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"Thielman's commentary is a major achievement. It is exegetically mature, finely argued, and delightfully written. It not only makes an outstanding contribution to the [BECNT] series, but it should also become a major voice in future discussions of Ephesians."--Lewis R. Donelson, Catholic Biblical Quarterly
Noted New Testament scholar Frank Thielman offers a substantive yet accessible commentary on Ephesians in this addition to the award-winning BECNT series. With extensive research and thoughtful chapter-by-chapter exegesis, this beautifully written commentary leads readers through all aspects of the book of Ephesians--sociological, historical, and theological--to help them better understand its meaning and relevance.

As with all BECNT volumes, Ephesians features the author's detailed interaction with the Greek text. This commentary admirably achieves the dual aims of the series--academic sophistication with pastoral sensitivity and accessibility--making it a useful tool for professors, students, and pastors. The acclaimed user-friendly design includes shaded chapter introductions summarizing the key themes of each thought unit.

About the Series: The Baker Exegetical Commentary on the New Testament (BECNT) series provides commentaries that blend scholarly depth with readability, exegetical detail with sensitivity to the whole, and attention to critical problems with theological relevance.


"Frank Thielman's commentary on Paul's Letter to the Ephesians is exemplary for pastors who seek solid information about the meaning of this letter to the Christians in western Asia Minor, for missionaries who seek guidance for the contextualization of the truth of the gospel in other cultures, for teachers in churches and professors at seminaries who want to survey older and recent interpretations of the Greek text, and for all who seek a deeper understanding of the gospel of Jesus Christ. The careful historical exegesis, judicious exegetical decisions, and consistent concern to highlight the theology of the text make this an indispensable commentary."--Eckhard J. Schnabel, Mary F. Rockefeller Distinguished Professor of New Testament, Gordon-Conwell Theological Seminary

"Thielman's Ephesians admirably combines the features that distinguish excellent commentaries on Scripture: breadth of research in both classical and contemporary writings, careful attention to the form and structure of the Greek text, clear writing, and appropriate theological and practical application. This commentary will join Hoehner and O'Brien as the first references on Ephesians to which I turn."--Douglas J. Moo, Kenneth T. Wessner Professor of New Testament , Wheaton College Graduate School

"Ephesians has been described as both the crown of Paul's Letters and a Waterloo for commentators. Calvin's favorite epistle, it joyfully celebrates the grace of God and the love of Christ in all their fullness. Thielman's commentary plumbs its depths and is a model of informed and lucid interpretation. Like its subject, it is rich and edifying and repays careful reading."--Brian S. Rosner, principal, Ridley College

"Thielman manages an extraordinary feat: a commentary that is thorough, historically astute, and written in engaging, conversational prose. Rarely does one come away from a commentary thinking that it was a delight to read, but Thielman pulls it off brilliantly. I do not concur with all of Thielman's conclusions, but I enthusiastically recommend his detailed work to pastors, students, and laity alike."--Lynn H. Cohick, provost, dean of academic affairs, and professor of New Testament, Northern Seminary

"Thielman's Ephesians commentary is an excellent example of how a high regard for the authority of Scripture can be combined with thorough historical, linguistic, scholarly work. Thielman takes seriously all the major challenges critical scholarship has marshaled in regard to the authorship and date of Ephesians, yet he argues convincingly that Paul has written this epistle to the Christians in Ephesus during his imprisonment in Rome. The strength of the commentary lies in the author's close attention to the text's structure, Greek style, and theological content. Teachers and students of the New Testament, as well as pastors and interested lay readers, will greatly benefit from this fine example of evangelical scholarship."--Peter Balla, Károli Gáspár University of the Reformed Church in Hungary

The Author

  1. Frank Thielman

    Frank Thielman

    Frank Thielman (PhD, Duke University) is Presbyterian Professor of Divinity at Beeson Divinity School, Samford University, in Birmingham, Alabama. He is the author of a number of books, including Philippians (NIVAC); Paul and the Law: A Contextual...

    Continue reading about Frank Thielman


"Like any good commentary, Thielman engages current scholarship. . . . But he doesn't lose sight of Paul's vision of God and his concern for the church. . . . Thielman is a clear and straightforward writer. For pastors, that should perk your attention. For sermon prep, we don't have to agree with every textual conclusion. But commentaries that can open up the text with clarity are the ones that usually stay open, while other reference materials pass through with regularity."--John Starke, The Gospel Coalition

"The [BECNT] series provides competent and well-informed commentary on the New Testament from an Evangelical perspective. This new commentary on Ephesians . . . fits well into the series' purpose and ethos. . . . The commentary itself is clearly written and theologically and pastorally sensitive."--Donald Senior, CP, The Bible Today

"Useful to a broad spectrum of readers. . . . This commentary is a very worthwhile addition to the literature on Ephesians."--Paul Foster, Expository Times

"[A] really good new commentar[y] on Ephesians. . . . Thielman often addresses the church-related questions I have more than many other commentaries. [This volume is] among the year's best new volumes."--Ray Van Neste, Preaching

"As with other volumes in this series, the layout and format facilitate ease of use. . . . Thielman's writing style throughout is clear and straightforward and his judgments are explained and defended at length. . . . Overall, his treatment of interpretive difficulties is evenhanded and thorough. Thielman's tone throughout is measured, and his treatment of the text is judicious. The commentary also displays completely original work. . . . He has done a great service to scholars, pastors, and students of Ephesians, who will consult the volume with great benefit in coming decades."--Timothy G. Gombis, Bulletin for Biblical Research

"Thielman is a world-renowned expert in Pauline studies. . . . The BECNT series is one of the more helpful commentary series on the NT, and this volume is a welcome addition. . . . One of the strengths of this series is the attempt to demonstrate how each individual passage fits within the letter's overall rhetorical strategy. . . . Perhaps the greatest strength of this commentary is its discussion of the use of the OT in the letter to the Ephesians. . . . For the graduate student or scholar seeking help with a detailed exegetical issue, this commentary . . . is certainly worth consulting and well deserves space on a bookshelf. Some pastor-teachers looking for guidance in preparing a sermon would also benefit from this commentary. . . . I would strongly recommend [it]."--Mark D. Owens, Themelios

"A commentary worth owning for those who desire to study or teach Ephesians. . . . Thielman rightly recognizes the significance of the OT background in understanding Ephesians. . . . Thielman pays close attention to the text itself. . . . One gets the sense that Thielman is a man who cherishes the gospel of God in Christ, and who wants to see that gospel appropriated by the church and spread to the nations. . . . This is a solid, evangelical commentary and exemplifies good scholarship. It should find its place among the best commentaries on Ephesians."--Joshua Greever, Credo

"This commentary will only add to [Thielman's] stature as a NT scholar. The layout of the commentary is pleasing and useful. . . . He intersperses helpful tables to illustrate various features. . . . More than many recent critical commentaries on Ephesians (and there are several excellent ones), Thielman's work painstakingly and sympathetically considers the alternatives for interpretive problems--from the Church fathers to the modern era. . . . Readers see not merely Thielman's conclusions, but they learn valuable lessons in how to interpret--using the relevant data from the historical background, literary context, word analyses, and grammar. This is particularly useful for students learning the skills of exegesis as well as seasoned pastors and teachers to see what makes a cogent defense. . . . No one will read this commentary and go away disappointed in Thielman's overall accomplishment, even if there is room for disagreement here or there. It is a model of fairness, clarity, and precision."--William W. Klein, Journal of the Evangelical Theological Society

"In the style of Baker Exegetical Commentaries, Frank Thielman's volume on Ephesians is a comprehensive historical and theological commentary. True to form, it has detailed analyses of textual and translation issues, and it offers balanced accounts of the debates about historical and literary context. . . . Grounding his discussions in the letter's syntax, Thielman produces a careful, plausible, and even engaging reading. . . . . Thielman's commentary is a major achievement. It is exegetically mature, finely argued, and delightfully written. It not only makes an outstanding contribution to the [BECNT] series, but it should also become a major voice in future discussions of Ephesians."--Lewis R. Donelson, Catholic Biblical Quarterly

"Thielman tends to offer objective, balanced perspectives on debated matters. He also demonstrates a thorough knowledge and interaction with oft-neglected patristic commentators. Further, while I did not necessarily agree with each and every interpretive decision Thielman made, his exegetical sensibilities are highly refined. . . . Thielman has written an erudite evangelical commentary that will serve both student and scholar well in research. Also, thanks to the series editors, the design of the commentary makes it user-friendly. Because Ephesians has not received the kind of scholarly attention paid to texts such as Romans, Galatians, and 1 Corinthians, I am pleased to see more serious scholarship on this letter."--Nijay K. Gupta, Review of Biblical Literature

"My preference [for an Ephesians commentary] for your church library is . . . Frank Thielman's admirable one."--Leslie Robert Keylock, Church Libraries

"Students of Ephesians are fortunate to have a rich selection of commentaries for use in their study. Thielman's recent contribution makes this positive situation even better. . . . Thielman's exegesis and exposition are clear and to the point. . . . This is a helpful evangelical commentary on the book of Ephesians. Thielman's style is easy to follow. He often backs up his statements with clearly numbered points of support. The commentary is long enough to provide a detailed interpretation of the text but not overwhelming in its detail or difficult to use."--Joseph D. Fantin, Bibliotheca Sacra

Praise for the series:

"In this age of unprecedented proliferation of biblical commentary series, it is an outstanding accomplishment for the Baker Exegetical series consistently to have produced what with only rare exceptions have become the best available commentaries on the Greek text of the New Testament book or books treated."--Craig Blomberg, Denver Journal

"Rigorous exegesis by seasoned scholars with explicit evangelical commitments. This is also one of the best-designed, easy-to-read series as it includes intro matters, then each commentator's translation, commentary, and textual notes for every passage. Very reliable."--Bruce Riley Ashford and Grant Taylor, Between the Times blog

"This commentary is a good resource for knowing the current divergent views on various passages in Ephesians, and pastors, students and scholars would benefit from including it in their repertoire."--David I. Yoon, Journal of Greco-Roman Christianity and Judaism