3 Blessed be the God and Father of our Lord Jesus Christ, who has blessed us with every spiritual blessing in the heavenly places in Christ, 4 just as He chose us in Him before the foundation of the world, that we would be holy and blameless before Him. In love 5 He predestined us to adoption as sons through Jesus Christ to Himself, according to the kind intention of His will, 6 to the praise of the glory of His grace, which He freely bestowed on us in the Beloved. – Ephesians 1:3-14 (NASB) Read verses 7-14 and Romans 8:29-30 on the site.
In this post we will look at Ephesians 1:3-14 and Romans 8:29-30. In these two passage are found three Greek words that have been the source of large numbers of polemic works and, in my own experience, I have been accused of holding to doctrines that I do not hold to (nor do any hold to that I know of) by Synergists constructing straw men in order to attack them in an attempt to make it look as if they are defeating the Doctrines of Grace to which I do hold dear and the Monergistic faith through which I know I am saved.
The first is found in Ephesians 1:4, which the NASB translates as “chose.” Here is v4 from the NA28 Greek text: “καθὼς ἐξελέξατο ἡμᾶς ἐν αὐτῷ πρὸ καταβολῆς κόσμου εἶναι ἡμᾶς ἁγίους καὶ ἀμώμους κατενώπιον αὐτοῦ ἐν ἀγάπῃ”, or, “Even as he chose us in him before the foundation of the world for us to be holy and blameless in his sight, in love…” The verb “chose” translates ἐξελέξατο (exelexato), “to pick or choose out for oneself.” Exelexato is the Aorist, Indicative, Middle case of ἐκλέγομαι (eklegomai). This verb case denotes simple action taking place in the past. The middle voice pictures the subject acting in its own interest, that is, it receives the benefit of the action. Therefore, this verb case tells us that God, the one choosing independently in the past, did so primarily for his own interest, and this for his glory. Also, no where mentioned here is the fodder for most of the straw man attacks I have experienced pertaining to election. God elected or chose for himself those who would believe and be of his kingdom. He did not reject those not chosen, he simply did not elect them. It is not necessary to do that. Why? Ephesians 2 tells us plainly that all are born dead in trespasses and sins. Without God intervening, no one comes to Christ.