Ephesians 2:5 even when we were dead in our trespasses, made us alive together with Christ—by grace you have been saved—
If you hadn’t noticed, the Apostle Paul was particularly eager to point out to the Ephesian church in his letter that Christians had been made alive. Though we were once dead spiritually, the Father caused us to have life through the Son.
When something is mentioned this much in one letter, it must be worthy of paying attention to. Of all the blessings God gives, the one that’s most important is life in the Spirit. Without life there would be no other blessings. What good would it do to talk of God’s promises if we were not awakened spiritually to experience them?
The Lord gives many gifts, free of charge, but they begin with Him bringing us out of our spiritually dead status into a new life that allows us to see, hear, and feel Him at work. In His grace He saved us. He kept us from eternal death by making us alive.
Ephesians 2:1-2 And you were dead in the trespasses and sins in which you once walked, following the course of this world, following the prince of the power of the air, the spirit that is now at work in the sons of disobedience—
What did you do to make yourself be born into the world? Most of us would not argue against the truth that we had nothing to do with our physical birth. It was as out of our control as anything can be. Why do so many of us, then, think that we had anything to do with our own spiritual birth?
When you’re dead, you’re just dead. There’s nothing that a dead thing can do to make itself come to life; that can only be done supernaturally. We were all once dead, even though we walked as someone who was living. We lived and breathed physical life, but spiritually we had no pulse. We could only follow the course of this world, led around by the rest of the walking dead. We were slaves to sin.
That is, until God made us alive. Yes, He made us alive together with Christ, that we might be His people. This is true if we’ve put our trust in Christ and we’ve been adopted into God’s family. Notice all the passive language. We’ve been made alive – passive. We’ve been adopted into the family of God – passive. We were chosen – again, passive.
The dead can’t raise themselves, physically or spiritually. We can no more choose to wake up from spiritual death than we can choose to be born from our mother’s womb. We have ever so much to be thankful for, and spiritual birth is among the greatest gifts we could ever receive. God’s grace is unfathomable.
Romans 8:10 But if Christ is in you, although the body is dead because of sin, the Spirit is life because of righteousness.
There is a stark difference between those who have Christ living in them and those who do not. There is only life in those who are in the Spirit. While it may seem that people are alive because they’re walking around and doing things people do, inside those who don’t have Christ are dead. They’re the walking dead.
Something spectacular happens when you surrender your life over to Jesus Christ. God takes what was once dead and makes it alive (Ephesians 2:5). If you are His, He’s brought you to life because now it’s no longer you who live, but Christ in you (Galatians 2:20). Your body is just a vessel to hold the Spirit that lives in you and through you (2 Corinthians 4:7). It’s not your power or mine that do great things; it’s the power of God working.
You see, we can’t live holy and sinless lives that would enable us to have such power. That’s why it’s evident that it’s the righteousness of Christ that makes it possible. It’s Him that lived a perfect life, and He is the one who purchased our ransom. He is able to do far more than we could ever even think or begin to imagine (Ephesians 3:20) and He does it through us, the living.