Five Eternal Gifts from God - Grace 10
But God, being rich in mercy, because of the great love with which he loved us, even when we were dead in our trespasses, made us alive together with Christ—by grace you have been saved—and raised us up with him and seated us with him in the heavenly places in Christ Jesus, so that in the coming ages he might show the immeasurable riches of his grace in kindness toward us in Christ Jesus. (Ephesians 2:4-7, ESV)
Who are those identified by the word “us.” Within the context it refers to those who are dead in their trespasses and sins or those who were. Notice that the Apostle Paul includes himself in the description. The Apostle John echoes these words in I John 4:7-11.
“Beloved, let us love one another, for love is from God, and whoever loves has been born of God and knows God. Anyone who does not love does not know God, because God is love. In this the love of God was made manifest among us, that God sent his only Son into the world, so that we might live through him. In this is love, not that we have loved God but that he loved us and sent his Son to be the propitiation for our sins. Beloved, if God so loved us, we also ought to love one another.” (1 John 4:7-11, ESV)
God makes the sinner alive because of His grace. “Even when we were dead in our trespasses, made us alive together with Christ—by grace you have been saved” — vs. 5.
The phase “even when we were dead in our trespasses” means that even when we sinners continually existed in a state of spiritual death and separation from God because of our trespasses, God made us alive together with Christ. It is not what we did, or could have done, but rather what God chose to graciously do.
God raised sinners to life. Life refers to a reconciled relationship with God in which the sinner is no longer condemned but forgiven and declared righteous before God. On what basis is this new life granted? It is through Christ and Christ alone.
God made sinners alive because of Christ. Jesus Christ. The One, True Messiah. Colossians 2:13-15 echoes these words. “And you, who were dead in your trespasses and the uncircumcision of your flesh, God made alive together with him, having forgiven us all our trespasses, by canceling the record of debt that stood against us with its legal demands. This he set aside, nailing it to the cross. He disarmed the rulers and authorities and put them to open shame, by triumphing over them in him. (Colossians 2:13-15, ESV).
This was accomplished because of grace. “By grace you have been saved.” Grace is the unmerited kindness and favor of god. His goodwill. Grace is defined as God giving sinners what they do not deserve, salvation, complimenting mercy which is God “not” giving sinners what they do deserve: judgment.