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Epistle

The Bible

Bible Usage:

Dictionaries:

  • Included in Eastons: No
  • Included in Hitchcocks: No
  • Included in Naves: No
  • Included in Smiths: No
  • Included in Websters: Yes
  • Included in Strongs: Yes
  • Included in Thayers: Yes
  • Included in BDB: No

Strongs Concordance:

 

Webster's 1828 Dictionary
Epistle

EPIS'TLE, noun epis'l. [Latin epistola; Gr. to send to; to send.]

A writing, directed or sent, communicating intelligence to a distant person; a letter; a letter missive. It is rarely used in familiar conversation or writings, but chiefly in solemn or formal transactions. It is used particularly in speaking of the letters of the Apostles, as the epistles of Paul; and of other letters written by the ancients, as the epistles of Pliny or of Cicero.


Webster's 1828 Dictionary
Epistler

EPIS'TLER, noun A writer of epistles. [Little used.]

1. Formerly, one who attended the communion table and read the epistles.


Easton's Bible Dictionary
Epistles

The apostolic letters. The New Testament contains twenty-one in all. They are divided into two classes.

1. Paul's Epistles, fourteen in number, including Hebrews. These are not arranged in the New Testament in the order of time as to their composition, but rather according to the rank of the cities or places to which they were sent. Who arranged them after this manner is unknown. Paul's letters were, as a rule, dictated to an amanuensis, a fact which accounts for some of their peculiarities. He authenticated them, however, by adding a few words in his own hand at the close. (See GALATIANS, EPISTLE TO.)

The epistles to Timothy and Titus are styled the Pastoral Epistles.

2. The Catholic or General Epistles, so called because they are not addressed to any particular church or city or individual, but to Christians in general, or to Christians in several countries. Of these, three are written by John, two by Peter, and one each by James and Jude.

It is an interesting and instructive fact that a large portion of the New Testament is taken up with epistles. The doctrines of Christianity are thus not set forth in any formal treatise, but mainly in a collection of letters. "Christianity was the first great missionary religion. It was the first to break the bonds of race and aim at embracing all mankind. But this necessarily involved a change in the mode in which it was presented. The prophet of the Old Testament, if he had anything to communicate, either appeared in person or sent messengers to speak for him by word of mouth. The narrow limits of Palestine made direct personal communication easy. But the case was different when the Christian Church came to consist of a number of scattered parts, stretching from Mesopotamia in the east to Rome or even Spain in the far west. It was only natural that the apostle by whom the greater number of these communities had been founded should seek to communicate with them by letter."


Naves Topical Index
Epistles

From the church at Jerusalem to the Gentiles
Acts 15:23-29

Of Luke to Theophilus
Luke 1:1-4; Acts 1:1

Of Paul:

To the church at Rome
Acts 45:1

To the church at Corinth
Acts 46:1; Acts 47:1

To the church at Galatia
Acts 48:1

To the church at Ephesus
Acts 49:1

To the church at Philippi
Acts 50:1

To the church at Colossi
Acts 51:1

To the church at Thessolonica
Acts 52:1; Acts 52:1

To Timothy
Acts 54:1; Acts 55:1

To Titus
Acts 56:1

Of James
Acts 59:1

Of Peter
Acts 60:1; Acts 61:1

Of John
Acts 62:1; 2 John 1:1-13; 3 John 1:1-14
Letters