he predestined us to be adopted as his sons through Jesus Christ, in accordance with his pleasure and will—
He predestined us to adoption as sons through Jesus Christ to Himself, according to the kind intention of His will,
His unchanging plan has always been to adopt us into his own family by bringing us to himself through Jesus Christ. And this gave him great pleasure.
Long, long ago he decided to adopt us into his family through Jesus Christ. (What pleasure he took in planning this!)
As we were designed before by him for the position of sons to himself, through Jesus Christ, in the good pleasure of his purpose,
He destined us for adoption as his children through Jesus Christ, according to the good pleasure of his will,
having predestined us to adoption as sons by Jesus Christ to Himself, according to the good pleasure of His will,
|NET © [draft] ITL|
|NET © Notes||
sn By predestining. The aorist participle may be translated either causally (“because he predestined,” “having predestined”) or instrumentally (“by predestining”). A causal nuance would suggest that God’s predestination of certain individuals prompted his choice of them. An instrumental nuance would suggest that the means by which God’s choice was accomplished was by predestination. The instrumental view is somewhat more likely in light of normal Greek syntax (i.e., an aorist participle following an aorist main verb is more likely to be instrumental than causal).
2 tn Grk “to himself” after “through Jesus Christ.”
3 tn The Greek term υἱοθεσία (Juioqesia) was originally a legal technical term for adoption as a son with full rights of inheritance. BDAG 1024 s.v. notes, “a legal t.t. of ‘adoption’ of children, in our lit., i.e. in Paul, only in a transferred sense of a transcendent filial relationship between God and humans (with the legal aspect, not gender specificity, as major semantic component).” Although some modern translations remove the filial sense completely and render the term merely “adoption” (cf. NAB, ESV), the retention of this component of meaning was accomplished in the present translation by the phrase “as…sons.”
sn Adoption as his sons is different from spiritual birth as children. All true believers have been born as children of God and will be adopted as sons of God. The adoption is both a future reality, and in some sense, already true. To be adopted as a son means to have the full rights of an heir. Thus, although in the ancient world, only boys could be adopted as sons, in God’s family all children – both male and female – are adopted.
4 tn Or “good pleasure.”