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in order that, at this present time, the multi-colored wisdom of THEOS might be made known through the called-out-ones to those that come first,

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and to the authorities in heavenly [places],


so that, at this precise time in history, the multifaceted wisdom of THE CREATOR AND OWNER OF ALL THINGS may be clearly demonstrated through His church to all the powerful beings that exercise their authority in the spiritual realm


1: those that come first

The word used here means “beginning, origin, initial, first, first place” and as the first it also was applied to “rulers, magistrates, kings and chiefs,” the ones who “had priority ahead of the rest.”


The phrase “in heavenly [places]” is mentioned five times in the book of Ephesians. It seems to emphasize the spiritual aspect of the battle we are in (not against flesh and blood), as well as the fact that spiritual beings, angels and demons alike, have great interest in how this conflict will turn out in the end. Although there is dispute as to whether the main emphasis of that phrase in Ephesians is the angels or the demons, I agree with most commentators who place the emphasis on the angels. It seems to be general enough to include all of them, but the emphasis seems to be positive rather than negative.

The passage seems to communicate that, if the plan of God is proved wise even to the angels, it will definitely be proven wise to mere humans. It is also reminding us where the real struggle takes place; we are in a spiritual battle, one we cannot see, but it is very real. Another point being highlighted is that the church, the body of Jesus Christ, is how God chooses to work. In this case, one of the great mysteries that God has kept hidden since early in the Old Testament era, is now being uncovered and revealed through the church. The church was what God was using to show the world, and even the angels, that He knew what He was doing when He invited the Gentiles into his fold. His plan was for everyone to have the opportunity to repent, not just the Jews. Because of Jesus working through His church, this truth was no longer concealed, but was clearly understood and was being brought to fruition in their day. The Ephesian church had the privilege of being a part of that great movement of God among the Gentiles of that time. Paul also saw his involvement as a great privilege, a gift he did not deserve.