Colossians and Ephesians: 5 Books Every Pastor Should Read

Colossians and Ephesians: 5 Books Every Pastor Should Read June 10, 2020

Colossians and Ephesians


Timothy Gombis, The Drama of Ephesians: Participating in the Triumph of God

A “must-read” work that helps the reader understand the wider thought-world of Ephesians and how it narrates the redemptive victory of God.

Clinton Arnold, Power and Magic: The Concept of Power in Ephesians

A key study on the message of Ephesians from the perspective of local religion and conceptions of power in context.

Sylvia Keesmaat and Brian Walsh, Colossians Remixed: Subverting the Empire

This was an early, key study arguing in favor of anti-imperial rhetoric and theology in Paul. I think it is overdone, but still a must-read in the conversation on Paul and empire.

Matthew Gordley, New Testament Christological Hymns

This is a handy resource, given how much hymnic language appears in Colossians and Ephesians. Gordley knows his stuff on this.

 G.K. Beale and Benjamin Gladd, Hidden But Now Revealed: A Biblical Theology of Mystery

A great thematic study on “mystery”, helpful for reading Colossians and Ephesians.


Other Resources

John M.G. Barclay, Colossians and Philemon

This short little introduction and guide is outstanding.

Carolyn Osiek, Margaret Y. MacDonald, and Janet Tulloch, A Woman’s Place: House Churches in Earliest Christianity

Given Colossians and Ephesians both contain similar “Household Codes,” this resource is an excellent examination of women’s roles in the house, society, and church.

Daniel Darko, Against Principalities and Powers: Spiritual Beings in Relation to Communal Identity and the Moral Discourse of Ephesians

Darko looks at the nature of spiritual beings in Asia Minor and their role in human affairs. He draws parallels to modern African beliefs. Darko shows how Ephesians focuses on salvation as deliverance from sin and release from the control of evil powers.


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