No Eye Has Seen: What Does 1 Corinthians 2:9 Mean?


1 Corinthians 2:9, “But as it is written, Eye hath not seen, nor ear heard, neither have entered into the heart of man, the things which God hath prepared for them that love him.” (King James Version)

Translation 1 Corinthians 2:9
ESVBut, as it is written, “What no eye has seen, nor ear heard, nor the heart of man imagined, what God has prepared for those who love him”—
NASBbut just as it is written: “THINGS WHICH EYE HAS NOT SEEN AND EAR HAS NOT HEARD, AND WHICH HAVE NOT ENTERED THE HUMAN HEART, ALL THAT GOD HAS PREPARED FOR THOSE WHO LOVE HIM.”
NIVHowever, as it is written: “What no eye has seen, what no ear has heard, and what no human mind has conceived” — the things God has prepared for those who love him—
NLTThat is what the Scriptures mean when they say, “No eye has seen, no ear has heard, and no mind has imagined what God has prepared for those who love him.”

Also see the meaning of Earthquakes in Divers Places

No Eye Has Seen: Matthew Henry’s Concise Commentary

2:6-9 Those who receive the doctrine of Christ as Divine, and, having been enlightened by the Holy Spirit, have looked well into it, see not only the plain history of Christ, and him crucified, but the deep and admirable designs of Divine wisdom therein.

It is the mystery made manifest to the saints, Col 1:26, though formerly hid from the heathen world; it was only shown in dark types and distant prophecies, but now is revealed and made known by the Spirit of God. Jesus Christ is the Lord of glory; a title much too great for any creature.

There are many things which people would not do, if they knew the wisdom of God in the great work of redemption. There are things God hath prepared for those that love him, and wait for him, which sense cannot discover, no teaching can convey to our ears, nor can it yet enter our hearts.

We must take them as they stand in the Scriptures, as God hath been pleased to reveal them to us.

Also see the meaning of We All Like Sheep Have Gone Astray

1 Corinthians 2:9 | Jamieson-Fausset-Brown Bible Commentary

9. But—(it has happened) as it is written.

Eye hath not seen, &c.—Alford translates, “The things which eye saw not … the things which God prepared … to us God revealed through His Spirit.” Thus, however, the “but” of 1Co 2:10 is ignored. Rather construe, as Estius, “(‘We speak,’ supplied from 1Co 2:8), things which eye saw not (heretofore), … things which God prepared … But God revealed them to us,” &c. The quotation is not a verbatim one, but an inspired exposition of the “wisdom” (1Co 2:6, from Isa 64:4).

The exceptive words, “O God, beside (that is, except) Thee,” are not quoted directly, but are virtually expressed in the exposition of them (1Co 2:10), “None but thou, O God, seest these mysteries, and God hath revealed them to us by His Spirit.”

entered—literally, “come up into the heart.” A Hebraism (compare, Jer 3:16, Margin). In Isa 64:4 it is “Prepared (literally, ‘will do’) for him that waiteth for Him”; here, “for them that love Him.”

For Isaiah spake to them who waited for Messiah’s appearance as future; Paul, to them who love Him as having actually appeared (1Jo 4:19); compare 1Co 2:12, “the things that are freely given to us of God”

Also see the meaning of Every Tongue Shall Confess

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