Does Ephesians 1 teach determinism/calvinism?


Ephesians 1
3 Blessed be the God and Father of our Lord Jesus Christ, who has blessed us in Christ with every spiritual blessing in the heavenly places, 4 even as he chose us in him before the foundation of the world, that we should be holy and blameless before him. In love 5 he predestined us for adoption to himself as sons through Jesus Christ, according to the purpose of his will,

It sounds to me like Paul was teaching that God sovereignly chooses who is saved.:face_with_raised_eyebrow:


Doesn’t it depend on the ‘us’ Paul is writing about? Could it be that he was talking about sinners called by God, elect if you will, to be the examples of His love and grace to the world?
It might not follow that that is the ONLY group He chooses for salvation, of course. All Humanity has been chosen for that blessing.


I think you’re conclusion is a stretch. It could mean we are all chosen in Him but we still have to respond. Or Paul could be referring to believers as a class or group rather then God choosing individual people, but again anyone can join the group. In the OT there was never any individual choosing and the OT is 2/3 of the bible.


I imagine Arminian, RCC, EO, Anglican, Pentecostal, Early Church Father, etc, commentators would have something to say about that, besides Freewill Universalists (as opposed to Calvinistic Universalists).

Then there are the rarely ever heard of (or known) Pantelist takes on it. Such as Pantelist Calvinism & Pantelist Arminianism & Pantelist Freewillism, etc.


It seems clear to me that the “us” is Christians.


We are so used to thinking as individuals in our individualistic countries that we don’t normally read Paul correctly. Who is the “us” to whom Paul refers? I suggest he speaks of all the members of the Body of Christ—all of Christ’s disciples everywhere. When we see it this way, we will understand that God chose that Body before the earth was made, a Body to be holy and blameless, a people group appointed for sonship long before any individuals in that group were born—and all the other wonderful things in God’s great plan, including His intention to ultimately unite every one in Himself!

Now try reading the passage with “us” being the whole Body instead of a select group of individuals, and all will become clear with no predestination, determinism or Calvinism!

Blessed be the God and Father of our Lord Jesus Christ, who has blessed us in Christ with every spiritual blessing in the heavenly places, even as he chose us in him before the foundation of the world, to be holy and blameless before him. In love he pre-appointed us for sonship through Jesus Christ, in keeping with the purpose of his will, to the praise of his glorious grace, with which he has blessed us in the Beloved One. In him we have redemption through his blood, the forsaking of our trespasses, according to the riches of his grace, which he lavished upon us, in all wisdom and insight, making known to us the secret of his will, in keeping with his purpose, which he set forth in Christ as a plan for the fullness of time, to unite all things in him, things in heaven and things on earth. (Ephesians 1:3-10)


THAT certainly is an evangelical way of reading it, i.e., your “saved” — even that “saved” doesn’t appear ANYWHERE in that text. What do YOU mean by “saved” qaz?

They were chosen to be “holy and blameless” and predestinedfor adoption to himself as sons” — certainly a privilege indeed.


How to read Ephesians 1 without Calvinist specs on:


This is a bit off topic, but what is the source of several translations rendering a Greek word as “adoption”?

The word does not occur in the Greek text. The word translated as “adoption” is “υιοθεσια” (huiothesia) which is a compound of “υιος” (son) and a derivative of τιθημι (to place). So the word “υιοθεσια” which has been translated as “adoption” should actually be translated as “placing as sons” or “sonship”

What may further complicate it for some is that in Romans 8:23, Paul places the phrase “the redemption of our body” in apposition to the word “sonship.”


@JasonPratt can you expound this text?


BTW thanks for those links origen. The only explanation I found somewhat plausible was Boyd’s.