Here’s another fine, helpful, conservative volume in the Evangelical Exegetical Commentary (EEC) series published by Lexham Press, this time on Ephesians by S. M. Baugh. It dives deep into the scholarly issues while retaining readability. Along with the other volumes released so far in this series, this book encourages you to believe that this series when complete will be a major asset and will live up to both the “evangelical” and “exegetical” labels.
Mr. Baugh begins the Introduction by discussing the authorship of Ephesians. He explains that no one doubted Paul as the author until the mid-19th century. He provides a listing of the five main issues that critical scholars use to attack the authorship of Paul. The fifth issue (“the Greek style of Ephesians versus the other Pauline Epistles”) is one where he will make an in-depth, scholarly contribution to the discussion. His explanation of the Greek style in Ephesians might be more than some pastors will care to get into but they must appreciate its erudition that will be hard for critical scholars to dodge. That discussion makes up the bulk of the Introduction.
He also discusses the date and place of writing, the occasion of the letter, and recipients. His section on theological emphases is surprisingly short, and he also gives a thorough explanation of how he will explain Greek verbs and syntax in the commentary. His outline is followed by a select bibliography.
In the commentary proper, every passage is given an introduction, an outline, a rendering of the original text in Greek, textual notes, translation, detailed commentary, application and devotional implications, and a selected bibliography for the passage.
When I checked out some of the more controversial passages of Ephesians, such as the household code, I found him to be very cautious on his way to reaching conservative conclusions. His commentary work was still thoughtful, and I often caught myself saying “I hadn’t thought of that before”.
We have several outstanding commentaries on the Book of Ephesians available today – add this one to that category. As one of the most important New Testament letters, you will want at least a few of the great ones. I suggest you make this volume one of them.
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