The capital city of the province of Asia in the first century CE
, Ephesus played a key role in the development of early Christianity. In this book Paul Trebilco examines the early Christians from Paul to Ignatius, seen in the context of our knowledge of the city as a whole.
Drawing on Paul's letters and the Acts of the Apostles, Trebilco looks at the foundations of the church, both before and during the Pauline mission. He shows that in the period from around 80 to 100 CE
there were a number of different communities in Ephesus that regarded themselves as Christians -- the Pauline and Johannine groups, Nicolaitans, and others -- testifying to the diversity of that time and place. Including further discussions on the Ephesus addresses of the apostle John and Ignatius, this scholarly study of the early Ephesian Christians and their community is without peer.
— University of St. Andrews
"Paul Trebilco's masterly study of the early Christians in one of the greatest cities of the Roman Empire analyzes in detail all the available evidence and creates an intriguing picture of a diversity of Christian groups that were distinctive without necessarily being hostile to each other."
Joel B. Green
— Fuller Theological Seminary
"With considerable finesse, Trebilco explores Christian developments in Ephesus from their beginning to the early second century and produces an extraordinarily suggestive social-historical mapping of house churches in Ephesus. This exemplary study of the diversity of early Christianity in one center of the movement has far-reaching implications — theologically, politically, and socially — for our understanding of the early church."
James D. G. Dunn
— University of Durham
"Ephesus ranks with Jerusalem, Antioch, and Rome as one of the centers of early Christianity — a role reflected in many of the New Testament writings. Yet Ephesus and the church(es) established there have received very little attention compared with these other centers. Paul Trebilco redresses that imbalance in this magisterial study. Drawing on the most recent archaeological and literary research, he traces the Christian presence in Ephesus from Paul and Acts, through the pastoral epistles, Revelation, and the Johannine letters, to Ignatius, building up the most comprehensive picture of the Ephesian Christians possible, with carefully stated detail and impressively judicious judgment. For any historian of earliest Christianity and any serious student of these New Testament texts, this volume is a must."