X.
THE DOUBLE RECONCILIATION.
The Jewish War—The two Parties in the Church—The Jewish Enmity typical—The new Christian Humanity—The Church in the first Century and the nineteenth—Hindrances to Unity: external, internal—The Ground of Reconciliation—Enemies of God—The Atonement of the Cross—Moral Communism—Personal Faith—The Fraternization of Mankind 131
CHAPTER XI.
GOD’S TEMPLE IN HUMANITY.
[viii]The Divine Occupant—The Service of Man and of God—One Temple and many Buildings—The Variety of the apostolic Church—The primitive Catholicism—Church and Dissent—Union by Approximation—Our Lord’s Prayer for Unity—The apostolic Basis—The Builder Spirit—The sure Foundation Stone 143
CHAPTER XII.
THE SECRET OF THE AGES.
St Paul’s Style of Composition—Christ the Mystery of God—Christ in the Old Testament—The Exploration of Christ—The Portion of the Gentiles in Israel—The Organs of the new Revelation—The unique Office and Influence of the Apostle Paul 155
CHAPTER XIII.
EARTH TEACHING HEAVEN.
Christ the Bond of Angels and Men—Our Lord and theirs—Jesus of Nazareth the Lord of the Ages—The Reality of the Angels—Their Interest in the Church—The Peculiarity of the human Problem—The Docility of the heavenly Potentates—The angelic Standpoint—The Grandeur of Christianity inspires Courage 167
PRAYER AND PRAISE.
Chapter iii. 14–21.
CHAPTER XIV.
THE COMPREHENSION OF CHRIST.
Contents of St Paul’s Prayer—The Father of Angels and of Men—Strength of Spirit and of the Spirit—Christ abiding in the Heart—Christ and the Christ—Christ’s Claim on the Intellect—Neglect of Theology—Dimensions of God’s Building—Strength to grasp the Magnitude of Christianity—The true Broad Churchman 183
CHAPTER XV.
KNOWING THE UNKNOWABLE.
[ix]Knowledge in the Growth—Paul’s Study of the Love of Christ—Christ’s manifested Love—God’s Fulness our final Aim—The Fulness more than Love—Praise out-soaring Prayer—God’s Gifts beyond our Requests—The Divine Power immanent in Men—The Inspirer of Prayer its Fulfiller—The Union of the Church and Christ in God’s Praise—The eternal Glory 197
THE EXHORTATION.
ON CHURCH LIFE.
Chapter iv. 1–16.
CHAPTER XVI.
THE FUNDAMENTAL UNITIES.
The Prisoner in the Lord—The Foes of Church Peace: Low-mindedness, Ambition, Resentfulness—The Basis of Unity: sevenfold, threefold—One Body despite Divisions—One Spirit makes one Body—Unity of Life and Hope—One Lord in all Churches—Baptism a Sign of Christ’s Rule, the Seal of a corporate Life—The one God, and the many 213
CHAPTER XVII.
THE MEASURE OF THE GIFT OF CHRIST.
Unity in Diversities—Christ the Administrator—The Ascension of David and of David’s Son—Height and Breadth—The Giving of Jesus—Christ’s Descent and Ascent—The Warfare of Christ—The Spoils of His Victory—The Enlistment of His Prisoners—Apostles and Prophets, Evangelists and Pastors—Paul, Augustine, Luther, Knox, Wesley—The Demands of the Future—Individual Responsibility 227
CHAPTER XVIII.
THE GROWTH OF THE CHURCH.
The Aim of the Christian Ministry—A perfect Manhood—Sleight or Sport?—Junctures of Supply—Reunion in the [x]Knowledge of the Son of God—The Stature of Christ our Standard—The Dangers of Childishness—Speculative Error—Gnosticism and Agnosticism—Conditions of Safety—Church Organization—The Framework of the Body of Christ—Its Continuity of Tissue 244
ON CHRISTIAN MORALS.
Chapter iv. 17–v. 21.
CHAPTER XIX.
THE WALK OF THE GENTILES.
The old World and the old Man—Impotence of Gentile Reason—Science and Pessimism—Loss of the Life of God—Ignorance the Mother of Indevotion—Induration of Heart—Impudicity of Paganism 261
CHAPTER XX.
THE TWO HUMAN TYPES.
Defective Views of Christ amongst Paul’s Readers—The historical Jesus the true Christ—Paul and the Tradition of Jesus—Jesus the human Model—Nero a Type of the Pagan Order—The Fraud of Sin—The Growth and the Birth of the new Man—Righteousness and Holiness 275
CHAPTER XXI.
DISCARDED VICES.
The seven Gentile Sins—Truthfulness and the Truth—The Perils of Anger—The Antidote to Theft—Sinfulness of vain Speech—Malice and its Brood—Imitation of the Divine Love—Filthiness and Jesting—The golden Leprosy 290
CHAPTER XXII.
DOCTRINE AND ETHICS.
The Intrinsic and Experimental in Morals—Originality of Christian Ethics—Ethical Art and Science—Four Principles [xi]of Pauline Ethics—Personality and Morals—Ethical Character of Christ’s Forgiveness—Auguste Comte and the Gospel—The moral Import of the Resurrection—And of the Atonement 305
CHAPTER XXIII.
THE CHILDREN OF THE LIGHT.
Right the Fruit of Light—All Virtue from one Source—Unbelief and Immorality—Christian Goodness—The Way of Righteousness—Truth the Hall-mark of Sanctity—Verity and Veracity—Specialists in Virtue—Reproof of open and of hidden Sins—Manifestation and Transformation 321
CHAPTER XXIV.
THE NEW WINE OF THE SPIRIT.
Soberness and Excitement—The heedful Look—Evil Days for the Asian Christians—Wisdom to know God’s Will—Wine and social Pleasure—The Craving for Excitement—Fulness of the Spirit—The Rise of Christian Psalmody—The Music of the Heart—Enthusiasm and Order 336
ON FAMILY LIFE.
Chapter v. 22–vi. 9.
CHAPTER XXV.
CHRISTIAN MARRIAGE.
The Divine Character of Marriage—Religious Equality of the Sexes—The Glory of the Man—Women’s Rights—Christ’s undivided Headship—Masculine Selfishness—Greek Terms for Love—The Husband and the Priest—The double Self—Indelibility of Wedlock 353
CHAPTER XXVI.
CHRIST AND HIS BRIDE.
[xii]Marriage and the Doctrine of the Church—The Individual and the Church—The Glory of the vicarious Death—Christ the Sanctifier of His Church—The Signification of Baptism—The Water and the Word—The Bride made ready—The Church a Christocracy—Adam’s Wedding-song—The Church inherent in Christ 366
CHAPTER XXVII.
THE CHRISTIAN HOUSEHOLD.
Children in the Church—The initial Form of Duty—Commandment and Promise—Gentleness of fatherly Rule—Spoilt Children—The Lord’s Nurture—Greek and Roman Slaves—The Church and the Slaves—Christ a Pattern for Slaves—Servants of Society—Care, Honesty, Heartiness in Work—The heavenly Master’s Reward—Responsibility of the earthly Master 380
ON THE APPROACHING CONFLICT.
Chapter vi. 10–18.
CHAPTER XXVIII.
THE FOES OF THE CHURCH.
Henceforth be strong!—The two Panoplies—The Personality of Satan—The Devil and his Angels—Paul’s Demonology—The spiritual Combat—Interior Temptations—Persecution and Heresy—The Region of the Struggle—The Siege of the heavenly City 397
CHAPTER XXIX.
THE DIVINE PANOPLY.
The coming evil Day—Comparison with Revelation ii., iii.—The Girdle of Truth—The Breastplate of Righteousness—Shoes of Gospel Readiness—The great Shield of Faith—Fire-tipped Darts—The Helmet of Salvation—The [xiii]Spirit’s Sword—The Weapon of All-prayer 410
THE CONCLUSION.
Chapter vi. 19–24.
CHAPTER XXX.
REQUEST: COMMENDATION: BENEDICTION.
Paul’s Need of the Church’s Prayers—Christ’s Ambassador before the Emperor—Speaking the Word given—Good News for the Asian Churches—Character and Services of Tychicus—Peace to the Brethren—Love with Faith—Love toward Christ and Grace from God—The Love incorruptible 427
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