Ephesians 3:9
Parallel Verses
New American Standard Bible
and to bring to light what is the administration of the mystery which for ages has been hidden in God who created all things;

King James Bible
And to make all men see what is the fellowship of the mystery, which from the beginning of the world hath been hid in God, who created all things by Jesus Christ:

Darby Bible Translation
and to enlighten all with the knowledge of what is the administration of the mystery hidden throughout the ages in God, who has created all things,

World English Bible
and to make all men see what is the administration of the mystery which for ages has been hidden in God, who created all things through Jesus Christ;

Young's Literal Translation
and to cause all to see what is the fellowship of the secret that hath been hid from the ages in God, who the all things did create by Jesus Christ,

Ephesians 3:9 Parallel
Commentary
Barnes' Notes on the Bible

And to make all men see - In order that the whole human family might see the glory of God in the plan of salvation. Hitherto the revelation of his character and plans had been confined to the Jews. Now it was his design that all the race should be made acquainted with it.

What is the fellowship of the mystery - Instead of "fellowship" here - κοινωνία koinōnia - most mss. and versions read οἰκονομία oikonomia - "dispensation;" see Mill. This reading is adopted by Griesbach, Tittman, Rosenmuller, Koppe, and is regarded by most critics as being the genuine reading. The mistake might easily have been made by a transcriber. The meaning then would be, "to enlighten all in respect to rite dispensation of this mystery;" that is, to cause all to understand the manner in which this great truth of the plan of salvation is communicated to people. If the word "fellowship" is to be retained, it means that this doctrine, or secret counsel of God, was now "common" to all believers. It was not to be confined to any class or rank of people. Locke renders it," and to make all people perceive how this mystery comes now to be communicated to the world." Dr. Whately (Errors of Romanism, chapter ii. section 1) renders it, the common participation of the mystery;" that is, of truths formerly unknown, and which could not be known by man's unaided powers, but which were now laid open by the gracious dispensation of Divine Providence; no longer concealed, or confined to a few, but to be partaken of by all.

The allusion, according to him, is to the mysteries of the ancient pagan religions; and he supposes that the apostle designs to contrast those "mysteries" with Christianity. In those "mysteries" there was a distinction between the initiated and uninitiated. There was a revelation to some of the worshippers, of certain holy secrets from which others were excluded. There were in some of the mysteries, as the Elensinian, "great and lesser" doctrines in which different persons were initiated. In strong contrast with these, the "great mystery" in Christianity was made known to all. It was concealed from none and there was no distinction made among those who were initiated. No truths which God had revealed were held back from any part, but there was a common participation by all. Christianity has no hidden truths for a part only of its friends; it has no "reserved" doctrines; it has no truths to be entrusted only to a sacred priesthood. Its doctrines are to be published to the wide world, and every follower of Christ is to be a partaker of all the benefits of the truths which Christ has revealed. It is difficult to determine which is the true reading, and it is not very important. The general sense is, that Paul felt himself called into the ministry in order that all people might understand now that salvation was free for all - a truth that had been concealed for ages. Bearing this great truth, he felt that he had a message of incalculable value to mankind, and he was desirous to go and proclaim it to the wide world. On the word "mystery," see the notes on Ephesians 1:9.

Hath been hid in God - With God. It has been concealed in his bosom. The plan was formed, but it had not before been made known.

Who created all things - This is plain enough; but it is not quite so plain why the declaration is introduced in this place. Locke and Rosenmuller suppose that it refers to the new creation, and that the sense is, that God frames and manages this new creation wholly by Jesus Christ. But the expression contains a truth of larger import, and naturally conveys the idea that all things were made by God, and that this was only a part of his great and universal agency. The meaning is, that God formed all things, and that this purpose of extending salvation to the world was a part of his great plan, and was under his control.

By Jesus Christ - As this stands in our common Greek text, as well as in our English version, there is a striking resemblance between the passage and that in Colossians 1:15-16. But the phrase is missing in the Vulgate, the Syriac, the Coptic, and in several of the ancient mss. Mill remarks that it was probably inserted here by some transcriber from the parallel passage in Colossians 1:16; and it is rejected as an interpolation by Griesbach. It is not "very" material whether it be retained in this place or not, as the same sentiment is elsewhere abundantly taught; see John 1:3; Colossians 1:16; Hebrews 1:2. If it is to be retained, the sentiment is that the Son of God - the second person of the Trinity - was the great and immediate agent in the creation of the universe.

Ephesians 3:9 Parallel Commentaries

Library
Sixteenth Sunday after Trinity Paul's Care and Prayer for the Church.
Text: Ephesians 3, 13-21. 13. Wherefore I ask that ye may not faint at my tribulations for you, which are your glory. 14 For this cause I bow my knees unto the Father, 15 from whom every family in heaven and on earth is named, 16 and that he would grant you, according to the riches of his glory, that ye may be strengthened with power through his Spirit in the inward man; 17 that Christ may dwell in your hearts through faith; to the end that ye, being rooted and grounded in love, 18 may be strong
Martin Luther—Epistle Sermons, Vol. III

The Indwelling Christ
'That Christ may dwell in your hearts by faith; ye being rooted and grounded in love.'--Eph. iii. 17. We have here the second step of the great staircase by which Paul's fervent desires for his Ephesian friends climbed towards that wonderful summit of his prayers--which is ever approached, never reached,--'that ye might be filled with all the fulness of God.' Two remarks of an expository character will prepare the way for the lessons of these verses. The first is as to the relation of this clause
Alexander Maclaren—Expositions of Holy Scripture Ephesians, Peter,John

The Love of Christ.
THE Patience of Christ was recently the object of our meditation in these pages. Blessed and inexhaustible it is. And now a still greater theme is before our hearts. The Love of Christ. The heart almost shrinks from attempting to write on the matchless, unfathomable love of our blessed and adorable Lord. All the Saints of God who have spoken and written on the Love of Christ have never told out its fulness and vastness, its heights and its depths. "The Love of Christ which passeth knowledge" (Ephesians
Arno Gaebelein—The Lord of Glory

The Holy Spirit Forming Christ Within Us.
It is a wonderful and deeply significant prayer that Paul offers in Eph. iii. 16-19 for the believers in Ephesus and for all believers who read the Epistle. Paul writes, "For this cause I bow my knees unto the Father, from whom every family in heaven and on earth is named, that He would grant you, according to the riches of His glory, that ye may be strengthened with power through His Spirit in the inward man; that Christ may dwell in your hearts through faith; to the end that ye, being rooted and
R. A. Torrey—The Person and Work of The Holy Spirit

Cross References
Romans 11:25
For I do not want you, brethren, to be uninformed of this mystery-- so that you will not be wise in your own estimation-- that a partial hardening has happened to Israel until the fullness of the Gentiles has come in;

Romans 16:25
Now to Him who is able to establish you according to my gospel and the preaching of Jesus Christ, according to the revelation of the mystery which has been kept secret for long ages past,

Ephesians 3:2
if indeed you have heard of the stewardship of God's grace which was given to me for you;

Ephesians 3:3
that by revelation there was made known to me the mystery, as I wrote before in brief.

Ephesians 3:4
By referring to this, when you read you can understand my insight into the mystery of Christ,

Ephesians 6:19
and pray on my behalf, that utterance may be given to me in the opening of my mouth, to make known with boldness the mystery of the gospel,

Colossians 1:26
that is, the mystery which has been hidden from the past ages and generations, but has now been manifested to His saints,

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