Romans 8:28

Kevin D. Williford KandSWilliford at
Sat Aug 5 12:04:56 EDT 2000

On 08/05/00, ""David McKay" <musicke at>" wrote:
> I have been reading some seemingly novel interpretations of Scripture at
> One of these is that KATA PROQESIN in Romans 8:28 refers to
> the purpose of TOIS AGAPWSIN TON QEON and not to God's purpose, which is the
> sense of all translations of this verse I have ever seen.
> The argument given is that "his" which is supplied in every translation I
> have seen, is not in the Greek.
> How do we know that Paul is referring to God's purpose? Is there a hint in
> the Greek?


I am by no means a Greek Scholar, but here is the opinion of a student, for 
what it may be worth to you.

The text is not specific regarding whose purpose.  TOIS KATA PROQESIN 
KLHTOIS OUSIN is in apposition to TOIS AGAPWSIN TON QEON (i.e. "The ones 
loving God ... namely the ones being called according to purpose)  Whose 
purpose is being left unspecified.  So they are correct in arguing "his" is 
not in the text.  However, I believe the CONTEXT make it abundantly clear 
whose purpose is in view. The "his"is not a problem because of the actions 
of the next verse.  Clearly it is God who "foreknew," "predestined," and 
"conformed."  On the basis of God's actions in verse 8.29, I think the 
context demands that it be "HIS purpose" in verse 8.28, although the AV is 
correct in italicising "his."

Kevin D. Williford
M.Div. Student
Midwestern Baptist Theological Seminary
Kansas City, MO

More information about the B-Greek mailing list