You will find an introduction and outline of Ephesians, here.

A prayer from the Book of Common Worship, for your use before reading;

Blessed Lord, who caused all holy scriptures to be written for our learning: Grant us so to hear them, read, mark, learn, and inwardly digest them, that we may embrace and ever hold fast the blessed hope of everlasting life, which you have given us in our Saviour Jesus Christ. Amen.


I. The Gift: The Church as the Place of Reconciliation, Chapters 1-3

A. Salutation 1:1-2 Early manuscripts lack the phrase “in Ephesus” and read, “saints who are also faithful”.

B. Introductory Praise of God 1:3-14: Ephesians ( also 2 Corinthians and 1 Peter) begins with a benediction. This benediction has a typical three fold structure- blessing God (v3), recounting the reasons for the blessing with interspersed responses of praise. (v 6,12,14). The major themes of the letter are here as well, in a series of clauses and phrases.

verse 3, the blessings are heavenly.

verses 4-6 election in Christ

verses 7-12 God’s purpose and its consequences.

verses 13-14 the seal of the Spirit

C. Intercession, Theme, and Exposition 1:15-2:22 Now Paul moves into a passage of thanksgiving 1:15-23.

 verses 15-16 Thanksgiving

verses 17-19 Intercession

verses 20-23 the enthronement of Christ: God’s great power is revealed in the resurrection and enthronement of Christ.

What recurring images, words and phrase are there in chapter 1?

D. Paul’s Ministry and Intercession 3:1-21

Read More About It

Dahl, Nils Alstrup, Donald H. Juel “Ephesians” in HarperCollins Bible Commentary, rev. ed.James L Mays, ed. (New York: Society of Bible Literature) 2000.

Johnson, Luke Timothy, The Writings of the New Testament: An Interpretation, rev. ed. (Minneapolis:Fortress Press) 1999. Chapter 18 “The Letter to the Ephesians”.

Metzger, Bruce M. , William A. Beardslee, “Ephesians”  in The New Oxford Annotated Bible, Bruce M. Metzger, Roland E. Murphy eds. (New York: Oxford University Press) 1994.