The Berean Expositor
Volume 38 - Page 10 of 249
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The Charter.
The Prayer.
The Will of the Father.
What is the hope of His calling?
The Work of the Son.
What is the riches of . . . inheritance?
The Witness of the Spirit.
What is the . . . power . . . who believe?
Paul tells the Ephesians that he had heard of their "faith" and their "love" and
consequently proceeds to pray concerning their "hope", these three often being brought
together in his epistles.
The original wording of Eph. 1: 15 is somewhat strange. Our version reads "After I
heard of your faith in the Lord Jesus" which is straightforward enough. Weymouth
inserts the words "which prevails among you".  Darby adds "which is in you",
Rotherham has "on your part". Each of these translators were endeavouring to express
the intention of the Apostle who said:
Dia  touto kago
kath' humas pisten
Because of this I also having heard of the according to your faith
"The according to your faith" is not English, and conveys no true meaning, yet the
very fact that so strange a term should be introduced here is a challenge. In Acts 26: 3
we read "especially because I know thee to be expert in all customs and questions
which are among the Jews", where the original reads ton kata Ioudaious.  Again in
Acts 18: 15, "but if it be a question of words and names, and of your law, look ye to
it". Here again the Greek reads kai nomou tou kath' humas "and of a law that is
according to you". In these references we readily perceive that the Roman Gallio or in
Paul's speech to King Agrippa, laws, customs and questions that are peculiarly Jewish
are in mind. The preposition kata is translated "according to" 108 times, and is found in
Ephesians, so translated, 14 times. Let us observe its occurrence in the charter of the
Church (Eph. 1: 3-14). These believers were predestinated to adoption "according to the
riches of His grace". The revelation of the mystery of His will was "according to His
good pleasure, which He hath purposed in Himself", and the taking of these believers for
an inheritance was also "according to the purpose of Him Who worketh all things after
the counsel of His own will". It is impossible to avoid the fact that the high calling of
this church, its revelation at that time and all that pertained to it was "according to" plan.
If the same word is used once more in verse fifteen, surely we are expected to continue
this thought. Your faith, said the Apostle in effect, must not be confounded with the faith
that is put forth by a believer in some other dispensation or calling. It may not be the
"gift of faith" by which mountains are moved, it must be that aspect of faith that
HARMONIZES ("accords") with your calling. It is however only too true, that there
may be a clear comprehension of the distinctive character of our calling with very little
corresponding "love unto all the saints" and where this is lacking, growth must cease.
Happily the Ephesians manifested both the true faith and the consequent love, and on this
basis the Apostle goes forward with his unceasing prayer for them. What he actually
prayed we must consider in the next article. Meanwhile let us not forget the connexion
established here, between the revelation of truth, and its manifestation in life.