Trebilco, The Early Christians in Ephesus

Trebilco, Paul R. The Early Christians in Ephesus: From Paul to Ignatius. Tübingen: Mohr Siebeck, 2004. Grand Rapids, Michigan: Eerdmans Publishing, 2007. Reprinted from the German edition, published as vol. 166 of WUNT, 2nd series. xxiv + 826 pp.
Rick Brannan at ricoblog made me aware of this monumental, somewhat expensive (see below), and really interesting volume (here and here).

Ephesus is important for many reasons. It is central to Paul and Acts, it became a centre of early Christianity, and the first of seven messages in Revelation 2-3 was directed “to the angel of the church in Ephesus.” I have often looked for a book that gives an overview of the knowledge available today. Trebilco’s opus magnum fills this gap. Trebilco is also the author of Jewish Communities in Asia Minor.

In ch. 1, Trebilco describes the context: the city, the Artemis cult, the imperial cult, and the Jewish community (pp. 11-52). Ch. 7 is devoted to “Revelation 2:1-7: The Proclamation to the Church in Ephesus and the Nicolaitans (pp. 293-350). Ch. 8.4 focus on the wider culture and the readers of Revelation: acculturation, assimilation and accommodation (pp. 393-402). In ch. 9.3, Trebilco analyses “Material Possessions and the Christians in Ephesus according to Revelation” (pp. 434-443). Leadership and authority in Revelation is the subject of ch. 10.3 (pp. 490-503). The role of women in Revelation is discussed in ch. 11.3 (pp. 540-550). Trebilco looks at the issue of self-designation in Revelation in ch. 12.5 (pp. 577-586).

Ch. 13 is an analysis of “The Relationships between traditions and communities in Ephesus,” and Revelation is treated in 13.3 (pp. 614-626). A full Table of Contents is available from the publisher (here).

The bibliography is huge: 54 pages (pp. 719-771), and there are indices of References, Authors, and Subjects and Places.

Mohr Siebeck provides a long list of reviews here.

The original German edition is available for €149.00 (see here), but the American edition is only about $62 or £37.

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