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20 - The Epistles to Corinth and Rome -The Itineraries Of Paul

Topic: logodpedia
Format: Mp3
Publication Date: 1976-1977

Walter J. Cummins graduated from the Power for Abundant Class in 1962.  

He received his Bachelor of Science degree in Education from Ohio State University in 1968 and his Master of Education degree in Secondary School Administration in 1978 from Wright State University.

He was ordained to the Christian by The Way International in 1968. He has studied at The Way International under Victor Paul Wierwille and K.C.Pillai. In addition to his teaching responsibilities, he was director of the Research department of the Way International  and served as assistant to the president. 

The Epistles to Corinth and Rome
We saw that Pricilla and Aquila were with Paul in Asia from the first epistle to the Corinthians. We saw that Timothy was being sent to Macedonia. This parallels the time in Acts 19 when Paul was with Pricilla and Aquila before they went to Rome and when Timothy was about to go on his venture.
Acts 19:22: So he sent into Macedonia two of them that ministered unto him, Timotheus and Erastus; but he himself stayed in Asia for a season.
It’s around this time when I Corinthians was written. That would be approximately in the summer of fall of that last year he was at Ephesus that he wrote that epistle. If Galatians, as we saw from the other evidence, was written shortly before I Corinthians then it may have been written in the spring or summer of that same year. You have the approximate time those two epistles were written, Galatians first and then I Corinthians.
During those three years that Paul spent at Ephesus, was the time that the Word went over all of Asia and then it says, “So mightily grew the Word of God and prevailed.” The Word was prevailing in Asia. Paul was really teaching his heart out there. People were out witnessing all over Asia and all Asia heard the Word in those two years and three months and then the mop-up that followed so that the Word prevailed in Asia.
Then word reaches his ears. It could have been somebody like Gaius from Derbe, over in the Galatia area. It may have been somebody else that reported to Paul that the Galatians were accepting other doctrines contrary to what he had taught them. Then word comes over from Corinth, “They’re starting to practice error.” He writes the epistle to correct that practical error and he sends Timothy and Erastus over there. Soon word reaches that they still haven’t corrected it and so he sends Titus over there. All this is happening while he’s in Asia were the Word prevailed.
You might be sitting in a place where the Word is really moving and Satan is working overtime in some other area trying to defeat the Christians so your heart’s over there with them. You see what he meant when he said, “the care of the churches daily?”
II Corinthians 11:28: Beside those things that are without, that which cometh upon me daily, the care of all the churches.
He not only had those in Ephesus in his mind, he had those in Galatia on his mind, had those over in Corinth on his mind, had those up in Macedonia on his mind. He was concerned about the Word reaching in every area and the people staying steadfast on the Word because they’re individuals and they have a right to believe what they want to
believe and not to be usurped by what the world dictates. They have just as much right to hear the truth of God’s Word as they do to hear the lies of the devil.
In I Corinthians 5:9 he mentions something that I think has been misunderstood.
I Corinthians 5:9: I wrote unto you in an epistle not to company with fornicators:
If this is I Corinthians, then was there an epistle previous to this? That’s what the critics have said. No, it says, “I wrote unto you in the epistle.” “This epistle,” in other words. In Greek it has the article in it. “I’ve already written it in here; not to company with fornicators.” He told them in chapter 1. He told them in chapter 5 verse1. He’s going to tell them some more in chapter 7 and a few other places, “Don’t company with fornicators.” In this epistle, he’s not talking about something that’s disappeared or been burned.
I Corinthians 2:6-8: Howbeit we speak wisdom among them that are perfect: yet not the wisdom of this world, nor of the princes of this world, that come to nought:
But we speak the wisdom of God in a mystery, even the hidden wisdom, which God ordained before the world unto our glory:
Which none of the princes of this world knew: for had they known it, they would not have crucified the Lord of glory.
Then he talks about the things of the mystery in the rest of that chapter. The fullness of the mystery was not revealed until much later when he wrote to the Ephesians, when he was at Rome. After he got to Rome, he writes back to the Ephesians. But already pieces of that revelation were starting to gel in Paul’s mind. He knew that it was a mystery kept secret before the foundation of the world, which none of the princes of this world knew, for had they known it they would not have crucified the Lord of glory. He knew it was that big. He didn’t know all the details of it but he knew it was that big. Where was he when he wrote this epistle? Ephesus, the same group to whom later he writes that great epistle, the book of Ephesians. I’ll bet a lot of things happened in Acts chapter 19 that you don’t know about. The Word was really working in Paul’s life.
II Corinthians
II Corinthians 1:1: Paul, an apostle of Jesus Christ by the will of God, and Timothy our brother, unto the church of God which is at Corinth, with all the saints which are in all Achaia [Greece]:
It tells you to whom it was written. It tells you who was with him when he wrote it. When he wrote I Corinthians, Timothy was about to depart, if he hadn’t already gone. Now, he’s back together with Timothy. When did he and Timothy get back together? It’s not at Corinth. Remember, he spent three months in Corinth. He’s writing to the Corinthians, in Greece so it can’t be while he spent those three months there yet it has to be after he sent Timothy on. Logically, where’s it going to be? It must have been in Macedonia, before he went to Greece unless Timothy came back to Asia. There is other evidence.
II Corinthians 1:8: For we would not, brethren, have you ignorant of our trouble which came [past tense] to us in Asia, that we were pressed out of measure, above strength, insomuch that we despaired even of life:
“trouble which came to us in Asia” – remember the big “union” meeting? A lot of things happened there, perhaps even more than we realize from Acts chapter 19.
II Corinthians 1:15: And in this confidence I was minded to come unto you before, that ye might have a second benefit;
Does it say he was guided by revelation? No, it says, “I was minded,” I had it in mind. Bullinger says, “I wish to come unto you before.” It was Paul’s thinking. He says, “There was a time that I wanted to come to you before.” Maybe about the time he sent Timothy, when he had gotten word that the Corinthians were practising error.
“second benefit” – how many times had he been there before? Once.
II Corinthians 1:16: And to pass by you into Macedonia, and to come again out of Macedonia unto you, and of you to be brought on my way toward Judaea.
What was his intention on that trip? He says he wanted to come from Asia over to you at Corinth and go up into Macedonia then down, and from there to go into Jerusalem. But what happened when he finally made the trip? He went up to Macedonia first then down to Achaia then back up to Macedonia and then over to Jerusalem. He says, “When I thought about it before, when I heard what was going on, I wanted to come to you and then go up to Macedonia, then back down to you then over to Jerusalem but I didn’t.”
II Corinthians 1:17-19: When I therefore was thus minded [when I had that in my head], did I use lightness? or the things that I purpose, do I purpose according to the flesh [did I walk according to the flesh?], that with me there should be yea yea, and nay nay?
But as God is true, our word toward you was not yea and nay.
For the Son of God, Jesus Christ, who was preached among you by us, even by me and Silvanus and Timotheus, was not yea and nay, but in him was yea.
“me and Silvanus and Timotheus” – that was the first trip, Silas and Timothy were with him in Acts 18.
“was not yea and nay, but in him was yea” – it wasn’t “yes and no” it was YES! “Thus saith the Lord,” it wasn’t “well, maybe the Lord said...”
II Corinthians 1:20-22: For all the promises of God in him are yea, and in him Amen, unto the glory of God by us.
Now he which stablisheth us with you in Christ, and hath anointed us, is God;
Who hath also sealed us, and given the earnest of the Spirit in our hearts.
“the earnest of the Spirit in our hearts” - “We don’t walk by the flesh. We walk by the spirit.”
II Corinthians 1:23: Moreover I call God for a record upon my soul, that to spare you I came not as yet unto Corinth.
He never came. He says, “I wanted to but I never did.” Why? “Because I didn’t walk by the flesh; I didn’t say yes and no. I said, ‘Thus saith the Lord.’ The Lord said, 'Don’t go.' ”
Someone is “tripping-out” over there. What do you want to do? Run. Why not reach up in Daddy’s cookie jar first? See if He wants you to run.
II Corinthians 1:24: Not for that we have dominion over your faith, but are helpers of your joy: for by faith ye stand.
He said, “It’s not that we come to lord it over your believing; to make you believe.” By believing you stand. It’s not by possession.
II Corinthians 2:1: But I determined this with myself, that I would not come again to you in heaviness.
That was the Word of the Lord.
II Corinthians 2:2: For if I make you sorry, who is he then that maketh me glad, but the same which is made sorry by me?
If Paul had have gone in there, he’d have knocked some heads together.
II Corinthians 2:12-13: Furthermore, when I came to Troas to preach Christ’s gospel, and a door was opened unto me of the Lord,
I had no rest in my spirit, because I found not Titus my brother: but taking my leave of them, I went from thence into Macedonia.
When did he come to Troas? On his way to Macedonia, he went from Ephesus to Troas, then to Macedonia, then down to Greece. He says, “When I came to Troas, I didn’t find Titus. So I went on to Macedonia.” He sent Titus after he hears double trouble in Corinth. The first epistle didn’t do much good, got to send a second one. I’m sure the first epistle did good but “They need a second one,” God said. He sends Titus. He sends another epistle someplace along the way. This epistle is after Titus left because he already sent Titus. Now he says, “I came to Troas and then into Macedonia.” When he’s talking, he’s already come to Macedonia.
He says, “Titus never came back from Corinth to Troas to meet me.” He says, “I sent him but he never came back to me yet.” That’s why he was troubled in Troas.
II Corinthians 7:5-6: For, when we were come into Macedonia, our flesh had no rest, but we were troubled on every side; without were fightings, within were fears.
Nevertheless God, that comforteth those that are cast down, comforted us by the coming of Titus;
Here comes Titus when he gets to Macedonia. At Troas he never saw him. He gets over to Macedonia, here comes Titus.
II Corinthians 7:7: And not by his coming only, but by the consolation wherewith he was comforted in you, when he told us your earnest desire, your mourning, your fervent mind [zeal] toward me; so that I rejoiced the more.
Titus said, “Yea they were really hot, just lacking in one area.” Do you know what that was? Abundant sharing.
II Corinthians 7:8: For though I made you sorry with a letter [I Corinthians], I do not repent,
though I did repent: for I perceive that the same epistle hath made you sorry, though it were but for a season.
“I made you sorry but I’m not sorry that I wrote it.”
“I did repent” – “Oh Lord I must have blown it again. They probably all hate the ministry now.” That’s Paul; human.
Whenever someone reproves you, you get mad. Then when you finally cool down, you say, “That’s the greatest thing. I’m sure glad they said it.”
II Corinthians 7:9-16: Now I rejoice, not that ye were made sorry, but that ye sorrowed to repentance: for ye were made sorry after a godly manner, that ye might receive damage by us in nothing.
For godly sorrow worketh repentance to salvation [wholeness] not to be repented of: but the sorrow of the world worketh death.
For behold this selfsame thing, that ye sorrowed after a godly sort, what carefulness it wrought in you, yea, what clearing of yourselves, yea, what indignation, yea, what fear, yea, what vehement desire, yea, what zeal, yea, what revenge! In all things ye have approved yourselves to be clear in this matter.
Wherefore, though I wrote unto you, I did it not for his cause that had done the wrong, nor for his cause that suffered wrong, but that our care for you in the sight of God might appear unto you.
Therefore we were comforted in your comfort: yea, and exceedingly the more joyed we for the joy of Titus, because his spirit was refreshed by you all.
For if I have boasted any thing to him of you, I am not ashamed; but as we spake all things to you in truth, even so our boasting, which I made before Titus, is found a truth.
And his inward affection is more abundant toward you, whilst he remembereth the obedience of you all, how with fear and trembling ye received him.
I rejoice therefore that I have confidence in you in all things.
Isn’t that neat? I guess that first epistle did a few things.
II Corinthians 8:1: Moreover, brethren, we do you to wit [know] of the grace of God bestowed on the churches of Macedonia;
“grace” - gift; money; abundant sharing – what happened in Macedonia; how they gave freely and he goes on to explain this.
II Corinthians 8:6: Insomuch that we desired Titus, that as he had begun, so he would also finish in you the same grace also.
“Titus had begun this work. He had ministered to you and he saw how greatly fired up you were except in one category, abundant sharing; that he would finish this work in you too.”
II Corinthians 8:16: But thanks be to God, which put the same earnest care into the heart of Titus for you.
II Corinthians 8:22-24: And we have sent with them our brother, whom we have oftentimes proved diligent in many things, but now much more diligent, upon the great confidence which I have in you.
Whether any do enquire of Titus, he is my partner and fellowhelper concerning you: or our brethren be enquired of, they are the messengers of the churches, and the glory of Christ.
Wherefore shew ye to them, and before the churches, the proof of your love, and of our boasting on your behalf.
Do the other 1 %. He’s sending Titus back.
Paul starts his trip from Ephesus, goes up to Troas: no Titus. He gets over to Macedonia, here comes Titus, “Paul their doing great down there in Corinth except one thing; no abundant sharing. I’ve been teaching it but no manifestation of it.” Paul says, “Titus, you go back and you finish the work you started there. Take an abundant sharing offering.”
It could be that Titus even carried this epistle back with him. This is all in the area of Macedonia, before he gets to Corinth because he hasn’t been there a second time yet. He’s only been there once, so it has to be in this area while he’s in Macedonia.
I’ll show you what happened. Do you think that when Paul wrote this epistle, it was just air that went over their heads? Or do you think it produced results?
Romans 15:26: For it hath pleased them of Macedonia and Achaia to make a certain contribution for the poor saints which are at Jerusalem.
Did it produce results? It sure did. Do you know what else that verse tells me? Romans must have been written after II Corinthians and after Paul was there to receive the abundant sharing to take with him back to Jerusalem.
II Corinthians 12:14: Behold, the third time I am ready to come to you; and I will not be burdensome to you: for I seek not yours but you: for the children ought not to lay up for the parents, but the parents for the children.
“the third time I am ready to come to you” – How many time has he been there? Once, it talks about the second benefit back in chapter 2 [II Corinthians 1:15], but it says, “I never came that second time.” [II Corinthians 1:23] That’s the key; it says, “this is the third time I’m ready to come to you.” Did he get ready the second time? Yes, but he never went. Now he’s ready the third time to go. It’s actually his second trip.
II Corinthians 12:15: And I will very gladly spend and be spent for you; though the more abundantly I love you, the less I be loved [it appears].
II Corinthians 12:17-18: Did I make a gain of you by any of them whom I sent unto you?
I desired Titus, and with him I sent a brother [possibly Luke]. Did Titus make a gain of you? walked we not in the same spirit? walked we not in the same steps?
Again he mentions Titus in here.
II Corinthians 13:1-2: This is the third time I am coming to you [It doesn’t say “ready” this time]. In the mouth of two or three witnesses shall every word be established.
I told you before, and foretell you, as if I were present, the second time; and being absent now I write to them which heretofore have sinned, and to all other, that, if I come again, I will not spare:
“as if I were present, the second time” – that’s the key. He says, “I’m writing to you as though I’m there a second time and now the third time I’m coming. That’s why he says, “third time.” “Right now, when I’m writing, I’m foretelling you. I told you before and I’m foretelling you now as if I were there a second time. This is my second coming. The third one is when I come a second time.” He says, “This epistle is as if I’m there a
second time.” After Paul goes to Corinth this time he never comes back till after he’s been to Rome, he may have made a trip back there.
Acts 20:1-2: And after the uproar was ceased, Paul called unto him the disciples, and embraced them, and departed for to go into Macedonia.
And when he had gone over those parts, and had given them much exhortation, he came into Greece,
Does it say how much time he was there? No, but apparently, from what we’ve read in II Corinthians, it was during that time when he was in Macedonia, that he wrote the second epistle to the Corinthians. Right here, while he’s in Macedonia before he goes to Greece, that he writes II Corinthians.
Remember Romans was written between Act 19:21 when he purposed to go to Rome and before he went to Rome because it’s going to be his first time coming to Rome that he’s writing about. We read that in Romans chapter 1. More than likely it would have been before he went to Jerusalem against the will of the Lord. Therefore it has to be sometime between sending Timothy and Erastus and when he goes to Macedonia and Troy after he’s been to Greece. In other words it was between Timothy and
Erastus leaving Ephesus and before he goes back to Troy, or Troas. He’s only five days in Macedonia then Troy for another seven days. So, it’s sometime in here that he writes Romans.
We read a while ago about the Macedonian and Grecian saints making the contribution which puts it sometime after II Corinthians was written. Now it’s between this time in Macedonia and when he goes back through Macedonia. So it’s either in Macedonia or in Greece.
Acts 20:2-3: And when he had gone over those parts, and had given them much exhortation, he came into Greece,
And there abode three months. And when the Jews laid wait for him, as he was about to sail into Syria, he purposed to return through Macedonia.
He abode there three months and that was the winter, remember. He wanted to sail straight from Greece on down toward Syria and then Jerusalem.
Acts 20:4: And there accompanied him into Asia Sopater of Berea; and of the
Thessalonians, Aristarchus and Secundus; and Gaius of Derbe, and Timotheus; and of Asia, Tychicus and Trophimus.
These were besides Luke and Paul.
Romans 16:21: Timotheus my workfellow, and Lucius, and Jason, and Sosipater, my kinsmen, salute you.
With him is Timothy. Lucius could be Luke or it may be someone else but Luke was with him in that territory in Greece.
Acts 20:5: These going before tarried for us at Troas.
That’s where Luke starts with him again; the second “we” section.
I’m not sure who Jason is. Sosipater may be the same name as Sopater of Berea in Acts 20:4.
Romans 16:22-23: I Tertius, who wrote this epistle, salute you in the Lord.
Gaius mine host, and of the whole church, saluteth you. Erastus the chamberlain of the city saluteth you, and Quartus a brother.
Gaius was his host. They had a Gaius of Derbe who travelled with them. Erastus was who he had sent with Timothy down to Macedonia and then to Corinth. It says that Erastus is the chamberlain of the city, the treasurer. Erastus is mentioned in II Timothy.
II Timothy 4:20: Erastus abode at Corinth: but Trophimus have I left at Miletum sick.
Corinth may very well have been Erastus’ home city. All these things seem to point to that when you put them together. He was the chamberlain of Corinth. He was the treasurer of the city, a city official.
From these indications it seems that Romans was written when Paul was in Corinth in Greece during the winter, those three months.
Romans 16:1: I commend unto you Phebe our sister, which is a servant of the church which is at Cenchrea:
Where is Cenchrea? It’s Right beside Corinth. He says, “I’m sending her up to Rome and I commend her unto you.”
Romans 16:2: That ye receive her in the Lord, as becometh saints, and that ye assist her in whatsoever business she hath need of you: for she hath been a succourer of many, and of myself also.
That indicates again the proximity to Corinth; that he was sending her from that area over to Rome. Maybe she was one of them that carried the epistle. I don’t know.
Romans 16:3: Greet Priscilla and Aquila my helpers in Christ Jesus:
This indicates they had already left Asia and gone to Rome.
Romans 16:4-5: Who have for my life laid down their own necks: unto whom not only I give thanks, but also all the churches of the Gentiles.
Likewise greet the church that is in their house. Salute my wellbeloved Epaenetus, who is the firstfruits of Achaia unto Christ.
They had been in Rome a little time. They had a twig going. Epaenetus was the firstfruits of Greece. See how it narrows this down to Greece, right before he sets off with those eight men back up through Macedonia and to Troy? During these three winter months in Greece he wrote the book of Romans.
Galatians was written at Ephesus and I Corinthians. Then Paul goes to Macedonia and Titus comes with word from Corinth then he writes II Corinthians. Then he goes over to Greece at Corinth and that where he writes Romans. From there he starts back through Macedonia and Troy and he’s going on his way to Jerusalem no matter what God says.
Romans 15:17ff gives you the purpose and intention Paul had for going to Rome.
Romans 15:17-19: I have therefore whereof I may glory through Jesus Christ in those things which pertain to God.
For I will not dare to speak of any of those things which Christ hath not wrought by me, to make the Gentiles obedient, by word and deed,
Through mighty signs and wonders, by the power of the Spirit of God; so that from Jerusalem, and round about unto Illyricum, I have fully preached the gospel of Christ.
All the area from Jerusalem all the way up to Illyricum he says he has fully preached the gospel.
Romans 15:20-23: Yea, so have I strived to preach the gospel, not where Christ was named, lest I should build upon another man's foundation:
But as it is written, To whom he was not spoken of, they shall see: and they that have not heard shall understand.
For which cause also I have been much hindered from coming to you.
But now having no more place in these parts, and having a great desire these many years to come unto you;
“no more place in these parts” – I have fully preached the gospel [verse 19]
Romans 15:24: Whensoever I take my journey into Spain, I will come to you: for I trust to see you in my journey, and to be brought on my way thitherward by you, if first I be somewhat filled with your company.
He’s going to take it to Rome and then over to Spain. You talk about his vision; Word over the world. He had it.
Romans 15:25-28: But now I go unto Jerusalem to minister unto the saints.
For it hath pleased them of Macedonia and Achaia to make a certain contribution for the poor saints which are at Jerusalem.
It hath pleased them verily; and their debtors they are. For if the Gentiles have been made partakers of their spiritual things, their duty is also to minister unto them in carnal things.
When therefore I have performed this, and have sealed to them this fruit, I will come by you into Spain.
He’s writing from Corinth where he had just taken that great abundant sharing offering he had talked about in II Corinthians. Now he’s got to take it to Jerusalem. Was there anything wrong with that? Not, I suppose, if he’d gone at the right time and not stayed so long.
“I will come by you” – by you, Romans.
Romans 15:29-33: And I am sure that, when I come unto you, I shall come in the fulness of the blessing of the gospel of Christ.
Now I beseech you, brethren, for the Lord Jesus Christ’s sake, and for the love of the Spirit, that ye strive together with me in your prayers to God for me;
That I may be delivered from them that do not believe in Judaea; and that my service which I have for Jerusalem may be accepted of the saints;
That I may come unto you with joy by the will of God, and may with you be refreshed.
Now the God of peace be with you all. Amen.
He could have dropped it off and left but that’s not what he did. God by His foreknowledge knew he wouldn’t and that’s why He was telling him, “Don’t go to Jerusalem.” He still made it to Rome and perhaps he made it to Spain. It doesn’t say so in Acts. At least that was his goal, to get over to Spain.
In Acts chapter 20, after he starts on this trip, he goes to Troas and from Troas down to Miletus.
Acts 20:16: For Paul had determined to sail by Ephesus, because he would not spend the time in Asia: for he hasted, if it were possible for him, to be at Jerusalem the day of Pentecost.
I Corinthians 16:8: But I will tarry at Ephesus until Pentecost.
Now he’s in a hurry to get to Jerusalem by Pentecost. I don’t know. Maybe if he’d have gone at the right time and not stayed so long, he wouldn’t have gotten in that soup. All I know is that the will of the Lord was not for him to go at this time in the manner in which he was going. God was saying in every city, “Don’t go, Paul.” In Corinthians he writes, “I was going to tarry at Ephesus until Pentecost.” Now he’s hastening to get to Jerusalem by Pentecost.
Acts 20:23: Save that the Holy Ghost witnesseth in every city, saying that bonds and afflictions abide me.
This is where he was going against God’s will. After this is where men start telling Paul, “Don’t go,” in Acts chapter 21. What was the last epistle written before Paul went to Jerusalem and then to Rome? Romans, that’s right, while he was at Corinth. After that he was in a hurry to get to Jerusalem. The last great epistle that he wrote before he went to Rome was the book of Romans. The book of Romans deals with the legal side of our justification. I don’t know if “legal” is the best term but it’s not the mystery; our
legal justification, redemption, salvation, etc. Romans deals with that. It does not deal with the mystery. In Romans 16, look what he closes with.
Romans 16:24: The grace of our Lord Jesus Christ be with you all. Amen.
This is not in many of the old manuscripts. It sounds like he’s closing it and then closing it again. That verse is not in many of the old manuscripts.
After really he’s covered everything of our legal justification, look at what he finally writes.
Romans 16:25-26: Now to him that is of power to stablish you according to my gospel, and the preaching of Jesus Christ, according to the revelation of the mystery, which was kept secret since the world began,
But now is [being] made manifest, and by the scriptures of the prophets, according to the commandment of the everlasting God, made known to all nations for the obedience of faith:
He closes it out with the mystery. Does he reveal here what the mystery is? No but he mentions it in his close. There’s not much more than he said in Corinthians; about the same because that wasn’t the purpose for Romans, Corinthians and Galatians. That dealt with the legal justification. The mystery is coming up. Maybe he didn’t know and understand all the things of the mystery at that time but it was starting to be revealed to him. That’s what Dr. Wierwille calls progressive revelation where things are unfolded to you according to your believing to accept them. Now Paul’s starting to understand a little more and more and then he makes that decision to go to Jerusalem. The next Epistle he writes, when he gets to Rome and gets back with it, is Ephesians which he writes from prison. Where did it start to gel? At Ephesus and now the last epistle he writes is Romans and he closes with the mystery which was kept secret. When he gets to Rome, 2 or 3 years later, he writes to the Ephesians where it began and sets the great doctrine regarding the mystery.
Ephesians 3:2-3: If ye have heard of the dispensation [administration] of the grace of God which is given me to you-ward:
How that by revelation he made known unto me the mystery; (as I wrote afore in few words,
“few words” – very few; Romans (the tail end), I Corinthians 2. “In few words I wrote it before. I told you it was coming. Now here it is, the icing on the cake...”
Ephesians 3:4: Whereby, when ye read, ye may understand my knowledge in the mystery of Christ)
That’s what Ephesians, Philippians and Colossians are all about, the great mystery. He wrote that book after he got to Rome 2 or 3 years after he wrote Romans. He writes Ephesians which reveals the mystery. Isn’t that something?