Eph 1:5-6  Sons and Daughters by His Will.

5 He predestined us to adoption as sons and daughters

The word for predestined here means “to pre-set a boundary, determine beforehand, to mark out beforehand, to predestine.” So, God set our destiny, He chose us, before the creation of the earth. 

“As sons and daughters” is the destiny that God has chosen us for.  And not only has God chosen us, He has adopted us. The word  υἱοθεσία (eohthesi’ah) is used five times in the NT and means “to adopt.”

The saints chosen by God are predestined as adopted sons (and daughters) of God. This means that believers, formerly labeled as “sons of disobedience” and “children of wrath” (Eph 2:2–3), have absolutely no responsibility and/or obligation to our old authority, the devil, the ruler of this world and this age, and sin, but we are now God’s sons and daughters and he controls our lives and property. We have acquired a new status, privilege, and property that would not have been available under his old father. And the benefits will not be enjoyed by us fully until the resurrection (Rom 8:23 23 And not only that, but also we ourselves, having the first fruits of the Spirit, even we ourselves groan within ourselves, waiting eagerly for our adoption as sons and daughters, the redemption of our body.) God is now our Abba, Father.

Abba, Father

As Christians, we think of Abba as equivalent to Daddy, and kind of childlike, but Jews and other Semetic language speakers use Abba Jews and other Semitic speakers use “Abba” as a title to honor and respect fathers, teachers, lords, elders, etc. This affectation is not so much childlike as with a child-like faith in someone in authority.  You’re letting them know that you trust that they want what’s best for you.  And, of course this child-like faith and trust is best put in God!  See 1 Chron 29:10 10 So David blessed the Lord in the sight of all the assembly; and David said, “Blessed are You, Lord

The picture in the New Testament is one of individual relationship and intimacy, whereas in the Old Testament, the relationship of God as Father is one of profound awe and respect.  We see both of these elements in Jesus’ use of the word at the Garden of Gethsemene in Mark 14:35-36 35 And He went a little beyond them, and fell to the ground and began praying that if it were possible, the hour might pass Him by. 36 And He was saying, “Abba! Father! All things are possible for You; remove this cup from Me; yet not what I will, but what You will.”  Jesus is suffering in the Garden of Gethsemane, sweating great drops of blood, and He knows that this suffering will only increase over the next day.  And so, His heartfelt cry to the father is filled with an expression of His intimate relationship with the Father as He cries out to Him in prayer.   But it is also an expression of submission to God’s authority “Yet not what I will but what You will”.  And, it’s our example:  If Jesus could remain strong in carrying the sins of the world and dying on the cross for us, and still call God Abba, with love and respect, being concerned about His Will being done instead of our will, then this is what we must strive for when we’re suffering, so that we can accomplish God’s Will more fully. 

through Jesus Christ to Himself,

In Gal 4:4-7 4 But when the fullness of the time came, God sent His Son, born of a woman, born under the Law, 5 so that He might redeem those who were under the Law, that we might receive the adoption as sons and daughters. 6 Because you are sons, God has sent the Spirit of His Son into our hearts, crying out, “Abba! Father!”  Notice the similarity with Jesus’ prayer at Gethsemane: The Aramaic term (Abba) followed by the Greek term (pater, Greek for “Father”). Paul uses Abba for a specific purpose, which is to express both intimacy and an obedient heart.  The Greek Father is added because it conveys the closeness of relationship, along with the respect, and would have been understood by his Roman audience.  This adoption as sons and daughters of God is through Jesus’ dying for our sins on the cross, our redemption. It is only through the Holy Spirit, described here as the Spirit of Jesus, that God has sent into our hearts that allows us to cry out “Abba!  Father!  We must know God as Both Father, and The Great I AM, personal provider, and yet also King of the Universe!? 

The only way that we can be brought into God’s family is by being born again through faith in Jesus Christ as Lord and Savior.  We must understand that there is no way that we can come to God on our own merits, by our own works, and accepting God’s free offer of Grace to do what we cannot.  Admitting that we have fallen short, sinned against a Holy God, and repenting, turning away from our sins, accepting Jesus’ payment for them.  We do things God’s way, not ours by accepting the Free Gift of salvation on the basis of what Jesus has purchased for us by shedding His blood, and allowing Jesus to justify us based on His righteousness, instead of seeking a self-righteousness.  It is through Jesus that we can have God as Father.  It is about the close, intimate relationship with God that Jesus purchased for us on the cross.  See Col 1:19-20 19 For it was the Father’s good pleasure for all the fullness to dwell in Him, 20 and through Him to reconcile all things to Himself, whether things on earth or things in heaven, having made peace through the blood of His cross.  God predestined us to be adopted as his sons (and daughters), this adoption came through Christ, and this finally brings us to God in order to have fellowship with him as our father.

according to the good pleasure of His will,

All this was done according to the good pleasure of God’s will. God was well-pleased, or satisfied.  It’s the same sense as inin Eph 1:9 9 He made known to us the mystery of His will, according to His good pleasure which He set forth in Him, ; God’s predestination of adopted sons and daughters into his family isn’t something he did begrudgingly, but was something that thrilled God, and pleased Him. He enjoys imparting his riches to many children.”

6 to the praise of the glory of His grace,

“to the praise of the glory of his grace.” It gives God glory.  We praise Him, because of His Grace toward us in adopting us as sons and daughters.  All of the actions of the Father have as their goal the praise to God.  He wants to show us that He loves us, and is good to us. Phil 1:11 11 having been filled with the fruit of righteousness which comes through Jesus Christ, for the glory and praise of God.  It is for His Glory.  Even in trials we praise Him as we’re being proven and tested.  Not easy, but so rewarding and blessed.  1 Peter 1:7-9 7 so that the proof of your faith, being more precious than gold which perishes though tested by fire, may be found to result in praise, glory, and honor at the revelation of Jesus Christ; 8 and though you have not seen Him, you love Him, and though you do not see Him now, but believe in Him, you greatly rejoice with joy inexpressible and [d]full of glory, 9 obtaining as the outcome of your faith, the salvation of [e]your souls.  The word doxa δόξα, glory has the idea of something that is “weighty” in a person and hence the idea of “significance” or “importance.”  Substantial. This personal “weightiness” makes an impact on others. It has to do with a sense of “reputation” and power, honor, splendor, power, and radiance. It has the idea of the reflection of the essence of one’s being, the summation of all of one’s attributes, as being praiseworthy.  We glorify (in the sense of magnify or praise) God because of his glory, reflecting who He is. Grace is God’s unmerited or undeserved favor in providing salvation for sinners through Christ’s sacrificial death on the cross.  Eph 2:8 8 For by grace you have been saved through faith; and this is not of yourselves, it is the gift of God; God’s unmerited or undeserved favor in providing salvation for sinners through Christ’s sacrificial death and enablement for believers.   “to the praise of the glory of his grace” “to the praise of God’s essential being for his gracious quality.

with which He favored us-God shows grace, looking at our helpless state as sinners, and giving us grace so that we can have faith in Jesus and become acceptable to God.  His Grace has changed who we are.

 in the Beloved.–We are to bless God who has benefited us with every spiritual blessing. The first is the work of God the Father who has elected them in Christ in eternity before the creation of the world that they might be holy before him. He elected us from the mass of all humanity because he had already predetermined our destiny as adopted sons into His family, all in accordance with His good pleasure. The goal of all this was to cause believers to praise the glorious father for his grace which he has bestowed on us in his beloved Son Jesus.

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