Ephesians 1

Thoughts from reading Ephesians 1 this morning:

In love He predestined us… (1:5)

I have struggled to understand for some years how God’s attributes of grace and mercy could legitimately be considered attributes. The reason for this revolved around my understanding of the time in which these occurred. If grace and mercy involved the application of God’s love to undeserving sinners – how could God have shown grace and mercy in eternity past to those who did not yet exist? In my understanding at that point, it seemed that God’s display of mercy and grace occurred (in my understanding at that point) in the scheme of time, not eternity. How could these be attributes (“God is what is attributes are”) if they seemingly occurred only in time-space-mass continuum? Ephesians 1 helped me through this. God’s exercise of grace and mercy occurred “before the foundation of the world” toward undeserving sinners as considered in the mind and plan of an eternal and infinite God. His election of individual sinners to salvation in Christ with all its attendant blessings and obligations “occurred” before time and was motivated by his love toward individual sinners. What a gracious and merciful God!

Who works all things after the counsel of His will…to the praise of His glory (1:11)

God does not confer with anyone outside of himself; the execution of his plan is not contingent on or affected by anything outside of himself. In conjunction with the fact that his plan was conceived in eternity past, it was impossible for him to confer with anyone other than the inter-Trinitarian Society. There is absolute sovereignty for absolute glory.


  1. Check out The Grandeur of God by C. Samuel Storms and his discussion of the immutability and so-called “timelessness” of God. He works around what many imprecisely call God’s “timelessness” (“there is no time with God”). Of course, God is not time-bound. He does, however, work and act in the “time-space-mass continuum” (to use your phraseology, although I know it is not original with you). 🙂

  2. Had you ever heard of the “inter-Trinitarian Society”? 🙂 One of the benefits of taking twice as long to finish my MDiv was getting a lot more of our professors’ “verbal gems” [heh heh].

    I’ll try to reference Storms. I’ve got it but haven’t read all of it. What I have read I enjoyed and appreciated.

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