2 As for you, you were dead in your transgressions and sins, 2 in which you used to live when you followed the ways of this world and of the ruler of the kingdom of the air, the spirit who is now at work in those who are disobedient. 3 All of us also lived among them at one time, gratifying the cravings of our flesh and following its desires and thoughts. Like the rest, we were by nature deserving of wrath. 4 But because of his great love for us, God, who is rich in mercy, 5 made us alive with Christ even when we were dead in transgressions—it is by grace you have been saved. 6 And God raised us up with Christ and seated us with him in the heavenly realms in Christ Jesus, 7 in order that in the coming ages he might show the incomparable riches of his grace, expressed in his kindness to us in Christ Jesus. 8 For it is by grace you have been saved, through faith—and this is not from yourselves, it is the gift of God— 9 not by works, so that no one can boast. 10 For we are God’s handiwork, created in Christ Jesus to do good works, which God prepared in advance for us to do.
I love the countless times the Bible starts with “Once you were…” and then follows with “But God…”
With “Once you were…”, Paul is reminding the Ephesians about what life looked like before Christ, and with “But God…”, he declares who God is and what He has done for them. This is such a helpful thing for them, and for me.
I love the picture that these verses paint. I was dead to God because of my sin – But God has brought me to life and has seated me – positioned me, with Him, in the heavenly realms. (Try to picture this right now – in your mind)
I live my life from this position – next to Christ – not lifeless and dead in sin.
I need reminding of this because it is too easy to be deceived. Circumstances and feelings can paint a very different picture – But God….
Sovereign, Powerful and Loving God – help me stay seated where you have positioned me – relying on what YOU have done. I am thankful afresh for your unfailing love and mercy to me.
Written by Ps. Linda Quinn