| || |The Berean Expositor
Volume 31 - Page 35 of 181 Index | Zoom | |
"Origen, who, as far as we know, was the first person who made the remark above
cited, recognizes the epistle as addressed to the Ephesians even when he is making the
remark, and comments upon it as such."
Regarding the reference to Marcion, Tertullian tells us that Marcion, the heretic,
desired to alter the title of the epistle so as to read "To the Laodiceans". This, however,
implies that the words "at Ephesus" were in use, otherwise they could not be "altered".
Tertullian adds:--"According to the verity of the church, we have this epistle address to
the Ephesians, and not to the Laodiceans".
The words "at Ephesus" are not found in the text of the Vatican Manuscript, but they
have been added in the margin by a later hand. The same is the case with the Sinaiticus,
and the words have been erased from one cursive manuscript.
Over against this entirely negative evidence we must place the following:
"(1) No copies now in existence have any other name than that of Ephesus; and all
the extant manuscripts, including the Vatican Manuscript, which have any title prefixed
to the Epistle, exhibit the words `To the Ephesians'.
(2) That all the extant manuscripts, except those just mentioned, have the words
`at Ephesus' in verse 1.
(3) That the ancient church universally received this epistle as addressed to the
"That this epistle was sent to the Church at Ephesus, we are assured by the testimony
of all catholic Christians of all past ages. This we can now say with confidence, having
examined the principal Christian writers of the first ages, to the beginning of the twelfth
century; in all which space of time, there appears not one who had any doubt of it."
Ignatius, in a letter to the Ephesians, says:
"Ye are the companions in the mystery of the gospel of Paul the sanctified . . . . . who
throughout all his epistle, makes mention of you in Christ."
This epistle of Ignatius was written in the 10th of Trajan, according to Bishop Pearson,
and if so, there are only forty-five years between the writing of Paul and Ignatius.
When we read in Eph. 6: 21, 22, that the Apostle intended sending Tychicus to make
known all things to them concerning himself, one wonders to whom Tychicus would
have gone, had the letter been unaddressed.
The truth of the matter seems to be that the epistle was originally addressed to
Ephesus, but that copies of it were circulated among the churches, and that in some few
of these copies a space had been left so that the name might be filled in. The matter is of