Ephesians 1. Stealing Calvinisms thunder

Discussion in '2004 Archive' started by Tatian, Jul 8, 2004.

  1. Tatian

    Tatian
    Expand Collapse
    New Member

    Joined:
    Jul 4, 2004
    Messages:
    19
    Likes Received:
    0
    For the longest time, Ephesians 1 has been a main
    stay for Calvinists. So frequently, we think this
    is referring to the entire church, specifically verses 3-12.

    Read verses 3-12 and follow the personal pronouns
    of who the "us" and "we" are.

    The text I am going to ask you to consider will be the following.

    Ephesians 1:1-14, 2:19-22 and 3:1-7

    I'll be using these texts for the force of my argument.

    Verse 4, "...just as He chose us in Him before the the foundation of the world..."
    (First note; We ask, who is the "us". The "us" in him does not neccesarily describe the "extent" in him. I believe this will be clearly descerned later in this passage)

    Verse 5 "He predestined us to adoption as sons...
    according to the good pleasure of his will."
    (Whoever "us" is was predestined according to
    his good pleasure)

    Verse 9 "He made known to us the mystery of His will..."
    (It was to the "us" the mystery of His will was made known. Compare this to Ephesians 3:1-7.
    Paul speaks first of his stewardship which is for the gentiles which was given to him by God. Then in verse 3 we read "that by revelation there was made known to me the mystery, as I wrote before in brief. He wrote before in brief the mystery in Eph. 1:9. In verse 4, Paul begins to introduce this mystery in more detail. In verse 5, who it is that knows this mystery is revealed. "which in other generations was not made known to the sons of men, as it has now been revealed to His holy apostles and prophets in the spirit." Who is it that the mystery was revealed to? The apostles and prophets. Who is the "us" in 1:9 who "He made known to us the mystery of his will?" The Apostles. The "us" is identified hear as the apostles and prophets and who the "us" is hasn't changed. This mystery isn't given to the entire church, it was given to the apostles.

    verse 10 "with a view to an administration suitable to the fulness of the times, the summing up of all things in Christ..."
    (The administration was given to the "us".Compare this to Ephesians 2:19-22 Specifically, concerning the administration.
    19. "So then, you are no longer strangers and aliens, but you are fellow citizens with the saints, and are of God's household, 20. having been built upon the foundation of the apostles, and prophets..."
    the administration of the building up of the church, specifically the gentiles was not given the church, much less the gentile church itself. The text clearly shows the administration, the building up of the church was given to the apostles and prophets. The prophets may be more indirect but then, the apostles were built up from them.)

    Verse 12 "to the end that we who were the first to hope in Christ should be to the praise of His glory."
    (Now this verse, isolated by itself doesn't scream apostles but it does demand a limit. This makes it absolutely impossible to think of this verse as referring to the entire church. Who was the first to hope in Christ? Well, you could argue MANY potential first, I admitt, but because
    of that, SOMEONE is left out. This shows there was a SECOND to hope in Christ which would not be among this "us". Whether you want to say its the apostles and prophets, up to the entire early
    church or even later, not everyone is the first to hope in Christ.

    Verse 13 "In Him you also, after listening to the message of truth, the gospel of your salvation- having also believed, you were sealed in Him with the Holy Spirit of promise..."
    (If Paul had been referring to the Ephesian Church, he wouldn't have said "you also" hear. He
    wouldn't have said, "having also believed". Paul is obviously not speaking of the entire church throughout time.)

    This passage of scripture is certainly not a Calvinist strong hold. Calvinists may not justly use this passage to speak of a Calvinist Elect church.
     
  2. Skandelon

    Skandelon
    Expand Collapse
    <b>Moderator</b>
    Moderator

    Joined:
    Jan 19, 2003
    Messages:
    9,638
    Likes Received:
    0
    This should lead to some good discussion. You should ask Nick what he thinks about this. [​IMG]
     
  3. Tatian

    Tatian
    Expand Collapse
    New Member

    Joined:
    Jul 4, 2004
    Messages:
    19
    Likes Received:
    0
    Actually, I AM kind of hoping for a responce or two.
     
  4. npetreley

    npetreley
    Expand Collapse
    New Member

    Joined:
    Oct 20, 2002
    Messages:
    7,359
    Likes Received:
    0
    Tatian,

    IMO, your analysis is absurd and, IMO, unworthy of a response. It also mirrors (perhaps coincidentally) the analysis of another person (or perhaps you're that other person). The reason I added the parenthetical comments is that the person to whom I am referring has a history of participating on Baptist Board under multiple names, and even conversing with himself as if he were two people. In addition, his "excuse" for anonymity was that he did not want his congregation to know that he was an Arminian, thus he was also the kind of person who thought it was okay to deceive even his own congregation.

    I do not debate with such people, or anyone who I suspect may be one of those people simply logging in under yet another name. I would rather assume falsely that someone is continuing such deceptive practices, and refuse to respond, than to get drawn into debating with such a person.

    Regardless, I do not believe your analysis merits a rebuttal. I'll leave it at that, regardless of your last word on it. If anyone else wants to rebut your analysis, they're free to do so.
     
  5. Skandelon

    Skandelon
    Expand Collapse
    <b>Moderator</b>
    Moderator

    Joined:
    Jan 19, 2003
    Messages:
    9,638
    Likes Received:
    0
    Tatian,

    This "other person" that Nick refers to was not shepherding a congregation and he was merely seeking to better understand his beliefs. He had a relative who was signing on under a different name from the same IP address (which he did not know was against policy). This relative apologized and left the board. It was handled by the moderators and he apologized publically. All forgave and moved on except Nick. I would remind him that if he refuses to forgive a brother that his sins will not be forgiven him.

    Nick, I can assure you that Tatian is not that person nor is their any relation or connection. Also, I would encourage you to seek to understand Titan because his approach is a bit different and probably more accurate. Scholars such as Norman Geisler hold to this view as do many others.

    Don't run from things you don't understand. That only shows your obvious weakness as a theologian.
     
  6. pinoybaptist

    pinoybaptist
    Expand Collapse
    Active Member

    Joined:
    Mar 17, 2002
    Messages:
    8,123
    Likes Received:
    1
    So, what you are saying is that the foreknowing, electing, and adopting are only for those in the ministry (the us, the apostles, the prophets), right ? If that is so, wouldn't it be reasonable to follow that eternal life also is only for those in the ministry ? That when all things are boiled down, merged in the language of graphics, the only ones with a lively hope of God's grace are those in the ministry ?

    Now, I can understand, and have always opposed, the teaching that all Christians are ambassadors for Christ based on 2 Cor. 5:20, since by context, the ambassadors are Paul an his fellow apostles and workers in the ministry, those who God uses to beseech his children. Or will you say different there, and take the traditional approach that all Christians are ambassadors of Christ, since that is a universal position taken by both Calvinists, and Arminians ?

    Now, let's go back to Ephesians 1. We know that verse 1 is a salutation by the writer to the addressee.

    But what about verse 2 ? Grace be to you (the recipients) and peace, from God our Father....(so, is our exlcusive to those in the ministry like Paul, or inclusive of all God's saints);

    verse 3 -Blessed be the God and Father of our Lord Jesus Christ, who hath blessed us with all .....(again, are you saying that us here is exclusive to the apostles and prophets ? if you are right, then there is indeed no hope for anyone, are you a prophet, or an apostle, sir ? If not, then you have not been blessed with all spiritual blessings in heavenly places in Christ. You are nowhere positionally, nowhere spiritually, you are on earth, dead in your sins and trespasses, you are not risen with Christ, baptized or not.).

    verse 4a. According as He hath chosen us in him before the foundation of the world....(again, I'd like to make it clear, your position is that only the Apostles and the prophets were chosen in Christ, who is the Him here, before the foundation of the world, is that right ?).

    verse 4b. That we should be holy and without blame before Him in love. (So, based on your theory, except for the Apostles and the prophets, no one else is afforded the righteousness of Christ, right ? It has to be the righteousness of Christ, unless you say we can be holy and without blame in him through our own works.).

    verse 5. Having predestinated us unto the adoption of children by Jesus Christ to Himself (again, let me place this before your mirror and see if it reflects God's will. His will is that only those in the ministry, to whom He will reveal the mystery of his will as stated in v.9, should be predestinated unto the adoption of children by Jesus Christ to Himself. Am I right so far ? This is what you are saying ?).

    Okay, so now, you have presented on this board a whole new set of theology, or soteriology, or whatever logy you want to call it.

    Make it square with the rest of the Bible, please.
     

Share This Page

Loading...