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Teks -- Ephesians 1:1-23 (NET)

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Konteks
Salutation
1:1 From Paul, an apostle of Christ Jesus by the will of God, to the saints in Ephesus, the faithful in Christ Jesus. 1:2 Grace and peace to you from God our Father and the Lord Jesus Christ!
Spiritual Blessings in Christ
1:3 Blessed is the God and Father of our Lord Jesus Christ, who has blessed us with every spiritual blessing in the heavenly realms in Christ. 1:4 For he chose us in Christ before the foundation of the world that we may be holy and unblemished in his sight in love. 1:5 He did this by predestining us to adoption as his sons through Jesus Christ, according to the pleasure of his will1:6 to the praise of the glory of his grace that he has freely bestowed on us in his dearly loved Son. 1:7 In him we have redemption through his blood, the forgiveness of our trespasses, according to the riches of his grace 1:8 that he lavished on us in all wisdom and insight. 1:9 He did this when he revealed to us the secret of his will, according to his good pleasure that he set forth in Christ, 1:10 toward the administration of the fullness of the times, to head up all things in Christ– the things in heaven and the things on earth. 1:11 In Christ we too have been claimed as God’s own possession, since we were predestined according to the one purpose of him who accomplishes all things according to the counsel of his will 1:12 so that we, who were the first to set our hope on Christ, would be to the praise of his glory. 1:13 And when you heard the word of truth (the gospel of your salvation)– when you believed in Christ– you were marked with the seal of the promised Holy Spirit, 1:14 who is the down payment of our inheritance, until the redemption of God’s own possession, to the praise of his glory.
Prayer for Wisdom and Revelation
1:15 For this reason, because I have heard of your faith in the Lord Jesus and your love for all the saints, 1:16 I do not cease to give thanks for you when I remember remember you in my prayers. 1:17 I pray that the God of our Lord Jesus Christ, the Father of glory, may give you spiritual wisdom and revelation in your growing knowledge of him, 1:18 –since the eyes of your heart have been enlightened– so that you may know what is the hope of his calling, what is the wealth of his glorious inheritance in the saints, 1:19 and what is the incomparable greatness of his power toward us who believe, as displayed in the exercise of his immense strength. 1:20 This power he exercised in Christ when he raised him from the dead and seated him at his right hand in the heavenly realms 1:21 far above every rule and authority and power and dominion and every name that is named, not only in this age but also in the one to come. 1:22 And God put all things under Christ’s feet, and he gave him to the church as head over all things. 1:23 Now the church is his body, the fullness of him who fills all in all.
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Nama Orang, Nama Tempat, Topik/Tema Kamus

Nama Orang dan Nama Tempat:
 · Ephesus a town in western Asia Minor at the mouth of the Cayster River


Topik/Tema Kamus: Salvation | Atonement | ESCHATOLOGY OF THE NEW TESTAMENT, I-V | God | Intercession | EPHESIANS, EPISTLE TO THE | Ephesians, Epistle to | Jesus, The Christ | Inheritance | Predestination | Hope | Grace of God | Philippians, Epistle to | Faith | PAULINE THEOLOGY | Election of Grace | Righteous | CHRIST, THE EXALTATION OF | Power | Church | selebihnya
Daftar Isi

Catatan Kata/Frasa
Robertson , Vincent , Wesley , JFB , Clarke , Calvin , Defender , TSK

Catatan Kata/Frasa
Poole , PBC , Haydock , Gill

Catatan Ayat / Catatan Kaki
NET Notes , Geneva Bible

Catatan Rentang Ayat
Maclaren , MHCC , Matthew Henry , Barclay , Constable , College

Lainnya
Evidence

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Tafsiran/Catatan -- Catatan Kata/Frasa (per frasa)

Robertson: Eph 1:1 - Of Christ Jesus Of Christ Jesus ( Christou Iēsou ). So B D, though Aleph A L have Iēsou Christou . Paul is named as the author and so he is. Otherwise the Epistl...

Of Christ Jesus ( Christou Iēsou ).

So B D, though Aleph A L have Iēsou Christou . Paul is named as the author and so he is. Otherwise the Epistle is pseudepigraphic.

Robertson: Eph 1:1 - By the will of God By the will of God ( dia thelēmatos theou ). As in 1Co 1:1; 2Co 1:1; Rom 1:1.

By the will of God ( dia thelēmatos theou ).

As in 1Co 1:1; 2Co 1:1; Rom 1:1.

Robertson: Eph 1:1 - At Ephesus At Ephesus ( en Ephesōi ). In Aleph and B these words are inserted by later hands, though both MSS. give the title Pros Ephesious . Origen explains...

At Ephesus ( en Ephesōi ).

In Aleph and B these words are inserted by later hands, though both MSS. give the title Pros Ephesious . Origen explains the words tois hagiois tois ousin as meaning "the saints that are"(genuine saints), showing that his MSS. did not have the words en Ephesōi . The explanation of the insertion of these words has already been given in the remarks on "The Destination"as one copy of the general letter that was preserved in Ephesus. It is perfectly proper to call it the Epistle to the Ephesians if we understand the facts.

Robertson: Eph 1:3 - Blessed Blessed ( eulogētos ). Verbal of eulogeō , common in the lxx for Hebrew baruk (Vulgate benedictus ) and applied usually to God, sometimes to...

Blessed ( eulogētos ).

Verbal of eulogeō , common in the lxx for Hebrew baruk (Vulgate benedictus ) and applied usually to God, sometimes to men (Gen 24:31), but in N.T. always to God (Luk 1:68), while eulogēmenos (perfect passive participle) is applied to men (Luk 1:42). "While eulogēmenos points to an isolated act or acts, eulogētos describes the intrinsic character"(Lightfoot). Instead of the usual eucharistoumen (Col 1:3) Paul here uses eulogētos , elsewhere only in 2Co 1:3 in opening, though in a doxology in Rom 1:25; Rom 9:5; 2Co 11:31. The copula here is probably estin (is), though either estō (imperative) or eiē (optative as wish) will make sense.

Robertson: Eph 1:3 - The God and Father of our Lord Jesus Christ The God and Father of our Lord Jesus Christ ( ho theos kai patēr tou Kuriou hēmōn Iēsou Christou ). Kai is genuine here, though not in Col ...

The God and Father of our Lord Jesus Christ ( ho theos kai patēr tou Kuriou hēmōn Iēsou Christou ).

Kai is genuine here, though not in Col 1:3. The one article (ho ) with theos kai patēr links them together as in 1Th 1:3; 1Th 3:11, 1Th 3:13; Gal 1:4. See also the one article in 2Pe 1:1, 2Pe 1:11. In Eph 1:17 we have ho theos tou Kuriou hēmōn Iēsou Christou , and the words of Jesus in Joh 20:17.

Robertson: Eph 1:3 - Who hath blessed us Who hath blessed us ( ho eulogēsas humās ). First aorist active participle of eulogeō , the same word, antecedent action to the doxology (eulog...

Who hath blessed us ( ho eulogēsas humās ).

First aorist active participle of eulogeō , the same word, antecedent action to the doxology (eulogētos ).

Robertson: Eph 1:3 - With With ( en ). So-called instrumental use of en though in is clear.

With ( en ).

So-called instrumental use of en though in is clear.

Robertson: Eph 1:3 - Every spiritual blessing Every spiritual blessing ( pasēi eulogiāi pneumatikēi ). Third use of the root eulog (verbal, verb, substantive). Paul lovingly plays with th...

Every spiritual blessing ( pasēi eulogiāi pneumatikēi ).

Third use of the root eulog (verbal, verb, substantive). Paul lovingly plays with the idea. The believer is a citizen of heaven and the spiritual blessings count for most to him.

Robertson: Eph 1:3 - In the heavenly places in Christ In the heavenly places in Christ ( en tois epouraniois en Christōi ). In four other places in Ephesians (Eph 1:20; Eph 2:6; Eph 3:10; Eph 6:12). Th...

In the heavenly places in Christ ( en tois epouraniois en Christōi ).

In four other places in Ephesians (Eph 1:20; Eph 2:6; Eph 3:10; Eph 6:12). This precise phrase (with en ) occurs nowhere else in the N.T. and has a clearly local meaning in Eph 1:20; Eph 2:6; Eph 3:10, doubtful in Eph 6:12, but probably so here. In Eph 2:6 the believer is conceived as already seated with Christ. Heaven is the real abode of the citizen of Christ’ s kingdom (Phi 3:20) who is a stranger on earth (Phi 1:27; Eph 2:19). The word epouranios (heavenly) occurs in various passages in the N.T. in contrast with ta epigeia (the earthly) as in Joh 3:12; 1Co 15:40, 1Co 15:48, 1Co 15:49; Phi 2:10, with patris (country) in Heb 11:16, with klēsis (calling) in Heb 3:1, with dōrea (gift) in Heb 6:4, with basileia (kingdom) in 2Ti 4:18.

Robertson: Eph 1:4 - Even as he chose us in him Even as he chose us in him ( kathōs exelexato hēmās en autōi ). First aorist middle indicative of eklegō , to pick out, to choose. Definiti...

Even as he chose us in him ( kathōs exelexato hēmās en autōi ).

First aorist middle indicative of eklegō , to pick out, to choose. Definitive statement of God’ s elective grace concerning believers in Christ.

Robertson: Eph 1:4 - Before the foundation of the world Before the foundation of the world ( pro katabolēs kosmou ). Old word from kataballō , to fling down, used of the deposit of seed, the laying of ...

Before the foundation of the world ( pro katabolēs kosmou ).

Old word from kataballō , to fling down, used of the deposit of seed, the laying of a foundation. This very phrase with pro in the Prayer of Jesus (Joh 17:24) of love of the Father toward the Son. It occurs also in 1Pe 1:20. Elsewhere we have apo (from) used with it (Mat 25:34; Luk 11:50; Heb 4:3; Heb 9:26; Rev 13:8; Rev 17:8). But Paul uses neither phrase elsewhere, though he has apo tōn aiōnōn (from the ages) in Eph 3:9. Here in Eph 1:3-14. Paul in summary fashion gives an outline of his view of God’ s redemptive plans for the race.

Robertson: Eph 1:4 - That we should be That we should be ( einai hēmās ). Infinitive of purpose with the accusative of general reference (hēmās ). See note on Col 1:22 for the sam...

That we should be ( einai hēmās ).

Infinitive of purpose with the accusative of general reference (hēmās ). See note on Col 1:22 for the same two adjectives and also katenōpion autou .

Robertson: Eph 1:5 - Having foreordained us Having foreordained us ( Proorisas hēmās ). First aorist active participle of proorizō , late and rare compound to define or decide beforehand....

Having foreordained us ( Proorisas hēmās ).

First aorist active participle of proorizō , late and rare compound to define or decide beforehand. Already in Act 4:28; 1Co 2:7; Rom 8:29. See also Eph 1:11. Only other N.T. example in Eph 1:11. To be taken with exelexato either simultaneous or antecedent (causal).

Robertson: Eph 1:5 - Unto adoption as sons Unto adoption as sons ( eis huiothesian ). For this interesting word see note on Gal 4:5 (included with discussion of Gal 4:4). Also see Rom 8:15; Ro...

Unto adoption as sons ( eis huiothesian ).

For this interesting word see note on Gal 4:5 (included with discussion of Gal 4:4). Also see Rom 8:15; Rom 9:4.

Robertson: Eph 1:5 - Unto himself Unto himself ( eis auton ). Unto God.

Unto himself ( eis auton ).

Unto God.

Robertson: Eph 1:5 - According to the good pleasure of his will According to the good pleasure of his will ( kata tēn eudokian tou thelēmatos autou ). Here eudokian means purpose like boulēn in Eph 1:1...

According to the good pleasure of his will ( kata tēn eudokian tou thelēmatos autou ).

Here eudokian means purpose like boulēn in Eph 1:11 rather than benevolence (good pleasure). Note the preposition kata here for standard.

Robertson: Eph 1:6 - To the praise To the praise ( eis epainon ). Note the prepositions in this sentence.

To the praise ( eis epainon ).

Note the prepositions in this sentence.

Robertson: Eph 1:6 - Which Which ( hēs ). Genitive case of the relative hēn (cognate accusative with echaritōsen (he freely bestowed), late verb charitoō (from ch...

Which ( hēs ).

Genitive case of the relative hēn (cognate accusative with echaritōsen (he freely bestowed), late verb charitoō (from charis , grace), in N.T. attracted to case of antecedent charitos only here and Luk 1:28.

Robertson: Eph 1:6 - In the Beloved In the Beloved ( en tōi ēgapēmenōi ). Perfect passive participle of agapaō . This phrase nowhere else in the N.T. though in the Apostolic F...

In the Beloved ( en tōi ēgapēmenōi ).

Perfect passive participle of agapaō . This phrase nowhere else in the N.T. though in the Apostolic Fathers.

Robertson: Eph 1:7 - In whom In whom ( en hōi ). Just like Col 1:14 with paraptōmatōn (trespasses) in place of hamartiōn (sins) and with the addition of dia tou haima...

In whom ( en hōi ).

Just like Col 1:14 with paraptōmatōn (trespasses) in place of hamartiōn (sins) and with the addition of dia tou haimatos autou (through his blood) as in Col 1:20. Clearly Paul makes the blood of Christ the cost of redemption, the ransom money (lutron , Mat 20:28; Mar 10:45; antilutron , 1Ti 2:6). See note on Col 1:9.

Robertson: Eph 1:8 - According to the riches of his grace According to the riches of his grace ( kata to ploutos tēs charitos autou ). A thoroughly Pauline phrase, riches of kindness (Rom 2:4), riches of g...

According to the riches of his grace ( kata to ploutos tēs charitos autou ).

A thoroughly Pauline phrase, riches of kindness (Rom 2:4), riches of glory (Col 1:27; Eph 3:16; Phi 4:19), riches of fulness of understanding (Col 2:7), riches of Christ (Eph 3:8), and in Eph 2:7 "the surpassing riches of grace."

Robertson: Eph 1:8 - Which Which ( hēs ). Genitive attracted again to case of antecedent charitos .

Which ( hēs ).

Genitive attracted again to case of antecedent charitos .

Robertson: Eph 1:9 - The mystery of his will The mystery of his will ( to mustērion tou thelēmatos autou ). Once hidden, now revealed as in Col 1:26 which see. See also Col 2:3.

The mystery of his will ( to mustērion tou thelēmatos autou ).

Once hidden, now revealed as in Col 1:26 which see. See also Col 2:3.

Robertson: Eph 1:9 - Which he purposed Which he purposed ( hēn proetheto ). Second aorist middle of protithēmi , old verb, for which see note on Rom 1:13; Rom 3:25.

Which he purposed ( hēn proetheto ).

Second aorist middle of protithēmi , old verb, for which see note on Rom 1:13; Rom 3:25.

Robertson: Eph 1:10 - Unto a dispensation of the fulness of the times Unto a dispensation of the fulness of the times ( eis oikonomian tou plērōmatos tōn kairōn ). See note on Col 1:25 for oikonomian . In Gal 4:...

Unto a dispensation of the fulness of the times ( eis oikonomian tou plērōmatos tōn kairōn ).

See note on Col 1:25 for oikonomian . In Gal 4:4 "the fulness of the time"(to plērōma tou chronou ) the time before Christ is treated as a unit, here as a series of epochs (kairōn ). Cf. Mar 1:15; Heb 1:1. On plērōma see also Rom 11:26; Eph 3:19; Eph 4:13.

Robertson: Eph 1:10 - To sum up To sum up ( anakephalaiōsasthai ). Purpose clause (amounting to result) with first aorist middle infinitive of anakephalaioō , late compound verb...

To sum up ( anakephalaiōsasthai ).

Purpose clause (amounting to result) with first aorist middle infinitive of anakephalaioō , late compound verb ana and kephalaioō (from kephalaion , Heb 8:1, and that from kephalē , head), to head up all things in Christ, a literary word. In N.T. only here and Rom 13:9. For the headship of Christ in nature and grace see notes on Col 1:15-20.

Robertson: Eph 1:11 - In him In him ( en autōi ). Repeats the idea of en tōi Christōi of Eph 1:10.

In him ( en autōi ).

Repeats the idea of en tōi Christōi of Eph 1:10.

Robertson: Eph 1:11 - We were made a heritage We were made a heritage ( eklērōthēmen ). First aorist passive of klēroō , an old word, to assign by lot (klēros ), to make a klēros ...

We were made a heritage ( eklērōthēmen ).

First aorist passive of klēroō , an old word, to assign by lot (klēros ), to make a klēros or heritage. So in lxx and papyri. Only time in N.T., though prosklēroō once also (Act 17:4).

Robertson: Eph 1:11 - Purpose Purpose ( prothesin ). Common substantive from protithēmi , a setting before as in Act 11:23; Act 27:13.

Purpose ( prothesin ).

Common substantive from protithēmi , a setting before as in Act 11:23; Act 27:13.

Robertson: Eph 1:12 - To the end that we should be To the end that we should be ( eis to einai hēmās ). Final clause with eis to and the infinitive einai (see the mere infinitive einai in Ep...

To the end that we should be ( eis to einai hēmās ).

Final clause with eis to and the infinitive einai (see the mere infinitive einai in Eph 1:4) and the accusative of general reference.

Robertson: Eph 1:12 - Who had before hoped in Christ Who had before hoped in Christ ( tous proēlpikotas en tōi Christōi ). Articular perfect active participle of proelpizō , late and rare compou...

Who had before hoped in Christ ( tous proēlpikotas en tōi Christōi ).

Articular perfect active participle of proelpizō , late and rare compound (here only in N.T.) and the reference of pro not clear. Probably the reference is to those who like Paul had once been Jews and had now found the Messiah in Jesus, some of whom like Simeon and Anna had even looked for the spiritual Messiah before his coming.

Robertson: Eph 1:13 - Ye also Ye also ( kai humeis ). Ye Gentiles (now Christians), in contrast to hēmās (we) in Eph 1:12.

Ye also ( kai humeis ).

Ye Gentiles (now Christians), in contrast to hēmās (we) in Eph 1:12.

Robertson: Eph 1:13 - In whom In whom ( en hōi ). Repeated third time (once in Eph 1:11, twice in Eph 1:13), and note ho or hos in Eph 1:14.

In whom ( en hōi ).

Repeated third time (once in Eph 1:11, twice in Eph 1:13), and note ho or hos in Eph 1:14.

Robertson: Eph 1:13 - Ye were sealed Ye were sealed ( esphragisthēte ). First aorist passive indicative of sphragizō , old verb, to set a seal on one as a mark or stamp, sometimes th...

Ye were sealed ( esphragisthēte ).

First aorist passive indicative of sphragizō , old verb, to set a seal on one as a mark or stamp, sometimes the marks of ownership or of worship of deities like stigmata (Gal 6:17). Marked and authenticated as God’ s heritage as in Eph 4:30. See note on 2Co 1:22 for the very use of the metaphor here applied to the Holy Spirit even with the word arrabōn (earnest).

Robertson: Eph 1:13 - Spirit Spirit ( pneumati ). In the instrumental case.

Spirit ( pneumati ).

In the instrumental case.

Robertson: Eph 1:14 - An earnest An earnest ( arrabōn ). See note on 2Co 1:22 for discussion of arrabōn . Here "of promise"(tēs epaggelias ) is added to the Holy Spirit to sho...

An earnest ( arrabōn ).

See note on 2Co 1:22 for discussion of arrabōn . Here "of promise"(tēs epaggelias ) is added to the Holy Spirit to show that Gentiles are also included in God’ s promise of salvation.

Robertson: Eph 1:14 - Of our inheritance Of our inheritance ( tēs klēronomias hēmōn ). God’ s gift of the Holy Spirit is the pledge and first payment for the final inheritance i...

Of our inheritance ( tēs klēronomias hēmōn ).

God’ s gift of the Holy Spirit is the pledge and first payment for the final inheritance in Christ.

Robertson: Eph 1:14 - Of God’ s own possession Of God’ s own possession ( tēs peripoiēseōs ). The word

Of God’ s own possession ( tēs peripoiēseōs ).

The word

Robertson: Eph 1:14 - God’ s God’ s is not in the Greek, but is implied. Late and rare word (from peripoieō , to make a survival) with the notion of obtaining (1Th 5:9; 2T...

God’ s

is not in the Greek, but is implied. Late and rare word (from peripoieō , to make a survival) with the notion of obtaining (1Th 5:9; 2Th 3:14) and then of preserving (so in the papyri). So in 1Pe 2:9; Heb 10:39, and here. God has purchased us back to himself. The sealing extends (eis ) to the redemption and to the glory of God.

Robertson: Eph 1:15 - And which ye shew toward all the saints And which ye shew toward all the saints ( kai tēn eis pantas tous hagious ). The words "ye show"do not occur in the Greek. The Textus Receptus has ...

And which ye shew toward all the saints ( kai tēn eis pantas tous hagious ).

The words "ye show"do not occur in the Greek. The Textus Receptus has ten agapēn (the love) before tēn supported by D G K L Syr., Lat., Copt., but Aleph A B P Origen do not have the word agapēn . It could have been omitted, but is probably not genuine. The use of the article referring to pistin and the change from en to eis probably justifies the translation "which ye shew toward."

Robertson: Eph 1:16 - I do not cease I do not cease ( ou pauomai ). Singular present middle, while in Col 1:9 Paul uses the plural (literary, or including Timothy), ou pauometha .

I do not cease ( ou pauomai ).

Singular present middle, while in Col 1:9 Paul uses the plural (literary, or including Timothy), ou pauometha .

Robertson: Eph 1:17 - The Father of glory The Father of glory ( ho patēr tēs doxēs ). The God characterized by glory (the Shekinah, Heb 9:5) as in Act 7:2; 1Co 2:8; 2Co 1:3; Jam 2:1.

The Father of glory ( ho patēr tēs doxēs ).

The God characterized by glory (the Shekinah, Heb 9:5) as in Act 7:2; 1Co 2:8; 2Co 1:3; Jam 2:1.

Robertson: Eph 1:17 - That - may give That - may give ( hinȧ̇dōiē ). In Col 1:9 hina is preceded by aitoumenoi , but here the sub-final use depends on the general idea asking in ...

That - may give ( hinȧ̇dōiē ).

In Col 1:9 hina is preceded by aitoumenoi , but here the sub-final use depends on the general idea asking in the sentence. The form dōiē is a late Koiné[28928]š optative (second aorist active) for the usual doiē . It occurs also in 2Th 3:16; Rom 15:5; 2Ti 1:16, 2Ti 1:18 in the text of Westcott and Hort. Here B 63 read dōi (like Joh 15:16) second aorist active subjunctive, the form naturally looked for after a primary tense (pauomai ). This use of the volitive optative with hina after a primary tense is rare, but not unknown in ancient Greek.

Robertson: Eph 1:17 - A spirit of wisdom and revelation A spirit of wisdom and revelation ( pneuma sophias kai apokalupseōs ). The Revised Version does not refer this use of pneuma to the Holy Spirit (...

A spirit of wisdom and revelation ( pneuma sophias kai apokalupseōs ).

The Revised Version does not refer this use of pneuma to the Holy Spirit (cf. Gal 6:1; Rom 8:15), but it is open to question if it is possible to obtain this wisdom and revelation apart from the Holy Spirit.

Robertson: Eph 1:17 - In the knowledge of him In the knowledge of him ( en epignōsei autou ). In the full knowledge of Christ as in Colossians.

In the knowledge of him ( en epignōsei autou ).

In the full knowledge of Christ as in Colossians.

Robertson: Eph 1:18 - Having the eyes of your heart enlightened Having the eyes of your heart enlightened ( pephōtismenous tous ophthalmous tēs kardias humōn ). A beautiful figure, the heart regarded as havi...

Having the eyes of your heart enlightened ( pephōtismenous tous ophthalmous tēs kardias humōn ).

A beautiful figure, the heart regarded as having eyes looking out toward Christ. But the grammar is difficult. There are three possible interpretations. One is an anacoluthon, the case of pephōtismenous being changed from the dative humin (to you) to the accusative because of the following infinitive like eklexamenous (Act 15:22) after apostolois . Another way of explaining it is to regard it as a tertiary predicate of dōiē , a loose expansion of pneuma . The third way is to regard the construction as the accusative absolute, a rare idiom possible in Act 26:3; 1Co 16:3; 1Ti 2:6. In this case, the participle merely agrees with tous ophthalmous , not with humin , "the eyes of your heart having been enlightened."Otherwise tous ophthalmous is the accusative retained after the passive participle.

Robertson: Eph 1:18 - That ye may know That ye may know ( eis to eidenai ). Final use of eis to and the infinitive (second perfect of oida ) as in Eph 1:12. Note three indirect question...

That ye may know ( eis to eidenai ).

Final use of eis to and the infinitive (second perfect of oida ) as in Eph 1:12. Note three indirect questions after eidenai (what the hope tis hē elpis , what the riches tis ho ploutos , and what the surpassing greatness kai ti to huperballon megethos ). When the Holy Spirit opens the eyes of the heart, one will be able to see all these great truths.

Robertson: Eph 1:18 - In the saints In the saints ( en tois hagiois ). Our riches is in God, God’ s is in his saints.

In the saints ( en tois hagiois ).

Our riches is in God, God’ s is in his saints.

Robertson: Eph 1:19 - The exceeding greatness of his power The exceeding greatness of his power ( to huperballon megethos tēs dunameōs autou ). Megethos is an old word (from megas ), but here only in N...

The exceeding greatness of his power ( to huperballon megethos tēs dunameōs autou ).

Megethos is an old word (from megas ), but here only in N.T. Huperballon , present active participle of huperballō , reappears in Eph 2:7; Eph 3:19 and seen already in 2Co 3:10; 2Co 9:14. To enlightened eyes the greatness of God’ s power is even more "surpassing."

Robertson: Eph 1:20 - Which he wrought Which he wrought ( enērgēken ). Reading of A B rather than aorist enērgēsen . Perfect active indicative, "which he has wrought."Hēn is co...

Which he wrought ( enērgēken ).

Reading of A B rather than aorist enērgēsen . Perfect active indicative, "which he has wrought."Hēn is cognate accusative of the relative referring to energeian (energy) with enērgēken and note also kratous (strength) and ischuos (might), three words trying to express what surpasses (huperballon ) expression or comprehension.

Robertson: Eph 1:20 - Made him to sit Made him to sit ( kathisas ). First aorist active participle of kathizō in causative sense as in 1Co 6:4. Metaphorical local expression like dexi...

Made him to sit ( kathisas ).

First aorist active participle of kathizō in causative sense as in 1Co 6:4. Metaphorical local expression like dexiāi and en tois epour aniois .

Robertson: Eph 1:21 - Far above all rule Far above all rule ( huperanō pasēs archēs ). Late compound adverbial preposition (huper , anō ) with the ablative case. In N.T. only here ...

Far above all rule ( huperanō pasēs archēs ).

Late compound adverbial preposition (huper , anō ) with the ablative case. In N.T. only here and Heb 9:5. As in Col 1:16, so here Paul claims primacy for Jesus Christ above all angels, aeons, what not. These titles all were used in the Gnostic speculations with a graduated angelic hierarchy.

Robertson: Eph 1:21 - World World ( aiōni ). "Age."See this identical expression in Mat 12:32 for the present time (Gal 1:4; 1Ti 6:17) and the future life (Eph 2:7; Luk 20:35)...

World ( aiōni ).

"Age."See this identical expression in Mat 12:32 for the present time (Gal 1:4; 1Ti 6:17) and the future life (Eph 2:7; Luk 20:35). Both combined in Mar 10:30; Luk 18:30.

Robertson: Eph 1:22 - He put all things in subjection He put all things in subjection ( panta hupetaxen ). First aorist active indicative of hupotassō , quoted from Psa 8:7 as in 1Co 15:27.

He put all things in subjection ( panta hupetaxen ).

First aorist active indicative of hupotassō , quoted from Psa 8:7 as in 1Co 15:27.

Robertson: Eph 1:22 - Gave him to be head Gave him to be head ( auton edōken kephalēn ).

Gave him to be head ( auton edōken kephalēn ).

Robertson: Eph 1:22 - Gave Gave ( edōken , first aorist active indicative of didōmi ) to the church (the universal spiritual church or kingdom as in Col 1:18, Col 1:24) Chr...

Gave ( edōken , first aorist active indicative of didōmi )

to the church (the universal spiritual church or kingdom as in Col 1:18, Col 1:24) Christ as Head (kephalēn , predicate accusative). This conception of ekklēsia runs all through Ephesians (Eph 3:10, Eph 3:21; Eph 5:23, Eph 5:24, Eph 5:25, Eph 5:27, Eph 5:29, Eph 5:32).

Robertson: Eph 1:23 - Which Which ( hētis ). "Which in fact is,"explanatory use of hētis rather than hē .

Which ( hētis ).

"Which in fact is,"explanatory use of hētis rather than hē .

Robertson: Eph 1:23 - The fulness of him that filleth all in all The fulness of him that filleth all in all ( to plērōma tou ta panta en pāsin plēroumenou ). This is probably the correct translation of a mu...

The fulness of him that filleth all in all ( to plērōma tou ta panta en pāsin plēroumenou ).

This is probably the correct translation of a much disputed phrase. This view takes plērōma in the passive sense (that which is filled, as is usual, Col 1:19) and plēroumenou as present middle participle, not passive. All things are summed up in Christ (Eph 1:10), who is the plērōma of God (Col 1:19), and in particular does Christ fill the church universal as his body. Hence we see in Ephesians the Dignity of the Body of Christ which is ultimately to be filled with the fulness (plērōma ) of God (Eph 3:19) when it grows up into the fulness (plērōma ) of Christ (Eph 4:13, Eph 4:16).

Vincent: Eph 1:1 - By the will of God By the will of God As frequently in the introductions of the epistles, to emphasize his divine appointment. In Rom 1:1; 1Co 1:1, called is adde...

By the will of God

As frequently in the introductions of the epistles, to emphasize his divine appointment. In Rom 1:1; 1Co 1:1, called is added.

Vincent: Eph 1:1 - To the saints To the saints See on Rom 1:7; see on Col 1:2; see on Phi 1:1.

To the saints

See on Rom 1:7; see on Col 1:2; see on Phi 1:1.

Vincent: Eph 1:1 - At Ephesus At Ephesus There is much discussion as to the genuineness of these words. They are bracketed by both Westcott and Hort, and Tischendorf. On their...

At Ephesus

There is much discussion as to the genuineness of these words. They are bracketed by both Westcott and Hort, and Tischendorf. On their omission or retention turns the question whether the epistle was addressed to the church at Ephesus, or was a circular epistle, addressed to Ephesus along with several other churches. For Ephesus , see on Rev 2:1.

Vincent: Eph 1:2 - Grace Grace One of the leading words of the epistle. It is used thirteen times.

Grace

One of the leading words of the epistle. It is used thirteen times.

Vincent: Eph 1:3 - Blessed Blessed ( εὐλογητὸς ) Placed first in the clause for emphasis, as always in the corresponding Hebrew in the Old Testament. The verb ...

Blessed ( εὐλογητὸς )

Placed first in the clause for emphasis, as always in the corresponding Hebrew in the Old Testament. The verb is commonly omitted - blessed the God . In the New Testament used of God only. The perfect participle of the verb, εὐλογημένος blessed , is used of men. See on 1Pe 1:3. The word differs from that used in the Beatitudes, μακάριος . which denotes character , while this word denotes repute . Lit., well-spoken of .

Vincent: Eph 1:3 - God and Father of our Lord, etc God and Father of our Lord, etc. Some object to this rendering on the ground that the phrase God of Christ is unusual, occurring nowhere in...

God and Father of our Lord, etc.

Some object to this rendering on the ground that the phrase God of Christ is unusual, occurring nowhere in Paul, except Eph 1:17 of this chapter. Such render, God who is also the Father , etc. But Christ of God is found Mat 27:46; and my God , Joh 20:17; Rev 3:12. Compare, also, 1Co 3:23; and the phrase is undoubted in Eph 1:17.

Vincent: Eph 1:3 - Hath blessed Hath blessed ( εὐλογήσας ) Kindred with εὐλογητὸς blessed .

Hath blessed ( εὐλογήσας )

Kindred with εὐλογητὸς blessed .

Vincent: Eph 1:3 - Spiritual Spiritual ( πνευματικῇ ) Another leading word. Spirit and spiritual occur thirteen times. Paul emphasizes in this epistle the w...

Spiritual ( πνευματικῇ )

Another leading word. Spirit and spiritual occur thirteen times. Paul emphasizes in this epistle the work of the divine Spirit upon the human spirit. Not spiritual as distinguished from bodily, but proceeding from the Holy Spirit . Note the collocation of the words, blessed , blessed , blessing .

Vincent: Eph 1:3 - In the heavenly places In the heavenly places ( ἐν τοῖς ἐπουρανίοις ) Another keyword; one of the dominant thoughts of the epistle being the wo...

In the heavenly places ( ἐν τοῖς ἐπουρανίοις )

Another keyword; one of the dominant thoughts of the epistle being the work of the ascended Christ. Places is supplied, the Greek meaning in the heavenlies . Some prefer to supply things , as more definitely characterizing spiritual blessing . But in the four other passages where the phrase occurs, Eph 1:20; Eph 2:6; Eph 3:10; Eph 6:12, the sense is local, and ἐπουράνιος heavenly , is local throughout Paul's epistles. The meaning is that the spiritual blessings of God are found in heaven and are brought thence to us. Compare Phi 3:20.

Vincent: Eph 1:4 - Even as Even as ( καθὼς ) Explaining blessed us , in Eph 1:3. His blessing is in conformity with the fact that He chose.

Even as ( καθὼς )

Explaining blessed us , in Eph 1:3. His blessing is in conformity with the fact that He chose.

Vincent: Eph 1:4 - Chose Chose ( ἐξελέξατο ) Middle voice, for himself .

Chose ( ἐξελέξατο )

Middle voice, for himself .

Vincent: Eph 1:4 - In Him In Him As the head and representative of our spiritual humanity. Compare 1Co 15:22. Divine election is in Christ the Redeemer. The crown of divin...

In Him

As the head and representative of our spiritual humanity. Compare 1Co 15:22. Divine election is in Christ the Redeemer. The crown of divine sovereignty is redemption. God rules the world to save it.

Vincent: Eph 1:4 - Holy and without blame Holy and without blame ( ἁγίους καὶ ἀμώμους ) The positive and negative aspects of christian life. See on Col 1:22. Rev...

Holy and without blame ( ἁγίους καὶ ἀμώμους )

The positive and negative aspects of christian life. See on Col 1:22. Rev., without blemish . The reference is to moral rather than to forensic righteousness. Compare 1Th 4:7.

Vincent: Eph 1:4 - In love In love Join with foreordained , Eph 1:5. Having in love foreordained .

In love

Join with foreordained , Eph 1:5. Having in love foreordained .

Vincent: Eph 1:5 - Having predestinated Having predestinated ( προορίσας ) Rev. foreordained . From πρό before , ὁρίζω to define , the latter word being fr...

Having predestinated ( προορίσας )

Rev. foreordained . From πρό before , ὁρίζω to define , the latter word being from ὅπος a boundary . Hence to define or determine beforehand .

Vincent: Eph 1:5 - Adoption Adoption ( υἱοθεσίαν ) See on Rom 8:15. Never used of Christ.

Adoption ( υἱοθεσίαν )

See on Rom 8:15. Never used of Christ.

Vincent: Eph 1:5 - Good pleasure Good pleasure ( εὐδοκίαν ) Not strictly in the sense of kindly or friendly feeling , as Luk 2:14; Phi 1:15, but because it ...

Good pleasure ( εὐδοκίαν )

Not strictly in the sense of kindly or friendly feeling , as Luk 2:14; Phi 1:15, but because it pleased Him , see Luk 10:21; Mat 11:26. The other sense, however, is included and implied, and is expressed by in love .

Vincent: Eph 1:6 - To the praise of the glory of His grace To the praise of the glory of His grace The ultimate aim of foreordained . Glory is an attribute of grace: that in which grace grandly and res...

To the praise of the glory of His grace

The ultimate aim of foreordained . Glory is an attribute of grace: that in which grace grandly and resplendently displays itself. Praise is called forth from the children of God by this divine glory which thus appears in grace. The grace is not merely favor , gift , but it reveals also the divine character. In praising God for what He does, we learn to praise Him for what He is. Glory is another of the ruling words of the epistle, falling into the same category with riches and fullness . The apostle is thrilled with a sense of the plenitude and splendor of the mystery of redemption.

Vincent: Eph 1:6 - Wherein He hath made us accepted Wherein He hath made us accepted ( ἐν ᾗ ἐχαρίτωσεν ἡμᾶς ) The correct reading is ἧς which , referring to ...

Wherein He hath made us accepted ( ἐν ᾗ ἐχαρίτωσεν ἡμᾶς )

The correct reading is ἧς which , referring to grace . The meaning is not endued us with grace , nor made us worthy of love , but, as Rev., grace - which he freely bestowed . Grace is an act of God, not a state into which He brings us.

Vincent: Eph 1:6 - The beloved The beloved Christ. Beloved par excellence . Compare the Son of His love , Col 1:13; also Mat 3:17; Mat 17:5.

The beloved

Christ. Beloved par excellence . Compare the Son of His love , Col 1:13; also Mat 3:17; Mat 17:5.

Vincent: Eph 1:7 - We have We have Or are having . The freely bestowed (Eph 1:6) is thus illustrated by experience. The divine purpose is being accomplished in the l...

We have

Or are having . The freely bestowed (Eph 1:6) is thus illustrated by experience. The divine purpose is being accomplished in the lives of believers.

Vincent: Eph 1:7 - Redemption Redemption ( τὴν ἀπολύτρωσιν ) See on Rom 3:24. Note the article: our redemption.

Redemption ( τὴν ἀπολύτρωσιν )

See on Rom 3:24. Note the article: our redemption.

Vincent: Eph 1:7 - Through His blood Through His blood Further defining and explaining in whom .

Through His blood

Further defining and explaining in whom .

Vincent: Eph 1:7 - Forgiveness Forgiveness ( ἄφεσιν ) See on Luk 3:3; see on Jam 5:15; see on Rom 3:25. Forgiveness specifies the peculiar quality of redemption.

Forgiveness ( ἄφεσιν )

See on Luk 3:3; see on Jam 5:15; see on Rom 3:25. Forgiveness specifies the peculiar quality of redemption.

Vincent: Eph 1:7 - Sins Sins ( παραπτωμάτων ) Rev., better, trespasses . See on Mat 6:14.

Sins ( παραπτωμάτων )

Rev., better, trespasses . See on Mat 6:14.

Vincent: Eph 1:7 - Riches Riches See on glory , Eph 1:6, and Rom 2:4.

Riches

See on glory , Eph 1:6, and Rom 2:4.

Vincent: Eph 1:8 - Wherein He hath abounded Wherein He hath abounded ( ἧς ἐπερίσσευσεν ) Rev., correctly, which He made to abound . The verb is used both tran...

Wherein He hath abounded ( ἧς ἐπερίσσευσεν )

Rev., correctly, which He made to abound . The verb is used both transitively and intransitively in the New Testament. The transitive use belongs mainly to later Greek. Compare, for the transitive sense, Mat 13:12; 2Co 4:15.

Vincent: Eph 1:8 - In all wisdom and prudence In all wisdom and prudence ( ἐν πάσῃ σοφίᾳ καὶ φρονήσει ) For wisdom , see on Rom 11:33. For prudence , on ...

In all wisdom and prudence ( ἐν πάσῃ σοφίᾳ καὶ φρονήσει )

For wisdom , see on Rom 11:33. For prudence , on Luk 1:17. The latter is an attribute or result of wisdom, concerned with its practical applications. Both words refer here to men, not to God: the wisdom and prudence with which He abundantly endows His followers. Compare Col 1:9. All wisdom is, properly, every kind of wisdom.

Vincent: Eph 1:9 - Having made known Having made known The participle is explanatory of which He made to abound , etc.: in that He made known.

Having made known

The participle is explanatory of which He made to abound , etc.: in that He made known.

Vincent: Eph 1:9 - The mystery of His will The mystery of His will For mystery , see on Rom 11:25; see on Col 1:26. Another key-word of this epistle. God's grace as manifested in redempti...

The mystery of His will

For mystery , see on Rom 11:25; see on Col 1:26. Another key-word of this epistle. God's grace as manifested in redemption is a mystery in virtue of its riches and depth - as the expression of God's very nature. The mystery of the redemption in Christ, belonging to the eternal plan of God, could be known to men only through revelation - making known . Of his will ; pertaining to his will. Compare Eph 3:9.

Vincent: Eph 1:9 - Purposed Purposed ( προέθετο ) Only here, Rom 1:13; Rom 3:25 (note).

Purposed ( προέθετο )

Only here, Rom 1:13; Rom 3:25 (note).

Vincent: Eph 1:9 - In Himself In Himself ( ἐν αὑτῷ ) The best texts read αὐτῷ in Him ; but the reference is clearly to God, not to Christ, who is ex...

In Himself ( ἐν αὑτῷ )

The best texts read αὐτῷ in Him ; but the reference is clearly to God, not to Christ, who is expressly mentioned in the next verse.

Vincent: Eph 1:10 - That in the dispensation, etc That in the dispensation, etc. ( εἰς οἰκονομίαν ) The A.V. is faulty and clumsy. Εἱς does not mean in , but unto , wi...

That in the dispensation, etc. ( εἰς οἰκονομίαν )

The A.V. is faulty and clumsy. Εἱς does not mean in , but unto , with a view to . Dispensation has no article. The clause is directly connected with the preceding: the mystery which He purposed in Himself unto a dispensation . For οἰκονομία dispensation see on Col 1:25. Here and Eph 3:2, of the divine regulation , disposition , economy of things.

Vincent: Eph 1:10 - Of the fullness of times Of the fullness of times ( τοῦ πληρώματος τῶν καιρῶν ) For fullness , see on Rom 11:12; see on Joh 1:16; see on Co...

Of the fullness of times ( τοῦ πληρώματος τῶν καιρῶν )

For fullness , see on Rom 11:12; see on Joh 1:16; see on Col 1:19. For times , compare Gal 4:4, " fullness of the time (τοῦ χρόνου ), where the time before Christ is conceived as a unit. Here the conception is of a series of epochs. The fullness of the times is the moment when the successive ages of the gospel dispensation are completed. The meaning of the whole phrase, then, is: a dispensation characterized: by the fullness of the times: set forth when the times are full.

Vincent: Eph 1:10 - To sum up all things in Christ To sum up all things in Christ ( ἀνακεφαλαιώσασθαι ) Explanatory of the preceding phrase; showing in what the dispensation c...

To sum up all things in Christ ( ἀνακεφαλαιώσασθαι )

Explanatory of the preceding phrase; showing in what the dispensation consists. For the word, see on Rom 13:9. It means to bring back to and gather round the main point (κεφαλαίον ), not the head (κεφαλή ); so that, in itself, it does not indicate Christ (the Read) as the central point of regathering, though He is so in fact. That is expressed by the following in Christ . The compounded preposition ἀνά signifies again , pointing back to a previous condition where no separation existed. All things . All created beings and things; not limited to intelligent beings. Compare Rom 8:21; 1Co 15:28.

The connection of the whole is as follows: God made known the mystery of His will, the plan of redemption, according to His own good pleasure, in order to bring to pass an economy peculiar to that point of time when the ages of the christian dispensation should be fulfilled - an economy which should be characterized by the regathering of all things round one point, Christ.

God contemplates a regathering, a restoration to that former condition when all things were in perfect unity, and normally combined to serve God's ends. This unity was broken by the introduction of sin. Man's fall involved the unintelligent creation (Rom 8:20). The mystery of God's will includes the restoration of this unity in and through Christ; one kingdom on earth and in heaven - a new heaven and a new earth in which shall dwell righteousness, and " the creation shall be delivered from the bondage of corruption into the liberty of the glory of the children of God."

Vincent: Eph 1:11 - In Him In Him Resuming emphatically: in Christ.

In Him

Resuming emphatically: in Christ.

Vincent: Eph 1:11 - We have obtained an inheritance We have obtained an inheritance ( ἐκληρώθημεν ) Only here in the New Testament. From κλῆρος a lot . Hence the verb mean...

We have obtained an inheritance ( ἐκληρώθημεν )

Only here in the New Testament. From κλῆρος a lot . Hence the verb means literally to determine , choose , or assign by lot . From the custom of assigning portions of land by lot, κλῆρος acquires the meaning of that which is thus assigned ; the possession or portion of land . So often in the Old Testament. See Sept., Num 34:14; Deu 3:18; Deu 15:4, etc. An heir (κληρονόμος ) is originally one who obtains by lot. The A.V. here makes the verb active where it should be passive. The literal sense is we were designated as a heritage . So Rev., correctly, were made a heritage . Compare Deu 4:20, a people of inheritance (λαὸν ἔγκληρον ). Also Deu 32:8, Deu 32:9.

Vincent: Eph 1:12 - That we should be That we should be Connect with we were made a heritage .

That we should be

Connect with we were made a heritage .

Vincent: Eph 1:12 - Who first trusted Who first trusted ( τοὺς προηλπικότας ) In apposition with we (should be). So Rev., we who had , etc., trusted , more...

Who first trusted ( τοὺς προηλπικότας )

In apposition with we (should be). So Rev., we who had , etc., trusted , more properly hoped ; and first trusted is ambiguous. We refers to Jewish Christians, and the verb describes their messianic hope before (πρό ) the advent of Christ. Hence Rev., correctly, we who had (have) before hoped . In Christ should be " in the Christ," as the subject of messianic expectation and not as Jesus , for whom Christ had passed into a proper name. It is equivalent to in the Messiah . See on Mat 1:1.

Vincent: Eph 1:13 - Ye also trusted Ye also trusted Gentile Christians. Trusted , which is not in the Greek, is unnecessary. The pronoun ye is nominative to were sealed .

Ye also trusted

Gentile Christians. Trusted , which is not in the Greek, is unnecessary. The pronoun ye is nominative to were sealed .

Vincent: Eph 1:13 - In whom In whom Resuming the in whom at the beginning of the verse, and repeated on account of the length of the clause.

In whom

Resuming the in whom at the beginning of the verse, and repeated on account of the length of the clause.

Vincent: Eph 1:13 - Ye were sealed Ye were sealed ( ἐσφραγίσθητε ) See on Joh 3:33; see on Rev 22:10. Sealed with the assurance of the Holy Spirit. Rom 8:16; 2Co 1:...

Ye were sealed ( ἐσφραγίσθητε )

See on Joh 3:33; see on Rev 22:10. Sealed with the assurance of the Holy Spirit. Rom 8:16; 2Co 1:22; 2Ti 2:19.

Vincent: Eph 1:13 - Spirit of promise Spirit of promise Strictly, the promise. Denoting the promise as characteristic of the Holy Spirit: the Spirit which was announced by promise. ...

Spirit of promise

Strictly, the promise. Denoting the promise as characteristic of the Holy Spirit: the Spirit which was announced by promise. See Act 2:16 sqq.; Joe 2:28; Zec 12:10; Isa 32:15; Isa 44:3; Joh 7:39; Act 1:4-8; Gal 3:14.

Vincent: Eph 1:14 - Earnest Earnest See on 2Co 1:22.

Earnest

See on 2Co 1:22.

Vincent: Eph 1:14 - Unto the redemption, etc Unto the redemption, etc. Construe with ye were sealed .

Unto the redemption, etc.

Construe with ye were sealed .

Vincent: Eph 1:14 - Of the purchased possession Of the purchased possession ( τῆς περιποιήσεως ) See on peculiar , 1Pe 2:9. The word originally means a making to rema...

Of the purchased possession ( τῆς περιποιήσεως )

See on peculiar , 1Pe 2:9. The word originally means a making to remain over and above ; hence preservation ; preservation for one's self ; acquisition ; the thing acquired , or a possession . Used here collectively for the people possessed , as the circumcision for those circumcised , Phi 3:3; the election for those chosen , Rom 11:7. Rev., God's own possession , God's own being inserted for the sake of clearness. Compare Isa 43:21; Act 20:28; Tit 2:14.

Vincent: Eph 1:14 - Unto the praise of His glory Unto the praise of His glory Construe with ye were sealed: Ye were sealed unto the redemption , etc.; setting forth God's purpos...

Unto the praise of His glory

Construe with ye were sealed: Ye were sealed unto the redemption , etc.; setting forth God's purpose as it contemplates man. Ye were sealed unto the praise of His glory ; God's purpose as it respects Himself.

Vincent: Eph 1:15 - Your faith Your faith ( τὴν καθ ' ὑμᾶς πίστιν ) The Greek phrase is nowhere else used by Paul. Lit., as Rev., the faith which ...

Your faith ( τὴν καθ ' ὑμᾶς πίστιν )

The Greek phrase is nowhere else used by Paul. Lit., as Rev., the faith which is among you . Expositors endeavor to make a distinction between this and Paul's common phrase ἡ πίστις ὑμῶν your faith , but they differ widely, and the distinction is at best doubtful.

Vincent: Eph 1:15 - Love Love Omit.

Love

Omit.

Vincent: Eph 1:15 - Unto all the saints Unto all the saints ( τὴν εἰς πάντας τοὺς ἁγίους ) Lit., that which is toward all , etc. Love being ...

Unto all the saints ( τὴν εἰς πάντας τοὺς ἁγίους )

Lit., that which is toward all , etc. Love being omitted, this refers to faith: faith which displays its work and fruits toward fellow Christians. See on Phm 1:5, Phm 1:6. Compare work of faith , 1Th 1:3. Though love is not mentioned, yet faith works by love. Gal 5:6.

Vincent: Eph 1:16 - Making mention, etc Making mention, etc. As I make mention. The same expression occurs Rom 1:9; Phi 1:4; Phm 1:4.

Making mention, etc.

As I make mention. The same expression occurs Rom 1:9; Phi 1:4; Phm 1:4.

Vincent: Eph 1:17 - God of our Lord Jesus Christ God of our Lord Jesus Christ Compare Joh 20:17; Mat 27:46, and see on Eph 1:3.

God of our Lord Jesus Christ

Compare Joh 20:17; Mat 27:46, and see on Eph 1:3.

Vincent: Eph 1:17 - Father of glory Father of glory ( ὁ πατὴρ τῆς δόξης ) The Father to whom the glory belongs. Note the article, the glory, preeminently. ...

Father of glory ( ὁ πατὴρ τῆς δόξης )

The Father to whom the glory belongs. Note the article, the glory, preeminently. Compare Act 7:2; 1Co 2:8. See Psa 18:3, " who is worthy to be praised;" where the Hebrew is is praised . The exact phrase has no parallel in Scripture.

Vincent: Eph 1:17 - The Spirit of wisdom and revelation The Spirit of wisdom and revelation Spirit has not the article, but the reference is to the Holy Spirit. Compare Mat 12:28; Luk 1:15, Luk 1:35,...

The Spirit of wisdom and revelation

Spirit has not the article, but the reference is to the Holy Spirit. Compare Mat 12:28; Luk 1:15, Luk 1:35, Luk 1:41; Rom 1:4; 1Pe 1:2. Wisdom and revelation are special forms of the Spirit's operation. He imparts general illumination (wisdom) and special revelations of divine mysteries. The combination of two words with an advance in thought from the general to the special is characteristic of Paul. Compare grace and apostleship , Rom 1:5; gifts and calling , Rom 11:29; wisdom and prudence , Eph 1:8, wisdom and knowledge , Col 2:3.

Vincent: Eph 1:17 - In the knowledge of Him In the knowledge of Him ( ἐν ἐπιγνώσει αὐτοῦ ) The sphere in which they will receive God's gift of wisdom and revelatio...

In the knowledge of Him ( ἐν ἐπιγνώσει αὐτοῦ )

The sphere in which they will receive God's gift of wisdom and revelation. To know God is to be wise. The condition is not merely acknowledgment , but knowledge . Ἑπίγνωσις knowledge is never ascribed to God in the New Testament. Of Him refers to God.

Vincent: Eph 1:18 - The eyes of your understanding being enlightened The eyes of your understanding being enlightened ( πεφωτισμένους τοὺς ὀφθαλμοὺς τῆς καρδίας ὑμω...

The eyes of your understanding being enlightened ( πεφωτισμένους τοὺς ὀφθαλμοὺς τῆς καρδίας ὑμῶν )

Rev., eyes of your heart . Lit., being enlightened as to the eyes of your heart ; enlightened being joined with you (Eph 1:17) by a somewhat irregular construction: may give unto you being enlightened . For a similar construction see Act 15:22. The phrase eyes of the heart occurs nowhere else in the New Testament. Plato has eye of the soul (ψυχῆς , " Sophist," 254). Ovid, speaking of Pythagoras, says: " With his mind he approached the gods, though far removed in heaven, and what nature denied to human sight, he drew forth with the eyes of his heart" (" Metamorphoses," xv., 62-64). Heart is not merely the seat of emotion , as in popular usage, but of thought and will . See on Rom 1:21. The particular aspect in which its activity is viewed, perception or cognition, is determined by what follows, " that ye may know," etc.

Vincent: Eph 1:18 - Hope of His calling Hope of His calling Hope , not, as sometimes, the thing hoped for , but the sentiment or principle of hope which God's calling inspires...

Hope of His calling

Hope , not, as sometimes, the thing hoped for , but the sentiment or principle of hope which God's calling inspires.

Vincent: Eph 1:18 - The riches of the glory of His inheritance The riches of the glory of His inheritance Ellicott remarks that this is a noble accumulation of genitives, " setting forth the inheritance on th...

The riches of the glory of His inheritance

Ellicott remarks that this is a noble accumulation of genitives, " setting forth the inheritance on the side of its glory, and the glory on the side of its riches." Glory is the essential characteristic of salvation, and this glory is richly abounding. His inheritance: which is His, and His gift.

Vincent: Eph 1:19 - Exceeding Exceeding ( ὑπερβάλλον ) Compounds with ὑπέρ over , beyond , are characteristic of Paul's intensity of style, and mark th...

Exceeding ( ὑπερβάλλον )

Compounds with ὑπέρ over , beyond , are characteristic of Paul's intensity of style, and mark the struggle of language with the immensity of the divine mysteries, and the opulence of the divine grace. See Eph 1:21; Eph 3:20; 2Co 4:17, etc.

Vincent: Eph 1:19 - According to the working of His mighty power According to the working of His mighty power ( κατὰ τὴν ἐνέργειαν τοῦ κράτους τῆς ἰσχύος αὐ...

According to the working of His mighty power ( κατὰ τὴν ἐνέργειαν τοῦ κράτους τῆς ἰσχύος αὐτοῦ )

The A.V. frequently impairs the force of a passage by combining into a single conception two words which represent distinct ideas; translating two nouns by an adjective and a noun. Thus Phi 3:21, vile body , glorious body , for body of humiliation , body of glory: Rom 8:21, glorious liberty , for liberty of the glory: 2Co 4:4, glorious gospel , for gospel of the glory: Col 1:11, glorious power , for power of the glory: 1Pe 1:14, obedient children , for children of obedience: 2Pe 2:14, cursed children , for children of cursing . So here, mighty power , for strength of might . The idea is thus diluted, and the peculiar force and distinction of the separate words is measurably lost. Rev., correctly, working of the strength of His might . For working , see on Col 1:29. For strength and might , see on 2Pe 2:11; see on Joh 1:12. Strength (κράτους ) is used only of God, and denotes relative and manifested power. Might (ἰσχύος ) is indwelling strength. Working (ἐνέργειαν ) is the active, efficient manifestation of these. Hence we have here God's indwelling power, which inheres in the divine nature ( strength ); the relative quality or measure of this power ( might ); and the efficient exertion of the divine quality ( working ). The phrase, according to the working of the strength , etc., is to be connected with the exceeding greatness of His power . The magnitude of God's power toward believers is known in the operation of the strength of His might.

Vincent: Eph 1:20 - Which Which ( ἣν ) Refer to working (Eph 1:19).

Which ( ἣν )

Refer to working (Eph 1:19).

Vincent: Eph 1:20 - He wrought He wrought ( ἐνήργησεν ) The best texts read ἐνήργηκεν , perfect tense, He hath wrought . The verb is kindred with...

He wrought ( ἐνήργησεν )

The best texts read ἐνήργηκεν , perfect tense, He hath wrought . The verb is kindred with working (Eph 1:19).

Vincent: Eph 1:20 - In Christ In Christ In the case of Christ. Christ's dead body was the point on which this working of divine power was exhibited. See Rom 8:11; 2Co 4:14.

In Christ

In the case of Christ. Christ's dead body was the point on which this working of divine power was exhibited. See Rom 8:11; 2Co 4:14.

Vincent: Eph 1:20 - When He raised When He raised ( ἐγείρας ) Or, in that He raised .

When He raised ( ἐγείρας )

Or, in that He raised .

Vincent: Eph 1:20 - And set And set ( καὶ ἐκάθισεν ) Rev., made Him to sit . The best texts read καθίσας having seated , or in that ...

And set ( καὶ ἐκάθισεν )

Rev., made Him to sit . The best texts read καθίσας having seated , or in that He caused him to sit .

Vincent: Eph 1:20 - Right hand Right hand See Act 7:56.

Right hand

See Act 7:56.

Vincent: Eph 1:20 - In the heavenly places In the heavenly places See on Eph 1:2. Local. Not merely of a spiritual state, which does not suit the local expressions made to sit and r...

In the heavenly places

See on Eph 1:2. Local. Not merely of a spiritual state, which does not suit the local expressions made to sit and right hand .

Vincent: Eph 1:21 - Far above Far above ( ὑπεράνω ) Lit., over above . See on Eph 1:19. Connect with made Him to sit .

Far above ( ὑπεράνω )

Lit., over above . See on Eph 1:19. Connect with made Him to sit .

Vincent: Eph 1:21 - Principality, power, etc Principality, power, etc. These words usually refer to angelic powers; either good , as Eph 3:10; Col 1:16; Col 2:10; or bad , as Eph 6:12; 1Co...

Principality, power, etc.

These words usually refer to angelic powers; either good , as Eph 3:10; Col 1:16; Col 2:10; or bad , as Eph 6:12; 1Co 15:24; Col 2:15; or both , as Rom 8:38. See on Col 1:16; see on Col 2:15. Here probably good , since the passage relates to Christ's exaltation to glory rather than to His victory over evil powers.

Vincent: Eph 1:21 - And every name that is named And every name that is named And has a collective and summary force - and in a word . Every name , etc. Whatever a name can be given ...

And every name that is named

And has a collective and summary force - and in a word . Every name , etc. Whatever a name can be given to. " Let any name be uttered, whatever it is, Christ is above it; is more exalted than that which the name so uttered affirms" (Meyer). Compare Phi 2:9. " We know that the emperor precedes all, though we cannot enumerate all the ministers of his court: so we know that Christ is placed above all, although we cannot name all" (Bengel).

Vincent: Eph 1:21 - Not only in this world, etc Not only in this world, etc. Connect with which is named . For world (αἰῶνι ), see on Joh 1:9.

Not only in this world, etc.

Connect with which is named . For world (αἰῶνι ), see on Joh 1:9.

Vincent: Eph 1:22 - Put all things in subjection Put all things in subjection Compare Col 1:15-18; Psa 8:5-8.

Put all things in subjection

Compare Col 1:15-18; Psa 8:5-8.

Vincent: Eph 1:22 - Gave Him Gave Him Him is emphatic: and Him He gave. Not merely set Him over the Church, but gave Him as a gift. See 2Co 9:15.

Gave Him

Him is emphatic: and Him He gave. Not merely set Him over the Church, but gave Him as a gift. See 2Co 9:15.

Vincent: Eph 1:22 - The Church The Church ( τῇ ἐκκλησίᾳ ) See on Mat 16:18.

The Church ( τῇ ἐκκλησίᾳ )

See on Mat 16:18.

Vincent: Eph 1:23 - Which is His body Which is His body ( ἥτις ) The double relative is explanatory, seeing it is: by which I mean . Body , a living organism of ...

Which is His body ( ἥτις )

The double relative is explanatory, seeing it is: by which I mean . Body , a living organism of which He is the head. See on Col 1:18.

Vincent: Eph 1:23 - The fullness The fullness See on Joh 1:16; see on Rom 11:12; see on Col 1:19. That which is filled. The Church, viewed as a receptacle. Compare Eph 3:10.

The fullness

See on Joh 1:16; see on Rom 11:12; see on Col 1:19. That which is filled. The Church, viewed as a receptacle. Compare Eph 3:10.

Vincent: Eph 1:23 - That filleth all in all That filleth all in all ( τὰ πάντα ἐν πᾶσιν πληρουμένου ) Better, that filleth all things with all ...

That filleth all in all ( τὰ πάντα ἐν πᾶσιν πληρουμένου )

Better, that filleth all things with all things . The expression is somewhat obscure. All things are composed of elements. Whatever things exist, God from His fullness fills with all those elements which belong to their being or welfare. The whole universe is thus filled by Him.

Wesley: Eph 1:1 - By the will of God Not by any merit of my own.

Not by any merit of my own.

Wesley: Eph 1:1 - To the saints who are at Ephesus And in all the adjacent places. For this epistle is not directed to the Ephesians only, but likewise to all the other churches of Asia.

And in all the adjacent places. For this epistle is not directed to the Ephesians only, but likewise to all the other churches of Asia.

Wesley: Eph 1:3 - Blessed be the God and Father of our Lord Jesus Christ, who hath blessed us God's blessing us is his bestowing all spiritual and heavenly blessings upon us. Our blessing God is the paying him our solemn and grateful acknowledg...

God's blessing us is his bestowing all spiritual and heavenly blessings upon us. Our blessing God is the paying him our solemn and grateful acknowledgments, both on account of his own essential blessedness, and of the blessings which he bestows upon us. He is the God of our Lord Jesus Christ, as man and Mediator: he is his Father, primarily, with respect to his divine nature, as his only begotten Son; and, secondarily, with respect to his human nature, as that is personally united to the divine.

Wesley: Eph 1:3 - With all spiritual blessings in heavenly things With all manner of spiritual blessings, which are heavenly in their nature, original, and tendency, and shall be completed in heaven: far different fr...

With all manner of spiritual blessings, which are heavenly in their nature, original, and tendency, and shall be completed in heaven: far different from the external privileges of the Jews, and the earthly blessings they expected from the Messiah.

Wesley: Eph 1:4 - As he hath chosen us Both Jews and gentiles, whom he foreknew as believing in Christ, 1Pe 1:2.

Both Jews and gentiles, whom he foreknew as believing in Christ, 1Pe 1:2.

Wesley: Eph 1:5 - Having predestinated us to the adoption of sons Having foreordained that all who afterwards believed should enjoy the dignity of being sons of God, and joint - heirs with Christ.

Having foreordained that all who afterwards believed should enjoy the dignity of being sons of God, and joint - heirs with Christ.

Wesley: Eph 1:5 - According to the good pleasure of his will According to his free, fixed, unalterable purpose to confer this blessing on all those who should believe in Christ, and those only.

According to his free, fixed, unalterable purpose to confer this blessing on all those who should believe in Christ, and those only.

Wesley: Eph 1:6 - To the praise of the glory of his grace His glorious, free love without any desert on our part.

His glorious, free love without any desert on our part.

Wesley: Eph 1:7 - By whom we Who believe.

Who believe.

Wesley: Eph 1:7 - Have From the moment we believe.

From the moment we believe.

Wesley: Eph 1:7 - Redemption From the guilt and power of sin.

From the guilt and power of sin.

Wesley: Eph 1:7 - Through his blood Through what he hath done and suffered for us.

Through what he hath done and suffered for us.

Wesley: Eph 1:7 - According to the riches of his grace According to the abundant overflowings of his free mercy and favour.

According to the abundant overflowings of his free mercy and favour.

Wesley: Eph 1:8 - In all wisdom Manifested by God in the whole scheme of our salvation.

Manifested by God in the whole scheme of our salvation.

Wesley: Eph 1:8 - And prudence Which be hath wrought in us, that we may know and do all his acceptable and perfect will.

Which be hath wrought in us, that we may know and do all his acceptable and perfect will.

Wesley: Eph 1:9 - Having made known to us By his word and by his Spirit.

By his word and by his Spirit.

Wesley: Eph 1:9 - The mystery of his will The gracious scheme of salvation by faith, which depends on his own sovereign will alone. This was but darkly discovered under the law; is now totally...

The gracious scheme of salvation by faith, which depends on his own sovereign will alone. This was but darkly discovered under the law; is now totally hid from unbelievers; and has heights and depths which surpass all the knowledge even of true believers.

Wesley: Eph 1:10 - That in the dispensation of the fullness of the times In this last administration of God's fullest grace, which took place when the time appointed was fully come.

In this last administration of God's fullest grace, which took place when the time appointed was fully come.

Wesley: Eph 1:10 - He might gather together into one in Christ Might recapitulate, re - unite, and place in order again under Christ, their common Head. All things which are in heaven, and on earth - All angels an...

Might recapitulate, re - unite, and place in order again under Christ, their common Head. All things which are in heaven, and on earth - All angels and men, whether living or dead, in the Lord.

Wesley: Eph 1:11 - Through whom we Jews.

Jews.

Wesley: Eph 1:11 - Also have obtained an inheritance The glorious inheritance of the heavenly Canaan, to which, when believers, we were predestinated according to the purpose of him that worketh all thin...

The glorious inheritance of the heavenly Canaan, to which, when believers, we were predestinated according to the purpose of him that worketh all things after the counsel of his own will - The unalterable decree, "He that believeth shall be delivered;" which will is not an arbitrary will, but flowing from the rectitude of his nature, else, what security would there be that it would be his will to keep his word even with the elect?

Wesley: Eph 1:12 - That we Jews.

Jews.

Wesley: Eph 1:12 - Who first believed Before the gentiles. So did some of them in every place. Here is another branch of the true gospel predestination: he that believes is not only electe...

Before the gentiles. So did some of them in every place. Here is another branch of the true gospel predestination: he that believes is not only elected to salvation, (if he endures to the end,) but is fore - appointed of God to walk in holiness, to the praise of his glory.

Wesley: Eph 1:13 - In whom ye Gentiles. Likewise believed, after ye had heard the gospel - Which God made the means of your salvation; in whom after ye had believed - Probably some...

Gentiles. Likewise believed, after ye had heard the gospel - Which God made the means of your salvation; in whom after ye had believed - Probably some time after their first believing.

Wesley: Eph 1:13 - Ye were sealed by that Holy Spirit of promise Holy both in his nature and in his operations, and promised to all the children of God. The sealing seems to imply, A full impression of the image of ...

Holy both in his nature and in his operations, and promised to all the children of God. The sealing seems to imply, A full impression of the image of God on their souls. A full assurance of receiving all the promises, whether relating to time or eternity.

Wesley: Eph 1:14 - Who, thus sealing us, is an earnest Both a pledge and a foretaste of our inheritance.

Both a pledge and a foretaste of our inheritance.

Wesley: Eph 1:14 - Till the redemption of the purchased possession Till the church, which he has purchased with his own blood, shall be fully delivered from all sin and sorrow, and advanced to everlasting glory.

Till the church, which he has purchased with his own blood, shall be fully delivered from all sin and sorrow, and advanced to everlasting glory.

Wesley: Eph 1:14 - To the praise of his glory Of his glorious wisdom, power, and mercy.

Of his glorious wisdom, power, and mercy.

Wesley: Eph 1:15 - Since I heard of your faith and love That is, of their perseverance and increase therein.

That is, of their perseverance and increase therein.

Wesley: Eph 1:16 - I cease not In all my solemn addresses to God. To give thanks for you, making mention of you in my prayers - So he did of all the churches, Col 1:9.

In all my solemn addresses to God. To give thanks for you, making mention of you in my prayers - So he did of all the churches, Col 1:9.

Wesley: Eph 1:17 - That the Father of that infinite glory which shines in the face of Christ, from whom also we receive the glorious inheritance, Eph 1:18, may give you the Spirit of wisdom and revelation The same who is the Spirit of promise is also, in the progress of the faithful, the Spirit of wisdom and revelation; making them wise unto salvation, ...

The same who is the Spirit of promise is also, in the progress of the faithful, the Spirit of wisdom and revelation; making them wise unto salvation, and revealing to them the deep things of God. He is here speaking of that wisdom and revelation which are common to all real Christians.

Wesley: Eph 1:18 - The eyes of your understanding It is with these alone that we discern the things of God. Being first opened, and then enlightened - - By his Spirit.

It is with these alone that we discern the things of God. Being first opened, and then enlightened - - By his Spirit.

Wesley: Eph 1:18 - That ye may know what is the hope of his calling That ye may experimentally and delightfully know what are the blessings which God has called you to hope for by his word and his Spirit.

That ye may experimentally and delightfully know what are the blessings which God has called you to hope for by his word and his Spirit.

Wesley: Eph 1:18 - And what is the riches of the glory of his inheritance in the saints What an immense treasure of blessedness he hath provided as an inheritance for holy souls.

What an immense treasure of blessedness he hath provided as an inheritance for holy souls.

Wesley: Eph 1:19 - And what the exceeding greatness of his power toward us who believe Both in quickening our dead souls, and preserving them in spiritual life. According to the power which he exerted in Christ, raising him from the dead...

Both in quickening our dead souls, and preserving them in spiritual life. According to the power which he exerted in Christ, raising him from the dead - By the very same almighty power whereby he raised Christ; for no less would suffice.

Wesley: Eph 1:20 - And he hath seated him at his own right hand That is, he hath exalted him in his human nature, as a recompence for his sufferings, to a quiet, everlasting possession of all possible blessedness, ...

That is, he hath exalted him in his human nature, as a recompence for his sufferings, to a quiet, everlasting possession of all possible blessedness, majesty, and glory.

Wesley: Eph 1:21 - Far above all principality, and power, and might, and dominion That is, God hath invested him with uncontrollable authority over all demons in hell, all angels in heaven, and all the princes and potentates on eart...

That is, God hath invested him with uncontrollable authority over all demons in hell, all angels in heaven, and all the princes and potentates on earth.

Wesley: Eph 1:21 - And every name that is named We know the king is above all, though we cannot name all the officers of his court. So we know that Christ is above all, though we are not able to nam...

We know the king is above all, though we cannot name all the officers of his court. So we know that Christ is above all, though we are not able to name all his subjects. Not only in this world, but also in that which is to come - The world to come is so styled, not because it does not yet exist, but because it is not yet visible. Principalities and powers are named now; but those also who are not even named in this world, but shall be revealed in the world to come, are all subject to Christ.

Wesley: Eph 1:22 - And he hath given him to be head over all things to the church An head both of guidance and government, and likewise of life and influence, to the whole and every member of it. All these stand in the nearest union...

An head both of guidance and government, and likewise of life and influence, to the whole and every member of it. All these stand in the nearest union with him, and have as continual and effectual a communication of activity, growth, and strength from him, as the natural body from its head.

Wesley: Eph 1:23 - The fulness of him that filleth all in all It is hard to say in what sense this can be spoken of the church; but the sense is easy and natural, if we refer it to Christ, who is the fulness of t...

It is hard to say in what sense this can be spoken of the church; but the sense is easy and natural, if we refer it to Christ, who is the fulness of the Father.

JFB: Eph 1:1 - by Rather, "through the will of God": called to the apostleship through that same "will" which originated the Church (Eph 1:5, Eph 1:9, Eph 1:11; compare...

Rather, "through the will of God": called to the apostleship through that same "will" which originated the Church (Eph 1:5, Eph 1:9, Eph 1:11; compare Gal 1:4).

JFB: Eph 1:1 - which are at Ephesus (See Introduction.)

(See Introduction.)

JFB: Eph 1:1 - to the saints . . . and to the faithful The same persons are referred to by both designations, as the Greek proves: "to those who are saints, and faithful in Christ Jesus." The sanctificatio...

The same persons are referred to by both designations, as the Greek proves: "to those who are saints, and faithful in Christ Jesus." The sanctification by God is here put before man's faith. The twofold aspect of salvation is thus presented, God's grace in the first instance sanctifying us, (that is, setting us apart in His eternal purposes as holy unto Himself); and our faith, by God's gift, laying hold of salvation (2Th 2:13; 1Pe 1:2).

JFB: Eph 1:2 - -- (Rom 1:7; 1Co 1:3; 2Co 1:2; Gal 1:3).

JFB: Eph 1:3 - -- The doxologies in almost all the Epistles imply the real sense of grace experienced by the writers and their readers (1Pe 1:3). Eph 1:3-14 sets forth ...

The doxologies in almost all the Epistles imply the real sense of grace experienced by the writers and their readers (1Pe 1:3). Eph 1:3-14 sets forth summarily the Gospel of the grace of God: the FATHER'S work of love, Eph 1:3 (choosing us to holiness, Eph 1:4; to sonship, Eph 1:5; to acceptance, Eph 1:6): the SON'S, Eph 1:7 (redemption, Eph 1:7; knowledge of the mystery of His will, Eph 1:9; an inheritance, Eph 1:11); the HOLY SPIRIT'S, Eph 1:13 (sealing, Eph 1:13; giving an earnest of the inheritance, Eph 1:14).

JFB: Eph 1:3 - the God and Father of . . . Christ And so the God and Father of us who are in Him (Joh 20:17). God is "the God" of the man Jesus, and "the Father" of the Divine Word. The Greek is, "Ble...

And so the God and Father of us who are in Him (Joh 20:17). God is "the God" of the man Jesus, and "the Father" of the Divine Word. The Greek is, "Blessed us," not "hath blessed us"; referring to the past original counsel of God. As in creation (Gen 1:22) so in redemption (Gen 12:3; Mat 5:3-11; Mat 25:34) God "blesses" His children; and that not in mere words, but in acts.

JFB: Eph 1:3 - us All Christians.

All Christians.

JFB: Eph 1:3 - blessings Greek, "blessing." "All," that is, "every possible blessing for time and eternity, which the Spirit has to bestow" (so "spiritual" means; not "spiritu...

Greek, "blessing." "All," that is, "every possible blessing for time and eternity, which the Spirit has to bestow" (so "spiritual" means; not "spiritual," as the term is now used, as opposed to bodily).

JFB: Eph 1:3 - in heavenly places A phrase five times found in this Epistle, and not elsewhere (Eph 1:20; Eph 2:6; Eph 3:10; Eph 6:12); Greek, "in the heavenly places." Christ's ascens...

A phrase five times found in this Epistle, and not elsewhere (Eph 1:20; Eph 2:6; Eph 3:10; Eph 6:12); Greek, "in the heavenly places." Christ's ascension is the means of introducing us into the heavenly places, which by our sin were barred against us. Compare the change made by Christ (Col 1:20; Eph 1:20). While Christ in the flesh was in the form of a servant, God's people could not realize fully their heavenly privileges as sons. Now "our citizenship (Greek) is in heaven" (Phi 3:20), where our High Priest is ever "blessing" us. Our "treasures" are there (Mat 6:20-21); our aims and affections (Col 3:1-2); our hope (Col 1:5; Tit 2:13); our inheritance (1Pe 1:4). The gift of the Spirit itself, the source of the "spiritual blessing," is by virtue of Jesus having ascended thither (Eph 4:8).

JFB: Eph 1:3 - in Christ The center and source of all blessing to us.

The center and source of all blessing to us.

JFB: Eph 1:4 - hath chosen us Greek, "chose us out for Himself" (namely, out of the world, Gal 1:4): referring to His original choice, spoken of as past.

Greek, "chose us out for Himself" (namely, out of the world, Gal 1:4): referring to His original choice, spoken of as past.

JFB: Eph 1:4 - in him The repetition of the idea, "in Christ" (Eph 1:3), implies the paramount importance of the truth that it is in Him, and by virtue of union to Him, the...

The repetition of the idea, "in Christ" (Eph 1:3), implies the paramount importance of the truth that it is in Him, and by virtue of union to Him, the Second Adam, the Restorer ordained for us from everlasting, the Head of redeemed humanity, believers have all their blessings (Eph 3:11).

JFB: Eph 1:4 - before the foundation of the world This assumes the eternity of the Son of God (Joh 17:5, Joh 17:24), as of the election of believers in Him (2Ti 1:9; 2Th 2:13).

This assumes the eternity of the Son of God (Joh 17:5, Joh 17:24), as of the election of believers in Him (2Ti 1:9; 2Th 2:13).

JFB: Eph 1:4 - that we should be holy Positively (Deu 14:2).

Positively (Deu 14:2).

JFB: Eph 1:4 - without blame Negatively (Eph 5:27; 1Th 3:13).

Negatively (Eph 5:27; 1Th 3:13).

JFB: Eph 1:4 - before him It is to Him the believer looks, walking as in His presence, before whom he looks to be accepted in the judgment (Col 1:22; compare Rev 7:15).

It is to Him the believer looks, walking as in His presence, before whom he looks to be accepted in the judgment (Col 1:22; compare Rev 7:15).

JFB: Eph 1:4 - in love Joined by BENGEL and others with Eph 1:5, "in love having predestinated us," &c. But English Version is better. The words qualify the whole clause, "t...

Joined by BENGEL and others with Eph 1:5, "in love having predestinated us," &c. But English Version is better. The words qualify the whole clause, "that we should be holy . . . before Him." Love, lost to man by the fall, but restored by redemption, is the root and fruit and sum of all holiness (Eph 5:2; 1Th 3:12-13).

JFB: Eph 1:5 - predestinated More special in respect to the end and precise means, than "chosen" or elected. We are "chosen" out of the rest of the world; "predestinated" to all t...

More special in respect to the end and precise means, than "chosen" or elected. We are "chosen" out of the rest of the world; "predestinated" to all things that secure the inheritance for us (Eph 1:11; Rom 8:29). "Foreordained."

JFB: Eph 1:5 - by Jesus Greek, "through Jesus."

Greek, "through Jesus."

JFB: Eph 1:5 - to himself The Father (Col 1:20). ALFORD explains, "adoption . . . into Himself," that is, so that we should be partakers of the divine nature (2Pe 1:4). LACHMAN...

The Father (Col 1:20). ALFORD explains, "adoption . . . into Himself," that is, so that we should be partakers of the divine nature (2Pe 1:4). LACHMANN reads, "unto Him." The context favors the explanation of CALVIN: God has regard to Himself and the glory of His grace (Eph 1:6, Eph 1:12, Eph 1:14) as His ultimate end. He had one only-begotten Son, and He was pleased for His own glory, to choose out of a lost world many to become His adopted sons. Translate, "unto Himself."

JFB: Eph 1:5 - the good pleasure of his will So the Greek (Mat 11:26; Luk 10:21). We cannot go beyond "the good pleasure of His will" in searching into the causes of our salvation, or of any of H...

So the Greek (Mat 11:26; Luk 10:21). We cannot go beyond "the good pleasure of His will" in searching into the causes of our salvation, or of any of His works (Eph 1:9). (Job 33:13.) Why needest thou philosophize about an imaginary world of optimism? Thy concern is to take heed that thou be not bad. There was nothing in us which deserved His love (Eph 1:1, Eph 1:9, Eph 1:11) [BENGEL].

JFB: Eph 1:6 - -- (Eph 1:7, Eph 1:17-18). The end aimed at (Psa 50:23), that is, that the glory of His grace may be praised by all His creatures, men and angels.

(Eph 1:7, Eph 1:17-18). The end aimed at (Psa 50:23), that is, that the glory of His grace may be praised by all His creatures, men and angels.

JFB: Eph 1:6 - wherein Some of the oldest manuscripts read, "which." Then translate, "which He graciously bestowed on us." But English Version is supported by good manuscrip...

Some of the oldest manuscripts read, "which." Then translate, "which He graciously bestowed on us." But English Version is supported by good manuscripts and the oldest versions.

JFB: Eph 1:6 - us accepted A kindred Greek word to "grace": charitos, echaritosen: translate, "graciously accepted"; "made us subjects of His grace"; "embraced us in the arms of...

A kindred Greek word to "grace": charitos, echaritosen: translate, "graciously accepted"; "made us subjects of His grace"; "embraced us in the arms of His grace" (Rom 3:24; Rom 5:15).

JFB: Eph 1:6 - in the beloved Pre-eminently so called (Mat 3:17; Mat 17:5; Joh 3:35; Col 1:13). Greek, "Son of His love." It is only "IN HIS BELOVED" that He loves us (Eph 1:3; 1Jo...

Pre-eminently so called (Mat 3:17; Mat 17:5; Joh 3:35; Col 1:13). Greek, "Son of His love." It is only "IN HIS BELOVED" that He loves us (Eph 1:3; 1Jo 4:9-10).

JFB: Eph 1:7 - In whom "the Beloved" (Eph 1:6; Rom 3:24).

"the Beloved" (Eph 1:6; Rom 3:24).

JFB: Eph 1:7 - we have As a present possession.

As a present possession.

JFB: Eph 1:7 - redemption Greek, "our (literally, 'the') redemption"; THE redemption which is the grand subject of all revelation, and especially of the New Testament (Rom 3:24...

Greek, "our (literally, 'the') redemption"; THE redemption which is the grand subject of all revelation, and especially of the New Testament (Rom 3:24), namely, from the power, guilt, and penal consequences of sin (Mat 1:21). If a man were unable to redeem himself from being a bond-servant, his kinsman might redeem him (Lev 25:48). Hence, antitypically the Son of God became the Son of man, that as our kinsman He might redeem us (Mat 20:28). Another "redemption" follows, namely, that "of the purchased possession" hereafter (Eph 1:14).

JFB: Eph 1:7 - through his blood (Eph 2:13); as the instrument; the propitiation, that is, the consideration (devised by His own love) for which He, who was justly angry (Isa 12:1), ...

(Eph 2:13); as the instrument; the propitiation, that is, the consideration (devised by His own love) for which He, who was justly angry (Isa 12:1), becomes propitious to us; the expiation, the price paid to divine justice for our sin (Act 20:28; Rom 3:25; 1Co 6:20; Col 1:20; 1Pe 1:18-19).

JFB: Eph 1:7 - the forgiveness of sins Greek, "the remission of our transgressions": not merely "pretermission," as the Greek (Rom 3:25) ought to be translated. This "remission," being the ...

Greek, "the remission of our transgressions": not merely "pretermission," as the Greek (Rom 3:25) ought to be translated. This "remission," being the explanation of "redemption," includes not only deliverance from sin's penalty, but from its pollution and enslaving power, negatively; and the reconciliation of an offended God, and a satisfaction unto a just God, positively.

JFB: Eph 1:7 - riches of his grace (Eph 2:7); "the exceeding riches of His grace." Compare Eph 1:18; Eph 3:16, "according to the riches of His glory": so that "grace" is His "glory."

(Eph 2:7); "the exceeding riches of His grace." Compare Eph 1:18; Eph 3:16, "according to the riches of His glory": so that "grace" is His "glory."

JFB: Eph 1:8 - -- Rather, "which He made to abound towards us."

Rather, "which He made to abound towards us."

JFB: Eph 1:8 - all wisdom and prudence "wisdom" in devising the plan of redeeming mankind; "prudence" in executing it by the means, and in making all the necessary arrangements of Providenc...

"wisdom" in devising the plan of redeeming mankind; "prudence" in executing it by the means, and in making all the necessary arrangements of Providence for that purpose. Paul attributes to the Gospel of God's grace "all" possible "wisdom and prudence," in opposition to the boasts of wisdom and prudence which the unbelieving Jews and heathen philosophers and false apostles arrogated for their teachings. Christ crucified, though esteemed "foolishness" by the world, is "the wisdom of God" (1Co 1:18-30). Compare Eph 3:10, "the manifold wisdom of God."

JFB: Eph 1:9 - -- "He hath abounded," or "made (grace) to abound toward us" (Eph 1:8), in that He made known to us, namely, experimentally, in our hearts.

"He hath abounded," or "made (grace) to abound toward us" (Eph 1:8), in that He made known to us, namely, experimentally, in our hearts.

JFB: Eph 1:9 - the mystery God's purpose of redemption hidden heretofore in His counsels, but now revealed (Eph 6:19; Rom 16:25; Col 1:26-27). This "mystery" is not like the hea...

God's purpose of redemption hidden heretofore in His counsels, but now revealed (Eph 6:19; Rom 16:25; Col 1:26-27). This "mystery" is not like the heathen mysteries, which were imparted only to the initiated few. All Christians are the initiated. Only unbelievers are the uninitiated.

JFB: Eph 1:9 - according to his good pleasure Showing the cause why "He hath made known to us the mystery," namely, His own loving "good pleasure" toward us; also the time and manner of His doing ...

Showing the cause why "He hath made known to us the mystery," namely, His own loving "good pleasure" toward us; also the time and manner of His doing so, are according to His good pleasure.

JFB: Eph 1:9 - purposed (Eph 1:11).

JFB: Eph 1:9 - in himself God the Father. BENGEL takes it, "in Him," that is, Christ, as in Eph 1:3-4. But the proper name, "in Christ," Eph 1:10, immediately after, is inconsi...

God the Father. BENGEL takes it, "in Him," that is, Christ, as in Eph 1:3-4. But the proper name, "in Christ," Eph 1:10, immediately after, is inconsistent with His being here meant by the pronoun.

JFB: Eph 1:10 - -- Translate, "Unto the dispensation of the fulness of the times," that is, "which He purposed in Himself" (Eph 1:9) with a view to the economy of (the g...

Translate, "Unto the dispensation of the fulness of the times," that is, "which He purposed in Himself" (Eph 1:9) with a view to the economy of (the gracious administration belonging to) the fulness of the times (Greek, "fit times," "seasons"). More comprehensive than "the fulness of the time" (Gal 4:4). The whole of the Gospel times (plural) is meant, with the benefits to the Church dispensed in them severally and successively. Compare "the ages to come" (Eph 2:7). "The ends of the ages" (Greek, 1Co 10:11); "the times (same Greek as here, 'the seasons,' or 'fitly appointed times') of the Gentiles" (Luk 21:24); "the seasons which the Father hath put in His own power" (Act 1:7); "the times of restitution of all things which God hath spoken by the prophets since the world began" (Act 3:20-21). The coming of Jesus at the first advent, "in the fulness of time," was one of these "times." The descent of the Holy Ghost, "when Pentecost was fully come" (Act 2:1), was another. The testimony given by the apostles to Him "in due time" ("in its own seasons," Greek) (1Ti 2:6) was another. The conversion of the Jews "when the times of the Gentiles are fulfilled," the second coming of Christ, the "restitution of all things," the millennial kingdom, the new heaven and earth, shall be severally instances of "the dispensation of the fulness of the times," that is, "the dispensation of" the Gospel events and benefits belonging to their respective "times," when severally filled up or completed. God the Father, according to His own good pleasure and purpose, is the Dispenser both of the Gospel benefits and of their several fitting times (Act 1:7).

JFB: Eph 1:10 - gather together in one Greek, "sum up under one head"; "recapitulate." The "good pleasure which He purposed," was "to sum up all things (Greek, 'THE whole range of things') ...

Greek, "sum up under one head"; "recapitulate." The "good pleasure which He purposed," was "to sum up all things (Greek, 'THE whole range of things') in Christ (Greek, 'the Christ,' that is, His Christ)" [ALFORD]. God's purpose is to sum up the whole creation in Christ, the Head of angels, with whom He is linked by His invisible nature, and of men with whom He is linked by His humanity; of Jews and Gentiles; of the living and the dead (Eph 3:15); of animate and inanimate creation. Sin has disarranged the creature's relation of subordination to God. God means to gather up all together in Christ; or as Col 1:20 says, "By Him to reconcile all things unto Himself, whether things in earth or things in heaven." ALFORD well says, "The Church of which the apostle here mainly treats, is subordinated to Him in the highest degree of conscious and joyful union; those who are not His spiritually, in mere subjugation, yet consciously; the inferior tribes of creation unconsciously; but objectively, all are summed up in Him."

JFB: Eph 1:11 - In whom By virtue of union to whom.

By virtue of union to whom.

JFB: Eph 1:11 - obtained an inheritance Literally, "We were made to have an inheritance" [WAHL]. Compare Eph 1:18, "His inheritance in the saints": as His inheritance is there said to be in ...

Literally, "We were made to have an inheritance" [WAHL]. Compare Eph 1:18, "His inheritance in the saints": as His inheritance is there said to be in them, so theirs is here said to be in Him (Act 26:18). However, Eph 1:12, "That we should BE TO . . . His glory" (not "that we should have"), favors the translation of BENGEL, ELLICOTT, and others, "We were made an inheritance." So the literal Israel (Deu 4:20; Deu 9:29; Deu 32:9). "Also" does not mean "we also," nor as English Version, "in whom also"; but, besides His having "made known to us His will," we were also "made His inheritance," or "we have also obtained an inheritance."

JFB: Eph 1:11 - predestinated (Eph 1:5). The foreordination of Israel, as the elect nation, answers to that of the spiritual Israelites, believers, to an eternal inheritance, whic...

(Eph 1:5). The foreordination of Israel, as the elect nation, answers to that of the spiritual Israelites, believers, to an eternal inheritance, which is the thing meant here. The "we" here and in Eph 1:12, means Jewish believers (whence the reference to the election of Israel nationally arises), as contrasted with "you" (Eph 1:13) Gentile believers.

JFB: Eph 1:11 - purpose Repeated from "purposed" (Eph 1:9; Eph 3:11). The Church existed in the mind of God eternally, before it existed in creation.

Repeated from "purposed" (Eph 1:9; Eph 3:11). The Church existed in the mind of God eternally, before it existed in creation.

JFB: Eph 1:11 - counsel of his . . . will (Eph 1:5), "the good pleasure of His will." Not arbitrary caprice, but infinite wisdom ("counsel") joined with sovereign will. Compare his address to...

(Eph 1:5), "the good pleasure of His will." Not arbitrary caprice, but infinite wisdom ("counsel") joined with sovereign will. Compare his address to the same Ephesians in Act 20:27, "All the counsel of God" (Isa 28:29). Alike in the natural and spiritual creations, God is not an agent constrained by necessity. "Wheresoever counsel is, there is election, or else it is vain; where a will, there must be freedom, or else it is weak" [PEARSON].

JFB: Eph 1:12 - -- (Eph 1:6, Eph 1:14).

JFB: Eph 1:12 - who first trusted in Christ Rather (we Jewish Christians), "who have before hoped in the Christ": who before the Christ came, looked forward to His coming, waiting for the consol...

Rather (we Jewish Christians), "who have before hoped in the Christ": who before the Christ came, looked forward to His coming, waiting for the consolation of Israel. Compare Act 26:6-7, "I am judged for the hope of the promise made of God unto our fathers: unto which our twelve tribes, instantly serving God day and night, hope to come." Act 28:20, "the hope of Israel" [ALFORD]. Compare Eph 1:18; Eph 2:12; Eph 4:4.

JFB: Eph 1:13 - In whom ye also Ye Gentiles. Supply as English Version, "trusted," from Eph 1:12; or "are." The priority of us Jews does not exclude you Gentiles from sharing in Chri...

Ye Gentiles. Supply as English Version, "trusted," from Eph 1:12; or "are." The priority of us Jews does not exclude you Gentiles from sharing in Christ (compare Act 13:46).

JFB: Eph 1:13 - the word of truth The instrument of sanctification, and of the new birth (Joh 17:17; 2Ti 2:15; Jam 1:18). Compare Col 1:5, where also, as here, it is connected with "ho...

The instrument of sanctification, and of the new birth (Joh 17:17; 2Ti 2:15; Jam 1:18). Compare Col 1:5, where also, as here, it is connected with "hope." Also Eph 4:21.

JFB: Eph 1:13 - sealed As God's confirmed children, by the Holy Spirit as the seal (Act 19:1-6; Rom 8:16, Rom 8:23; 1Jo 3:24; see on 2Co 1:22). A seal impressed on a documen...

As God's confirmed children, by the Holy Spirit as the seal (Act 19:1-6; Rom 8:16, Rom 8:23; 1Jo 3:24; see on 2Co 1:22). A seal impressed on a document gives undoubted validity to the contract in it (Joh 3:33; Joh 6:27; compare 2Co 3:3). So the sense of "the love of God shed abroad in the heart by the Holy Ghost" (Rom 5:5), and the sense of adoption given through the Spirit at regeneration (Rom 8:15-16), assure believers of God's good will to them. The Spirit, like a seal, impresses on the soul at regeneration the image of our Father. The "sealing" by the Holy Spirit is spoken of as past once for all. The witnessing to our hearts that we are the children of God, and heirs (Eph 1:11), is the Spirit's present testimony, the "earnest of the (coming) inheritance" (Rom 8:16-18).

JFB: Eph 1:13 - that Holy Spirit of promise Rather, as the Greek, "The Spirit of promise, even the Holy Spirit": The Spirit promised both in the Old and New Testaments (Joe 2:28; Zec 12:10; Joh ...

Rather, as the Greek, "The Spirit of promise, even the Holy Spirit": The Spirit promised both in the Old and New Testaments (Joe 2:28; Zec 12:10; Joh 7:38-39). "The word" promised the Holy Spirit. Those who "believed the word of truth" were sealed by the Spirit accordingly.

JFB: Eph 1:14 - earnest The first instalment paid as a pledge that the rest will follow (Rom 8:23; 2Co 1:22).

The first instalment paid as a pledge that the rest will follow (Rom 8:23; 2Co 1:22).

JFB: Eph 1:14 - until Rather, "Unto the redemption," &c.; joined thus, "ye were sealed (Eph 1:13) unto," that is, for the purpose of and against, the accomplishment of "the...

Rather, "Unto the redemption," &c.; joined thus, "ye were sealed (Eph 1:13) unto," that is, for the purpose of and against, the accomplishment of "the redemption," namely, not the redemption in its first stage, made by the blood of Christ, which secures our title, but, in its final completion, when the actual possession shall be ours, the full "redemption of the body" (Rom 8:23), as well as of the soul, from every infirmity (Eph 4:30). The deliverance of the creature (the body, and the whole visible creation) from the bondage of corruption, and from the usurping prince of this world, into the glorious liberty of the children of God (Rom 8:21-23; 2Pe 3:13).

JFB: Eph 1:14 - of the purchased possession God's people purchased ("acquired," Greek) as His peculiar (Greek) possession by the blood of Christ (Act 20:28). We value highly that which we pay a ...

God's people purchased ("acquired," Greek) as His peculiar (Greek) possession by the blood of Christ (Act 20:28). We value highly that which we pay a high price for; so God, His Church (Eph 5:25-26; 1Pe 1:18; 1Pe 2:9; "my special treasure," Mal 3:17, Margin).

JFB: Eph 1:15 - Wherefore Because ye are in Christ and sealed by His Spirit (Eph 1:13-14).

Because ye are in Christ and sealed by His Spirit (Eph 1:13-14).

JFB: Eph 1:15 - I also On my part, in return for God's so great benefits to you.

On my part, in return for God's so great benefits to you.

JFB: Eph 1:15 - after I heard Ever since I have heard. Not implying that he had only heard of their conversion: an erroneous argument used by some against the address of this Epist...

Ever since I have heard. Not implying that he had only heard of their conversion: an erroneous argument used by some against the address of this Epistle to the Ephesians (see on Eph 1:1); but referring to the report he had heard since he was with them, as to their Christian graces. So in the case of Philemon, his "beloved fellow laborer" (Phm 1:1), he uses the same words (Phm 1:4-5).

JFB: Eph 1:15 - your faith Rather, as Greek, "the faith among you," that is, which many (not all) of you have.

Rather, as Greek, "the faith among you," that is, which many (not all) of you have.

JFB: Eph 1:15 - love unto all the saints Of whatever name, simply because they are saints. A distinguishing characteristic of true Christianity (Eph 6:24). "Faith and love he often joins toge...

Of whatever name, simply because they are saints. A distinguishing characteristic of true Christianity (Eph 6:24). "Faith and love he often joins together. A wondrous pair" [CHRYSOSTOM]. Hope is added, Eph 1:18.

JFB: Eph 1:16 - -- (Col 1:9).

(Col 1:9).

JFB: Eph 1:16 - of you Omitted in the oldest manuscripts. Then the translation may be as English Version still, or as ALFORD, "making mention of them" (your "faith and love"...

Omitted in the oldest manuscripts. Then the translation may be as English Version still, or as ALFORD, "making mention of them" (your "faith and love").

JFB: Eph 1:17 - -- A fit prayer for all Christians.

A fit prayer for all Christians.

JFB: Eph 1:17 - the God of our Lord Jesus Appropriate title here; as in Eph 1:20-22 he treats of God's raising Jesus to be Head over all things to the Church. Jesus Himself called the Father "...

Appropriate title here; as in Eph 1:20-22 he treats of God's raising Jesus to be Head over all things to the Church. Jesus Himself called the Father "My God" (Mat 27:46).

JFB: Eph 1:17 - the Father of glory (Compare Act 7:2). The Father of that infinite glory which shines in the face of Christ, who is "the glory" (the true Shekinah); through whom also "th...

(Compare Act 7:2). The Father of that infinite glory which shines in the face of Christ, who is "the glory" (the true Shekinah); through whom also "the glory of the inheritance" (Eph 1:18) shall be ours (Joh 17:24; 2Co. 3:7-4:6).

JFB: Eph 1:17 - the spirit of wisdom Whose attribute is infinite wisdom and who works wisdom in believers (Isa 11:2).

Whose attribute is infinite wisdom and who works wisdom in believers (Isa 11:2).

JFB: Eph 1:17 - and revelation Whose function it is to reveal to believers spiritual mysteries (Joh 16:14-15; 1Co 2:10).

Whose function it is to reveal to believers spiritual mysteries (Joh 16:14-15; 1Co 2:10).

JFB: Eph 1:17 - in the knowledge Rather, as Greek (see on 1Co 13:12), "in the full knowledge of Him," namely, God.

Rather, as Greek (see on 1Co 13:12), "in the full knowledge of Him," namely, God.

JFB: Eph 1:18 - understanding The oldest manuscripts, versions, and Fathers, read "heart." Compare the contrary state of unbelieving, the heart being in fault (Eph 4:18; Mat 13:15)...

The oldest manuscripts, versions, and Fathers, read "heart." Compare the contrary state of unbelieving, the heart being in fault (Eph 4:18; Mat 13:15). Translate, "Having the eyes of your heart enlightened" (Eph 5:14; Mat 4:16). The first effect of the Spirit moving in the new creation, as in the original physical creation (Gen 1:3; 2Co 4:6). So THEOPHILUS to AUTOLYCUS (1.3), "the ears of the heart." Where spiritual light is, there is life (Joh 1:4). The heart is "the core of life" [HARLESS], and the fountain of the thoughts; whence "the heart" in Scripture includes the mind, as well as the inclination. Its "eye," or inward vision, both receives and contemplates the light (Mat 6:22-23). The eye is the symbol of intelligence (Eze 1:18).

JFB: Eph 1:18 - the hope of his calling The hope appertaining to His having called you; or, to the calling wherewith He has called you.

The hope appertaining to His having called you; or, to the calling wherewith He has called you.

JFB: Eph 1:18 - and Omitted in the oldest manuscripts and versions.

Omitted in the oldest manuscripts and versions.

JFB: Eph 1:18 - riches of the glory (Col 1:27).

JFB: Eph 1:18 - his inheritance in the saints The inheritance which he has in store in the case of the saints. I prefer explaining, "The inheritance which He has in his saints." (See on Eph 1:11; ...

The inheritance which he has in store in the case of the saints. I prefer explaining, "The inheritance which He has in his saints." (See on Eph 1:11; Deu 32:9).

JFB: Eph 1:19 - exceeding "surpassing."

"surpassing."

JFB: Eph 1:19 - power to us-ward who believe The whole of the working of His grace, which He is carrying on, and will carry on, in us who believe. By the term "saints" (Eph 1:18), believers are r...

The whole of the working of His grace, which He is carrying on, and will carry on, in us who believe. By the term "saints" (Eph 1:18), believers are regarded as absolutely perfected, and so as being God's inheritance; in this verse, as in the course of fighting the good fight of faith.

JFB: Eph 1:19 - according to In accordance wit,h, what might be expected from.

In accordance wit,h, what might be expected from.

JFB: Eph 1:19 - working Greek, "the energizing"; translate, "the effectual working" (Eph 3:7). The same superhuman power was needed and exerted to make us believe, as was nee...

Greek, "the energizing"; translate, "the effectual working" (Eph 3:7). The same superhuman power was needed and exerted to make us believe, as was needed and exerted to raise Christ from the dead (Eph 1:20). Compare Phi 3:10, "the power of His resurrection" (Col 2:12; 1Pe 1:3-5).

JFB: Eph 1:19 - of his mighty power Greek, "of the strength of His might."

Greek, "of the strength of His might."

JFB: Eph 1:20 - in Christ As our "first-fruits" of the resurrection, and Head, in virtue of God's mighty working in whom His power to us-ward is made possible and actual [ALFOR...

As our "first-fruits" of the resurrection, and Head, in virtue of God's mighty working in whom His power to us-ward is made possible and actual [ALFORD].

JFB: Eph 1:20 - when he raised him "in that He raised Him." The raising of Christ is not only an earnest of our bodies being hereafter raised, but has a spiritual power in it involving ...

"in that He raised Him." The raising of Christ is not only an earnest of our bodies being hereafter raised, but has a spiritual power in it involving (by virtue of our living union with Him, as members with the Head) the resurrection, spiritually of the believer's soul now, and, consequently, of his body hereafter (Rom 6:8-11; Rom 8:11). The Son, too, as God (though not as man), had a share in raising His own human body (Joh 2:19; Joh 10:17-18). Also the Holy Spirit (Rom 1:4; 1Pe 3:18).

JFB: Eph 1:20 - set him Greek, "made Him sit." The glorious spirits stand about the throne of God, but they do not sit at God's right hand (Heb 1:13).

Greek, "made Him sit." The glorious spirits stand about the throne of God, but they do not sit at God's right hand (Heb 1:13).

JFB: Eph 1:20 - at his own right hand (Psa 110:1). Where He remains till all His enemies have been put under His feet (1Co 15:24). Being appointed to "rule in the midst of His enemies" du...

(Psa 110:1). Where He remains till all His enemies have been put under His feet (1Co 15:24). Being appointed to "rule in the midst of His enemies" during their rebellion (Psa 110:2), He shall resign His commission after their subjection [PEARSON] (Mar 16:19; Heb 1:3; Heb 10:12).

JFB: Eph 1:20 - in the heavenly places (Eph 1:3). As Christ has a literal body, heaven is not merely a state, but a place; and where He is, there His people shall be (Joh 14:3).

(Eph 1:3). As Christ has a literal body, heaven is not merely a state, but a place; and where He is, there His people shall be (Joh 14:3).

JFB: Eph 1:21 - -- Greek, "Far (or high) above all (Eph 4:10) principality (or rule, 1Co 15:24), and authority, and power (Mat 28:18), and dominion (or lordship)." Compa...

Greek, "Far (or high) above all (Eph 4:10) principality (or rule, 1Co 15:24), and authority, and power (Mat 28:18), and dominion (or lordship)." Compare Phi 2:9; Col 1:16; Heb 7:26; 1Pe 3:22. Evil spirits (who are similarly divided into various ranks, Eph 6:12), as well as angels of light, and earthly potentates, are included (compare Rom 8:38). Jesus is "King of kings, and Lord of lords" (Rev 19:16). The higher is His honor, the greater is that of His people, who are His members joined to Him, the Head. Some philosophizing teachers of the school of Simon Magus, in Western Asia Minor, had, according to IRENÆUS and EPIPHANIUS, taught their hearers these names of various ranks of angels. Paul shows that the truest wisdom is to know Christ as reigning above them all.

JFB: Eph 1:21 - every name Every being whatever. "Any other creature" (Rom 8:39).

Every being whatever. "Any other creature" (Rom 8:39).

JFB: Eph 1:21 - in this world Greek, "age," that is, the present order of things. "Things present . . . things to come" (Rom 8:38).

Greek, "age," that is, the present order of things. "Things present . . . things to come" (Rom 8:38).

JFB: Eph 1:21 - that . . . to come "Names which now we know not, but shall know hereafter in heaven. We know that the emperor goes before all, though we cannot enumerate all the satraps...

"Names which now we know not, but shall know hereafter in heaven. We know that the emperor goes before all, though we cannot enumerate all the satraps and ministers of his court; so we know that Christ is set above all, although we cannot name them all" [BENGEL].

JFB: Eph 1:22 - put . . . under Greek, "put in subjection under" (Psa 8:6; 1Co 15:27).

Greek, "put in subjection under" (Psa 8:6; 1Co 15:27).

JFB: Eph 1:22 - gave . . . to the church For her special advantage. The Greek order is emphatic: "HIM He gave as Head over all things to the Church." Had it been anyone save HIM, her Head, it...

For her special advantage. The Greek order is emphatic: "HIM He gave as Head over all things to the Church." Had it been anyone save HIM, her Head, it would not have been the boon it is to the Church. But as He is Head over all things who is also her Head (and she the body), all things are hers (1Co 3:21-23). He is OVER ("far above") all things; in contrast to the words, "TO the Church," namely, for her advantage. The former are subject; the latter is joined with Him in His dominion over them. "Head" implies not only His dominion, but our union; therefore, while we look upon Him at the right hand of God, we see ourselves in heaven (Rev 3:21). For the Head and body are not severed by anything intervening, else the body would cease to be the body, and the Head cease to be the Head [PEARSON from CHRYSOSTOM].

JFB: Eph 1:23 - his body His mystical and spiritual, not literal, body. Not, however, merely figurative, or metaphorical. He is really, though spiritually, the Church's Head. ...

His mystical and spiritual, not literal, body. Not, however, merely figurative, or metaphorical. He is really, though spiritually, the Church's Head. His life is her life. She shares His crucifixion and His consequent glory. He possesses everything, His fellowship with the Father, His fulness of the Spirit, and His glorified manhood, not merely for Himself, but for her, who has a membership of His body, of His flesh, and of His bones (Eph 5:30).

JFB: Eph 1:23 - fulness "the filled-up receptacle" [EADIE]. The Church is dwelt in and filled by Christ. She is the receptacle, not of His inherent, but of His communicated, ...

"the filled-up receptacle" [EADIE]. The Church is dwelt in and filled by Christ. She is the receptacle, not of His inherent, but of His communicated, plenitude of gifts and graces. As His is the "fulness" (Joh 1:16; Col 1:19; Col 2:9) inherently, so she is His "fulness" by His impartation of it to her, in virtue of her union to Him (Eph 5:18; Col 2:10). "The full manifestation of His being, because penetrated by His life" [CONYBEARE and HOWSON]. She is the continued revelation of His divine life in human form; the fullest representative of His plenitude. Not the angelic hierarchy, as false teachers taught (Col 2:9-10, Col 2:18), but Christ Himself is the "fulness of the Godhead," and she represents Him. KOPPE translates less probably, "the whole universal multitude."

JFB: Eph 1:23 - filleth all in all Christ as the Creator, Preserver, and Governor of the world, constituted by God (Col 1:16-19), fills all the universe of things with all things. "Fill...

Christ as the Creator, Preserver, and Governor of the world, constituted by God (Col 1:16-19), fills all the universe of things with all things. "Fills all creation with whatever it possesses" [ALFORD]. The Greek is, "filleth for Himself."

Clarke: Eph 1:1 - To the saints which are at Ephesus To the saints which are at Ephesus - As some learned men think that this epistle was written to the Church of the Laodiceans, and that the words ε...

To the saints which are at Ephesus - As some learned men think that this epistle was written to the Church of the Laodiceans, and that the words εν Εφεσῳ, in Ephesus, were not originally in this epistle, the consideration of the subject has appeared to be more proper for the preface; and to that the reader is referred for a particular discussion of this opinion. By the term saints we are to understand those who in that place professed Christianity, and were members of the Christian Church. Saint properly signifies a holy person, and such the Gospel of Christ requires every man to be, and such every true believer is, both in heart and life; but saint appears to have been as ordinary a denomination of a believer in Christ in those primitive times, as the term Christian is now. Yet many had the name who had not the thing

Clarke: Eph 1:1 - The faithful in Christ Jesus The faithful in Christ Jesus - Πιστοις· the believers - the persons who received Christ as the promised Messiah, and the Savior of the wor...

The faithful in Christ Jesus - Πιστοις· the believers - the persons who received Christ as the promised Messiah, and the Savior of the world, and continued in the grace which they had received.

Clarke: Eph 1:2 - Grace be to you Grace be to you - See the note on Rom 1:7.

Grace be to you - See the note on Rom 1:7.

Clarke: Eph 1:3 - Blessed be the God Blessed be the God - See the note on 2Co 1:3, where the same form is used

Blessed be the God - See the note on 2Co 1:3, where the same form is used

Clarke: Eph 1:3 - With all spiritual blessings With all spiritual blessings - With the pure doctrines of the Gospel, and the abundant gifts and graces of the Holy Ghost, justifying, sanctifying, ...

With all spiritual blessings - With the pure doctrines of the Gospel, and the abundant gifts and graces of the Holy Ghost, justifying, sanctifying, and building us up on our most holy faith

Clarke: Eph 1:3 - In heavenly places In heavenly places - Εν τοις επουρανιοις· In heavenly things, such as those mentioned above; they were not yet in heavenly place...

In heavenly places - Εν τοις επουρανιοις· In heavenly things, such as those mentioned above; they were not yet in heavenly places, but they had abundance of heavenly things to prepare them for heavenly places. Some think the word should be understood as signifying blessings of the most exalted or excellent kind, such as are spiritual in opposition to those that are earthly, such as are eternal in opposition to those that are temporal; and all these in, through and by Christ. We have already seen, on Gal 4:26, that the heavenly Jerusalem, or Jerusalem which is from above, is used by the Jews to signify the days of the Messiah, and that state of grace and glory which should follow the Levitical worship and ceremonies; and it is possible that St. Paul may use the word επουρανια, heavenly things, in this sense: God hath blessed us with all spiritual blessings in heavenly things, or in this heavenly state, in which life and immortality are brought to light by the Gospel. This is apparently the preferable sense.

Clarke: Eph 1:4 - According as he hath chosen us in him According as he hath chosen us in him - As he has decreed from the beginning of the world, and has kept in view from the commencement of the religio...

According as he hath chosen us in him - As he has decreed from the beginning of the world, and has kept in view from the commencement of the religious system of the Jews, (which the phrase sometimes means), to bring us Gentiles to the knowledge of this glorious state of salvation by Christ Jesus. The Jews considered themselves an elect or chosen people, and wished to monopolize the whole of the Divine love and beneficence. The apostle here shows that God had the Gentiles as much in the contemplation of his mercy and goodness as he had the Jews; and the blessings of the Gospel, now so freely dispensed to them, were the proof that God had thus chosen them, and that his end in giving them the Gospel was the same which he had in view by giving the law to the Jews, viz. that they might be holy and without blame before him. And as his object was the same in respect to them both, they should consider that, as he loved them, so they should love one another: God having provided for each the same blessings, they should therefore be ἁγιους, holy - fully separated from earth and sin, and consecrated to God and αμωμους, without blame - having no spot nor imperfection, their inward holiness agreeing with their outward consecration. The words are a metaphor taken from the perfect and immaculate sacrifices which the law required the people to bring to the altar of God. But as love is the fulfilling of the law, and love the fountain whence their salvation flowed, therefore love must fill their hearts towards God and each other, and love must be the motive and end of all their words and works.

Clarke: Eph 1:5 - Having predestinated us Having predestinated us - Προορισας . As the doctrine of eternal predestination has produced much controversy in the Christian world, it m...

Having predestinated us - Προορισας . As the doctrine of eternal predestination has produced much controversy in the Christian world, it may be necessary to examine the meaning of the term, that those who do use it may employ it according to the sense it has in the oracles of God. The verb προοριζω, from προ, before, and ὁριζω, I define, finish, bound, or terminate, whence ὁρος, a boundary or limit, signifies to define beforehand, and circumscribe by certain bounds or limits; and is originally a geographical term, but applied also to any thing concluded, or determined, or demonstrated. Here the word is used to point out God’ s fixed purpose or predetermination to bestow on the Gentiles the blessing of the adoption of sons by Jesus Christ, which adoption had been before granted to the Jewish people; and without circumcision, or any other Mosaic rite, to admit the Gentiles to all the privileges of his Church and people. And the apostle marks that all this was fore-determined by God, as he had fore-determined the bounds and precincts of the land which he gave them according to the promise made to their fathers; that the Jews had no reason to complain, for God had formed this purpose before he had given the law, or called them out of Egypt; (for it was before the foundation of the world, Eph 1:4); and that, therefore, the conduct of God in calling the Gentiles now - bringing them into his Church, and conferring on them the gifts and graces of the Holy Spirit, was in pursuance of his original design; and, if he did not do so, his eternal purposes could not be fulfilled; and that, as the Jews were taken to be his peculiar people, not because they had any goodness or merit in themselves; so the Gentiles were called, not for any merit they had, but according to the good pleasure of his will; that is, according to his eternal benevolence, showing mercy and conferring privileges in this new creation, as he had done in the original creation; for as, in creating man, he drew every consideration from his own innate eternal benevolence, so now, in redeeming man, and sending the glad tidings of salvation both to the Jews and the Gentiles, be acted on the same principles, deriving all the reasons of his conduct from his own infinite goodness

This argument was exceedingly conclusive, and must silence the Jews on the ground of their original, primitive, and exclusive rights, which they were ever ready to plead against all pretensions of the Gentiles. If therefore God, before the foundation of the Jewish economy, had determined that the Gentiles, in the fullness of time, should be called to and admitted into all the privileges of the Messiah’ s kingdom, then the exclusive salvation of the Jews was chimerical; and what God was doing now, by the preaching of the apostles in the Gentile world, was in pursuance of his original design. This same argument St. Paul repeatedly produces in his Epistle to the Romans; and a proper consideration of it unlocks many difficulties in that epistle. See the notes on Rom 8:29, Rom 8:30 (note); and elsewhere, in the course of that epistle, where this subject is handled. But why is the word προορισας, fore-determined, limited, or circumscribed, used here? Merely in reference to the settlement of the Israelites in the promised land. God assigned to them the portions which they were to inherit; and these portions were described, and their bearings, boundaries, vicinities to other portions, extent and length, as exactly ascertained as they could be by the most correct geographical map. As God, therefore, had dealt with the Jews in making them his peculiar people, and when he divided the earth among the sons of Noah reserved to himself the twelve portions which he afterwards gave to the twelve tribes; (see on Deu 32:8 (note)); and as his dealings with them were typical of what he intended to do in the calling and salvation of the Gentiles; so he uses the terms by which their allotment and settlement were pointed out to show that, what he had thus designed and typified, he had now fulfilled according to the original predetermination; the Gentiles having now the spiritual inheritance which God had pointed out by the grant made of the promised land to the children of Israel. This is the grand key by which this predestination business is unlocked. See on Eph 1:11 (note).

Clarke: Eph 1:6 - To the praise of the glory of his grace To the praise of the glory of his grace - Δοξης της χαριτος αὑτου· The glory of his grace, for χαρις ενδοξος, ...

To the praise of the glory of his grace - Δοξης της χαριτος αὑτου· The glory of his grace, for χαρις ενδοξος, his glorious or illustrious grace, according to the Hebrew idiom. But the grace or mercy of God is peculiarly illustrated and glorified in the plan of redemption by Christ Jesus. By the giving of the Law, God’ s justice and holiness were rendered most glorious; by the giving of the Gospel, his grace and mercy are made equally conspicuous

Clarke: Eph 1:6 - Wherein he hath made us accepted in the Beloved Wherein he hath made us accepted in the Beloved - This translation of εν ᾑ εχαριτωσεν ἡμας εν τῳ Ηγαπημενῳ ...

Wherein he hath made us accepted in the Beloved - This translation of εν ᾑ εχαριτωσεν ἡμας εν τῳ Ηγαπημενῳ is not clear; with which he has graciously favored us through the Beloved, is at once more literal and more intelligible. Whitby, Macknight, and Wakefield translate the passage in nearly the same way

In the Beloved must certainly mean in Christ, who is termed God’ s beloved Son, Mat 3:17; but several excellent MSS., such as D*EFG, the later Syriac, the Ethiopic, Vulgate, Itala, with several of the fathers, add, υιῳ αυτου, his beloved Son. This is the meaning, whether the reading be received or rejected.

Clarke: Eph 1:7 - In whom we have redemption In whom we have redemption - God has glorified his grace by giving us redemption by the blood of his Son, and this redemption consists in forgiving ...

In whom we have redemption - God has glorified his grace by giving us redemption by the blood of his Son, and this redemption consists in forgiving and delivering us from our sins; so then Christ’ s blood was the redemption price paid down for our salvation: and this was according to the riches of his grace; as his grace is rich or abundant in benevolence, so it was manifested in beneficence to mankind, in their redemption by the sacrifice of Christ, the measure of redeeming grace being the measure of God’ s own eternal goodness

It may not be useless to remark that, instead of της χαριτος αυτου, his grace, the Codex Alexandrinus and the Coptic version have της χρηστοτητος, his goodness.

Clarke: Eph 1:8 - Wherein he hath abounded Wherein he hath abounded - That is, in the dispensation of mercy and goodness by Christ Jesus

Wherein he hath abounded - That is, in the dispensation of mercy and goodness by Christ Jesus

Clarke: Eph 1:8 - In all wisdom and prudence In all wisdom and prudence - Giving us apostles the most complete instructions in heavenly things by the inspiration of his Spirit; and at the same ...

In all wisdom and prudence - Giving us apostles the most complete instructions in heavenly things by the inspiration of his Spirit; and at the same time prudence, that we might know when and where to preach the Gospel so that it might be effectual to the salvation of those who heard it. Nothing less than the Spirit of God could teach the apostles that wisdom by which they were to instruct a dark and sinful world; and nothing less than the same Spirit could inspire them with that prudence which was necessary to be exercised in every step of their life and ministry. Every wise man is not a prudent man, and every prudent man is not a wise man. Wisdom and prudence may be expected in an apostle who is constantly living under the inspiration of the Holy Ghost. "Wisdom,"according to Sir William Temple, "is that which makes men judge what are the best ends, and what the best means to attain them; and gives a man advantage of counsel and direction.""Prudence is wisdom applied to practice; or that discreet, apt suiting as well of actions as words, in their due place, time, and manner. Every minister of Christ needs these still; and if he abide not under the influence of both, not only his prayers but his ministerial labors will be all hindered.

Clarke: Eph 1:9 - Having made known unto us the mystery Having made known unto us the mystery - That the Gentiles should ever be received into the Church of God, and have all the privileges of the Jews, w...

Having made known unto us the mystery - That the Gentiles should ever be received into the Church of God, and have all the privileges of the Jews, without being obliged to submit to circumcision, and perform the rites and ceremonies of the Jewish law was a mystery - a hidden thing which had never been published before; and now revealed only to the apostles. It was God’ s will that it should be so, but that will he kept hidden to the present time. A mystery signifies something hidden, but it ceases to be a mystery as soon as it is revealed. See the note on Mat 13:11; and particularly that on Rom 11:25 (note)

Clarke: Eph 1:9 - Good pleasure Good pleasure - Την ευδοκιαν· That benevolent design which he had purposed in himself, not being induced by any consideration from wit...

Good pleasure - Την ευδοκιαν· That benevolent design which he had purposed in himself, not being induced by any consideration from without.

Clarke: Eph 1:10 - In the dispensation of the fullness of times In the dispensation of the fullness of times - Εις οικονομιαν του πληρωματος των καιρων . The word οικονο...

In the dispensation of the fullness of times - Εις οικονομιαν του πληρωματος των καιρων . The word οικονομια, which is the same as our word economy, signifies, as Dr. Macknight has well observed, "the plan which the master of a family, or his steward, has established for the management of the family;"it signifies, also, a plan for the management of any sort of business: and here it means the dispensation of the Gospel, that plan by which God has provided salvation for a lost world; and according to which he intends to gather all believers, both Jews and Gentiles, into one Church under Jesus Christ, their head and governor. See the note on Mat 24:45, where the word and the office are particularly explained

The fullness of times - By this phrase we are to understand either the Gospel dispensation, which is the consummation of all preceding dispensations, and the last that shall be afforded to man; or that advanced state of the world which God saw to be the most proper for the full manifestation of those benevolent purposes which he had formed in himself relative to the salvation of the world by Jesus Christ

Clarke: Eph 1:10 - That he might gather together in one That he might gather together in one - Ανακεφαλαιωσασθαι, from ανα, again, and κεφαλαιοω, to reduce to one sum; to a...

That he might gather together in one - Ανακεφαλαιωσασθαι, from ανα, again, and κεφαλαιοω, to reduce to one sum; to add up; to bring different sums together, and fractions of sums, so as to reduce them under one denomination; to recapitulate the principal matters contained in a discourse. Here it means the gathering together both Jews and Gentiles, who have believed in Christ, into one Church and flock. See the preceding note

Clarke: Eph 1:10 - All things - which are in heaven, and which are on earth All things - which are in heaven, and which are on earth - This clause is variously understood: some think, by things in heaven the Jewish state is ...

All things - which are in heaven, and which are on earth - This clause is variously understood: some think, by things in heaven the Jewish state is meant and by things on earth the Christian. The Jews had been long considered a Divine or heavenly people; their doctrine, their government, their constitution, both civil and ecclesiastical, were all Divine or heavenly: as the powers of the heavens, Mat 24:29, Luk 21:26, mean the Jewish rulers in Church and state, it is very possible that the things which are in heaven mean this same state; and as the Gentiles were considered to have nothing Divine or heavenly among them, they may be here intended by the earth, out of the corruption of which they are to be gathered by the preaching of the Gospel. But there are others who imagine that the things in heaven mean the angelical hosts; and the things on earth believers of all nations, who shall all be joined together at last in one assembly to worship God throughout eternity. And some think that the things in heaven mean the saints who died before Christ’ s advent, and who are not to be made perfect till the resurrection, when the full power and efficacy of Christ shall be seen in raising the bodies of believers and uniting them with their holy souls, to reign in his presence for ever. And some think that, as the Hebrew phrase שמים והארץ shamayim vehaarets , the heavens and the earth, signifies all creatures, the words in the text are to be understood as signifying all mankind, without discrimination of peoples, kindreds, or tongues; Jews, Greeks, or barbarians. All that are saved of all nations, (being saved in the same way, viz. by faith in Christ Jesus, without any distinction of nation or previous condition), and all gathered into one Church or assembly

I believe that the forming one Church out of both Jews and Gentiles is that to which the apostle refers. This agrees with what is said, Eph 2:14-17.

Clarke: Eph 1:11 - In whom In whom - Christ Jesus; also we - believing Jews have obtained an inheritance - what was promised to Abraham and his spiritual seed, viz. the adopti...

In whom - Christ Jesus; also we - believing Jews have obtained an inheritance - what was promised to Abraham and his spiritual seed, viz. the adoption of sons, and the kingdom of heaven, signified by the privileges under the Mosaic dispensation, and the possession of the promised land, but all these privileges being forfeited by the rebellion and unbelief of the Jews, they are now about to be finally cut off, and the believing part to be re-elected, and put in possession of the blessings promised to Abraham and his spiritual seed, by faith; for without a re-election, they cannot get possession of these spiritual privileges

Clarke: Eph 1:11 - Being predestinated Being predestinated - God having determined to bring both Jews and Gentiles to salvation, not by works, nor by any human means or schemes, but by Je...

Being predestinated - God having determined to bring both Jews and Gentiles to salvation, not by works, nor by any human means or schemes, but by Jesus Christ; that salvation being defined and determined before in the Divine mind, and the means by which it should be brought about all being according to his purpose, who consults not his creatures, but operates according to the counsel of his own will, that being ever wise, gracious, and good

The original reference is still kept up here in the word προορισθεντες, being predestinated, as in the word προορισας Eph 1:5. And as the apostle speaks of obtaining the inheritance, he most evidently refers to that of which the promised land was the type and pledge. And as that land was assigned to the Israelites by limit and lot, both of which were appointed by God so the salvation now sent to the Gentiles was as expressly their lot or portion, as the promised land was that of the people of Israel. All this shows that the Israelites were a typical people; their land, the manner of possessing it, their civil and religious code, etc., etc., all typical; and that in, by, and through them, God had fore-determined, fore-described, and fore-ascertained a greater and more glorious people, among whom the deepest counsels of his wisdom should be manifested, and the most powerful works of his eternal mercy, grace, holiness, goodness, and truth, be fully exhibited. Thus there was nothing fortuitous in the Christian scheme; all was the result of infinite counsel and design. See on Eph 1:5 (note).

Clarke: Eph 1:12 - That we That we - Jews, now apostles and messengers of God, to whom the first offers of salvation were made, and who were the first that believed in Christ

That we - Jews, now apostles and messengers of God, to whom the first offers of salvation were made, and who were the first that believed in Christ

Clarke: Eph 1:12 - Should be to the praise of his glory Should be to the praise of his glory - By being the means of preaching Christ crucified to the Gentiles, and spreading the Gospel throughout the wor...

Should be to the praise of his glory - By being the means of preaching Christ crucified to the Gentiles, and spreading the Gospel throughout the world.

Clarke: Eph 1:13 - In whom ye also trusted In whom ye also trusted - Ye Gentiles, having heard from us the word, τον λογον, the doctrine, of the truth, which is the Gospel, or glad t...

In whom ye also trusted - Ye Gentiles, having heard from us the word, τον λογον, the doctrine, of the truth, which is the Gospel, or glad tidings, of your salvation, have believed, as we Jews have done, and received similar blessings to those with which God has favored us

In whom also, εν ὡ, through whom, Christ Jesus, after that ye had believed, viz. that he was the only Savior, and that through his blood redemption might be obtained, ye were sealed with that holy Spirit of promise; that is, The Holy Spirit, which is promised to them who believe on Christ Jesus, was given to you, and thus you were ascertained to be the children of God, for God has no child who is not a partaker of the Holy Ghost, and he who has this Spirit has God’ s seal that he belongs to the heavenly family. It was customary among all nations, when a person purchased goods of any kind, to mark with his seal that which he had bought, in order that he might know it, and be able to claim it if mixed with the goods of others; to this custom the apostle may here allude but it was also customary to set a seal upon what was dedicated to God, or what was to be offered to him in sacrifice. See this proved in the note on Joh 6:27. The Jews themselves speak of the seal of God, which they term אמת emeth , truth, and which they consider as a representation of the unoriginated and endless perfections of God. As the apostle is here speaking of the doctrine of truth, which came by the Holy Spirit, and is sealed on the souls of believers by this Spirit, he may have in view the Jewish notion, which is at once both correct and elevated. This Spirit of truth, Joh 14:17, who leads into all truth, Joh 16:13, and teaches all things, Joh 14:26, makes the impression of his own eternal purity and truth in the souls of them who believe, and thus they bear the seal of God Almighty. And they who in the day of judgment are found to bear this seal - Truth; truth in the inward parts, having truly repented, truly believed, and having been in consequence truly justified, and truly sanctified; and having walked in truth and sincerity towards God and man; these are sealed to the day of redemption; for, having this seal, they are seen to have a right to eternal life.

Clarke: Eph 1:14 - Which is the earnest of our inheritance Which is the earnest of our inheritance - This Holy Spirit, sealing the soul with truth and righteousness, is the earnest, foretaste, and pledge of ...

Which is the earnest of our inheritance - This Holy Spirit, sealing the soul with truth and righteousness, is the earnest, foretaste, and pledge of the heavenly inheritance. And he who can produce this earnest - this witness of the Spirit, in the day of judgment, shall have an abundant entrance into the holiest. On the αρῥαβων, or earnest, see the notes on Gen 38:17 (note), etc., and on 2Co 1:22 (note)

Clarke: Eph 1:14 - The redemption of the purchased possession The redemption of the purchased possession - That is, till the time when body and soul are redeemed from all their miseries, and glorified in the ki...

The redemption of the purchased possession - That is, till the time when body and soul are redeemed from all their miseries, and glorified in the kingdom on heaven

The redemption of the purchased possession - Απολυτρωσις της περιποιησεως is variously understood; and indeed the original is variously translated. Dr. Whitby has observed that the verb πεειποιειν signifies to save alive; and he refers the περιποιησις, here, to the redemption of the body from corruption, and to its final glorification with the soul

All those who believe in Christ Jesus are considered as his peculiar people and property, and to them eternal glory is promised. The Spirit of promise, which is given them, is a pledge that they shall have a resurrection from the dead, and eternal blessedness; the redemption, or bringing to life of the body, cannot take place till the day of judgment, but the Holy Spirit promises this redemption, and is now in their hearts an earnest or pledge of this complete restoration at the great day, which will then be, in an especial manner, to the praise of his glory, viz. of Christ, who has bought them by his blood.

Clarke: Eph 1:15 - Faith in the Lord Jesus Faith in the Lord Jesus - Cordial reception of the Christian religion, amply proved by their love to all the saints - to all the Christians. Perhaps...

Faith in the Lord Jesus - Cordial reception of the Christian religion, amply proved by their love to all the saints - to all the Christians. Perhaps love here implies, not only the kind affection so called, but also all the fruits of love - benevolence, and kind offices of every description.

Clarke: Eph 1:16 - Cease not to give thanks Cease not to give thanks - The apostle intimates, so fully satisfied was he of the genuineness of their conversion, and of their steadiness since th...

Cease not to give thanks - The apostle intimates, so fully satisfied was he of the genuineness of their conversion, and of their steadiness since their conversion, that it was to him a continual cause of thanksgiving to God, who had brought them into that state of salvation; and of prayer, that they might be preserved blameless to the end

Clarke: Eph 1:16 - Making mention of you Making mention of you - While praying for the prosperity of the Christian cause generally, he was led, from his particular affection for them, to me...

Making mention of you - While praying for the prosperity of the Christian cause generally, he was led, from his particular affection for them, to mention them by name before God.

Clarke: Eph 1:17 - That the God of our Lord Jesus That the God of our Lord Jesus - Jesus Christ, as man and mediator, has the Father for his God and Father: and it is in reference to this that he hi...

That the God of our Lord Jesus - Jesus Christ, as man and mediator, has the Father for his God and Father: and it is in reference to this that he himself says: I ascend unto my Father and your Father, and to my God and your God; Joh 20:17

Clarke: Eph 1:17 - The Father of glory The Father of glory - The author and giver of that glory which you expect at the end of your Christian race. This may be a Hebraism for glorious Fat...

The Father of glory - The author and giver of that glory which you expect at the end of your Christian race. This may be a Hebraism for glorious Father, but the former appears to be the best sense

Clarke: Eph 1:17 - The Spirit of wisdom and revelation The Spirit of wisdom and revelation - I pray that God may give you his Holy Spirit, by whom his will is revealed to men, that he may teach and make ...

The Spirit of wisdom and revelation - I pray that God may give you his Holy Spirit, by whom his will is revealed to men, that he may teach and make you wise unto salvation, that you may continue to acknowledge him, Christ Jesus, as your only Lord and Savior.

Clarke: Eph 1:18 - The eyes of your understanding being enlightened The eyes of your understanding being enlightened - The understanding is that power or faculty in the soul by which knowledge or information is recei...

The eyes of your understanding being enlightened - The understanding is that power or faculty in the soul by which knowledge or information is received, and the recipient power is here termed the Eyes of the understanding; and we learn from this that ὁπερ ὁ οφθαλμος εν τῳ σωματι, τουτο ὁ νους εν τῃ ψυχη, as Philo expresses it: What the eye is to the body, the understanding is to the soul; and that as the eye is not light in itself, and can discern nothing but by the means of light shining, not only on the objects to be viewed, but into the eye itself; so the understanding of man can discern no sacred thing of or by itself, but sees by the influence of the Spirit of wisdom and revelation; for without the influence of God’ s Holy Spirit no man ever became wise unto salvation, no more than a man ever discerned an object, (no matter how perfect soever his eye might have been), without the instrumentality of light

Instead of της διανοιας, of your understanding, της καρδιας, of your heart, is the reading of ABDEFG, and several others; also both the Syriac, all the Arabic, the Coptic, the Ethiopic, Armenian, Sahidic, Slavonian, Vulgate, and Itala, besides several of the fathers. The eyes of your Heart is undoubtedly the true reading

Clarke: Eph 1:18 - The hope of his calling The hope of his calling - That you may clearly discern the glorious and important objects of your hope, to the enjoyment of which God has called or ...

The hope of his calling - That you may clearly discern the glorious and important objects of your hope, to the enjoyment of which God has called or invited you

Clarke: Eph 1:18 - The riches of the glory of his inheritance The riches of the glory of his inheritance - That you may understand what is the glorious abundance of the spiritual things to which you are entitle...

The riches of the glory of his inheritance - That you may understand what is the glorious abundance of the spiritual things to which you are entitled, in consequence of being made children of God; for if children, then heirs, heirs of that glorious inheritance which God has provided for the saints - for all genuine Christians, whether formerly Jews or Gentiles. On the chief subject of this verse, see the notes on Gal 4:6, Gal 4:7 (note).

Clarke: Eph 1:19 - The exceeding greatness of his power The exceeding greatness of his power - As the apostle is here speaking of the glorious state of believers after death, the exceeding greatness of hi...

The exceeding greatness of his power - As the apostle is here speaking of the glorious state of believers after death, the exceeding greatness of his power, or that power which surpasses all difficulties, being itself omnipotent, is to be understood of that might which is to be exerted in raising the body at the last day; as it will require the same power or energy which he wrought in Christ, when he raised his body from the grave, to raise up the bodies of all mankind; the resurrection of the human nature of Christ being a proof of the resurrection of mankind in general

Clarke: Eph 1:19 - According to the working of his mighty power According to the working of his mighty power - Κατα την ενεργειαν του κρατους της ισχυος αυτου· According...

According to the working of his mighty power - Κατα την ενεργειαν του κρατους της ισχυος αυτου· According to the energy of the power of his might. We may understand these words thus: Might, ισχυς, is the state or simple efficiency of this attribute in God; Power, κρατος, is this might or efficiency in action; Energy, ενεργεια, is the quantum of force, momentum, or velocity, with which the power is applied. Though they appear to be synonymous terms they may be thus understood: passive power is widely different from power in action; and power in action will be in its results according to the energy or momentum with which it is applied. The resurrection of the dead is a stupendous work of God; it requires his might in sovereign action; and when we consider that all mankind are to be raised and changed in a moment, in the twinkling of an eye, then the momentum, or velocity, with which the power is to be applied must be inconceivably great. All motion is in proportion to the quantity of matter in the mover, and the velocity with which it is applied. The effect here is in proportion to the cause and the energy he puts forth in order to produce it. But such is the nature of God’ s power in action, that it is perfectly inconceivable to us; and even these astonishingly strong words of the apostle are to be understood as used in condescension to human weakness.

Clarke: Eph 1:20 - Set him at his own right hand in the heavenly places Set him at his own right hand in the heavenly places - Gave him, as mediator between God and man, the highest honors and dignities, Phi 2:9; in whic...

Set him at his own right hand in the heavenly places - Gave him, as mediator between God and man, the highest honors and dignities, Phi 2:9; in which state of exaltation he transacts all the affairs of his Church, and rules the universe. The right hand is the place of friendship, honor, confidence, and authority.

Clarke: Eph 1:21 - Far above all principality Far above all principality - The difficulty in this verse does not arise from the words themselves, the meaning of each being easily understood, but...

Far above all principality - The difficulty in this verse does not arise from the words themselves, the meaning of each being easily understood, but from the sense in which the apostle uses them. Some think he has reference here to the different orders among good and evil angels; he is superior to all the former, and rules all the latter. Others think he refers to earthly governments; and as αρχη, principality, the first word, signifies the most sovereign and extensive kind of dominion; and κυριοτης, lordship, the last word, signifies the lowest degree of authority; hence we are to understand that to our Lord, in his human nature, are subjected the highest, the intermediate, and the lowest orders of beings in the universe. - Chandler. Others imagine that the apostle has in view, by whatsoever is named in this world, all the dignitaries of the Jewish Church; and by what is named in the world to come, all the dignities that should be found in the Christian Church

Schoettgen supposes that the "apostle’ s αρχη (for αρχοντες, the abstract for the concrete) means the same as the נשיאים Nesiim among the Jews, whose chief business it was to clear and decide all contentions which arose concerning traditions and legal controversies

"That εξουσια, power, is the same as צורבא tsorba , he who possesses authority to propound, expound, persuade, convince, and refute

"That δυναμις, might, answers to רבנות rabbanoth , signifying all the class of rabbins, whose office it was to expound the law, and teach the people generally

"And that κυριοτης, dominion, answers to מר mar , which signifies a person above the lower orders of men. And he observes that Jesus Christ, after his resurrection, called fishermen, publicans, and men from the lowest orders of the people, to the work of the ministry; and made them instruments of confounding and overturning all the Jewish rulers, rabbins, and doctors. And that in the world which is to come - the successive ages of Christianity, he should ever be exalted above all those powers and authorities which Antichrist might bring into the Christian Church; such as popes, cardinals, wicked archbishops, bishops, deans, and canons; and all those who among the schoolmen were termed seraphic doctors, angelic doctors, most illuminated, most perfect, and irrefragable doctors. And although Wiclif, Huss, Luther, Melancthon, and the rest of the reformers, were men of little or no note when compared with the rulers of the popish Church, so eminently did the power of Christ work in and by them, that the pope and all his adjutants were every where confounded, and their power and authority annihilated in several entire regions.

It is certain that the apostle means that all created power, glory, and influence, are under Christ; and hence it is added:

Clarke: Eph 1:22 - And hath put all things under his feet And hath put all things under his feet - All beings and things are subject to him, whether they be thrones, dominions, principalities, or powers, Co...

And hath put all things under his feet - All beings and things are subject to him, whether they be thrones, dominions, principalities, or powers, Col 1:16-18; Col 2:10; for he, God the Father, has given him to be head - chief, and supreme, over all, to the Church, the Church having no ruler but Jesus Christ; others may be officers in his Church, but he alone is head and supreme.

Clarke: Eph 1:23 - Which is his body Which is his body - As he is head over all things, he is head to the Church; and this Church is considered as the body of which he is especially the...

Which is his body - As he is head over all things, he is head to the Church; and this Church is considered as the body of which he is especially the head; and from him, as the head, the Church receives light, life, and intelligence

Clarke: Eph 1:23 - And is the fullness of him And is the fullness of him - That in which he especially manifests his power, goodness, and truth; for though he fills all the world with his presen...

And is the fullness of him - That in which he especially manifests his power, goodness, and truth; for though he fills all the world with his presence, yet he fills all the members of his mystical body with wisdom, goodness, truth, and holiness, in an especial manner. Some understand the fullness or πληρωμα, here, as signifying the thing to be filled; so the Christian Church is to be filled by him, whose fullness fills all his members, with all spiritual gifts and graces. And this corresponds with what St. John says, Joh 1:16 : And of his fullness have all we received, and grace for grace. And with what is said, Col 2:9, Col 2:10 : Ye are complete in him; και εστε εν αυτῳ πεπληρωμενοι· And ye are in him filled full; i.e. with gifts and grace

How, in any other sense, the Church can be said to be the fullness of him who fills all in all, is difficult to say. However, as Jesus Christ is represented to be the head, and the Church, the body under that head, the individuals being so many members in that body; and as it requires a body and members to make a head complete; so it requires a Church, or general assembly of believers, to make up the body of Christ. When, therefore, the Jews and Gentiles are brought into this Church, the body may be said to be complete; and thus Christ has his visible fullness upon earth, and the Church may be said to be the fullness of him, etc. See Eph 1:10.

Calvin: Eph 1:1 - Paul, an apostle // To all the saints 1.Paul, an apostle As the same form of salutation, or at least very little varied, is found in all the Epistles, it would be superfluous to repeat he...

1.Paul, an apostle As the same form of salutation, or at least very little varied, is found in all the Epistles, it would be superfluous to repeat here the observations which we have formerly made. He calls himself “an apostle of Jesus Christ;” for all to whom has been given the ministry of reconciliation are his ambassadors. The word Apostle, indeed, carries something more; for it is not every minister of the gospel, as we shall afterwards see, (Eph 4:11,) that can be called an apostle. But this subject has been explained more fully in my remarks on the Epistle to the Galatians. (See Calvin on “Gal 1:1 ”)

He adds, by the will of God; for “no man ought to take this honor unto himself,” (Heb 5:4,) but every man ought to wait for the calling of God, which alone makes lawful ministers. He thus meets the jeers of wicked men by holding out the authority of God, and removes every occasion of inconsiderate strife.

To all the saints He gives the name of saints to those whom he afterwards denominates faithful in Christ Jesus. No man, therefore, is a believer who is not also a saint; and, on the other hand, no man is a saint who is not a believer. Most of the Greek copies want the word all; but I was unwilling to strike it out, because it must, at all events, be understood.

Calvin: Eph 1:3 - Blessed // With all spiritual blessings // In heavenly 3.Blessed 108 be the God and Father of our Lord Jesus Christ. The lofty terms in which he extolls the grace of God toward the Ephesians, are intend...

3.Blessed 108 be the God and Father of our Lord Jesus Christ. The lofty terms in which he extolls the grace of God toward the Ephesians, are intended to rouse their hearts to gratitude, to set them all on flame, to fill them even to overflowing with this thought. They who perceive in themselves discoveries of the Divine goodness, so full and absolutely perfect, and who make them the subject of earnest meditation, will never embrace new doctrines, by which the very grace which they feel so powerfully in themselves is thrown into the shade. The design of the apostle, therefore, in asserting the riches of divine grace toward the Ephesians, was to protect them against having their faith shaken by the false apostles, as if their calling were doubtful, or salvation were to be sought in some other way. He shews, at the same time, that the full certainty of future happiness rests on the revelation of his love to us in Christ, which God makes in the gospel. But to confirm the matter more fully, he rises to the first cause, to the fountain, — the eternal election of God, by which, ere we are born, (Rom 9:11,) we are adopted as sons. This makes it evident that their salvation was accomplished, not by any accidental or unlooked-for occurrence, but by the eternal and unchangeable decree of God.

The word bless is here used in more than one sense, as referring to God, and as referring to men. I find in Scripture four different significations of this word. 1. We are said to bless God when we offer praise to him for his goodness. 2. God is said to bless us, when he crowns our undertakings with success, and, in the exercise of his goodness, bestows upon us happiness and prosperity; and the reason is, that our enjoyments depend entirely upon his pleasure. Our attention is here called to the singular efficacy which dwells in the very word of God, and which Paul expresses in beautiful language. 3. Men bless each other by prayer. 4. The priest’s blessing is not simply a prayer, but is likewise a testimony and pledge of the Divine blessing; for the priests received a commission to bless in the name of the Lord. Paul therefore blesses God, because he hath blessed us, that is, hath enriched us with all blessing and grace.

With all spiritual blessings I have no objection to Chrysostom’s remark, that the word spiritual conveys an implied contrast between the blessing of Moses and of Christ. The law had its blessings; but in Christ only is perfection found, because he gives us a perfect revelation of the kingdom of God, which leads us directly to heaven. When the body itself is presented to us, figures are no longer needed.

In heavenly Whether we understand the meaning to be, in heavenly Places, or in heavenly Benefits, is of little consequence. All that was intended to be expressed is the superiority of that grace which we receive through Christ. The happiness which it bestows is not in this world, but in heaven and everlasting life. In the Christian religion, indeed, as we are elsewhere taught, (1Ti 4:8,) is contained the “promise of the life that now is, and of that which is to come;” but its aim is spiritual happiness, for the kingdom of Christ is spiritual. A contrast is drawn between Christ and all the Jewish emblems, by which the blessing under the law was conveyed; for where Christ is, all those things are superfluous.

Calvin: Eph 1:4 - According as he hath chosen us // In Christ // That we should be holy // Before him it love 4.According as he hath chosen us The foundation and first cause, both of our calling and of all the benefits which we receive from God, is here decla...

4.According as he hath chosen us The foundation and first cause, both of our calling and of all the benefits which we receive from God, is here declared to be his eternal election. If the reason is asked, why God has called us to enjoy the gospel, why he daily bestows upon us so many blessings, why he opens to us the gate of heaven, — the answer will be constantly found in this principle, that he hath chosen us before the foundation of the world. The very time when the election took place proves it to be free; for what could we have deserved, or what merit did we possess, before the world was made? How childish is the attempt to meet this argument by the following sophism! “We were chosen because we were worthy, and because God foresaw that we would be worthy.” We were all lost in Adam; and therefore, had not God, through his own election, rescued us from perishing, there was nothing to be foreseen. The same argument is used in the Epistle to the Romans, where, speaking of Jacob and Esau, he says,

“For the children being not yet born, neither having done any good or evil, that the purpose of God according to election might stand, not of works, but of him that calleth.” (Rom 9:11.)

But though they had not yet acted, might a sophist of the Sorbonne reply, God foresaw that they would act. This objection has no force when applied to the depraved natures of men, in whom nothing can be seen but materials for destruction.

In Christ This is the second proof that the election is free; for if we are chosen in Christ, it is not of ourselves. It is not from a perception of anything that we deserve, but because our heavenly Father has introduced us, through the privilege of adoption, into the body of Christ. In short, the name of Christ excludes all merit, and everything which men have of their own; for when he says that we are chosen in Christ, it follows that in ourselves we are unworthy.

That we should be holy This is the immediate, but not the chief design; for there is no absurdity in supposing that the same thing may gain two objects. The design of building is, that there should be a house. This is the immediate design, but the convenience of dwelling in it is the ultimate design. It was necessary to mention this in passing; for we shall immediately find that Paul mentions another design, the glory of God. But there is no contradiction here; for the glory of God is the highest end, to which our sanctification is subordinate.

This leads us to conclude, that holiness, purity, and every excellence that is found among men, are the fruit of election; so that once more Paul expressly puts aside every consideration of merit. If God had foreseen in us anything worthy of election, it would have been stated in language the very opposite of what is here employed, and which plainly means that all our holiness and purity of life flow from the election of God. How comes it then that some men are religious, and live in the fear of God, while others give themselves up without reserve to all manner of wickedness? If Paul may be believed, the only reason is, that the latter retain their natural disposition, and the former have been chosen to holiness. The cause, certainly, is not later than the effect. Election, therefore, does not depend on the righteousness of works, of which Paul here declares that it is the cause.

We learn also from these words, that election gives no occasion to licentiousness, or to the blasphemy of wicked men who say, “Let us live in any manner we please; for, if we have been elected, we cannot perish.” Paul tells them plainly, that they have no right to separate holiness of life from the grace of election; for

“whom he did predestinate, them he also called, and whom he called, them he also justified.” (Rom 8:30.)

The inference, too, which the Catharists, Celestines, and Donatists drew from these words, that we may attain perfection in this life, is without foundation. This is the goal to which the whole course of our life must be directed, and we shall not reach it till we have finished our course. Where are the men who dread and avoid the doctrine of predestination as an inextricable labyrinth, who believe it to be useless and almost dangerous? No doctrine is more useful, provided it be handled in the proper and cautious manner, of which Paul gives us an example, when he presents it as an illustration of the infinite goodness of God, and employs it as an excitement to gratitude. This is the true fountain from which we must draw our knowledge of the divine mercy. If men should evade every other argument, election shuts their mouth, so that they dare not and cannot claim anything for themselves. But let us remember the purpose for which Paul reasons about predestination, lest, by reasoning with any other view, we fall into dangerous errors.

Before him it love Holiness before God (κατενώπιον αὐτοῦ) is that of a pure conscience; for God is not deceived, as men are, by outward pretense, but looks to faith, or, which means the same thing, the truth of the heart. If we view the word love as applied to God, the meaning will be, that the only reason why he chose us, was his love to men. But I prefer connecting it with the latter part of the verse, as denoting that the perfection of believers consists in love; not that God requires love alone, but that it is an evidence of the fear of God, and of obedience to the whole law.

Calvin: Eph 1:5 - Who hath predestinated us 5.Who hath predestinated us What follows is intended still further to heighten the commendation of divine grace. The reason why Paul inculcated so ea...

5.Who hath predestinated us What follows is intended still further to heighten the commendation of divine grace. The reason why Paul inculcated so earnestly on the Ephesians the doctrines of free adoption through Christ, and of the eternal election which preceded it, has been already considered. But as the mercy of God is nowhere acknowledged in more elevated language, this passage will deserve our careful attention. Three causes of our salvation are here mentioned, and a fourth is shortly afterwards added. The efficient cause is the good pleasure of the will of God, the material cause is, Jesus Christ, and the final cause is, the praise of the glory of his grace. Let us now see what he says respecting each.

To the first belongs the whole of the following statement God hath predestinated us in himself, according to the good pleasure of his will, unto the adoption of sons, and hath made us accepted by his grace. In the word predestinate we must again attend to the order. We were not then in existence, and therefore there was no merit of ours. The cause of our salvation did not proceed from us, but from God alone. Yet Paul, not satisfied with these statements, adds in himself. The Greek phrase is, εἰς αὑτὸν, and has the same meaning with ἐν αὑτῷ. By this he means that God did not seek a cause out of himself, but predestinated us, because such was his will.

But this is made still more clear by what follows, according to the good pleasure of his will. The word will was enough, for Paul very frequently contrasts it with all outward causes by which men are apt to imagine that the mind of God is influenced. But that no doubt may remain, he employs the word good pleasure, which expressly sets aside all merit. In adopting us, therefore, God does not inquire what we are, and is not reconciled to us by any personal worth. His single motive is the eternal good pleasure, by which he predestinated us. 109 Why, then, are the sophists not ashamed to mingle with them other considerations, when Paul so strongly forbids us to look at anything else than the good pleasure of God?

Lest anything should still be wanting, he adds, ἐχαρίτωσεν ἐν χάριτι 110 This intimates, that, in the freest manner, and on no mercenary grounds, does God bestow upon us his love and favor, just as, when we were not yet born, and when he was prompted by nothing but his own will, he fixed upon us his choice. 111

The material cause both of eternal election, and of the love which is now revealed, is Christ, the Beloved. This name is given, to remind us that by him the love of God is communicated to us. Thus he is the well-beloved, in order that we may be reconciled by him. The highest and last end is immediately added, the glorious praise of such abundant grace. Every man, therefore, who hides this glory, is endeavoring to overturn the everlasting purpose of God. Such is the doctrine of the sophists, which entirely overturns the doctrine of Christ, lest the whole glory of our salvation should be ascribed undividedly to God alone.

Calvin: Eph 1:7 - In whom we have redemption // According to the riches of his grace 7.In whom we have redemption The apostle is still illustrating the material cause, — the manner in which we are reconciled to God through Christ. B...

7.In whom we have redemption The apostle is still illustrating the material cause, — the manner in which we are reconciled to God through Christ. By his death he has restored us to favor with the Father; and therefore we ought always to direct our minds to the blood of Christ, as the means by which we obtain divine grace. After mentioning that, through the blood of Christ, we obtain redemption, he immediately styles it the forgiveness of sins, — to intimate that we are redeemed, because our sins are not imputed to us. Hence it follows, that we obtain by free grace that righteousness by which we are accepted of God, and freed from the chains of the devil and of death. The close connection which is here preserved, between our redemption itself and the manner in which it is obtained, deserves our notice; for, so long as we remain exposed to the judgment of God, we are bound by miserable chains, and therefore our exemption from guilt, becomes an invaluable freedom.

According to the riches of his grace He now returns to the efficient cause, — the largeness of the divine kindness, which has given Christ to us as our Redeemer. Riches, and the corresponding word overflow, in the following verse, are intended to give us large views of divine grace. The apostle feels himself unable to celebrate, in a proper manner, the goodness of God, and desires that the contemplation of it would occupy the minds of men till they are entirely lost in admiration. How desirable is it that men were deeply impressed with “the riches of that grace” which is here commended! No place would any longer be found for pretended satisfactions, or for those trifles by which the world vainly imagines that it can redeem itself; as if the blood of Christ, when unsupported by additional aid, had lost all its efficacy. 112

Calvin: Eph 1:8 - In all wisdom 8.In all wisdom He now comes to the formal cause, the preaching of the gospel, by which the goodness of God overflows upon us. 113 It is through fa...

8.In all wisdom He now comes to the formal cause, the preaching of the gospel, by which the goodness of God overflows upon us. 113 It is through faith that we receive Christ, by whom we come to God, and by whom we enjoy the privilege of adoption. Paul gives to the gospel the magnificent appellations of wisdom and prudence, for the purpose of leading the Ephesians to despise all contrary doctrines. The false apostles insinuated themselves, under the pretense of imparting views more elevated than the elementary instructions which Paul conveyed. And the devil, in order to undermine our faith, labors, as far as he can, to disparage the gospel. Paul, on the other hand, builds up the authority of the gospel, that believers may rest upon it with unshaken confidence. All wisdom means — full or perfect wisdom.

Calvin: Eph 1:9 - Having made known to us the mystery of his will // Which he hath purposed in himself 9.Having made known to us the mystery of his will Some were alarmed at the novelty of his doctrine. With a view to such persons, he very properly den...

9.Having made known to us the mystery of his will Some were alarmed at the novelty of his doctrine. With a view to such persons, he very properly denominates it a mystery of the divine will, and yet a mystery which God has now been pleased to reveal. As he formerly ascribed their election, so he now ascribes their calling, to the good pleasure of God. The Ephesians are thus led to consider that Christ has been made known, and the gospel preached to them, not because they deserved any such thing, but because it pleased God.

Which he hath purposed in himself All is wisely and properly arranged. What can be more just than that his purposes, with which men are unacquainted, should be known to God alone, so long as he is pleased to conceal them, — or, again, that it should be in his own will and power to fix the time when they shall be communicated to men? The decree to adopt the Gentiles is declared to have been till now hidden in the mind of God, but so hidden, that God reserved it in his own power until the time of the revelation. Does any one now complain of it as a new and unprecedented occurrence, that those who were formerly “without God in the world,” (Eph 2:12,) should be received into the church? Will he have the hardihood to deny that the knowledge of God is greater than that of men?

Calvin: Eph 1:10 - That in the dispensation of the fullness of times // That he might gather together in one 10.That in the dispensation of the fullness of times That no man may inquire, why one time rather than another was selected, the apostle anticipates ...

10.That in the dispensation of the fullness of times That no man may inquire, why one time rather than another was selected, the apostle anticipates such curiosity, by calling the appointed period the fullness of times, the fit and proper season, as he also did in a former epistle. (Gal 4:4) Let human presumption restrain itself, and, in judging of the succession of events, let it bow to the providence of God. The same lesson is taught by the word dispensation, for by the judgment of God the lawful administration of all events is regulated.

That he might gather together in one In the old translation it is rendered ( instaurare ) restore; to which Erasmus has added ( summatim ) comprehensively. I have chosen to abide closely by the meaning of the Greek word, ἀνακεφαλαιώσασθαι, 114 because it is more agreeable to the context. The meaning appears to me to be, that out of Christ all things were disordered, and that through him they have been restored to order. And truly, out of Christ, what can we perceive in the world but mere ruins? We are alienated from God by sin, and how can we but present a broken and shattered aspect? The proper condition of creatures is to keep close to God. Such a gathering together (ἀνακεφαλαίωσις) as might bring us back to regular order, the apostle tells us, has been made in Christ. Formed into one body, we are united to God, and closely connected with each other. Without Christ, on the other hand, the whole world is a shapeless chaos and frightful confusion. We are brought into actual unity by Christ alone.

But why are heavenly beings included in the number? The angels were never separated from God, and cannot be said to have been scattered. Some explain it in this manner. Angels are said to be gathered together, because men have become members of the same society, are admitted equally with them to fellowship with God, and enjoy happiness in common with them by means of this blessed unity. The mode of expression is supposed to resemble one frequently used, when we speak of a whole building as repaired, many parts of which were ruinous or decayed, though some parts remained entire.

This is no doubt true; but what hinders us from saying that the angels also have been gathered together? Not that they were ever scattered, but their attachment to the service of God is now perfect, and their state is eternal. What comparison is there between a creature and the Creator, without the interposition of a Mediator? So far as they are creatures, had it not been for the benefit which they derived from Christ, they would have been liable to change and to sin, and consequently their happiness would not have been eternal. Who then will deny that both angels and men have been brought back to a fixed order by the grace of Christ? Men had been lost, and angels were not beyond the reach of danger. By gathering both into his own body, Christ hath united them to God the Father, and established actual harmony between heaven and earth.

Calvin: Eph 1:11 - Through whom also we have obtained an inheritance // Who worketh all things 11.Through whom also we have obtained an inheritance Hitherto he has spoken generally of all the elect; he now begins to take notice of separate clas...

11.Through whom also we have obtained an inheritance Hitherto he has spoken generally of all the elect; he now begins to take notice of separate classes. When he says, WE have obtained, he speaks of himself and of the Jews, or, perhaps more correctly, of all who were the first fruits of Christianity; and afterwards he comes to the Ephesians. It tended not a little to confirm the faith of the Ephesian converts, that he associated them with himself and the other believers, who might be said to be the first-born in the church. As if he had said, “The condition of all godly persons is the same with yours; for we who were first called by God owe our acceptance to his eternal election.” Thus, he shews, that, from first to last, all have obtained salvation by free grace, because they have been freely adopted according to eternal election.

Who worketh all things The circumlocution employed in describing the Supreme Being deserves attention. He speaks of Him as the sole agent, and as doing everything according to His own will, so as to leave nothing to be done by man. In no respect, therefore, are men admitted to share in this praise, as if they brought anything of their own. God looks at nothing out of himself to move him to elect them, for the counsel of his own will is the only and actual cause of their election. This may enable us to refute the error, or rather the madness, of those who, whenever they are unable to discover the reason of God’s works, exclaim loudly against his design.

Calvin: Eph 1:12 - That we should be to the praise of his glory 12.That we should be to the praise of his glory Here again he mentions the final cause of salvation; for we must eventually become illustrations of...

12.That we should be to the praise of his glory Here again he mentions the final cause of salvation; for we must eventually become illustrations of the glory of God, if we are nothing but vessels of his mercy. The word glory, by way of eminence, (κατ ᾿ ἐξοχὴν) denotes, in a peculiar manner, that which shines in the goodness of God; for there is nothing that is more peculiarly his own, or in which he desires more to be glorified, than goodness.

Calvin: Eph 1:13 - In whom ye also // In whom also, after that ye believed // With that Holy Spirit of promise 13.In whom ye also He associates the Ephesians with himself, and with the rest of those who were the first fruits; for he says that they, in like man...

13.In whom ye also He associates the Ephesians with himself, and with the rest of those who were the first fruits; for he says that they, in like manner, trusted in Christ. His object is, to shew that both had the same faith; and therefore we must supply the word trusted from the twelfth verse. He afterwards states that they were brought to that hope by the preaching of the gospel.

Two epithets are here applied to the gospel, — the word of truth, and the gospel of your salvation. Both deserve our careful attention. Nothing is more earnestly attempted by Satan than to lead us either to doubt or to despise the gospel. Paul therefore furnishes us with two shields, by which we may repel both temptations. In opposition to every doubt, let us learn to bring forward this testimony, that the gospel is not only certain truth, which cannot deceive, but is, by way of eminence, (κατ ᾿ ἐξοχὴν,) the word of truth, as if, strictly speaking, there were no truth but itself. If the temptation be to contempt or dislike of the gospel, let us remember that its power and efficacy have been manifested in bringing to us salvation. The apostle had formerly declared that

“it is the power of God to salvation to every one that believeth,” (Rom 1:16;)

but here he expresses more, for he reminds the Ephesians that, having been made partakers of salvation, they had learned this by their own experience. Unhappy they who weary themselves, as the world generally does, in wandering through many winding paths, neglecting the gospel, and pleasing themselves with wild romances, —

“ever learning and never able to come to the knowledge of the truth,”
(2Ti 3:7)

or to find life! But happy they who have embraced the gospel, and whose attachment to it is steadfast; for this, beyond all doubt, is truth and life.

In whom also, after that ye believed Having maintained that the gospel is certain, he now comes to the proof. And what higher surety can be found than the Holy Spirit? “Having denominated the gospel the word of truth, I will not prove it by the authority of men; for you have the testimony of the Spirit of God himself, who seals the truth of it in your hearts.” This elegant comparison is taken from Seals, which among men have the effect of removing doubt. Seals give validity both to charters and to testaments; anciently, they were the principal means by which the writer of a letter could be known; and, in short, a seal distinguishes what is true and certain, from what is false and spurious. This office the apostle ascribes to the Holy Spirit, not only here, but in another part of this Epistle, (Eph 4:30,) and in the Second Epistle to the Corinthians, (2Co 1:22.) Our minds never become so firmly established in the truth of God as to resist all the temptations of Satan, until we have been confirmed in it by the Holy Spirit. The true conviction which believers have of the word of God, of their own salvation, and of religion in general, does not spring from the judgment of the flesh, or from human and philosophical arguments, but from the sealing of the Spirit, who imparts to their consciences such certainty as to remove all doubt. The foundation of faith would be frail and unsteady, if it rested on human wisdom; and therefore, as preaching is the instrument of faith, so the Holy Spirit makes preaching efficacious.

But is it not the faith itself which is here said to be sealed by the Holy Spirit? If so, faith goes before the sealing. I answer, there are two operations of the Spirit in faith, corresponding to the two parts of which faith consists, as it enlightens, and as it establishes the mind. The commencement of faith is knowledge: the completion of it is a firm and steady conviction, which admits of no opposing doubt. Both, I have said, are the work of the Spirit. No wonder, then, if Paul should declare that the Ephesians, who received by faith the truth of the gospel, were confirmed in that faith by the seal of the Holy Spirit.

With that Holy Spirit of promise This title is derived from the effect produced; for to him we owe it that the promise of salvation is not made to us in vain. As God promises in his word, “that he will be to us a Father,” (2Co 6:18,) so he gives to us the evidence of having adopted us by the Holy Spirit.

Calvin: Eph 1:14 - Which is the earnest // To the praise of his glory 14.Which is the earnest 115 of our inheritance. This phrase is twice used by Paul in another Epistle. (2Co 1:22.) The metaphor is taken from bargai...

14.Which is the earnest 115 of our inheritance. This phrase is twice used by Paul in another Epistle. (2Co 1:22.) The metaphor is taken from bargains, in which, when a pledge has been given and accepted, the whole is confirmed, and no room is left for a change of mind. Thus, when we have received the Spirit of God, his promises are confirmed to us, and no dread is felt that they will be revoked. In themselves, indeed, the promises of God are not weak; but, until we are supported by the testimony of the Spirit, we never rest upon them with unshaken confidence. The Spirit, then, is the earnest of our inheritance of eternal life, until the redemption, that is, until the day of complete redemption is arrived. So long as we are in this world, our warfare is sustained by hope, and therefore this earnest is necessary; but when the possession itself shall have been obtained, the necessity and use of the earnest will then cease.

The significance of a pledge lasts no longer than till both parties have fulfilled the bargain; and, accordingly, he afterwards adds, ye are sealed to the day of redemption, (Eph 4:30,) which means the day of judgment. Though we are now redeemed by the blood of Christ, the fruit of that redemption does not yet appear; for “every creature groaneth, desiring to be delivered from the bondage of corruption. And not only they, but ourselves also, who have the first-fruits of the Spirit, even we ourselves groan within ourselves, waiting for the adoption, to wit, the redemption of our body;” for we have not yet obtained it, but by hope. (Rom 8:21.) But we shall obtain it in reality, when Christ shall appear to judgment. Such is the meaning of the word redemption in the passage now quoted from the Epistle to the Romans, and in a saying of our Lord,

“Look up, and lift up your heads, for your redemption draweth nigh.”
(Luk 21:28.)

Περιποίησις, which we translate the possession obtained, is not the kingdom of heaven, or a blessed immortality, but the Church itself. This is added for their consolation, that they might not think it hard to cherish their hope till the day of Christ’s coming, or be displeased that they have not yet obtained the promised inheritance; for such is the common lot of the whole Church.

To the praise of his glory The word praise, as in the twelfth verse, Eph 1:12 signifies “making known.” 116 The glory of God may sometimes be concealed, or imperfectly exhibited. But in the Ephesians God had given proofs of his goodness, that his glory might be celebrated and openly proclaimed. Those persons, therefore, who slighted the calling of the Ephesians, might be charged with envying and slighting the glory of God.

The frequent mention of the glory of God ought not to be regarded as superfluous, for what is infinite cannot be too strongly expressed. This is particularly true in commendations of the Divine mercy, for which every godly person will always feel himself unable to find adequate language. He will be more ready to utter, than other men will be to hear, the expression of praise; for the eloquence both of men and angels, after being strained to the utmost, falls immeasurably below the vastness of this subject. We may likewise observe, that there is not a more effectual method of shutting the mouths of wicked men, than by shewing that our views tend to illustrate, and theirs to obscure, the glory of God.

Calvin: Eph 1:15 - Wherefore I also 15.Wherefore I also This thanksgiving was not simply an expression of his ardent love to the Ephesians. He congratulated them before God, that the op...

15.Wherefore I also This thanksgiving was not simply an expression of his ardent love to the Ephesians. He congratulated them before God, that the opinion which he had formed respecting them was highly favorable. Observe here, that under faith and love Paul includes generally the whole excellence of Christian character. He uses the expression, faith in the Lord Jesus, 117 because Christ is the aim and object of faith. Love ought to embrace all men, but here the saints are particularly mentioned; because love, when properly regulated, begins with them, and is afterwards extended to all others. If our love must have a view to God, the nearer any man approaches to God, the stronger unquestionably must be his claims to our love.

Calvin: Eph 1:16 - Making mention of you 16.Making mention of you To thanksgiving, as his custom is, he adds prayer, in order to excite them to additional progress. It was necessary that the...

16.Making mention of you To thanksgiving, as his custom is, he adds prayer, in order to excite them to additional progress. It was necessary that the Ephesians should understand that they had entered upon the proper course. But it was equally necessary that they should not turn aside to any new scheme of doctrine, or become indifferent about proceeding farther; for nothing is more dangerous than to be satisfied with that measure of spiritual benefits which has been already obtained. Whatever, then, may be the height of our attainments, let them be always accompanied by the desire of something higher.

Calvin: Eph 1:17 - That the God of our Lord Jesus Christ // The God of our Lord Jesus Christ // The Father of glory // The Spirit of wisdom and revelation // In the knowledge of him 17.That the God of our Lord Jesus Christ But what does Paul wish for the Ephesians? The spirit of wisdom, and the eyes of their understanding bein...

17.That the God of our Lord Jesus Christ But what does Paul wish for the Ephesians? The spirit of wisdom, and the eyes of their understanding being enlightened. And did they not possess these? Yes; but at the same time they needed increase, that, being endowed with a larger measure of the Spirit, and being more and more enlightened, they might more clearly and fully hold their present views. The knowledge of the godly is never so pure, but that some dimness or obscurity hangs over their spiritual vision. But let us examine the words in detail.

The God of our Lord Jesus Christ The Son of God became man in such a manner, that God was his God as well as ours.

“I ascend,” says he, “to my Father, and your Father; and to my God, and your God.” (Joh 20:17)

And the reason why he is our God, is, that he is the God of Christ, whose members we are. Let us remember, however, that this relates to his human nature; so that his subjection takes nothing away from his eternal godhead.

The Father of glory This title springs from the former; for God’s glory, as a Father, consists in subjecting his Son to our condition, that, through him, he might be our God. The Father of glory is a well-known Hebrew idiom for The glorious Father. There is a mode of pointing and reading this passage, which I do not disapprove, and which connects the two clauses in this manner: That God, the glorious Father of our Lord Jesus Christ, may give to you.

The Spirit of wisdom and revelation is here put, by a figure of speech, (metonymy,) for the grace which the Lord bestows upon us by his own Spirit. But let it be observed, that the gifts of the Spirit are not the gifts of nature. Till the Lord opens them, the eyes of our heart are blind. Till the Spirit has become our instructor, all that we know is folly and ignorance. Till the Spirit of God has made it known to us by a secret revelation, the knowledge of our Divine calling exceeds the capacity of our own minds.

In the knowledge of him This might also be read, In the knowledge of himself. Both renderings agree well with the context, for he that knows the Son knows also the Father; but I prefer the former as more natively suggested by the Greek pronoun, ἐν ἐπιγνώσει αὐτοῦ

Calvin: Eph 1:18 - The eyes of your understanding being enlightened. === The eyes of your heart is the rendering of the Vulgate, which is supported by some Greek manuscripts. The difference is immaterial, for the Hebrews frequently employ it to denote the rational powers of the soul, though more strictly, being the seat of the affections, it means the will or desire; but I have preferred the ordinary translation.

===And what the riches 18.The eyes of your understanding being enlightened. === The eyes of your heart is the rendering of the Vulgate, which is supported by some Greek ma...

18.The eyes of your understanding being enlightened. === The eyes of your heart is the rendering of the Vulgate, which is supported by some Greek manuscripts. The difference is immaterial, for the Hebrews frequently employ it to denote the rational powers of the soul, though more strictly, being the seat of the affections, it means the will or desire; but I have preferred the ordinary translation.

===And what the riches A comparison, suggested by its excellence, reminds us how unfit we are to receive this elevated knowledge; for the power of God is no small matter. This great power, he tells us, had been exerted, and in a very extraordinary manner, towards the Ephesians, who were thus laid under constant obligations to follow his calling. By thus extolling the grace of God toward themselves, he intended to check every tendency to despise or dislike the duties of the Christian life. But the splendid encomiums which he pronounces on faith convey to us also this instruction, that it is so admirable a work and gift of God, that no language can do justice to its excellence. Paul is not in the habit of throwing out hyperboles without discrimination; but when he comes to treat of a matter which lies so far beyond this world as faith does, he raises our minds to the admiration of heavenly power.

Calvin: Eph 1:19 - According to the working // According to the efficacy of the power of his strength 19.According to the working Some consider this clause as referring solely to the word believe, which comes immediately before it; but I rather view ...

19.According to the working Some consider this clause as referring solely to the word believe, which comes immediately before it; but I rather view it as an additional statement, tending to heighten the greatness of the power, as a demonstration, or, if you prefer it, an instance and evidence of the efficacy of the power. The repetition of the word power, (δυνάμεως) has the appearance of being superfluous; but in the former case it is restricted to one class, — in the next, it has a general application. Paul, we find, never thinks that he can say enough in his descriptions of the Christian calling. And certainly the power of God is wonderfully displayed, when we are brought from death to life, and when, from being the children of hell, we become the children of God and heirs of eternal life.

Foolish men imagine that this language is absurdly hyperbolical; but godly persons, who are engaged in daily struggles with inward corruption, have no difficulty in perceiving that not a word is here used beyond what is perfectly just. As the importance of the subject cannot be too strongly expressed, so our unbelief and ingratitude led Paul to employ this glowing language. We never form adequate conceptions of the treasure revealed to us in the gospel; or, if we do, we cannot persuade ourselves that it is possible for us to do so, because we perceive nothing in us that corresponds to it, but everything the reverse. Paul’s object, therefore, was not only to impress the Ephesians with a deep sense of the value of Divine grace, but also to give them exalted views of the glory of Christ’s kingdom. That they might not be cast down by a view of their own unworthiness, he exhorts them to consider the power of God; as if he had said, that their regeneration was no ordinary work of God, but was an astonishing exhibition of his power.

According to the efficacy of the power of his strength There are three words here, on which we may make a passing remark. We may view strength as the root, — power as the tree, — and efficacy as the fruit, or the stretching out of the Divine arm which terminates in action.

Calvin: Eph 1:20 - Which he wrought in Christ // And set him at his own right hand 20.Which he wrought in Christ The Greek verb isἐνέργησεν, from which ἐνέργεια is derived. It might run thus, According to the...

20.Which he wrought in Christ The Greek verb isἐνέργησεν, from which ἐνέργεια is derived. It might run thus, According to the efficacy which he effected. But the translation which I have given conveys the same meaning, and is less harsh.

With the greatest propriety does he enjoin us to contemplate this power in Christ; for in us it is hitherto concealed. “My strength,” says he, “is made perfect in weakness.” (2Co 12:9.) In what do we excel the children of the world but in this, that our condition appears to be somewhat worse than theirs? Though sin does not reign, it continues to dwell in us, and death is still strong. Our blessedness, which lies in hope, is not perceived by the world. The power of the Spirit is a thing unknown to flesh and blood. A thousand distresses, to which we are daily liable, render us more despised than other men.

Christ alone, therefore, is the mirror in which we can contemplate that which the weakness of the cross hinders from being clearly seen in ourselves. When our minds rise to a confident anticipation of righteousness, salvation, and glory, let us learn to turn them to Christ. We still lie under the power of death; but he, raised from the dead by heavenly power, has the dominion of life. We labor under the bondage of sin, and, surrounded by endless vexations, are engaged in a hard warfare, (1Ti 1:18;) but he, sitting at the right hand of the Father, exercises the highest government in heaven and earth, and triumphs gloriously over the enemies whom he has subdued and vanquished. We lie here mean and despised; but to him has been “given a name” (Phi 2:9,) which angels and men regard with reverence, and devils and wicked men with dread. We are pressed down here by the scantiness of all our comforts: but he has been appointed by the Father to be the sole dispenser of all blessings. For these reasons, we shall find our advantage in directing our views to Christ, that in him, as in a mirror, we may see the glorious treasures of Divine grace, and the unmeasurable greatness of that power, which has not yet been manifested in ourselves.

And set him at his own right hand This passage shews plainly, if any one does, what is meant by the right hand of God. It does not mean any particular place, but the power which the Father has bestowed on Christ, that he may administer in his name the government of heaven and earth. It is idle, therefore, to inquire why Stephen saw him standing, (Act 7:55,) while Paul describes him as sitting at God’s right hand. The expression does not refer to any bodily posture, but denotes the highest royal power with which Christ has been invested. This is intimated by what immediately follows, far above all principality and power: for the whole of this description is added for the purpose of explaining what is meant by the right hand.

God the Father is said to have raised Christ to “his right hand,” because he has made him to share in his government, because by him he exerts all his power; the metaphor being borrowed from earthly princes, who confer the honor of sitting along with themselves on those whom they have clothed with the highest authority. As the right hand of God fills heaven and earth, it follows that the kingdom and power of Christ are equally extensive. It is in vain, therefore, to attempt to prove that, because Christ sitteth at the right hand of God, he dwells in heaven alone. His human nature, it is true, resides in heaven, and not in earth; but that argument is foreign to the purpose. The expression which follows, in heavenly places, does not at all imply that the right hand of God is confined to heaven, but directs us to contemplate the heavenly glory amidst which our Lord Jesus dwells, the blessed immortality which he enjoys, and the dominion over angels to which he has been exalted.

Calvin: Eph 1:21 - Far above all principality, and power, and might, and dominion 21.Far above all principality, and power, and might, and dominion All these names, there can be no doubt, are applied to angels, who are so denominat...

21.Far above all principality, and power, and might, and dominion All these names, there can be no doubt, are applied to angels, who are so denominated, because, by means of them, God exercises his power, and might, and dominion. He permits them to share, as far as is competent to creatures, what belongs to himself, and even gives to them his own name; for we find that they are called אלהים , ( elohim,) gods. From the diversity of names we conclude that there are various orders of angels; but to attempt to settle these with exactness, to fix their number, or determine their ranks, would not merely discover foolish curiosity, but would be rash, wicked, and dangerous.

But why did he not simply call them Angels? I answer, it was to convey exalted views of the glory of Christ that Paul employed those lofty titles. As if he had said, “There is nothing so elevated or excellent, by whatever name it may be named, that is not subject to the majesty of Christ.” There was an ancient superstition, prevalent both among Jews and Gentiles, falsely attributing to angels many things, in order to draw away their minds from God himself, and from the true Mediator. Paul constantly labors to prevent this imaginary lustre of angels from dazzling the eyes of men, or obscuring the brightness of Christ; and yet his utmost exertions could not prevent “the wiles of the devil”(Eph 6:11) from succeeding in this matter. Thus we see how the world, through a superstitious dread of angels, departed from Christ. It was indeed the unavoidable consequence of the false opinions entertained respecting angels, that the pure knowledge of Christ disappeared.

===Above every name that is named. === Name is here taken for largeness, or excellence; and to be named means to enjoy celebrity and praise. The age that is to come is expressly mentioned, to point out that the exalted rank of Christ is not temporal, but eternal; and that it is not limited to this world, but shines illustriously in the kingdom of God. For this reason, too, Isaiah calls him, (Isa 9:6,) The Father of the future age. In short, the glories of men and angels are made to hold an inferior place, that the glory of Christ, unequalled and unapproached, may shine above them all.

Calvin: Eph 1:22 - And gave him to be the head 22.And gave him to be the head He was made the head of the Church, on the condition that he should have the administration of all things. The apostle...

22.And gave him to be the head He was made the head of the Church, on the condition that he should have the administration of all things. The apostle shews that it was not a mere honorary title, but was accompanied by the entire command and government of the universe. The metaphor of a head denotes the highest authority. I am unwilling to dispute about a name, but we are driven to it by the base conduct of those who flatter the Romish idol. Since Christ alone is called “the head,” all others, whether angels or men, must rank as members; so that he who holds the highest place among his fellows is still one of the members of the same body. And yet they are not ashamed to make an open avowal that the Church will beἀκέφαλον, without a head, if it has not another head on earth besides Christ. So small is the respect which they pay to Christ, that, if he obtain undivided that honor which his Father has bestowed upon him, the Church is supposed to be disfigured. This is the basest sacrilege. But let us listen to the Apostle, who declares that the Church is His body, and, consequently, that those who refuse to submit to Him are unworthy of its communion; for on Him alone the unity of the Church depends.

Calvin: Eph 1:23 - The fullness of him that filleth all in all // That filleth all in all 23.The fullness of him that filleth all in all This is the highest honor of the Church, that, until He is united to us, the Son of God reckons himsel...

23.The fullness of him that filleth all in all This is the highest honor of the Church, that, until He is united to us, the Son of God reckons himself in some measure imperfect. What consolation is it for us to learn, that, not until we are along with him, does he possess all his parts, or wish to be regarded as complete! Hence, in the First Epistle to the Corinthians, [1Co 12:12 ] when the apostle discusses largely the metaphor of a human body, he includes under the single name of Christ the whole Church.

That filleth all in all This is added to guard against the supposition that any real defect would exist in Christ, if he were separated from us. His wish to be filled, and, in some respects, made perfect in us, arises from no want or necessity; for all that is good in ourselves, or in any of the creatures, is the gift of his hand; and his goodness appears the more remarkably in raising us out of nothing, that he, in like manner, may dwell and live in us. There is no impropriety in limiting the word all to its application to this passage; for, though all things are regulated by the will and power of Christ, yet the subject of which Paul particularly speaks is the spiritual government of the Church. There is nothing, indeed, to hinder us from viewing it as referring to the universal government of the world; but to limit it to the case in hand is the more probable interpretation.

Defender: Eph 1:1 - Ephesus Unlike the other Pauline epistles, there are few, if any, references to individuals or to local church problems in Ephesians. Nevertheless, strong con...

Unlike the other Pauline epistles, there are few, if any, references to individuals or to local church problems in Ephesians. Nevertheless, strong confirmation exists in the ancient manuscripts and in writings of the church fathers that it was, indeed, addressed to the Ephesian church. In view of the fact that Paul visited Ephesus at least three times and once spent at least three years there teaching them night and day (Act 20:31), he knew this church and its people better than any other. No doubt he felt they would be best equipped to receive, then circulate, this most doctrinal of all his epistles. It is significant that the letters to the seven churches in Asia (Revelation 2 and 3) begin with the letter to Ephesus, suggesting that Ephesus was the mother church of the seven. None of the others (Smyrna, Pergamos, Thyatira, Sardis, Philadelphia and Laodicea) apparently received a letter from Paul (although there is a possible reference to a Laodicean letter in Col 4:16). So it seems plausible that Paul wanted the Ephesian epistle to be read in all the churches of Asia. That could well be the reason why he included no personal references. The latter could have been conveyed by Tychicus (Eph 6:21), who carried the epistle from Rome to Ephesus, presumably with the instruction to circulate it among the other churches."

Defender: Eph 1:4 - chosen us God chose us by His own will (Eph 1:11), not because He could foresee our choice of Him. Jesus made this compellingly clear. "Ye have not chosen me, b...

God chose us by His own will (Eph 1:11), not because He could foresee our choice of Him. Jesus made this compellingly clear. "Ye have not chosen me, but I have chosen you" (Joh 15:16). Nevertheless, from our human perspective, every believer has also made his own willing decision to receive Christ (Joh 1:12; Joh 3:16; Rom 10:13).

Defender: Eph 1:4 - in him The phrase "in him," "in Christ" or the equivalent occurs at least thirty times in Ephesians. For example, we have been "blessed ... in Christ" (Eph 1...

The phrase "in him," "in Christ" or the equivalent occurs at least thirty times in Ephesians. For example, we have been "blessed ... in Christ" (Eph 1:3), "accepted in the Beloved" (Eph 1:6), "in whom we have redemption" (Eph 1:7), "in heavenly places in Christ Jesus" (Eph 2:6), and many others.

Defender: Eph 1:4 - foundation of the world God in Christ was the Creator of the space/matter/time universe, but before He began the world, in some way beyond our comprehension, we were chosen i...

God in Christ was the Creator of the space/matter/time universe, but before He began the world, in some way beyond our comprehension, we were chosen in Him. Note also the other events that were planned, and (since God does not change) in effect all consummated before the world began: (1) love within the Godhead (Joh 17:5, Joh 17:24); (2) Lamb of God slain (1Pe 1:20); (3) names written in Book of Life (Rev 13:8; Rev 17:8); (4) chosen ones saved by grace (2Ti 1:9);(5) saved ones given assurance of eternal life (Tit 1:2); (6) established hidden wisdom of God (1Co 2:7); (7) all God's works known and planned (Act 15:18). Even though our finite minds cannot really comprehend such truths, we can believe them since God has revealed them to us. He did not say we must understand the full depths of His gospel to be saved, we just have to believe."

Defender: Eph 1:5 - predestinated The goals of God's predestinating work are given in this chapter as: (1) producing holiness in those so chosen (Eph 1:4); (2) adopting them as His own...

The goals of God's predestinating work are given in this chapter as: (1) producing holiness in those so chosen (Eph 1:4); (2) adopting them as His own sons and daughters (Eph 1:5); (3) assuring them of an inheritance in eternity (Eph 1:11). Its over-all purpose is to be "to the praise of his glory" (Eph 1:6, Eph 1:12, Eph 1:14; Eph 3:21). The word "predestinate" is also used in Act 4:28, note; (there rendered "determined before"), Rom 8:29, Rom 8:30, note; (see notes on these verses), and 1Co 2:7 (rendered as "ordained before"). The same Greek word, without the prefix, is found in Luk 22:22; Act 17:26 ("determined") and Act 10:42; Act 17:31 ("ordained") with essentially the same meaning. Since our minds are finite, we are unable to comprehend the infinite character of the plan and purpose of God, which is exactly the situation with regard to the clearly Biblical truth of predestination. In no way does this preclude the ability of God to plan also the paradoxical truth of human freedom and responsibility, which also are clearly Biblical (remember God's ability is infinite). We cannot fully comprehend with our minds, but can believe and rejoice with our hearts that God has known and chosen us believers for Himself even before the world began."

Defender: Eph 1:6 - accepted "Accepted" is translated "highly favored" in the angel's message to Mary (Luk 1:28). The Greek word, charitoo, means "graced," or "graciously honored....

"Accepted" is translated "highly favored" in the angel's message to Mary (Luk 1:28). The Greek word, charitoo, means "graced," or "graciously honored.""

Defender: Eph 1:7 - riches The attributes of God are characterized by this term of abundance. Note "the riches of his grace" in this verse, "the exceeding riches of his grace" (...

The attributes of God are characterized by this term of abundance. Note "the riches of his grace" in this verse, "the exceeding riches of his grace" (Eph 2:7), "the riches of the glory of his inheritance" (Eph 1:18), His "unsearchable riches" (Eph 3:8), "the riches of his glory" (Eph 3:16; Rom 9:23), "the riches of his goodness" (Rom 2:4), "the riches both of the wisdom and knowledge of God" (Rom 11:33), His "riches in glory" (Phi 4:19). No wonder men have suggested the familiar acrostic for GRACE to be "God's riches at Christ's expense!""

Defender: Eph 1:8 - all wisdom Since God in Christ has abounded toward us in all wisdom, there is no other true wisdom (Compare 1Co 3:19, Mat 11:25)."

Since God in Christ has abounded toward us in all wisdom, there is no other true wisdom (Compare 1Co 3:19, Mat 11:25)."

Defender: Eph 1:10 - dispensation For a discussion of "dispensation," see note on Eph 3:2.

For a discussion of "dispensation," see note on Eph 3:2.

Defender: Eph 1:10 - he Here, "He" refers to the Father, as in Eph 1:6. The Father's work of predestination is expounded in Eph 1:1-6, the Son's work of redemption in Eph 1:7...

Here, "He" refers to the Father, as in Eph 1:6. The Father's work of predestination is expounded in Eph 1:1-6, the Son's work of redemption in Eph 1:7-12, and the Spirit's work of sealing in Eph 1:13 and Eph 1:14. This passage (Eph 1:3-14) is the longest sentence in the Bible.

Defender: Eph 1:10 - in Christ Christ is both Creator and Consummator of all things (Col 1:16-20)."

Christ is both Creator and Consummator of all things (Col 1:16-20)."

Defender: Eph 1:11 - predestinated On predestination, see Rom 8:29, Rom 8:30, note; and Eph 1:5, note. Note the important assertion here that God did not base our predestination on His ...

On predestination, see Rom 8:29, Rom 8:30, note; and Eph 1:5, note. Note the important assertion here that God did not base our predestination on His ability to foresee our decision to accept Christ, but simply according to "the counsel of his own will." In fact, He works all things - even evil things - according to His own will. If it were otherwise, He would not be omnipotent. The fact that He allows evil, when He could prevent it if He so chose, and the fact that He allows Satan and wicked men to perform and instigate evil actions, knowing when He created them that they would do this, yet creating them anyway, can only lead to the conclusion that God is the ultimate cause (though not the immediate cause) of evil, as well as good. This conclusion would seem to compromise His perfect holiness, but any other conclusion would lead to the still more unthinkable denial of His omnipotence and thus deny that God is really God! We can partly harmonize this in our understanding by saying that God has allowed (or even caused, if we press our semantics) evil for a finite time in order to produce a greater good in eternity when all the ills of this present world will be long forgotten (Compare Rom 9:18-23). We cannot fully comprehend or reconcile such matters in our finite minds, so we must simply rest our hearts in the truth that whatever the Creator does is right, by definition, since He has created us as well as the very concept of right and wrong (Act 15:18)."

Defender: Eph 1:13 - sealed The sealing ministry of the Spirit, serving as an assurance (a down payment or earnest money) of our ultimate complete redemption when Christ comes ag...

The sealing ministry of the Spirit, serving as an assurance (a down payment or earnest money) of our ultimate complete redemption when Christ comes again (Eph 1:14), is also mentioned in 2Co 1:22 and Eph 4:30. This sealing is evidenced experientially by His indwelling witness and guidance (Rom 8:16, Rom 8:23)."

Defender: Eph 1:18 - enlightened The spiritual eyes of the natural man have been blinded by Satan, the god of this world (2Co 4:4), and the saving gospel of Christ is beyond his compr...

The spiritual eyes of the natural man have been blinded by Satan, the god of this world (2Co 4:4), and the saving gospel of Christ is beyond his comprehension. In answer to prayer, (Eph 1:16), the Holy Spirit - the Spirit of wisdom and revelation, whose ministry is to convict unbelievers "of sin, and of righteousness, and of judgment" (Joh 16:8) - may bring light to his spiritual eyes, and an understanding faith in Christ. The same Spirit will then continue to enlighten his understanding through the Word."

Defender: Eph 1:21 - not only in this world When Christ defeated sin and death and arose from the dead, He ascended far above all heavens (Eph 4:10), including the dwelling of the angelic hosts ...

When Christ defeated sin and death and arose from the dead, He ascended far above all heavens (Eph 4:10), including the dwelling of the angelic hosts and their stellar habitations. The risen, glorified Lord Jesus is now King of all creation (Mat 28:18; Phi 2:9-11), and will be so forever."

Defender: Eph 1:23 - his body The theme of the church as the body of Christ whose members are composed of both Jews and Gentiles is prominent in Eph 2:15, Eph 2:16; Eph 4:4, Eph 4:...

The theme of the church as the body of Christ whose members are composed of both Jews and Gentiles is prominent in Eph 2:15, Eph 2:16; Eph 4:4, Eph 4:12-16 (1 Corinthians 12:12-31; Rom 12:4, Rom 12:5; Col 1:24).

Defender: Eph 1:23 - fulness of him This is an amazing concept, that somehow we, the members of His body, can contribute to the "fulness" of the great King who, by virtue of His work of ...

This is an amazing concept, that somehow we, the members of His body, can contribute to the "fulness" of the great King who, by virtue of His work of creating, saving and reconciling all things (Col 1:16-20) already "fills all things" (Eph 4:10; Eph 3:19; Eph 4:13; Col 2:9, Col 2:10)."

TSK: Eph 1:1 - an // to the saints // which // faithful an : Rom 1:1; 1Co 1:1; Gal 1:1 to the saints : Rom 1:7; 1Co 1:2; 2Co 1:1 which : Eph 6:21; Num 12:7; Luk 16:10; Act 16:15; 1Co 4:12, 1Co 4:17; Gal 3:9...

TSK: Eph 1:2 - -- Rom 1:7; 2Co 1:2; Gal 1:3; Tit 1:4

TSK: Eph 1:3 - Blessed // God // who // heavenly // places // in Christ Blessed : Gen 14:20; 1Ch 29:20; Neh 9:5; Psa 72:19; Dan 4:34; Luk 2:28; 2Co 1:3; 1Pe 1:3; Rev 4:9-11, Rev 5:9-14 God : Eph 1:17; Joh 10:29, Joh 10:30,...

TSK: Eph 1:4 - as // before // that // without // love as : Deu 7:6, Deu 7:7; Psa 135:4; Isa 41:8, Isa 41:9, Isa 42:1, Isa 65:8-10; Mat 11:25, Mat 11:26, Mat 24:22, Mat 24:24; Mat 24:31; Joh 10:16; Act 13:...

TSK: Eph 1:5 - predestinated // unto // by // according predestinated : Eph 1:11; Rom 8:29, Rom 8:30 unto : Jer 3:4, Jer 3:19; Hos 1:10; Joh 1:12, Joh 11:52; Rom 8:14-17, Rom 8:23; 2Co 6:18; Gal 4:5, Gal 4:...

TSK: Eph 1:6 - praise // he // in praise : Eph 1:7, Eph 1:8, Eph 1:12, Eph 1:14, Eph 1:18, Eph 2:7, Eph 3:10,Eph 3:11; Pro 16:4; Isa 43:21, Isa 61:3, Isa 61:11; Jer 33:9; Luk 2:14; Rom...

TSK: Eph 1:7 - whom // the forgiveness // to whom : Job 33:24; Psa 130:7; Dan 9:24-26; Zec 9:11, Zec 13:1, Zec 13:7; Mat 20:28, Mat 26:28; Mar 14:24; Act 20:28; Rom 3:24; 1Co 1:30; Col 1:14; 1Ti ...

TSK: Eph 1:8 - he // in he : Rom 5:15, Rom 5:20,Rom 5:21 in : Eph 1:11, Eph 3:10; Psa 104:24; Pro 8:12; Isa 52:13; Dan 2:20,Dan 2:21; Mat 11:19; Rom 11:33; 1Co 1:19-24, 1Co 2...

TSK: Eph 1:9 - made // according // purposed made : Eph 1:17, Eph 1:18, Eph 3:3-9; Mat 13:11; Rom 16:25-27; 1Co 2:10-12; Gal 1:12, Gal 1:16; Col 1:26-28; 1Ti 3:16 according : Eph 1:5 purposed : E...

TSK: Eph 1:10 - in the // he // heaven in the : Isa 2:2-4; Dan 2:44, Dan 9:24-27; Amo 9:11; Mic 4:1, Mic 4:2; Mal 3:1; 1Co 10:11; Gal 4:4; Heb 1:2, Heb 9:10, Heb 11:40; 1Pe 1:20 he : Eph 1:...

TSK: Eph 1:11 - we // being // according // the purpose // the counsel we : Eph 1:14; Psa 37:18; Act 20:32, Act 26:18; Rom 8:17; Gal 3:18; Col 1:12, Col 3:24; Tit 3:7; Jam 2:5; 1Pe 1:4, 1Pe 3:9 being : Eph 1:5 according :...

TSK: Eph 1:12 - be // who // trusted be : Eph 1:6, Eph 1:14, Eph 2:7, Eph 3:21; 2Th 2:13 who : Eph 1:13; Psa 2:12, Psa 146:3-5; Isa 11:10, Isa 12:2, Isa 32:1, Isa 32:2, Isa 42:1-4, Isa 45...

TSK: Eph 1:13 - ye also // after that ye heard // the word // the gospel // ye were // holy ye also : Eph 2:11, Eph 2:12; Col 1:21-23; 1Pe 2:10 after that ye heard : Eph 4:21; Joh 1:17; Rom 6:17, Rom 10:14-17; Col 1:4-6, Col 1:23; 1Th 2:13 th...

TSK: Eph 1:14 - the earnest // the redemption // unto the earnest : Rom 8:15-17, Rom 8:23; 2Co 1:22, 2Co 5:5; Gal 4:6 the redemption : Eph 4:30; Lev 25:24-34; Psa 74:2, Psa 78:54; Jer 32:7, Jer 32:8; Luk ...

TSK: Eph 1:15 - after // faith // love after : Col 1:3, Col 1:4; Phm 1:5 faith : Gal 5:6; 1Th 1:3; 2Th 1:3; 1Ti 1:5, 1Ti 1:14 love : Psa 16:3; Col 1:4; 1Th 4:9; Heb 6:10; 1Pe 1:22; 1Jo 3:17...

TSK: Eph 1:16 - Cease // making Cease : Rom 1:8, Rom 1:9; 1Sa 7:8, 1Sa 12:23; Phi 1:3, Phi 1:4; Col 1:3; 1Th 5:17; 2Th 1:3 making : Gen 40:14; Isa 62:6; 1Th 1:2

TSK: Eph 1:17 - the God // the Father // the spirit // revelation // in the knowledge the God : Eph 1:3; Joh 20:17 the Father : 1Ch 29:11; Psa 24:7, Psa 24:10, Psa 29:3; Jer 2:11; Mat 6:13; Luk 2:14; Act 7:2; 1Co 2:8; Jam 2:1; Rev 7:12 ...

TSK: Eph 1:18 - eyes // is // his calling // the riches eyes : Eph 5:8; Psa 119:18; Isa 6:10, Isa 29:10,Isa 29:18, Isa 32:3, Isa 42:7; Mat 13:15; Luk 24:45; Act 16:14, Act 26:18; 2Co 4:4, 2Co 4:6; Heb 10:32...

TSK: Eph 1:19 - exceeding // his mighty exceeding : Eph 2:10, Eph 3:7, Eph 3:20; Psa 110:2, Psa 110:3; Isa 53:1; Joh 3:6; Act 26:18; Rom 1:16; 2Co 4:7, 2Co 5:17; Phi 2:13; Col 1:29, Col 2:12...

TSK: Eph 1:20 - he wrought // when // and set // heavenly he wrought : Eph 2:5, Eph 2:6; Rom 6:5-11; Phi 3:10; 1Pe 1:3 when : Psa 16:9-11; Joh 10:18, Joh 10:30; Act 2:24-33, Act 4:10, Act 10:40, Act 26:8; Rom...

TSK: Eph 1:21 - above // principality // every // in that above : Phi 2:9, Phi 2:10; Col 2:10; Heb 1:4 principality : Eph 3:10, Eph 6:12; Dan 7:27; Rom 8:38, Rom 8:39; Col 1:15, Col 1:16, Col 2:15; Heb 4:14; ...

TSK: Eph 1:22 - put // gave // to the put : Gen 3:15; Psa 8:6-8, Psa 91:13; 1Co 15:25-27; Heb 2:8 gave : Eph 4:15, Eph 4:16; 1Co 11:3; Col 1:8, Col 2:10,Col 2:19 to the : Eph 3:21; Mat 16:...

TSK: Eph 1:23 - his // fulness his : Eph 2:16, Eph 4:4, Eph 4:12, Eph 5:23-32; Rom 13:5; 1Cor. 12:12-27; Col 1:18, Col 1:24, Col 3:15 fulness : Eph 3:19, Eph 4:10; Joh 1:16; 1Co 12:...

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Poole: Eph 1:1 - Chapter Summary // The faithful // Christ Jesus Chapter Summary Eph 1:1,2 After saluting the Ephesians, Eph 1:3-6 Paul blesseth God for his spiritual blessings on those whom he had chosen in...

Chapter Summary

Eph 1:1,2 After saluting the Ephesians,

Eph 1:3-6 Paul blesseth God for his spiritual blessings on

those whom he had chosen in Christ, and predestinated

to the adoption of children,

Eph 1:7-10 for our redemption by his grace, according to his

revealed purpose of gathering together all in one

under Christ,

Eph 1:11,12 for the inhertance already obtained by those who

first trusted in Christ,

Eph 1:13,14 and for the Spirit given to after believers, as an

earnest of the same.

Eph 1:15-19 He declareth his continual thankfulness to God for

their faith, and his prayers that God would perfect

them in the knowledge of those things which concerned

their state in Christ,

Eph 1:20-23 whom God had raised up, and exalted to be the supreme

Head of his body the church.

The faithful this may be understood either:

1. By way of restriction, of those that are sincere and constant to Christ, and so not only saints by profession, but true to their profession; or rather:

2. By way of explication: he defines those saints he spake of, and calls them faithful in Christ here, whom he called saints before.

Christ Jesus the Author and Fountain of that holiness which denominates them saints.

Poole: Eph 1:2-3 - Who hath blessed us // With all // Spiritual blessings // In heavenly places // In Christ Ver. 2,3. Blessed be i.e. thanked, praised. We bless God when we praise him for, and acknowledge him in, his excellencies or benefits. Who hath ble...

Ver. 2,3. Blessed be i.e. thanked, praised. We bless God when we praise him for, and acknowledge him in, his excellencies or benefits.

Who hath blessed us hath vouchsafed or communicated, all spiritual blessings to us. God blesseth us when he doeth good to us: and so the word blessed is taken in a different sense from what it was in the former clause.

With all of all sorts or kinds.

Spiritual blessings in opposition to temporal and worldly, which the carnal Jews principally expected, and the law mostly promised, Deu 28:1-14and which were but types and shadows of those spiritual blessings which immediately relate to the spiritual life and salvation of believers.

In heavenly places Gr. supercelestial, or heavenly: understand either:

1. Things; and then it seems to be the same as spiritual blessings, only in other terms. Or:

2. Places, in opposition to earthly places, particularly the land of Canaan, in which God had formerly promised to bless his people. These spiritual blessings are in heavenly places, because, though they reach us here on earth, yet they are derived to us from God and Christ in heaven, and in heaven only have their full perfection and consummation hereafter.

In Christ by or through Christ; upon the account of whose merit, and by whose efficiency, these spiritual blessings are derived from God to us. Or, in Christ as our Head, the repository and seat of all Divine blessings, from whom they flow down upon us as his members, receiving all we have out of his fulness. He seems to have respect to the promise made to Abraham, Gen 22:18 : That in his seed all the nations of the earth should be blessed; pointing out Christ as that seed, and those blessings as spiritual. See Act 3:25,26 .

Poole: Eph 1:4 - Chosen us // In him // Before the foundation of the world // That we should be holy and without blame // Before him // In love God blesseth us with all spiritual blessings according as he hath chosen us election being the fountain from whence those blessings come, so that G...

God blesseth us with all spiritual blessings according as he hath chosen us election being the fountain from whence those blessings come, so that God doeth nothing for us in carrying on the work of our salvation, but what he had in his eternal counsel before determined.

Chosen us separated us in his purpose and decree from others, (whom he left out of that gracious act of his will), and determined that we should be holy and unblamable, &c.

In him either:

1. By and through Christ, (as in the former verse), for his sake, and upon the account of his merit as the procuring cause, not of our election, but sanctification; q.d. God hath chosen us, that we should be made holy and unblamable by Christ. Or rather:

2. In Christ, as the foundation on which he would build us, (his spiritual house), and by which both we might be united to God, and he communicate his influence and grace to us; or as our Head, by which he might convey grace, and strength, and life to us as Christ’ s members.

Before the foundation of the world either before God’ s decree of creating the world, or rather, before his executing that decree in the actual creation of it; i.e. from eternity, when neither we nor the world had a being.

That we should be holy and without blame by inherent grace begun in regeneration, and carried on in sanctification and mortification in this life, though not perfected till the other. Holiness in us is declared here to be not the cause, but the effect of our election; we are chosen that we may be holy, not because we are, or God foresees we will be holy.

Before him in the sight of God, who is not deceived with an outward appearance, but looks to the heart.

In love as a principal part of our sanctification, and the best evidence of the fear of God in us, and our obedience to the whole law.

Poole: Eph 1:5 - Having predestinated us unto the adoption of children // By Jesus Christ // To himself // According to the good pleasure of his will Having predestinated us unto the adoption of children having appointed us unto a state of sonship and right to glory. This seems to be more than the ...

Having predestinated us unto the adoption of children having appointed us unto a state of sonship and right to glory. This seems to be more than the former, a greater thing to be the sons of God, and heirs of heaven, than to be holy.

By Jesus Christ as Mediator, and Head of the elect, and the foundation of all spiritual blessings vouchsafed them, and so of this relation into which they are brought, by being united to him. The adopted children come into that state by the intervention of the natural Son.

To himself either:

1. In himself, i.e. looking no farther than to himself for the cause of and motive to his adopting them. Or:

2. To himself, (according to our translation), i.e. to God. Or, rather:

3. For himself (as the Syriac renders it); God would have the honour of having many adopted children that shall all call him Father.

According to the good pleasure of his will his sovereign grace and good will, as the only spring from which predestination issued, God being moved to it by nothing out of himself.

Poole: Eph 1:6 - To the praise of the glory of his grace // Wherein // He hath made us accepted in the beloved To the praise of the glory of his grace : glory of his grace, by a usual Hebraism, for glorious grace, i.e. large, abundant, admirable. The praise ...

To the praise of the glory of his grace : glory of his grace, by a usual Hebraism, for glorious grace, i.e. large, abundant, admirable. The praise of this grace the apostle makes the end of God’ s choosing and predestinating us to the adoption of children. God hath chosen us, &c., and therein manifested his grace to us, that such as it is in itself, such it may be acknowledged to be; and therefore praised and adored by us.

Wherein in, or through, or by the same grace out of which he chose us.

He hath made us accepted in the beloved having chosen us in Christ, he likewise favours us, is well pleased with us in Christ, to whom we are united, whose members we are, and in whom God looks upon us. We are hateful in ourselves as sinners, but accepted in Christ as sons.

Poole: Eph 1:7 - In whom // We // Have redemption // Through his blood // Even the forgiveness of sins // According to the riches of his grace In whom in Christ, God-man, the immediate worker of this redemption; for though the Father and the Spirit concurred to it, yet the redeeming work was...

In whom in Christ, God-man, the immediate worker of this redemption; for though the Father and the Spirit concurred to it, yet the redeeming work was peculiarly terminated in the Second Person. The other two Persons have a right of propriety to redeem us; Christ only a right of propinquity, as assuming our nature, and being of kin to us.

We we elect, before mentioned.

Have redemption freedom from the wrath of God, and curse of the law, to which we are obnoxious, and consequently the power of sin and tyranny of Satan, as the effects of the former.

Through his blood i.e. by the sacrifice of his death upon the cross, where his blood was shed. This was the price of redemption paid to God for us, and wherewith his justice being satisfied, we could no longer be detained under the custody of the devil, or the dominion of sin.

Even the forgiveness of sins redemption is not formally forgiveness, but causally, forgiveness being the effect of it; and it is mentioned not as the only or adequate, but the prime and principal fruit of redemption, and upon which the other depend.

According to the riches of his grace: what he called glorious grace, Eph 1:6 , here he calls riches of grace, meaning plentiful and superabundant grace, by a phrase frequently used by him elsewhere in the same sense, Rom 9:23 2:4,7 .

Poole: Eph 1:8 - Wherein // he hath abounded toward us // In all wisdom // Wisdom and prudence Wherein in which grace before mentioned, he hath abounded toward us i.e. out of abundance of grace in himself, (called riches of grace, Eph 1:7 ),...

Wherein in which grace before mentioned,

he hath abounded toward us i.e. out of abundance of grace in himself, (called riches of grace, Eph 1:7 ), he hath bestowed upon us wisdom and prudence. The like expression we have, 1Ti 1:14 .

In all wisdom this denotes either, the perfections or excellency of it, being instead of all other wisdom, and more excellent than all else; or all in comparison of what was under the Old Testament. They then had Divine truths revealed but by parts and parcels, and so a more sparing measure of spiritual wisdom; but under the gospel, believers have it more fully and largely, the Spirit of wisdom and revelation being poured out on them.

Wisdom and prudence either the doctrine of the gospel, which contains more perfect and higher wisdom than that the Greeks sought after, 1Co 1:22 , and for lack of which they counted the gospel foolishness; or rather, by wisdom is understood that knowledge or faith whereby we receive spiritual truths revealed to us, and to be believed by us, so as to their excellency, and have our hearts affected with them; and by prudence the knowledge of the rule of our duty, with skill to govern ourselves according to it: and so wisdom is no other than faith, and prudence the same in effect with holiness; the former relates to the things we are to believe, the latter to the things we are to do. In the working these two in the soul, consists inward and effectual calling, which the apostle mentions in this verse, as he doth the outward likewise, by the preaching the word of the gospel, in the next.

Poole: Eph 1:9 - Having made known unto us // The mystery of his will // According to his good pleasure // Which he hath purposed in himself Having made known unto us having revealed to us outwardly by the preaching of the gospel; inwardly, by the illumination of the Spirit. The mystery o...

Having made known unto us having revealed to us outwardly by the preaching of the gospel; inwardly, by the illumination of the Spirit.

The mystery of his will the whole doctrine of grace and salvation by Christ, which is a secret to others, and had still been so to us, had not God discovered it to us in the gospel.

According to his good pleasure the good pleasure of God is the fountain of all spiritual blessings which flow out to us, as well as it is of our being first chosen and appointed to be the subjects of them.

Which he hath purposed in himself this signifies a firm, settled will in God, either merely of God, and moved by nothing out of himself, or his keeping this purpose in himself till the time appointed for the publication of it.

Poole: Eph 1:10 - The fulness of times // Gather together in one // All things // In Christ // Which are in heaven // Which are on earth Some copies join the last clause of the former verse with this, leaving out the relative which, and concluding the sentence at good pleasure, ...

Some copies join the last clause of the former verse with this, leaving out the relative which, and concluding the sentence at good pleasure, and then read: He purposed in himself, that in the dispensation, & c.; but most read it as our translators have rendered it, only some understand an explicative particle, to wit, in the beginning of this verse, to wit, that in the dispensation, &c.; but either way the scope of the words is the same, viz. to give the sum of that mystery of God’ s will, mentioned before.

In the dispensation; in that administration or distribution of the good things of God’ s house; which he had determined should be in the fulness of time. It is a metaphor taken from a steward, who distributes and dispenseth according to his master’ s order to those that are in the house, Luk 12:42 . The church is the house of God, God himself the Master of the family, Christ the Steward that governs the house; those spiritual blessings, mentioned Eph 1:3 , are the good things he gives out. These treasures of God’ s grace had been opened but to a few, and dispensed sparingly under the Old Testament, the more full communication of them being reserved till the fulness of times, when they were to be dispensed by Christ.

The fulness of times the time appointed of the Father for the appearance of Christ in the flesh, (according to former promises), the promulgation of the gospel, and thereby the gathering together in one all things in Christ. It is spoken in opposition to the times and ages before Christ’ s coming, which God would have run out till the set time came which he had pitched upon, and believers expected: see Gal 4:2,4 .

Gather together in one to recapitulate; either to sum up as men do several lesser numbers in one total sum, which is the foot of the account, but called by the Greeks the head of it, and set at the top; or as orators do the several parts of their speeches in fewer words; thus all former prophecies, promises, types, and shadows centred, and were fulfilled, and as it were summed up, in Christ: or rather, to unite unto, and gather together again under, one head things before divided and scattered.

All things all intellectual beings, or all persons, as Gal 3:22 .

In Christ as their Head, under which they might be united to God, and to each other.

Which are in heaven either saints departed, who have already obtained salvation by Christ, or rather the holy angels, that still keep their first station.

Which are on earth the elect of God among men here upon earth in their several generations. The meaning of the whole seems to be, that whereas the order and harmony of God’ s principal workmanship, intellectual creatures, angels and men, had been disturbed and broken by the entering of sin into the world; all mankind, and many of the angels, having apostatized from him, and the remnant of them being in their own nature labile and mutable; God would, in his appointed time, give Christ (the Heir of all things) the honour of being the repairer of this breach, by gathering together again the disjointed members of his creation in and under Christ as their Head and Governor, confirming the good angels in their good estate, and recovering his elect among men from their apostate condition. Though it be true, that not only believers under the Old Testament were saved, but the elect angels confirmed before Christ’ s coming, yet both the one and the other was with a respect to Christ as their Head, and the foundation of their union with God; and out of whom, as the one, being lost, could not have been restored, so the fall of the other could not have been prevented, nor their happiness secured.

Poole: Eph 1:11 - In whom we // Have obtained an inheritance // Being predestinated // Who worketh all things // after the counsel of his own will In whom we we apostles and others elect of the Jewish nation, we who first trusted in Christ, Eph 1:12 . Have obtained an inheritance are called, ...

In whom we we apostles and others elect of the Jewish nation, we who first trusted in Christ, Eph 1:12 .

Have obtained an inheritance are called, or brought into the participation of an inheritance, or have a right given us to it as by lot: in allusion to the twelve tribes having, in the division of the land of Canaan, their inheritances assigned them by lot. He shows that they did not first seek it, much less deserve it, but God cast it upon them: their lot fell in the heavenly inheritance, when others did not.

Being predestinated this, as well as the forementioned privileges, was designed to us by eternal predestination, and though it be free, and without our procuring, yet in respect of God it is not casual, but of his ordering.

Who worketh all things powerfully and effectually,

after the counsel of his own will i.e. that infinite wisdom of God, which is always in conjunction with his will, whereby he acts wisely as well as freely, and though not by deliberation, which falls beneath his infinite perfection, yet with his greatest reason and judgment.

Poole: Eph 1:12 - That we should be to the praise of his glory // Who first trusted in Christ That we should be to the praise of his glory either: 1. Passively, that the excellency and greatness of God’ s wisdom, power, grace, mercy, &c....

That we should be to the praise of his glory either:

1. Passively, that the excellency and greatness of God’ s wisdom, power, grace, mercy, &c. might be shown forth in us by our being predestinated, called, sanctified, saved: or rather:

2. Actively, that we, by the holiness, obedience, and fruitfulness of our conversations, suitable to such privileges, might manifest and set forth the glory of him that vouchsafed them to us.

Who first trusted in Christ who were the fruits of the New Testament church, the gospel having been first preached to the apostles by Christ himself, and by them to the Jews, (their own nation), and having been first believed by them.

Poole: Eph 1:13 - In whom ye also // In whom ye also trusted // Ye // The word of truth // The gospel of your salvation // In whom also after that ye believed // Ye were sealed with that holy Spirit // Of promise In whom ye also here is a defect of the verb in the Greek, which may be supplied either from Eph 1:11 , which seems to be the principal verb in the s...

In whom ye also here is a defect of the verb in the Greek, which may be supplied either from Eph 1:11 , which seems to be the principal verb in the sentence, and then it must be read: In whom ye also have obtained an inheritance; or from Eph 1:12 , trusted, which is the nearest verb; so our translation:

In whom ye also trusted but neither way makes any difference in the scope of the words.

Ye ye Ephesians and other Gentiles.

The word of truth the gospel, so called, either:

1. By a usual Hebraism, from the true word; or:

2. By way of eminency, as containing the most excellent and necessary of all truths, the doctrine of righteousness and life by Jesus Christ; or:

3. With respect to the law and its shadows, the truth and substance of which is held forth in the gospel.

The gospel of your salvation: both in respect of the matter contained in it, the doctrine of salvation, and in respect of its efficiency, as being the means whereby God works faith, and brings to salvation, Rom 1:12 Heb 2:3 .

In whom also after that ye believed ; in whom either is to be referred to believers; q.d. After ye believed in Christ: or to sealing; and then it shows by virtue of whom this benefit of sealing is bestowed, viz. by virtue of Christ.

Ye were sealed with that holy Spirit ye were secured and ascertained of your right to the inheritance; which we may understand to be done either by the Spirit’ s impressing upon the soul the image of God in the work of regeneration, or (because that cannot so well be understood to be after believing) rather by his testimony in men’ s own consciences afterward; whether immediate, by an overpowering light shining into the soul, and filling it with assurance of its interest in Christ and heaven; or mediate, enabling a man to discern that image of God in his soul, by which the Spirit bears witness to his interest in the inheritance, and assures him of it: see Eph 4:30 Rom 8:16 Gal 4:6 .

Of promise because the Spirit’ s coming was before promised, or because he verifies and confirms the promises in and to the hearts of believers.

Poole: Eph 1:14 - Which is the earnest of our inheritance // Until the redemption of the purchased possession // Unto the praise of his glory Which is the earnest of our inheritance: the Spirit, given to and dwelling in believers by his gifts and graces, is the earnest or pledge whereby the...

Which is the earnest of our inheritance: the Spirit, given to and dwelling in believers by his gifts and graces, is the earnest or pledge whereby their inheritance is secured to them; as men are secured the payment of a promised sum, by a part given beforehand in earnest for the rest.

Until the redemption of the purchased possession either:

1. The redemption of the possession is put for the possessing of the redemption, (by an hypallage), viz. full and final redemption from sin, and death, and hell, and Satan; which redemption though perfectly wrought by Christ, is but in part applied in this life, and is to be fully enjoyed in the other: or rather:

2. (Though to the same sense), To the full and final redemption in the end of the world, of all God’ s people, who are here called his purchased possession: see the same word so taken, Act 20:28 1Pe 2:9 .

Unto the praise of his glory the final salvation and complete redemption of God’ s people, will be especially for the glory of God, 2Th 1:10 .

Poole: Eph 1:15 - After I heard // Of your faith in the Lord Jesus // And love unto all the saints After I heard he was an eye-witness of their first believing, but here he speaks of their increase and constancy in the faith since, of which he had ...

After I heard he was an eye-witness of their first believing, but here he speaks of their increase and constancy in the faith since, of which he had heard by others.

Of your faith in the Lord Jesus i.e. not barely a belief of Christ’ s excellencies, but a belief of his being their Saviour, their receiving and relying on him as such, and so a believing in him as the immediate object of their faith, and him by whom they believed in God, 1Pe 1:21 .

And love unto all the saints this is added to show the truth of their faith, which works by love.

Love to the saints is mentioned, as an evidence of their love to God; and to all the saints to show the sincerity of that love, in its not being partial, but respecting all saints, and therefore saints as saints.

Poole: Eph 1:16 - Cease not to give thanks for you // Making mention of you in my prayers Cease not to give thanks for you for your faith and love, and all the spiritual blessings God hath bestowed upon you. Making mention of you in my pr...

Cease not to give thanks for you for your faith and love, and all the spiritual blessings God hath bestowed upon you.

Making mention of you in my prayers I not only acknowledge what ye have received, but pray that what is yet lacking in you may be made up.

Poole: Eph 1:17 - That the God of our Lord Jesus Christ // The Father of glory // May give unto you the spirit of wisdom // And revelation // In the knowledge // Of him That the God of our Lord Jesus Christ he is the God of Christ not according to Christ’ s Divine nature, but his human, and as Mediator, in which...

That the God of our Lord Jesus Christ he is the God of Christ not according to Christ’ s Divine nature, but his human, and as Mediator, in which respect he was subject to the Father.

The Father of glory the most glorious Father, and the Author of all glory and glorious things, and to whom all glory is due.

May give unto you the spirit of wisdom a greater measure (for some they already had) of faith, as Eph 1:8 , where it is called wisdomor of the knowledge of the things of God, whereof the Spirit is the Author. God is said to give or send the Spirit, where the Spirit works effectually; and, so to give the Spirit of wisdom, where the Spirit effectually works that wisdom.

And revelation: by revelation he means not extraordinary, such as the prophets had, but ordinary, such as was common to believers, and expresseth the manner of the Spirit’ s working this wisdom, that he doth it by removing the covering or veil of natural ignorance, Psa 119:18 Luk 24:45shining into the mind, and making it see what before it saw not; sometimes new objects, sometimes new excellencies in objects before known. Thus the Spirit works not only in the beginning of faith and spiritual knowledge, but in its further progress he lets in new light into the mind, and removes some remaining degree of natural darkness.

In the knowledge or acknowledgment, which may imply an ownng, approving, and embracing things before known.

Of him i.e. God or Christ, or God in Christ: and so either he declares here wherein the wisdom he mentioned consists, viz. the knowledge of God and Christ, in whom are hid all the treasures of wisdom and knowledge: or rather, the end of that wisdom and revelation, viz. the acknowledgment of God or Christ, when we so know him, as to own him as ours, to embrace, and love, and wholly subject ourselves to him, Col 1:9,10 .

Poole: Eph 1:18 - The eyes of your understanding being enlightened // That ye may know what is the hope of his calling // And what the riches of the glory // Of his // Inheritance // In the saints The eyes of your understanding being enlightened viz. by that spirit of revelation: and so this clause explains the former. What the eye is to the ...

The eyes of your understanding being enlightened viz. by that

spirit of revelation: and so this clause explains the former. What the eye is to the body, that the understanding is to the soul. He prays for a further degree of illumination for them.

That ye may know what is the hope of his calling either:

1. The object of hope, the thing hoped for, as Col 1:5 Gal 5:5 ; and then the meaning is, what it is to the hope of which God hath called you by the gospel. Or:

2. The grace of hope: q.d. That ye may know how great, and sure, and well grounded that hope is, which by the gospel is wrought in you.

And what the riches of the glory the glorious riches, or the abundant glory; riches of glory, and riches of grace, Eph 1:7 , and riches of glory, Rom 6:23 .

Of his because he is the Father of it: he gives this glory as the Father of glory. As men give inheritances suitable to their estates, so God, as the God of glory, and Father of glory, gives a glorious inheritance.

Inheritance heaven, called an inheritance both in respect of believers’ title to it by virtue of their adoption, being heirs of God; and in respect of the perpetuity of their enjoying it, on which account it is called an eternal inheritance, Heb 9:15 .

In the saints or, among the saints, those, namely, that are perfect, who alone are possessed of the inheritance, which saints on earth have only in hope.

Poole: Eph 1:19 - And what is the exceeding greatness of his power to usward who believe // According to the working of his mighty power // who believe according to the working of his mighty power And what is the exceeding greatness of his power to usward who believe he means that power of God which is put forth in the whole of our salvation, f...

And what is the exceeding greatness of his power to usward who believe he means that power of God which is put forth in the whole of our salvation, from first to last: not that absolute power whereby he can do whatsoever is possible to be done; but his ordinate power, or power joined with his will, whereby not only he will work in raising us up at last, and finally saving us, but hath wrought in begetting faith in us, and doth work in still preserving that faith, 1Pe 1:5and carrying us on in the way of salvation. And this he speaks for the encouragement of the Ephesians, that they should not fear falling short of the riches of the glory of the inheritance mentioned, seeing God, who hath by his power brought them to Christ, is able likewise by the same power to bring them to glory.

According to the working of his mighty power: some point the words after us-ward, and read them,

who believe according to the working of his mighty power & c.; and then the meaning must be, that the working faith in believers, is an instance of his mighty power; he hath shown his power in working faith, and therefore will show it in the remainder of salvation which is to follow. But our translation favours the former sense, and then, as in the preceding clause he shows the greatness of God’ s power, so in this latter the efficacy of it in its actual operation, particularly the raising up Christ from the dead.

Poole: Eph 1:20 - Which he wrought in Christ, when he raised him from the dead // And set him at his own right hand // In the heavenly places Which he wrought in Christ, when he raised him from the dead i.e. the power God exerciseth toward believers is such as that was whereby he raised up ...

Which he wrought in Christ, when he raised him from the dead i.e. the power God exerciseth toward believers is such as that was whereby he raised up Christ from the dead.

And set him at his own right hand hath invested him with the greatest honour, dignity, and power, as princes set the next in honour and authority to themselves at their right hands: see Mat 20:21 .

In the heavenly places in the highest heaven, called the third heaven, 2Co 12:2 , and paradise, 2Co 12:4 .

Poole: Eph 1:21 - Principality, and power, and might, and dominion // And every name that is named // Every name // Not only in this world, but also in that which is to come Principality, and power, and might, and dominion: these terms are sometimes applied to magistrates and men in authority here in the world, Tit 3:1 Ju...

Principality, and power, and might, and dominion: these terms are sometimes applied to magistrates and men in authority here in the world, Tit 3:1 Jud 1:8 sometimes to angels; to good ones, Col 1:16 ; to evil ones, Eph 6:12 Col 2:15 ; though with allusion to powers in the world, or because by them God puts forth and exerciseth his power and dominion. By these, then, the apostle understands good angels, as Eph 3:10 ; or, comprehensively, all sorts of powers, both visible and invisible, as Col 1:16 1Pe 3:22 .

And every name that is named lest any might think he had not named all above whom Christ is exalted, he adds this, to take all in.

Every name that is, every person, and every thing which hath a name; whatever hath any dignity or excellency.

Not only in this world, but also in that which is to come because, though it hath a being at present, yet it is future to us who are not yet possessed of it. Either this clause relates to Christ’ s sitting at his Father’ s right hand, and then it notes the perpetuity of his reign, that his kingdom is an everlasting kingdom, Luk 1:33 ; or rather, to the words immediately going before: q.d. If there be any name, any dignity, or excellency, not known in this life, and which shall be known in the other; yet, be they what they may, Christ is above them all.

Poole: Eph 1:22 - All things // Hath put all things under his feet // Objection // Answer // And gave him // To be head // Over all things // To the church // things under his feet All things either all his enemies, as Psa 110:1 , all except the church, which is said to be his body; or all things more generally, of which he spak...

All things either all his enemies, as Psa 110:1 , all except the church, which is said to be his body; or all things more generally, of which he spake before, angels and men; all are made subject to Christ, 1Pe 3:22 .

Hath put all things under his feet put them into a perfect and full subjection to him.

Objection. All things are not yet put under him.

Answer.

1. All things are so put under him that he can do with them what he please, break all his enemies in pieces when he will, though for many reasons he yet doth it not.

2. They are begun to be subjected to him, and by degrees shall be further subjected, till they be perfectly and absolutely subjected unto him, de facto, as already they are de jure.

And gave him appointed, or constituted, or made him.

To be head a mystical head; such a one not only as a king is to his subjects, to rule them externally by his laws, but such as a natural head is to the body, which it governs by way of influence, conveying spirits to it, and so causing and maintaining sense and motion in it, Eph 4:16 Col 2:19 .

Over all things either:

1. God hath chiefly, and above all before mentioned, given Christ to be the Head of the church; q.d. Though he be King and Lord of all, yet God hath made him the only proper Head to the church only; God hath set him above principalities and powers, but especially hath appointed him to be the Head of the church. Or:

2. Over all things may be meant, for the communication of all good things to the church, and performing all offices of a Head to her; a Head to the church, with a power over all things for her good.

To the church the catholic church, or whole collection of believers throughout the world, and in all ages of it.

things under his feet put them into a perfect and full subjection to him.

Objection. All things are not yet put under him.

Answer.

1. All things are so put under him that he can do with them what he please, break all his enemies in pieces when he will, though for many reasons he yet doth it not.

2. They are begun to be subjected to him, and by degrees shall be further subjected, till they be perfectly and absolutely subjected unto him, de facto, as already they are de jure.

And gave him appointed, or constituted, or made him.

To be head a mystical head; such a one not only as a king is to his subjects, to rule them externally by his laws, but such as a natural head is to the body, which it governs by way of influence, conveying spirits to it, and so causing and maintaining sense and motion in it, Eph 4:16 Col 2:19 .

Over all things either:

1. God hath chiefly, and above all before mentioned, given Christ to be the Head of the church; q.d. Though he be King and Lord of all, yet God hath made him the only proper Head to the church only; God hath set him above principalities and powers, but especially hath appointed him to be the Head of the church. Or:

2. Over all things may be meant, for the communication of all good things to the church, and performing all offices of a Head to her; a Head to the church, with a power over all things for her good.

To the church the catholic church, or whole collection of believers throughout the world, and in all ages of it.

Poole: Eph 1:23 - Which is his body // The fulness of him // That filleth all in all Which is his body i.e. a mystical one, whereof every member is influenced by the Spirit of Christ the Head, as in the natural body the members are in...

Which is his body i.e. a mystical one, whereof every member is influenced by the Spirit of Christ the Head, as in the natural body the members are influenced by spirits derived from the natural head.

The fulness of him: the church is called the fulness of Christ, not personally, but relatively considered, and as Head of the church. The head is incomplete without the body; Christ in his relative capacity as a Head, would not be complete without his mystical body the church.

That filleth all in all: lest Christ should be thought to have any need of the church, because of her being said to be his fulness, it is added, that she herself is filled by Christ. Christ fills all his body, and all the members of it, with the gifts and graces of his Spirit, Eph 4:10 .

PBC: Eph 1:1 - saints // to the faithful in Christ Jesus. // Paul, a servant of Jesus Christ, by the will of God: // To the Saints which are at Ephesus, and to the faithful in Christ Jesus. What kind of person does the gospel address? Does it address all mankind? Or does it address a particular kind or class of people? In this introductio...

What kind of person does the gospel address? Does it address all mankind? Or does it address a particular kind or class of people? In this introduction to the Ephesian letter, Paul carefully defined the recipients of his letter by two descriptive terms, saints and faithful in Christ Jesus.  41

" saints"

Who are saints? How does one become a saint? By Paul’s use of the word here and by its use in other New Testament scriptures, we conclude that saints are not as exclusive as many would have us think. Neither are they made saints by an act of the church. When we study the doctrine of sanctification, we will learn more about saints. Legally, every child of God is a saint. 41

" to the faithful in Christ Jesus."

The person who fits this description is already in Christ Jesus. Further, in Christ Jesus he manifests faithfulness. This verse should encourage us to understand that faithfulness does not put the sinner in Christ Jesus. It rather manifests that the faithful saint holds an established relationship with Christ, dwelling permanently in him. 41

REFLECTIONS.

This chapter is a rich storehouse of Spiritual truth. Paul here treats of the foundation principles of Christian hope. As ponderous stones are laid deep in the earth to support some mighty structure, so would Paul find in God’s eternal purpose and omnipotent power, a sure basis for the building of mercy. Other foundation can no man lay than that is laid—laid deep and strong ere man came upon the scene. If we are true believers, or faithful ministers of Christ, we owe it to the unmerited and sovereign grace of God. He might justly had left all to perish evermore; so Christians are but as brands plucked from the burning. The thought that our present hopeful state grows out of, or is due to, God’s eternal purpose, is an abiding well-spring of joy. It led Paul to exclaim, " All things work together for good to them that love God, who are the called according to his purpose."

I am not sad nor surprised that self-confident men dislike these pride-debasing truths, but my heart is pained within me to know that some who are Christians in heart, and who love the Redeemer, dislike the thought that our eternal salvation in heaven is the result of God’s eternal purpose and foreknowledge. God has given us this truth as a stronghold in the day of trouble, a resting-place in despondency, a rock of comfort in the gloomy hour. When we consider our poor fallen state here, our weakness, the evil of our hearts, our proneness to do wrong; and when we remember that Satan is our foe; that the world is at war with our eternal interests; that death and the tomb are waiting for each one of us, should we not press to our hearts those wonderful truths that Paul has given for the consolation of believers? Should not every child rejoice to hear that God remembered his people in eternity’ that they were chosen in Christ Jesus ere time began; predestinated to be holy and without blame, given redemption and forgiveness of sins, and an inheritance in Christ? Is it not a source of exceeding joy that God manifested his greatness of his power to us-ward; opening the eyes of our understanding, causing us to believe, and sealing us with the Holy Spirit of promise, and giving us the inspiring truth that we are one with the Redeemer? May these considerations be the solace of our lives, and make us tender to those who know them not. If thus favored, it is ours to commend in life and heart the great truths we profess, that God may be glorified by the children of men.

Eph 1:1 Paul, an apostle of Jesus Christ by the will of God, to the saints which are at Ephesus, and to the faithful in Christ Jesus:

" Paul, a servant of Jesus Christ, by the will of God:"

This eminent servant in the Gospel, the most striking character in the New Testament next to Jesus, was not an apostle from his own choice. He had not thrust himself into the office, nor sought it, but declared of it, " Necessity is laid upon me, yea woe is unto me if I preach not the gospel." His labors, sacrifices, and sufferings were patiently endured because of this necessity. He did not engage in this work that he might obtain a livelihood, or secure an honorable name, but simply because God had called him to the work. No man taketh this honor upon himself, nor does he shrink from its sacrifices and responsibility, when moved by the " necessity" that God implants.

We yet need men " called of God" to preach the ever-living gospel of truth, men who do not labor for gain, but from love to God and to his people. The man who engages in this work from any other motive, cannot preach the gospel. He may preach many things pleasing to the world, but the bearer of the true message to God’s people must be " sent" of him. It was God who sent the prophets and servants of old, who sent Jesus of Nazareth, and John the forerunner of his kingdom. It was he who called and sent each one of his apostles, who " set in the church" every official gift; and it is to him, as the Lord of the harvest, that we are directed to pray that he will send laborers into his field and the question may properly be asked, " How can they preach, except they be sent?"

" To the Saints which are at Ephesus, and to the faithful in Christ Jesus."

This epistle is clearly addressed to Christian people, and not to men of the world. The distinction should be kept in view with every part of the letter. Being directed " to the Saints," or faithful believers, no minister or teacher has the right to apply it to unbelievers, or the unregenerate. The same thought is connected with every portion of God’s word, and it is a fruitful source of error and confusion to disregard so plain a truth. Whatever there may be of promise, privilege, or comfort in this letter, it cannot be applied farther than to the faithful in Christ Jesus.

Eld. James Oliphant

PBC: Eph 1:2 - -- By " grace" in this expression, the apostle does not refer to the doctrine of grace as saving his people from ruin, but to the Lord’s presence and ...

By " grace" in this expression, the apostle does not refer to the doctrine of grace as saving his people from ruin, but to the Lord’s presence and help in their daily life. The same thought occurs in the exhortation, " Let us have grace whereby we may serve God acceptably and godly fear." So it is indispensable in the true service of God, and with it there is a sweetness to us that makes his worship the most delightful employment. It becomes the children of God to be constantly seeking this state of the heart and pray that God’ fullness of the blessing of the gospel of Christ. Peace with God is equally desirable and dear to the believer. How precious is the experience that we are at peace with " our Father!" When thus at peace, we can easily bear the malice and injustice of men. Nothing on earth can disturb the serenity of mind when Jesus has left his peace, for the peace that abides and arms us against the stings of this world, is from no less a friend than God our Father, and the Lord Jesus Christ.

Eld. James Oliphant

PBC: Eph 1:3 - Blessed be the God and Father of our Lord Jesus Christ. // Who has blessed us with all spiritual blessings in heavenly places in Christ. // Places At times we tend to divide eternal blessings and timely blessings into neat compartments. We seem averse to allowing them to flow logically and freely...

At times we tend to divide eternal blessings and timely blessings into neat compartments. We seem averse to allowing them to flow logically and freely across the band of time that marks our current physical universe into eternity. Paul had no such aversion to this logical flow of blessings between eternity and time. For him the same hand of grace that chose us in Christ before God created the universe is the hand that blesses us with all spiritual blessings now, and it is that same hand of grace that will complete our blessings as it gathers us together in Heaven in our Lord Jesus Christ. This river runs long and wide! We drink of it sparingly in time; we shall drink deeply of its waters in eternity.

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Eph 1:3 Blessed be the God and Father of our Lord Jesus Christ, who hath blessed us with all spiritual blessings in heavenly places in Christ:

" Blessed be the God and Father of our Lord Jesus Christ."

How truly this expresses the feelings of the Christian, who is engaged, as Paul was, in reviewing the mercies of Jehovah. It denotes reverence and tender affection, and rises spontaneous in the heart of every believer. " Bless the Lord, O my soul," cries the Psalmist, " and forget not all his benefits." Luke tells how Mary, Elizabeth, and Zachariah all poured forth the sweetest strains of blessing and praise to God under a sense of his mercy and good will to men. This expression confirms the doctrine of a Triune God as to the Father and Son. Take from us this sweet truth, and you take from us the mediatorial office and our hope perishes. There is no sweeter portion of divine truth, and no gift so precious as the knowledge of a Savior equal with God and one with him, and yet who could say, " I must work the works of him who sent me." Our praise to God grows out of a sense of his goodness, as prayer grows out a knowledge of our wants. Jesus teaches us to say " Our Father," and Paul inculcates a common interest with believers in the Lord Jesus Christ.

" Who has blessed us with all spiritual blessings in heavenly places in Christ."

Our blessing God confers no real benefit on him, but when he blesses us, " the poor are filled with good things" and made to rejoice. When a mother, helpless and poor, exclaims, " bless my child," she but manifests a tenderness and depth of love, that tells plainly what she would do if she were able, and so Paul, in the same manner, reveals a supreme devotion and tender, loving regard for his Maker, while utterly unable to bestow the slightest favor. If God hath blessed us, then we are secure in estate, character, and hope. The earth may reel and stagger as a drunken man, and the elements grow black with terror, but he who created all material things, will never remove far from us the everlasting arms. If we are not blessed of the Father, we are ruined, though all the world speaks well of us. We are to place little value upon the applause of men or the flattery of the world. We should esteem spiritual blessings as infinitely of more value than material good. Paul seemed to forget temporal blessings in his ardor to commend the things that pertained to his eternal welfare. There seems often to be a connection between temporal losses and our spiritual well being. " Before I was afflicted I went astray, but now I keep thy word," may be said by many as truthfully as David. If riches and honor bring pride and cause us to forget God, it is a mercy to be stripped of those snares, and if tribulation brightens us as does the hope that maketh not ashamed, let us receive it as the " excellent oil of kindness." Humility is the royal gem of religion, and is God’s gift. Sometimes it is like bitter herbs to the tried soul. David becomes humble when driven from his throne and stripped of earthly glory. If bereavements or poverty be attended with lowliness of spirit, then we may bless God, even for what we suffer.

" Places" is an italicized word, and is rendered " things" in the margin. This phrase should not give rise to vain speculation. It no doubt refers to our being raised to walk in newness of life. The apostle would certainly include faith, repentance, love to God, spiritual discernment and understanding. These blessings do not make believers proud and boastful, but on the contrary, lowly minded, thankful and tender hearted. If you are a child of God, it is his work, and your heart should overflow with unceasing love to him, and kindliness of spirit to all men. Who can portray the advantages of a Christian life, which is but a display of the spiritual blessings the apostle had in view.

Eld. James Oliphant

PBC: Eph 1:4 - According as he hath chosen us in him before the foundation of the world. // That we should be holy and without blame before him in love. See PBtop: PERSEVERANCE AND PRESERVATION " According as he hath chosen us in him before the foundation of the world." The world " according" here i...

See PBtop: PERSEVERANCE AND PRESERVATION

" According as he hath chosen us in him before the foundation of the world."

The world " according" here is highly significant. It illustrates the harmony to be found between God’s design and its exact fulfillment. The Bible teaches that God works according to his purposes, and that purpose is eternal. The thought should not frighten nor distress us, but rather exalt our ideas of God’s perfection and immutability. His dear favor and the blessings contemplated by Paul and his Ephesian brethren, and like manner " to the faithful in Christ Jesus," which adapts it to people of every land and every period of time. Some would call this high doctrine, and would break its force by saying that the Christian dispensation was intended by the word " world," but the weakness of this idea is exposed by remembering that Paul was not called before the " gospel age," but some years after the church was set up. And again, the Greek word for world (kosmos) SGreek: 2889. kosmos occurs nearly two hundred times in the New Testament, and is never once rendered age or dispensation. Its use indicates invariably that Paul taught that God’s choice was before the " worlds were framed." This same writer says to Timothy, " Who hath saved us and called us, not according to our works, but according to his own purpose and grace given us in Christ before the world began." The translation of 1881 reads, " before the times eternal." So Paul plainly designed his readers should understand God’s choice to be from eternity.

" That we should be holy and without blame before him in love."

It is taught by some that election rests on foreseen goodness or obedience, but that doctrine is overthrown by this text. The design of God’s choice is that men " should be holy." Holiness is the result of election, and does not go before it, and this is the undoubted meaning of the passage here. This truth is confirmed by many proofs. The same apostle declares, " Not by works of righteousness which we have done," " Not of works, lest any man should boast," " Not of him that willeth, nor of him that runneth." If it were by any of these things, and God which foresaw, it would be the election of obedience, or the election of works, whereas it is called by the apostle, " The election of grace." The doctrine of eternal election is inseparable from the perfections of God, and an intelligence that is infinite. It is foolish and absurd for men to decry election as leading to unholiness. Holiness of life does not go before election, but it is the very end and evidence of it. That we should be holy and without blame is the intent of God’s choosing us. A man that is inclined to an evil course is cut off from the hope of election, but if his heart is drawn to obedience and upright living, there is ground to hope that God has remembered him. The spirit bears witness to all filial obedience, and gives the sweet hope of sonship. When Jesus was baptized the Spirit testified, " This is my beloved Son, in whom I am well pleased," and when the believer now, is baptized, he is given the answer of a good conscience toward God. To be without blame before God in love, is the happiest thought that ever thrilled the heart of a poor, erring man in this world of sin. In this life, the best of men are sensible of imperfection. " Who shall deliver me, for I am the chief of sinners. All my righteousness is but filthy rags. O my leanness, my leanness. Behold I am vile." Such expressions reveal the state of warfare and unrest which the believer encounters, and to all such what a comforter is Paul, when he points to the blessed of being at last before God without blame in love! This they will be when the work of grace is completed, and they stand before God with clothing of wrought gold, and raiment of needlework—the imputed righteousness of Christ—which alone can bear the piercing eye of Jehovah and give exceeding joy.

Eld. James Oliphant

PBC: Eph 1:5 - Having predestinated us to the adoption of children, by Jesus Christ to Himself. // According to the good pleasure of his will. " Having predestinated us to the adoption of children, by Jesus Christ to Himself." Paul was not afraid of the doctrine of predestination. He esteeme...

" Having predestinated us to the adoption of children, by Jesus Christ to Himself."

Paul was not afraid of the doctrine of predestination. He esteemed it as the ground of a sinner’s hope—the guarantee of a certain redemption. The adoption of Jesus Christ to himself—the Father—is but manifesting in time, what God purposed in eternity. Men fix their minds on certain individuals to inherit their estates, and seek to arrange infallibly the accomplishment of their wishes; so God chose a people before the foundation of the world in Christ Jesus, and in him, and by him, established for them every spiritual good. " Every good gift, is from above, and cometh down from the Father of lights." By reason of God’s predestination, the " adoption of children" is secured to them, and by adoption is here meant the work of regeneration or bringing in among his children, as the word here signifies. " Delivered from the power of darkness and translated into the kingdom of God’s dear Son." Individuals receive not only the adoption, but the Spirit of it, whereby they cry " Abba, Father." The Christian loves God as a Father, and draws near to him as a child. Dr. Gill and others, speak of adoption as in some sense eternal, which perhaps is true, as God’s purpose to adopt is itself adoption, but here it seems to me, is intended the act God in bringing men into his own family by regeneration.

" According to the good pleasure of his will."

The world has long sought to find a reason in man why he should be saved, and system after system has been devised to subvert or supercede God’s sovereignty, but the skill of man has fallen short of the task, and while God’s word remains, and he continues to reveal himself in our hearts as the hope of glory, they must forever fail. The apostle here gives the standard by which God works, " According to the good pleasure of his will." Should not this put to silence all who speak of human merit or the work of man in accomplishing salvation? It agrees with the experience of God’s children in every age. Each one is made to know and feel himself as utterly unworthy of salvation, and the Bible presents many instances where (apparently) the worst of men realized the adoption of children, as the thief at the cross, the woman at the well of Samaria, Mary Magdalene, Saul of Tarsus, and many others.

Eld. James Oliphant

PBC: Eph 1:6 - -- The great object of God in bestowing salvation is to manifest his grace, and not to pay an obligation he is under to man. Each person saved stands in ...

The great object of God in bestowing salvation is to manifest his grace, and not to pay an obligation he is under to man. Each person saved stands in time, and will through the cycles of eternity, as a monument of God’s rich grace. Paul would put mountain upon mountain in his desire to magnify and intensify the power of grace. " To the praise of the glory of his grace." What luster shines and sparkles in the words! The sun is dimmed and the stars grow pale as we contemplate the wonder-working power of almighty grace. And so all true ministers should seek to extol the heavenly excellence of redeeming, sanctifying, saving grace! This is not done by urging that God ought to do anything for man, nor by insisting that there is something good in the nature of the life of man, but he who would glorify the lifting, cleansing power of grace, must first see man justly condemned and destitute of all claim to the favor of his Maker. It is a sweet thought to be accepted in the beloved. The ground of this acceptance is not a mixture of our obedience with God’s grace, but our sins are thoroughly purged away by his blood and his righteousness is imputed to us.

Eld. James Oliphant

PBC: Eph 1:7 - redemption // In whom we have redemption through his blood, the forgiveness of sins according to the riches of his grace. " redemption" We know that to redeem something, one must have prior ownership. The children of God were given to Christ in election before the founda...

" redemption"

We know that to redeem something, one must have prior ownership. The children of God were given to Christ in election before the foundation of the world. {Eph 1:4; Joh 6:39} In Adam, they fell in sin. They come into this world with a sin nature and willingly commit sins. They are deserving of eternal condemnation and separation from God along with eternal suffering in hell. But Jesus loved His own so much that He suffered in their place and secured eternal redemption for them!

314

" In whom we have redemption through his blood, the forgiveness of sins according to the riches of his grace."

Here two great blessings are secured to God’s children, through the blood, that is the death of Jesus. He was the " near kinsman," and so related that he had the right of redemption. Being chosen in him, he represented them publicly and officially. His sufferings throughout were vicarious. He restored that which he took not away. He saved others, himself he could not save, but he saw of the travail of his soul and was satisfied. He justified many by bearing their iniquities, and opened not his mouth against the stroke. His people are called the " purchased possession." They are bought with a goodly price—the precious blood of their Redeemer. He that has redemption, shall have the forgiveness of sins, and this not of himself, his merit or deserving. Paul is careful to give the ground or reason of every blessing, and here redemption and forgiveness of sins, are " according to the riches of his grace." It is only in realizing man’s need of redemption and forgiveness, that we get true ideas of the length, and depth, and splendor of the riches of that grace that prepares lost men and women for a home in glory.

Eld. James Oliphant

PBC: Eph 1:8 - -- That is, " In the riches of his grace he hath abounded to us in all wisdom and prudence." In the plan, and means, and manner, and end of salvation, w...

That is, " In the riches of his grace he hath abounded to us in all wisdom and prudence." In the plan, and means, and manner, and end of salvation, we see all wisdom and prudence abounding. God did not suspend or modify his law, neither was his justice tarnished, and while his law was fulfilled in every jot and tittle, and his justice honored to the full, so also did grace and mercy have their glorious fruits of everlasting joy. The throne of glory remains unsullied while grace, mercy, and compassion rise above the mountains of our sins, as the waters of the flood rose above the mountains of earth. Wonderful, indeed are the Father’s gifts. Who can describe the abounding of his mercy, in our daily supplies, in gifts of pardon and eternal life? When men enrich their children, how often do they increase their pride and cultivate their vanity. God maketh rich beyond expression, but in a way that humbles his children and destroys boasting. They would not exchange their hope of felicity for the world’s glory, yet they are made to feel themselves less than the least of all Saints.

Eld. James Oliphant

PBC: Eph 1:9 - -- In writing to the Gentile churches, Paul dwelt with an evident delight upon the enlargement of the gospel and the extension of its privileges to other...

In writing to the Gentile churches, Paul dwelt with an evident delight upon the enlargement of the gospel and the extension of its privileges to other nations than the Jews, and especially in this letter to the Saints at Ephesus, he treats the subject as of the first importance. That the heathen (a common name for all who were not Jewish lineage), should be fellow-heirs and partakers of the gospel blessings with the house of Israel, Paul happily shows, was not an after-thought with God. He here calls this grand design a " mystery" in the sense of a secret; " having made known," he says " unto us the mystery of his will." In another part of this letter he says that in other ages it was not made known to the sons of men, but was hid in God from the beginning of the world. The same thought is in Romans, where he calls it " the revelation of the mystery which was kept secret since the world began." This heirship and mercy to the Gentiles was long concealed in the purpose of God as gold is hid in the earth and might not be revealed until the " dispensation of the fullness of times." This fullness of times took place when the incarnate Lord blessed the earth with his presence made known by the gospel of his manifold wisdom, and eternal purpose of gathering together in one, " all things in Christ." It is not the fullness of time, but of " times," in the plural. To the Jew first and also to the Gentile—a time set for each one of his people. There is a set time for the installation of men into high office, and much is made of it among men, but how trivial and unimportant is such an event compared to the time when a ruined sinner is given to possess eternal life. When the Lord opens the heart of a man, a revolution takes place in his whole being. When the time came to gather " Saul of Tarsus," his enmity gave way, and instead of longer " breathing out threatenings and slaughter against the disciples of the Lord," he gave his life to their service, and blessed the church with such epistles of divine truth and love as only the grace of God could inspire. Thus it is, by the secret working of God’s mighty power that his kingdom is sustained, and not by those agencies that are essential to the perpetuity of earthly governments. The Savior’s kingdom is not of this world, nor dependent upon visible things for its success. It is more reasonable for men to think of adding to the stars of heaven, than of adding to the family of God, —-the election of grace. Human enterprises fail for a thousand reasons, but the salvation that is accomplished by the precious blood of the Redeemer, cannot be retarded by human indifference nor advanced by human help.

Eld. James Oliphant

PBC: Eph 1:11 - -- See PBtop: GOD IS SOVEREIGN An inheritance is not obtained by purchase nor by labor. It is not a commercial transaction of one value for another. If ...

See PBtop: GOD IS SOVEREIGN

An inheritance is not obtained by purchase nor by labor. It is not a commercial transaction of one value for another. If we obtained it this way, we would be " to the praise of his glory." This same writer says that " The gift of God is eternal life," and Jesus had said before him, " I give unto them eternal life, and they shall never perish." That which we inherit from our estate from our parents comes to us freely, though it may have cost our parents much toil. The text says that it was in God that Paul and his fellow-saints obtained the inheritance, and this too, in " being predestinated," or named in the will. It was not according to any industry, or skill on their part, but according to God’s purpose that this inheritance came to them. This view does not flatter the pride of our nature, but when stripped of every ground of hope but the mercy of God, it becomes exceeding precious to us. God’s purpose cannot fail of accomplishment, for he will do all his pleasure. He says of those who obtain this inheritance according to his purpose, " They shall never perish, neither shall any pluck them out of my hand."

Eld. James Oliphant

PBC: Eph 1:13 - sealed with that Holy Spirit of promise " sealed with that Holy Spirit of promise" The inner man is born of the Spirit of God and bears that mark within. 1Jo 3:9. That soul has the seal and...

" sealed with that Holy Spirit of promise"

The inner man is born of the Spirit of God and bears that mark within. 1Jo 3:9. That soul has the seal and earnest of the inheritance to come and longs and reaches for it here, though bound by the flesh. That hope, (assured knowledge based on fact -my definition), is what delivers us in this life in following the movings of the Spirit and truth of the word. We are indeed saved by His life, not in the hereafter only, but now! That inner man is waiting for the adoption to be complete in body, soul, and spirit. That is the redemption of the body. The inner is born in spirit of the family of God, the flesh of the family of Adam has been paid for by the blood of Christ and legally purchased for a certain purpose, it will be changed, the mortal will put on immortality, the corrupt will put on incorruption, death will be swallowed up in victory! The firstfruits of that is planted within us, the harvest is promised. The firstborn, elder brother, of this sits in the seat of power, Jesus Christ. Verily God-Verily Man. He rules over the proceedings of the covenant being finished. It shall be done. Ro 8:28-30.

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See WebbSr: TRUSTING IN CHRIST

See WebbSr: SEALED WITH THE HOLY SPIRIT OF PROMISE

Eph 1:12-13 " That we should be to the praise of his glory who first trusted in Christ. In whom ye also trusted, after that ye heard the word of truth, the gospel of your salvation, in whom after that ye believed, ye were sealed with that Holy Spirit of promise."

James in his writing to the " twelve tribes" scattered abroad says that they should be a kind of first fruit of his creatures, and Jeremiah, calls Israel the first fruits of increase. It was the Jewish brethren who first heard the word and hoped in Christ, and who should so deport themselves to their Gentile brethren who trusted later, as to glorify God and that the enemies of Christ may have no evil thing to say of them. While the extraordinary gifts of the apostle’s day no longer mark the ministry " of God’s word," yet the Lord still blesses it to the comfort and satisfaction of his quickened people, whereby they are led into obedient life, and thus sealed and marked to as children of God.

Eld. James Oliphant

PBC: Eph 1:14 - -- However small this earnest of our inheritance may be, it is a certain pledge that we shall receives our portion of the estate. When Boaz redeemed the ...

However small this earnest of our inheritance may be, it is a certain pledge that we shall receives our portion of the estate. When Boaz redeemed the inheritance of Naomi and Ruth, simply plucking the shoe from the foot was a testimony that confirmed this transaction throughout Israel forever. If we receive but a drop from the fountain of God’s love, it assures us that Jesus, our spiritual Joseph, remembers us, and that he is concerned on our behalf. The smallest pittance received through the will is an evidence of heirship, and if we have tasted that God is gracious, it is an earnest of our inheritance. We are given a foretaste of God’s love till " the redemption of the purchased possession." When our bodies are delivered from the grave, we shall awake in our Redeemers likeness and be satisfied. This earnest of our inheritance is an inward witness of fellowship with God, and the watchfulness against its decay should be of more concern to us than the perpetuity of our earthly estate.

Eld. James Oliphant

PBC: Eph 1:15 - -- No sweeter intelligence ever reaches the heart of God’s minister than to hear that his fellow-men have been delivered from the bonds of sin. With wh...

No sweeter intelligence ever reaches the heart of God’s minister than to hear that his fellow-men have been delivered from the bonds of sin. With what overflowing hearts did Mary and Martha behold their brother walking home from the tomb; and so, when the Lord’s servants see lost and ruined sinners rescued from the fetters of sin and delivered from its taint and guilt, their first feeling is thankfulness to God for each new evidence of his mercy and good will. How aptly Paul describes the fruits of grace that he recognized in these brethren, and such evidences we are taught by this Scripture, should accompany a knowledge of salvation. " Faith in the Lord Jesus and love unto all the Saints," are the best tokens that men can give of knowing the Lord. Grace so frames their hearts that they became knit together in love. When Paul heard of the faith and love of the Ephesian brethren, his mind became at once earnest and loving on their behalf, and as the two sisters, on seeing their brother alive and well, thought of gratitude to none but Jesus, so Paul made mention of the Saints at Ephesus before God with unceasing thankfulness, indeed (as with the Corinthians), his heart was enlarged until his feeling was to live and die with them.

Eld. James Oliphant

PBC: Eph 1:17 - eyes of your understanding being enlightened " eyes of your understanding being enlightened" He (God) has revealed himself in Scripture. Ps 19:7-14; Ro 1:16-17 Revelation, in other words, was co...

" eyes of your understanding being enlightened"

He (God) has revealed himself in Scripture. Ps 19:7-14; Ro 1:16-17 Revelation, in other words, was communicated to man via the vehicle of inspiration. As we read and study God’s revealed word, therefore, we need illumination from God the Holy Spirit. Eph 1:18

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What boundless love marked the petitions of Paul as he came boldly to the throne of grace for these brethren? His desires for them seemed to be addresses to the Father of glory, who alone commanded these blessings, so would he show them the intensity of his affection in his desire that they attain to the highest measure knowledge and spiritual joy. We learn from this something of the bond that unites the true minister with his flock. He is fitted in heart and experience to care for them. No thought of gain or honor touches his bosom, but an affectionate, tender, and lasting regard for their well being, that God alone puts in the heart. Human training does not produce the self-sacrificing, tender, out-going principle of love that is necessary in caring for the flock of God. It is akin to the feeling which the mother has for her offspring which no opposition, suffering, nor persecution can destroy. Prompted by this solicitude, Paul pored forth his soul in prayer for his brethren. He knew the value to the church of a spiritually minded congregation, that could witness to the experimental truth and doctrinal sentiments of the gospel. What is more sad than to see Christians active and penetrating as to worldly things, and yet dull and stupid in things eternal? Alas! How often are church members found to be, what the apostle calls in another letter " weak, and sickly, and asleep," irresolute, and disinclined, and incapable of understanding the solid truths of God’s word when presented to them.

Eld. James Oliphant

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It is interesting to note that very seldom do we find the apostle Paul praying for people with physical problems.  He was far more concerned about their spiritual health.

Oh that we might be burdened for the spiritual needs of those who are physically sick and those that have other problems and those that we encounter in our own life.  That we might have a prayer continually for spiritual growth that there may be a development in our lives to be drawn closer to the Lord and to display the fruit of the Spirit to the honor of His name.  Paul was perpetually concerned about that.  He's praying that they may have wisdom.  He wants them to have knowledge concerning Jesus Christ, the eyes of their understanding being enlightened that they might know more about the hope of His calling and the riches of His glory in the inheritance of the saints in light.

PBC: Eph 1:19 - -- Paul taught that our belief results from God’s mighty power, the same power which he exerted in the resurrection of our Lord Jesus from the grave. B...

Paul taught that our belief results from God’s mighty power, the same power which he exerted in the resurrection of our Lord Jesus from the grave. Belief in God does not result from a logical analysis of the carnal, rational mind of sinful man. The carnal mind is God’s enemy, not his intelligent ally, Ro 8:7.

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Eph 1:19-20  " And what is the exceeding greatness of his power to us-ward who believe, according to the working of his mighty power. Which he wrought in Christ, when he raised him from the dead, and set him at his own right hand in the heavenly places."

This passage shows clearly how we comprehend and believe the gospel. It was simply Paul’s own experience, and it can be no less true today, for Paul was a pattern for all them that afterward believe. But notwithstanding this clear statement of the apostle, it is now everywhere proclaimed that men have sufficient power to repent and believe the gospel. If so, why did not Paul believe if himself? He certainly had great intellectual power and strength of mind. His reasoning caused Felix to tremble on the judgement seat, and Festus and Agrippa were startled by his learning, and yet he tells us that it tool the same display of power to cause him to believe that it did to raise Jesus from the dead and set him in the heavenly places. He gives these as parallel cases, both of which are accomplished by the working of God’s mighty power. He would have us think of the Savior being taken from the cross—the vital spark gone out; he is laid in the rocky sepulchre, which is then closed with a great stone bearing Pilate’s seal; grim soldiers guard this place of death. Friends could not save his life, what can they do now that he is in the tomb? Will he leave this dark abode; will he live again? Yes, if the text be true, God will rescue his darling from the lions. He will not suffer his Holy One to see corruption. Yes, Jesus will live again, but who will mention the help of man in such a circumstance? Who will speak of our Savior as being taught or persuaded to rise from the dead? Study carefully this wonderful event, and you will have the precise power that makes men believe. There is no place in the salvation of sinners where the best of men, nor angels, nor the sinner himself can take any part. The power that wrought silently, wonderfully, effectually in the tomb of Jesus, is the only force that can deliver men from the power of darkness, and translate them into the Kingdom of God’s dear Son. They are dead in trespasses and sins, and none can quicken them but God. He reserves this right to himself, and he will not give this glory to another. The capacity or power to believe in God has many forms of expression. It is known in God’s word as a quickening, a deliverance, a translation, an opening of the heart, an opening of blind eyes, opening the eyes of your understanding, born of God, born from above, born from incorruptible seed, called with a holy calling, partaking of the divine nature, the gift of eternal life, renewed in the spirit of your mind, renewing of the Holy Ghost, washing of regeneration, a creation in Christ Jesus, and many others, and all of which denote the working of God’s mighty power. Turn where we may in God’s word, a cloud of witnesses assures us that this mighty power goes before or underlies every manifestation of spiritual life. It is said that he that believeth is born of God, and as many as were ordained to eternal life, believe. This shows that God prepares the heart to receive his word. Of his own will begat he us, says James. He is the author and finisher of our faith, that is our belief and trust in God as a Redeemer and Savior. When Paul wrote of believing according to God’s mighty power, no doubt he called to mind his memorable journey to Damascus—that great crises of his life—when, as he said, " It pleased God to reveal His Son in him." No man, or church, or angel, was pleading for Paul; it simply was the good pleasure of God’s sovereign will, and so, this revelation of Christ Jesus, is that which is essential to " seeing the Kingdom of God," or receiving the things of the Spirit, and no man can reveal Jesus to his brother, saying, " Know the Lord."

Eld. James Oliphant

PBC: Eph 1:21 - -- Our minds are put in awe by this picture of the Savior’s exaltation. It seems to be the answer to his prayer to God the night of his betrayal, " O F...

Our minds are put in awe by this picture of the Savior’s exaltation. It seems to be the answer to his prayer to God the night of his betrayal, " O Father, glorify thou me with thine own self with the glory which I had with thee before the world was." From being an object of scorn, and suffering, and death, he is, by the greatness of God’s power, set above all principality, might, and dominion, and above every name that is named on earth, or known in heaven. How often we are told of his power and glory and how things are put under his feet; but in this letter we learn that his people are connected with the praise of his glory, and Paul concludes the chapter by the wonderful statement that he is given to be the head over all things to the church, and that the church is his body and his fullness. He shares his glory and his honor with his people, saying to them, " Because I live, ye shall live also." What great joy these reflections should bring to our hearts! When Jacob heard of the great power of Joseph in Egypt, he was comforted; he was so related to Jacob’s family that all his power would be turned to do them good, and they would share in Joseph’s honor and glory. When David slew the giant, Israel rejoiced, they shared the victory with him, for he was their brother. And so the church rejoices and shares in the triumph of her Redeemer. He appeared for her in his life, and in his death, and now in heaven appears in her behalf. The doctrine of covenant union, before faith and before time, in the foundation for all his loving toil and perfect victory. He left the throne of glory to fill the place of a Redeemer, and as the Surety of his people, he endured the cross, caring nothing for the shame of it. They were given to him before time, that he might give eternal life to them. Adam represented every human being in his one sin, and Jesus, in his obedience, was the head of all chosen in him.

The representative nature of Christ’s obedience, death, resurrection, and intercession is essentially necessary, so Paul argues in Romans from previous considerations. Answering the question, " Who shall lay anything to the charge of God’s elect?" he says, " It is Christ that died [for them], yea rather, that is risen again [for them], who is even at the right hand of God [for them], who also maketh intercession for us." Take away the doctrine of covenant union before time and before faith, and you strip all his works of their consistency and essential glory, for this is the ground upon which we may glory in the cross and in Christ’s great glory in heaven. Let us remember that our dearest friend is at the right hand of the Father; that all power is given into his hand, and that every enemy is beneath his feet. The same power that upholds the universe is engaged to uphold Zion, and the feeblest of her members. Therefore, we have reason to press on though our own sins and the evil influences of a sinful world make war on our doctrine. Let us show by an upright walk that the sentiment of trusting all to Christ does not tend to licentiousness, but that such a principle forms the strongest incentive to obedience and correct living, and this is the sentiment of this chapter, faith in him and his unchanging power, and faithfulness to him in continued and devoted service.

Eld. James Oliphant

Haydock: Eph 1:1 - -- St. John Chrysostom take notice, in his preface to this epistle, that the doctrinal part in the first three chapters is treated in a very sublime mann...

St. John Chrysostom take notice, in his preface to this epistle, that the doctrinal part in the first three chapters is treated in a very sublime manner, with long periods and sentences, which makes the style more perplexed and the sense more obscure than in his other epistles. On this account I shall first give the reader a paraphrase as literal as I can, and then make some short notes on the difficulties in the text. (Witham)

Haydock: Eph 1:3 - Blessed by the God // In heavenly things; (in cælestibus) // With all spiritual blessings in heavenly places Blessed by the God, who, through his Son Jesus Christ, made man, hath blessed us with all spiritual blessings and gifts; and by his grace, infuse...

Blessed by the God, who, through his Son Jesus Christ, made man, hath blessed us with all spiritual blessings and gifts; and by his grace, infused into our souls, has given us a title to a happy eternity in heaven. (Witham) ---

In heavenly things; (in cælestibus) i.e. all spiritual blessings from heaven, or for eternity. This is the object of all the blessings we receive from God; and we ought, according to the first intention of them, to refer them all to eternal or heavenly beatitude. St. Paul distinguishes the blessings which we receive in Jesus Christ from those bestowed upon the Jews, which were temporal and limited to this earth. (Calmet; Challoner)

With all spiritual blessings in heavenly places: literally, in heavenlies, [1] or celestials, which some expound and translate, in heavenly things; but this being expressed just before by spiritual blessings, it rather seems to be understood of the glory prepared for us un heaven, or in the heavenly mansions; in which sense it seems to me, according to the interpretation both of St. Jerome and of St. John Chrysostom in their commentaries on these words. Estius takes notice that the same expression, in the celestials, is used five times in this epistle, and in all of them signifies places above us. (Witham)

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[BIBLIOGRAPHY]

In cælestibus, Greek: en tois epouraniois, in supercælestibus. St. Jerome, (p. 324, tom. 4. nov. edit.) Spiritualia in cælestibus expectanda....thesaurizamus nobis in cælis. See St. John Chrysostom, Greek: log. a. p. 765.

Haydock: Eph 1:4-8 - -- As by his eternal decree, according to the purpose of his good will and pleasure, he hath made choice of us to be his adoptive sons, and predest...

As by his eternal decree, according to the purpose of his good will and pleasure, he hath made choice of us to be his adoptive sons, and predestinated us to be saved and glorified by the merits and grace of his beloved Son, our Redeemer, without any merits of ours to the glorious praise and riches of his grace, by which he hath made us abound in all wisdom and true prudence. (Witham)

Haydock: Eph 1:6 - To the praise of the glory of his grace To the praise of the glory of his grace; i.e. unto the glorious praise or commendation of his grace. (Witham)

To the praise of the glory of his grace; i.e. unto the glorious praise or commendation of his grace. (Witham)

Haydock: Eph 1:8 - In all wisdom and prudence In all wisdom and prudence; which may be either referred to the wisdom and prudence of God, the giver of grace, or to the gifts of wisdom and prudenc...

In all wisdom and prudence; which may be either referred to the wisdom and prudence of God, the giver of grace, or to the gifts of wisdom and prudence bestowed upon the elect. (Witham)

Haydock: Eph 1:9 - That he might make known to us // The mystery of his will // Which he hath purposed in him That he might make known to us, and to all men, the mystery of his will and pleasure in establishing his new law, of calling all Gentiles, as well ...

That he might make known to us, and to all men, the mystery of his will and pleasure in establishing his new law, of calling all Gentiles, as well as Jews, to believe in his Son, made man for us, in the dispensation of the fulness of times, (that is, at the time decreed from eternity) to establish, to accomplish, and, as it is in the Greek, to recapitulate all things in heaven and on earth, in Christ, and through him, and his merits; on earth, by fulfilling all the types, figures, and prophecies concerning the Messias; and in heaven, by filling up the number of his elect. (Witham) ---

The mystery of his will. The word mystery signifies a secret, an unknown design. It was the will of God, to reveal to us the great design he had in the incarnation of his Son, viz. the formation of one great body of true adorers; composed, without distinction, of Jew and Gentile: till (ver. 10) when the time appointed shall come, he will reunite and perfect in or under Christ this one body, composed of the Church triumphant, Angels and saints in heaven, and the Church militant upon earth. (St. John Chrysostom, Estius, &c.)

Which he hath purposed in him; [2] i.e. in Christ: but in the Greek the sense is, in himself; i.e. in God the Father, who sent his Son. (Witham)

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[BIBLIOGRAPHY]

In eo; but in the Greek, en auto, in seipso.

Haydock: Eph 1:10 - In the dispensation of the fulness of times // To establish In the dispensation of the fulness of times. It may perhaps be transl