Saturday, August 25, 2012

HT Jim West: Michael Pahl on Ephesians 6:10-20

Michael Pahl blogs about how he used to enjoy the Frank Perretti spiritual warfare books long ago and no longer thinks that way, in part, because he no longer thinks as he once did about the relevant Ephesian text.

One of the first and basic problems of a Perretti-style approach to Ephesians 6:10-20 is its conception of what principalities and powers are in the text.

these powers are anything or anyone apart from God that orders our world, that controls our destiny, that demands our allegiance, whether spiritual beings or structured systems or human persons. Nation states and economic systems, invisible spiritual beings and human rulers, the "gods" and "lords" of this world—which are never to be our God and Lord (1 Cor 8:5-6)—are all candidates for these "powers." These are not inherently evil—indeed, Paul affirms God created such entities (e.g. Col 1:16)—but they become evil to the extent that they do not align themselves with God's self-giving, life-giving, peace- and justice-bringing purposes revealed in Christ.

There's more in the post but I'm not going to quote the whole thing.  It's an interesting reflection for a particular direction in interpreting a famous Ephesians text.

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