Eph 1.18 Acc Abso

FRED HALTOM (haltom@cbcag.edu)
Mon, 20 Jan 1997 15:32:27 -0500

Dale Wheeler on 20 Jan 1401 wrote:
>Let me suggest that PEFWTISMENOUS is in fact an accusative absolute
>in Eph 1:18. The two reasons I wouldn't construe this the way Carl
>has above are: (1) the ptc is perfect, and my "feel" for this passage
>tells me that it has to have happened BEFORE the time of the main
>verb DWHi, which is Aorist, thus it cannot be another way of saying
>the same thing as "God grant you a/the s/Spirit of wisdom..." My
>suspicion is that if they were to be understood as the same thing,
>then the ptc would have been aorist as well (cf., a similar situation
>in Eph 3:17-18, "rooted and grounded"); (2) FWTIZW and FWS are in
>Ephesians terms used to describe the new birth (cf., 5:8ff., cmp.,
>3:9; John 3:18ff) and thus the enlightenment of new birth provides
>the foundation for Paul's subsequent request that they mature in
>their spiritual understanding of God's plan.

Carl's response is well taken. The most obvious problem with Dale's
position regarding time of the perferct participle is that its part of a
hINA clause with the verb DWHi being subjunctive. PNEUMA is the
direct object with TOUS OFQALMOUS being its appositive. Nothing
could be clearer grammer. The perfect participle modifying this
appositive is not circumstantial, it is attributive, "that God may
give a spirit...eyes illumined...." See the discussion on the
doctrine of illumination and this verse in John Owen's Works Vol.4
pp.121ff, "SUNESIS PNEUMATIKH, The Causes, Ways, and Means of
Understanding the Mind of God as Revealed in His Word, with
Assurances Therein; and A Declaration of the Perspecuity of the
Scriptures with the External Means of the Interpretation of them."
(Johnstone & Hunter: London, 1678).