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Bible Commentaries

John Dummelow's Commentary on the Bible
Ephesians 2

 

 

Other Authors
Verses 1-22


Gentiles and Jews are now One in Chirst

1-10. Further illustration of God's power. He raised both Gentiles and Jews from the death of sin and exalted them to Christ's side.

2. The prince of the power of the air] Jewish phraseology, as in Ephesians 1:21. The air is regarded as full of evil powers, with Satan as their prince (Ephesians 6:12; Luke 22:53; Acts 26:18; Colossians 1:13).

3. Also we] 'we Jews were as dead in sins as you Gentiles, and were thus objects of God's wrath' (Ephesians 5:6).

Had our conversation] RV 'lived.'

5. Quickened us.. with Christ] 'made us, who were morally dead, to share the life of Christ.' 6, 8, 9.'No merit of our own has saved us; it is all God's free gift.'

10. Created in Christ Jesus] He means the new creation, by which the whole human race, reunited in Christ, makes a fresh start (Ephesians 2:14; Ephesians 4:24; Galatians 6:15). Mankind began as one race; it was split in two; it is now one again.

11-22. 'Ye Gentiles were formerly cut off from Israel and from God's promises. But now Christ's death has broken down the barrier between Gentile and Jew, and reconciled both as one body to God. There are now no strangers: all are fellow-citizens; all are parts of a spiritual temple, in which God, in His Spirit, dwells.'

11. In the flesh] repeated for emphasis; it was in the flesh that the difference between Jew and Gentile was marked. Called] not contemptuous in either place; not' so-called.' The distinction was real enough, but it has been done away.

12. Without God] 'Atheists'; the only place where the word occurs in the Bible: the heathen were 'godless.'

13. But now] The blessed contrast is enlarged upon at four times the length (Ephesians 2:13-22) of the original sad condition (Ephesians 2:11-12).

14. He is our peace] emphatic pronoun; 'it is He who is our peace.' The middle wall of partition is perhaps an allusion to the warning barrier which marked off the Court of the Gentiles from the higher level of the Court of the Women in the Temple. It was death for a Gentile to pass the barrier.

15. The Fall of man introduced discord between God and man, and between man and man. The Law revealed this discord. Christ in His humanity fulfilled the Law for man, and set an example of perfect obedience. His humanity united all mankind; His obedience united mankind to God.

16. A paradox: the Slain slays, and a bloody death, which commonly provokes enmity, slays it.

17. Exulting repetition of 'peace,' four times in four vv.: cp. Isaiah 57:19.

18. Quite incidentally the recognition of Son, Spirit, and Father, comes to the surface: cp. Ephesians 4:4-6; 1 Corinthians 12:4-6; 2 Corinthians 13:14. The Apostle habitually thinks of the Godhead as threefold.

19. From the idea of 'Father' he easily passes to that of 'household,' and thence to that of 'a house.'

20. They are not merely members of the family; they are stones in the structure of the home, in which God Himself dwells: see on Ephesians 3:5.

21. All the building] This is the right meaning: only one building is in the Apostle's mind, as the preceding vv. show. The RV's accuracy is here misleading: cp. 'all' in Ephesians 1:8; Colossians 4:12.

22. Through the Spirit] RV 'in the Spirit.' It is in the Spirit's dwelling in us that God dwells in us.

 


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Bibliography Information
Dummelow, John. "Commentary on Ephesians 2:4". "John Dummelow's Commentary on the Bible". https://www.studylight.org/commentaries/dcb/ephesians-2.html. 1909.

Lectionary Calendar
Monday, August 19th, 2019
the Week of Proper 15 / Ordinary 20
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