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Ephesians 1:21

    Ephesians 1:21 Translations

    King James Version (KJV)

    Far above all principality, and power, and might, and dominion, and every name that is named, not only in this world, but also in that which is to come:

    American King James Version (AKJV)

    Far above all principality, and power, and might, and dominion, and every name that is named, not only in this world, but also in that which is to come:

    American Standard Version (ASV)

    far above all rule, and authority, and power, and dominion, and every name that is named, not only in this world, but also in that which is to come:

    Basic English Translation (BBE)

    Far over all rule and authority and power and every name which is named, not only in the present order, but in that which is to come:

    Webster's Revision

    far above all rule, and authority, and power, and dominion, and every name that is named, not only in this world, but also in that which is to come:

    World English Bible

    far above all rule, and authority, and power, and dominion, and every name that is named, not only in this age, but also in that which is to come.

    English Revised Version (ERV)

    far above all rule, and authority, and power, and dominion, and every name that is named, not only in this world, but also in that which is to come:

    Definitions for Ephesians 1:21

    Principality - The highest dignitary of the State.

    Clarke's Commentary on Ephesians 1:21

    Far above all principality - The difficulty in this verse does not arise from the words themselves, the meaning of each being easily understood, but from the sense in which the apostle uses them. Some think he has reference here to the different orders among good and evil angels; he is superior to all the former, and rules all the latter. Others think he refers to earthly governments; and as αρχη, principality, the first word, signifies the most sovereign and extensive kind of dominion; and κυριοτης, lordship, the last word, signifies the lowest degree of authority; hence we are to understand that to our Lord, in his human nature, are subjected the highest, the intermediate, and the lowest orders of beings in the universe. - Chandler. Others imagine that the apostle has in view, by whatsoever is named in this world, all the dignitaries of the Jewish Church; and by what is named in the world to come, all the dignities that should be found in the Christian Church.

    Schoettgen supposes that the "apostle's αρχη (for αρχοντες, the abstract for the concrete) means the same as the נשיאים Nesiim among the Jews, whose chief business it was to clear and decide all contentions which arose concerning traditions and legal controversies.

    "That εξουσια, power, is the same as צורבא tsorba, he who possesses authority to propound, expound, persuade, convince, and refute.

    "That δυναμις, might, answers to רבנות rabbanoth, signifying all the class of rabbins, whose office it was to expound the law, and teach the people generally.

    "And that κυριοτης, dominion, answers to מר mar, which signifies a person above the lower orders of men. And he observes that Jesus Christ, after his resurrection, called fishermen, publicans, and men from the lowest orders of the people, to the work of the ministry; and made them instruments of confounding and overturning all the Jewish rulers, rabbins, and doctors. And that in the world which is to come - the successive ages of Christianity, he should ever be exalted above all those powers and authorities which Antichrist might bring into the Christian Church; such as popes, cardinals, wicked archbishops, bishops, deans, and canons; and all those who among the schoolmen were termed seraphic doctors, angelic doctors, most illuminated, most perfect, and irrefragable doctors. And although Wiclif, Huss, Luther, Melancthon, and the rest of the reformers, were men of little or no note when compared with the rulers of the popish Church, so eminently did the power of Christ work in and by them, that the pope and all his adjutants were every where confounded, and their power and authority annihilated in several entire regions."

    It is certain that the apostle means that all created power, glory, and influence, are under Christ; and hence it is added:

    Barnes' Notes on Ephesians 1:21

    Far above all principality - The general sense in this verse is, that the Lord Jesus was exalted to the highest conceivable dignity and honor; compare Philippians 2:9; Colossians 2:10. In this beautiful and most important passage, the apostle labors for words to convey the greatness of his conceptions, and uses those which denote the highest conceivable dignity and glory. The "main" idea is, that God had manifested great "power" in thus exalting the Lord Jesus, and that similar power was exhibited in raising up the sinner from the death of sin to the life and honor of believing. The work of religion throughout was a work of power; a work of exalting and honoring "the dead," whether dead in sin or in the grave; and Christians ought to know the extent and glory of the power thus put forth in their salvation. The word rendered "far above" - ὑπεράνω huperanō - is a compound word, meaning "high above," or greatly exalted. He was not merely "above" the ranks of the heavenly beings, as the head; he was not one of their own rank, placed by office a little above them, but he was infinitely exalted over them, as of different rank and dignity. How could this be if he were a mere man; or if he were an angel? The word rendered "principality" - ἀρχή archē - means properly, "the beginning;" and then the first, the first place, power, dominion, pre-eminence, rulers. magistrates, etc. It may refer here to any rank and power, whether among people or angels, and the sense is, that Christ is exalted above all.

    And power - It is not easy to distinguish between the exact meaning of the words which the apostle here uses. The general idea is, that Christ is elevated above all ranks of creatures, however exalted. and by whatever name they may be known. As in this he refers to the "world that is to come," as well as this world, it is clear that there is a reference here to the ranks of the angels, and probably he means to allude to the prevailing opinion among the Jews, that the angels are of different orders. Some of the Jewish rabbies reckon four, others ten orders of angels, and they presume to give them names according to their different ranks and power. But all this is evidently the result of mere fancy. The Scriptures hint in several places at a difference of rank among the angels, but the sacred writers do not go into detail. It may be added that there is no improbability in such a subordination, but it is rather to be presumed to be true. The creatures of God are not made alike; and difference of degree and rank, as far as our observation extends everywhere prevails. On this verse compare the notes at Romans 8:38.

    Dominion - Greek "Lordship."

    And every name that is named - Every creature of every rank.

    Not only in this world - Not only above all kings, and princes, and rulers of every grade and rank on earth.

    But also in that which is to come - This refers undoubtedly to heaven. The meaning is, that he is Supreme over all.

    Wesley's Notes on Ephesians 1:21

    1:21 Far above all principality, and power, and might, and dominion - That is, God hath invested him with uncontrollable authority over all demons in hell, all angels in heaven, and all the princes and potentates on earth. And every name that is named - We know the king is above all, though we cannot name all the officers of his court. So we know that Christ is above all, though we are not able to name all his subjects. Not only in this world, but also in that which is to come - The world to come is so styled, not because it does not yet exist, but because it is not yet visible. Principalities and powers are named now; but those also who are not even named in this world, but shall be revealed in the world to come, are all subject to Christ.