Study Guide

Ephesians and Colossians Ephesians: Chapter 2

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Ephesians: Chapter 2

Only Mostly Dead

  • Okay, so these Christians are good now, but it wasn't so long ago that they were living pretty sin-filled lives.
  • As far as anyone knew, they were dead to God because they didn't know about him or his laws or promises.
  • Basically, these folks just followed everyone else in the world and did whatever it was they wanted. They ate what they wanted. They had sex with who they wanted. And they didn't even feel guilty about it the next morning.
  • Okay, so they were dead to God, but he's apparently a forgiving guy, because he went and made them come to life again. It's a miracle! By sin they had died (metaphorically), but through Jesus they started living again.
  • Now these believers have risen up to hang with Jesus. He does have that pretty sweet seat up there in Heaven.
  • Yup. God saved them. These Christians didn't "earn" salvation by being good people or something. (No bragging!) God gave it to them as a gift. We're guessing it came with a pretty nice bow on top, too.

Gentiles Wanted

  • See, these Christians were Gentiles in the beginning. That just means they weren't Jewish. They also weren't circumcised like Jewish folks. That means they didn't have any relationship with God at all. They just worshipped their pagan gods and had no clue.
  • They also didn't know anything about all the promises that God made to his people way back in the Hebrew Bible. Gentiles weren't part of that stuff, so they clearly weren't going to be saved.
  • But now, because Jesus lived and died, God has pulled the Gentiles in for a nice warm, group hug.
  • Before, Gentiles were separate in God's eyes. Now they're part of his chosen people. There aren't two groups anymore—Gentiles and Jews. There's just one group. Everyone believes in Jesus, so everyone gets to benefit from God's promises.
  • Back in the Hebrew Bible, God also gave his people all kinds of laws to follow. Now, God has tossed all those out so that everyone can come to him on the same footing.
  • It's all because of Jesus (as usual). He died, and all the old feuds between Gentiles and Jews are over. Now there's just peace. It's a new humanity.
  • Gentiles aren't on the outside looking in anymore. They're citizens of Heaven. They've got the keys to God's house.
  • And this is the house that Jesus built…along with some help from the apostles and prophets. Sure, Jesus is the most important brick in the wall, but all believers—whether they're Gentiles or Jews—are there too.
  • Awww.

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