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Verse-by-Verse Bible Commentary

Ephesians 2:5

even when we were dead in our transgressions, made us alive together with Christ (by grace you have been saved),

Adam Clarke Commentary

Even when we were dead in sins - Dead in our souls; dead towards God; dead in law; and exposed to death eternal,

Hath quickened us together with Christ - God has given us as complete a resurrection from the death of sin to a life of righteousness, as the body of Christ has had from the grave. And as this quickening, or making alive, was most gratuitous on God's part, the apostle, with great propriety, says; By grace ye are saved.


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Bibliography
Clarke, Adam. "Commentary on Ephesians 2:5". "The Adam Clarke Commentary". https:https://www.studylight.org/commentaries/acc/ephesians-2.html. 1832.

Albert Barnes' Notes on the Whole Bible

Even when we were dead in sins - notes, Ephesians 2:1; compare Romans 5:8. The construction here is, “God, who is rich in mercy, on account of the great love which he bare unto us, even being dead in sin, hath quickened us,” etc. It does not mean that he quickened us when we were dead in sin, but that he loved us then, and made provision for our salvation. It was love to the children of wrath; love to those who had no love to return to him; love to the alienated and the lost. That is true love - the sincerest and the purest benevolence - love, not like that of people, but such only as God bestows. Man loves his friend, his benefactor, his kindred - God loves his foes, and seeks to do them good.

Hath quickened us - Hath made us alive see Ephesians 2:1.

Together with Christ - In connection with him; or in virtue of his being raised up from the grave. The meaning is, that there was such a connection between Christ and those whom the Father hath given to him, that his resurrection from the grave involved their resurrection to spiritual life. It was like raising up the head and the members - the whole body together; compare the notes at Romans 6:5. Everywhere in the New Testament, the close connection of the believer with Christ is affirmed. We are crucified with him. We die with him. We rise with him. We live with him. We reign with him. We are joint heirs with him. We share his sufferings on earth 1 Peter 4:13, and we share his glory with him on his throne; Revelation 3:21.

By grace ye are saved - Margin, “by whose;” see the notes at Romans 3:24. Paul‘s mind was full of the subject of salvation by grace, and he throws it in here, even in an argument, as a point which he would never have them lose sight of. The subject before him was one eminently adapted to bring this truth to mind, and though, in the train of his arguments, he had no time now to dwell on it, yet he would not suffer any opportunity to pass without referring to it.


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Bibliography
Barnes, Albert. "Commentary on Ephesians 2:5". "Barnes' Notes on the New Testament". https:https://www.studylight.org/commentaries/bnb/ephesians-2.html. 1870.

John Gill's Exposition of the Whole Bible

Even when we were dead in sins,.... See Gill on Ephesians 2:1.

Hath quickened us together with Christ: which may be understood either of regeneration, when a soul that is dead in a moral or spiritual sense, is quickened and made alive; a principle of life is infused, and acts of life are put forth; such have their spiritual senses, and these in exercise; they can feel the load and weight of sin; see their lost state and condition, the odiousness of sin, and the beauty of a Saviour, the insufficiency of their own righteousness, and the fulness and suitableness of Christ's; breathe after divine and spiritual things; speak in prayer to God, and the language of Canaan to fellow Christians; move towards Christ, exercise grace on him, act for him, and walk on in him: and this life they have not from themselves, for previous to it they are dead, and in this quickening work are entirely passive; nor can regenerate persons quicken themselves, when in dead and lifeless frames, and much less unregenerate sinners; but this is God's act, the act of God the Father; though not exclusive of the Son, who quickens whom he will; nor of the Spirit, who is the Spirit of life from Christ; and it is an instance of the exceeding greatness, both of his power and love; and this may be said to be done with Christ, because he is the procuring and meritorious cause of it, by his death and resurrection from the dead; and is the author and efficient cause of it; and he is the matter of it, it is not so much the quickened persons that live, as Christ that lives in them, and it is the same life he himself lives; and because he lives, they shall live also; it is in him as in the fountain, and in them as in the stream: or else this may be understood of justification; men are dead in a legal sense, and on account of sin, are under the sentence of death; though they naturally think themselves alive, and in a good state; but when the Spirit of God comes, he strikes dead all their hopes of life by a covenant of works; not merely by letting in the terrors of the law upon the conscience, but by showing the spirituality of it, and the exceeding sinfulness of sin; and how incapable they are of satisfying the law, for the transgressions of it; and then he works faith in them, whereby they revive and live; they see pardon and righteousness in Christ, and pray for the one, and plead the other; and also lay hold and live upon the righteousness of Christ, when the Spirit seals up the pardon of their sins to them, and passes the sentence of justification on them, and so they reckon themselves alive unto God; and this is the justification of life, the Scripture speaks of; and this is in consequence of their being quickened with Christ, at the time of his resurrection; for when he rose from the dead, they rose with him; when he was justified, they were justified in him; and in this sense when he was quickened, they were quickened with him:

by grace ye are saved: the Claromontane copy and the Vulgate Latin version read, "by whose grace"; and the Arabic and Ethiopic versions, "by his grace"; either by the grace of him that quickens, or by the grace of Christ with whom they were quickened; the Syriac version renders it, "by his grace he hath redeemed us"; which seems to refer to the redeeming grace of Christ; and so the Ethiopic version, "and hath delivered us by his grace"; and there is a change of the person into "us", which seems more agreeable to what goes before, and follows after; See Gill on Ephesians 2:8.


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The New John Gill's Exposition of the Entire Bible Modernised and adapted for the computer by Larry Pierce of Online Bible. All Rightes Reserved, Larry Pierce, Winterbourne, Ontario.
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Bibliography
Gill, John. "Commentary on Ephesians 2:5". "The New John Gill Exposition of the Entire Bible". https:https://www.studylight.org/commentaries/geb/ephesians-2.html. 1999.

Commentary Critical and Explanatory on the Whole Bible

dead in sins — The best reading is in the Greek, “dead in our (literally, ‹the‘) trespasses.

quickened — “vivified” spiritually, and consequences hereafter, corporally. There must be a spiritual resurrection of the soul before there can be a comfortable resurrection of the body [Pearson] (John 11:25, John 11:26; Romans 8:11).

together with Christ — The Head being seated at God‘s right hand, the body also sits there with Him [Chrysostom]. We are already seated there IN Him (“in Christ Jesus,” Ephesians 2:6), and hereafter shall be seated by Him; IN Him already as in our Head, which is the ground of our hope; by Him hereafter, as by the conferring cause, when hope shall be swallowed up in fruition [Pearson]. What God wrought in Christ, He wrought (by the very fact) in all united to Christ, and one with Him.

by grace ye are savedGreek, “Ye are in a saved state.” Not merely “ye are being saved,” but ye “are passed from death unto life” (John 5:24). Salvation is to the Christian not a thing to be waited for hereafter, but already realized (1 John 3:14). The parenthetic introduction of this clause here (compare Ephesians 2:8) is a burst of Paul‘s feeling, and in order to make the Ephesians feel that grace from first to last is the sole source of salvation; hence, too, he says “ye,” not “we.”


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These files are a derivative of an electronic edition prepared from text scanned by Woodside Bible Fellowship.
This expanded edition of the Jameison-Faussett-Brown Commentary is in the public domain and may be freely used and distributed.

Bibliography
Jamieson, Robert, D.D.; Fausset, A. R.; Brown, David. "Commentary on Ephesians 2:5". "Commentary Critical and Explanatory on the Whole Bible". https:https://www.studylight.org/commentaries/jfb/ephesians-2.html. 1871-8.

Robertson's Word Pictures in the New Testament

Even when we were dead (και οντας ημας νεκρουςkai ontas hēmās nekrous). Repeats the beginning of Ephesians 2:1, but he changes υμαςhumās (you Gentiles) to ημαςhēmās (us Jews).

Quickened us together with Christ (συνεζωοποιησεν τωι Χριστωιsunezōopoiēsen tōi Christōi). First aorist active indicative of the double compound verb συνζωοποιεωsunzōopoieō as in Colossians 2:13 which see. Associative instrumental case in ΧριστωιChristōi Literal resurrection in the case of Jesus, spiritual in our case as pictured in baptism.

By grace have ye been saved (χαριτι εστε σεσωσμενοιchariti este sesōsmenoi). Instrumental case of χαριτιchariti and perfect passive periphrastic indicative of σωζωsōzō Parenthetical clause interjected in the sentence. All of grace because we were dead.


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The Robertson's Word Pictures of the New Testament. Copyright Broadman Press 1932,33, Renewal 1960. All rights reserved. Used by permission of Broadman Press (Southern Baptist Sunday School Board)

Bibliography
Robertson, A.T. "Commentary on Ephesians 2:5". "Robertson's Word Pictures of the New Testament". https:https://www.studylight.org/commentaries/rwp/ephesians-2.html. Broadman Press 1932,33. Renewal 1960.

Wesley's Explanatory Notes

Even when we were dead in sins, hath quickened us together with Christ, (by grace ye are saved;)

He hath quickened us together with Christ — In conformity to him, and by virtue of our union with him.

By grace ye are saved — Grace is both the beginning and end. The apostle speaks indifferently either in the first or second person; the Jews and gentiles being in the same circumstance, both by nature and by grace. This text lays the axe to the very root of spiritual pride, and all glorying in ourselves. Therefore St. Paul, foreseeing the backwardness of mankind to receive it, yet knowing the absolute necessity of its being received, again asserts the very same truth, Ephesians 2:8, in the very same words.


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These files are public domain and are a derivative of an electronic edition that is available on the Christian Classics Ethereal Library Website.

Bibliography
Wesley, John. "Commentary on Ephesians 2:5". "John Wesley's Explanatory Notes on the Whole Bible". https:https://www.studylight.org/commentaries/wen/ephesians-2.html. 1765.

Abbott's Illustrated New Testament

Dead in sins; that is, utterly lost in sin,--without life or hope.


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Bibliography
Abbott, John S. C. & Abbott, Jacob. "Commentary on Ephesians 2:5". "Abbott's Illustrated New Testament". https:https://www.studylight.org/commentaries/ain/ephesians-2.html. 1878.

Calvin's Commentary on the Bible

5.Even when we were dead in sin. These words have the same emphasis as similar expressions in another Epistle.

“For when we were yet without strength, in due time Christ died, for the ungodly. — But God commendeth his love toward us, in that, while we were yet sinners, Christ died for us.”
(
Romans 5:6.)

Whether the words, by grace ye are saved, have been inserted by another hand, I know not; but, as they are perfectly agreeable to the context, I am quite willing to receive them as written by Paul. They show us that he always feels as if he had not sufficiently proclaimed the riches of Divine grace, and accordingly expresses, by a variety of terms, the same truth, that everything connected with our salvation ought to be ascribed to God as its author. And certainly he who duly weighs the ingratitude of men will not complain that this parenthesis is superfluous.


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Bibliography
Calvin, John. "Commentary on Ephesians 2:5". "Calvin's Commentary on the Bible". https:https://www.studylight.org/commentaries/cal/ephesians-2.html. 1840-57.

Scofield's Reference Notes

dead

Death (spiritual), Summary: Spiritual death is the state of the natural or unregenerate man as still in his sins. Ephesians 2:1 alienated from the life of God Ephesians 4:18; Ephesians 4:19 and destitute of the Spirit. Prolonged beyond the death of the body, spiritual death is a state of eternal separation from God in conscious suffering. This is called "the second death."; Revelation 2:11; Revelation 20:6; Revelation 20:14; Revelation 21:8.

saved (See Scofield "Romans 1:16").


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These files are considered public domain and are a derivative of an electronic edition that is available in the Online Bible Software Library.

Bibliography
Scofield, C. I. "Scofield Reference Notes on Ephesians 2:5". "Scofield Reference Notes (1917 Edition)". https:https://www.studylight.org/commentaries/srn/ephesians-2.html. 1917.

John Trapp Complete Commentary

5 Even when we were dead in sins, hath quickened us together with Christ, (by grace ye are saved;)

Ver. 5. Hath quickened, &c.] The very first stirrings in the womb of grace are precious to God; he blesseth our very buds, Isaiah 44:3, according to the Geneva translation.

Even when we were dead] This is again repeated, because hardly believed. We are apt to conceit better of ourselves than there is cause for, and can hardly be persuaded that we are dead in sins and trespasses, and lie rotting and stinking in the graves of corruption, much worse than Lazarus did after he had lain four days in his sepulchre. We would be sorry but our penny should be as good silver as another’s, and are ready, with the Pharisee, to set up our counter for a thousand pound. In fine, a dead woman we say must have four to carry her forth. A man shall have much ado to persuade the merry Greeks of this world, but that they have the only life of it, and that others are dead in comparison of them. Hence this iteration of the blow upon the natural man, to knock him down dead, as it were, to bring him to Paul’s pass, Romans 7:9.


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Bibliography
Trapp, John. "Commentary on Ephesians 2:5". John Trapp Complete Commentary. https:https://www.studylight.org/commentaries/jtc/ephesians-2.html. 1865-1868.

Thomas Coke Commentary on the Holy Bible

Ephesians 2:5. Even when we were dead, &c.— "In this wonderful love, with which he of his own good pleasure has loved us, even when we Jews, as well as Gentiles, one as much as another, were in such forlorn, wretched, and desperate circumstances, as to be dead in sin, and so helpless, hopeless, and loathsome in our fallen state; he even then quickened us;"—that is, by the Spirit given to those who by faith in Christ were united to him, became his members, and sons of God, partaking of the adoption: by which Spirit they were put into a state of life, (see Romans 8:9-15.) and made capable, if they would, to live to God, and not to obey sin in the lusts thereof, nor to yield their members instruments of sin unto iniquity; but to give up themselves to God, as men alive from the dead. See Romans 6:11-13 and, concerning the last clause of this verse, the Inferences and Reflections.


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Bibliography
Coke, Thomas. "Commentary on Ephesians 2:5". Thomas Coke Commentary on the Holy Bible. https:https://www.studylight.org/commentaries/tcc/ephesians-2.html. 1801-1803.

Heinrich Meyer's Critical and Exegetical Commentary on the New Testament

Ephesians 2:5. The καί is not to be taken as in Ephesians 2:1 (“also us collectively,” Meier, Baumgarten-Crusius, and earlier expositors), which, apart from the universal reference of the ἡμᾶς, the order of the words forbids ( καὶ ἡμᾶς must have been written), according to which, also, the καί of Ephesians 2:1 can by no, means be here resumed (Rückert, Matthies, Holzhausen, and most of the older expositors); further, καί is not, with Koppe, to be taken as although, seeing that, in fact, a making alive cannot take place otherwise than from a state of death, and consequently καί cannot convey any climactic stress, on which account Harless explains incorrectly from a logical point of view: “even in the state of death, in which we were” (comp. Calvin and de Wette). Erasmus paraphrases as though καί stood before συνεζωοπ., and even the shift to which Morus has recourse, that καί corresponds to the καί of Ephesians 2:6 (non modo … verum etiam), would demand this position. Others give other explanations, and many are silent with regard to it. If καί were also, it would have to be referred to ὄντας,(141) and would express the reality of the relation asserted in Ephesians 2:1 (Hartung, I. p. 132 f.). But there would be nothing to call for the assurance of this reality. It is rather the simple copula: and, annexing to the διὰ τ. πολλ. ἀγ. ἣν ἠγ. ἡμ. a further element.(142) The two elements, side by side, place in the full light what God has done. God has, on account of His much love, and when we were dead in the sins, made us alive with Christ. The καί might also be omitted; but the keeping of the points thus apart strengthens the representation.

τοῖς παραπτ.] The article denotes the sins, which we had committed, with a retrospective glance at Ephesians 2:1.

συνεζωοποίησε τῷ χρ.] is by most expositors (including Flatt, Rückert, Meier, Matthies, Harless, Olshausen, de Wette, Baumgarten-Crusius, Schenkel, Hofmann, Bleek) understood of new spiritual quickening (“justificationem et regenerationem nostram complectitur,” Boyd; Rückert would have us think mainly of the justification). But how is this to be justified from the context? If the reader was reminded by νεκροὺς τοῖς παραπτ. of the eternal death, to which he had been subjected by his pre-Christian life of sin (see on Ephesians 2:1), he would now have to think of the eternal life, which begins with the resurrection, and he could the less think of anything else than of this real resurrection-life, since afterwards there is further expressed the translation together into heaven, and then, in Ephesians 2:7, the intention of God is referred to the times after the Parousia. And had not already Ephesians 1:18 f. pointed definitely to the future κληρονομία? How, in this connection, could a reader light upon the merely ethical, spiritual quickening (Romans 6:4 f.; 2 Corinthians 5:15; Galatians 2:19 f.)? No, God has made believers alive with Christ; i.e. in Christ’s revivification, which God has wrought, theirs also is included. By virtue of the dynamic connection in which Christ stands with His believers, as the head with its body (Ephesians 1:23), their revivification is objectively comprehended in His,—a relation, in fact, of which the Christian is conscious in faith; “quum autem fides suscipitur, ea omnia a Deo applicantur homini, et ab homine rata habentur,” Bengel. So the matter stands in the view of the apostle as accomplished, because the making alive of Christ is accomplished; the future actual making alive, or, as the case may be, change at the Parousia (1 Corinthians 15:23), is then the subjective individual participation of that which is already objectively given on the part of God in the resurrection of Christ. Certainly Paul might, in accordance with another mode of looking at it, have expressed himself by the future, as at 1 Corinthians 15:22; cf. Romans 8:17; but who does not feel that by means of the aorist (“ponitur autem aoristus de re, quae, quamvis futura sit, tamen pro peracta recte censeatur, cum … alia re jam facta contineatur,” Fritzsche, ad Rom. II. p. 206) the matter stands forth more forcibly and triumphantly out of the believing conviction of the apostle? οὓς ἐδικαίωσε τούτους καὶ ἐδόξασε, Romans 8:30.

The σύν in συνεζωοπ. is by Beza, erroneously referred to the coagmentatio gentium et Judaeorum, a reference which is forbidden by the τῷ χριστῷ; and by Grotius, Koppe, Rosenmüller, and others, it is explained ad exemplum (comp. Anselm: sicut), by which the Pauline idea of fellowship with Christ, which also lay at the bottom of Ephesians 1:19, is quite arbitrarily explained away.

Comp. on Colossians 2:13; Romans 8:17; 2 Timothy 2:12.

χάριτί ἐστε σεσωσμ.] by grace (not by merit) are ye partakers of the Messianic salvation! an impassioned (hence expressed in the second person), parenthetic reminding the readers of the divine basis of the salvation which had accrued to them, designated by συνεζωοποίησε; a reminding, which was very natural for the apostle in general (for its tenor was the sum of his doctrine and the constant echo of his own experience, 1 Corinthians 15:10), and more especially here, where he represents the quickening of believers as accomplished with the making alive of Christ, which could not but repel even the most distant thought of personal merit. In connection with συνεζωοπ. τ. χρ. the possession of the Messianic bliss is designated as an already accomplished fact, although it was before the Parousia (Colossians 3:3 f.) merely a possession in hope (Romans 8:24), and the final realization was yet future (Romans 5:10). That the χάριτι emphatically placed at the beginning (for “gratiam esse docet proram et puppim,” Bengel) means the grace of God, not of Christ (Beza; comp. the inserted οὗ in D* E F G, Vulg. It. Victorin. Aug. Ambrosiaster), is manifest from the context, in which God is constantly the subject.


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Bibliography
Meyer, Heinrich. "Commentary on Ephesians 2:5". Heinrich Meyer's Critical and Exegetical Commentary on the New Testament. https:https://www.studylight.org/commentaries/hmc/ephesians-2.html. 1832.

Johann Albrecht Bengel's Gnomon of the New Testament

Ephesians 2:5. καὶ, even) This is connected with you, when you were, Ephesians 2:1.— ἡμᾶς, us) both, Jews and Gentiles.— συνεζωοποίησε τῷ χριστῷ· χάριτί ἐστε σεσωσμένοι, hath quickened together with Christ; by grace ye are saved) Quickening precedes the “raising up” [Ephesians 2:6], and ch. Ephesians 1:20; the raising up presupposes life. We were made alive at the time when Christ was made alive; comp. 2 Corinthians 5:15, concerning the death of Christ, and so of the other steps. But when faith is received, all those things are applied to man by God, and they are considered as ratified by man. The apostle, enumerating this very order of salvation, shows that grace is the beginning and the end [proram et puppim] in this and in the eighth verse, and sometimes he uses indiscriminately the first and second person, on account of the equal footing of the Jews and Gentiles.— τῷ χριστῷ, together with Christ) Hence He is the fountain-head, Ephesians 2:6-10.


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Bibliography
Bengel, Johann Albrecht. "Commentary on Ephesians 2:5". Johann Albrecht Bengel's Gnomon of the New Testament. https:https://www.studylight.org/commentaries/jab/ephesians-2.html. 1897.

Matthew Poole's English Annotations on the Holy Bible

Hath quickened us; hath raised us up from the death of sin to the life of righteousness, not only in our justification, in which God frees us from our obnoxiousness to eternal death, and gives us a right to eternal life, who before were dead in law, (though this may be included), but especially in our regeneration, by the infusion of a vital principle.

Together with Christ; either:

1. God, in quickening Christ, hath also quickened us; Christ’s quickening, or receiving his life after death, being not only the type and exemplar of our spiritual enlivening or regeneration, but the cause of it, inasmuch as we are quickened, as meritoriously by his death, so effectively by his life: Christ, as having died and risen again, exerciseth that power the Father gave him of quickening whom he will, John 5:21. Or:

2. In Christ as our Head virtually, and by the power of his resurrection actually. Or:

3. By the same power whereby he raised up Christ from the dead, Ephesians 1:20. See the like expression, Colossians 2:13.

(By grace are ye saved); some read the words without a parenthesis, supplying by whose, and so refer them to Christ, quickened us together with Christ, by whose grace ye are saved; but if the parenthesis stand, yet here seems to be a connection with the foregoing words, at least a reason of the apostle’s bringing in these; for having mentioned God’s great love, Ephesians 2:4, as the cause of their spiritual enlivening here, which is the beginning of their salvation, he infers from thence that the whole of their salvation is of grace, i.e. alike free, and as much out of God’s great love, as the beginning of it, viz. their quickening, is.


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Bibliography
Poole, Matthew, "Commentary on Ephesians 2:5". Matthew Poole's English Annotations on the Holy Bible. https:https://www.studylight.org/commentaries/mpc/ephesians-2.html. 1685.

Justin Edwards' Family Bible New Testament

Together with Christ; as God raised Christ from the dead in behalf of his people and as their surety, so they, by virtue of their union with him, had been raised from spiritual death, which is the pledge of their future union with Christ in the resurrection of the body also to a glorious immortality.


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Bibliography
Edwards, Justin. "Commentary on Ephesians 2:5". "Family Bible New Testament". https:https://www.studylight.org/commentaries/fam/ephesians-2.html. American Tract Society. 1851.

Cambridge Greek Testament for Schools and Colleges

5. συνεζωοποίησεν [ἐν] τῷ χριστῷ. The various readings here are of great interest and it is hard to decide between them. Either of them might quite easily have given rise to the other, though perhaps the accidental omission of εν after σεν would be slightly more probable than its accidental repetition. Intrinsically the difficulty of the phrase ἐν τῷ χριστῷ might have led to alteration. On the other hand it is possible, though not so likely, that the ἐν was inserted by assimilation to ἐν Χριστῷ Ἰησοῦ in Ephesians 2:6. If ἐν is retained the συν must refer to the common quickening of all the members together in the Christ, and not to the fact of their sharing individually in His quickening. This sense of the compound seems to be required later in the phrase συνεκάθισεν ἐν τοῖς ἐπουρανίοις ἐν Χριστῷ Ἰησοῦ and inferentially in the συνήγειρεν that precedes it. It is therefore difficult to give the preposition a different meaning in συνεζωοποίησεν. No doubt elsewhere in St Paul similar compounds, συνζήσομεν (Romans 6:8; 2 Timothy 2:11), συμβασιλεύσομεν (2 Timothy 2:12), συνταφέντες (Romans 6:4; Colossians 2:12), as well as συνήγειρεν and συνεζωοποίησεν, in a closely similar context in Colossians 2:12, are used constantly of union with Christ. Yet St Paul uses both συνζῇν (2 Corinthians 7:3) and συμβασιλεύειν (1 Corinthians 4:8) in the other sense, and with συνκληρονόμα, σύνσωμα, συνμέτοχα to come in Ephesians 3:6 we cannot say that such a meaning is anything but natural in this epistle. It is better therefore to retain the ἐν. This has a further advantage as it helps to explain the change from τῷ χριστῷ to Χριστῷ Ἰησοῦ in the next verse. See Additional Note on ὁ χριστός, p. 132.

χάριτί ἐστι σεσωσμένοι. A parenthetic clause to show that the blessings spoken of were already bestowed on Gentile believers in ideal completeness. Salvation (cf. on Ephesians 1:13) is here seen to include resurrection to new life and a share in the present sovereignty of Jesus Christ. The stress lies on the fact. By an act of Divine grace (independent of any works or merit or feelings on your part) you have already been brought into a state of salvation. In Ephesians 2:8 the stress lies on the method of the deliverance.


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"Commentary on Ephesians 2:5". "Cambridge Greek Testament for Schools and Colleges". https:https://www.studylight.org/commentaries/cgt/ephesians-2.html. 1896.

John Eadie's Commentary on Galatians, Ephesians, Colossians and Philippians

(Ephesians 2:5.) καὶ ὄντας ἡμᾶς νεκροὺς τοῖς παραπτώμασιν—“Us being even dead in trespasses.” The καί does more than mark the connection. It does not, however, signify “also,” as Meier supposes—“us, too, along with you;” nor, as Flatt, Rückert, Matthies, and Holzhausen think, does it merely show the connection of the ὑμᾶς of Ephesians 2:1 with this ἡμᾶς of Ephesians 2:5. Nor does it mean “yet,” “although,” as Koppe takes it. In this view, to give any good sense, it must be joined to the preceding verb—“He loved us, even though we were dead in sins.” But such a construction destroys the unity of meaning. With Meyer and Harless, we prefer joining the καί to the participle ὄντας, and making it signify “indeed,” or when we “were truly” dead in sins. Hartung, vol. i. p. 132. See chap. Ephesians 1:11; Ephesians 1:15.

συνεζωοποίησεν τῷ χριστῷ—“quickened together with Christ.” Some MSS. and texts have the preposition ἐν before τῷ χριστῷ, but for this there is no authority, as the dative is governed by the συν- in composition with the verb. The σύν is repeated before the dative in Colossians 2:13. The entire passage, and the aorist form of the three verbs, show that this vivification is a past, and not a future blessing. It is a life enjoyed already, not one merely secured to us by our ideal resurrection with Christ. The remark of Jerome is foreign to the purpose, that the aorist is used with reference to the Divine prescience-id quod futurum est, quasi factum esse jam dixerit. We have already exhibited the validity of our objection under Ephesians 1:19. Theodoret's interpretation is out of place,- ἐκείνου γὰρ ἀναστάντος, καὶ ἡμεῖς ἐλπίζομεν ἀναστήσεσθαι. Meyer's view has been already rejected under the 1st verse of this chapter; for as the death there described is not a physical death to come upon us, but a death already experienced, so this is not a physical resurrection to be enjoyed at some distant epoch, but one in which, even now, we who were dead have participated. Therefore, with the majority of interpreters, we hold that it is spiritual life to which the apostle refers. The exegesis of Harless, found also in the old Scottish commentator Dickson, though it be cleverly maintained, is too refined, and is not in accordance with the literal and sincere appeal of the apostle to present Christian experience, for in his opinion, life, resurrection, and glorification are said to be ours, not because we actually enjoy them, but because Jesus has experienced them, and they are ours in Him, or ours because they are His. Olshausen advocates a similar view, though not so broadly. Slichtingius and Crellius suppose that the verb refers to the jus, not the ipsum factum; and it is of necessity the theory of all who, like Rollock and Bodius, maintain that the resurrection and enthronement described are specially connected with the body and its final ascension and blessedness. The interpretation of Chrysostom- εἰ γὰρ ἡ ἀπαρχὴ ζῇ, καὶ ἡμεῖς—“if the first-fruits live, so do we,” does not wholly bring out the meaning. Theophylact's exposition, which is shared in by Augustine and Erasmus, is more acute. God raised up Christ, ἐκεῖνον ἐνεργείᾳ-Him in fact, but us δυνάμει νῦν-potentially now, but afterwards in fact also. Harless compares the language with that in Romans 8:30, which Meyer also quotes, where the verbs are all aorists, and where the last verb refers to future but certain glory. But the apostle in that verse describes, by the aorists, God's normal method of procedure viewed as from the past-the call, justification, and glorification being contained in a past predestination, and regarded as coincident with it. The apostle is not appealing to the Roman Christians, and saying, “God has called and glorified you;” he is only describing God's general and invariable method of procedure in man's salvation. But here he speaks to the Ephesian converts, and tells them that God quickened them, raised them up, and gave them a seat with Jesus. He is not unfolding principles of divine government; but analyzing human experience, and verifying that analysis by an appeal to living consciousness. Were no more intended by the words than Harless imagines, then they would be quite as true of Christians still unborn as they were of Ephesian believers at that time in existence, since all who shall believe to the end of time were spiritually comprised in the risen Saviour. Nay more, the sentiment would be true of men in an unconverted state who were afterwards to believe. But here the apostle speaks of union with Jesus not only as a realized fact, but of its blessed and personal results. The death was a personal state, and the life corresponds in character. It is not a theoretic abstraction, but as really an individual blessing as the death was an individual curse. The life and resurrection spoken of are now possessed, and their connection with Christ seems to be of the following nature. When God quickened and raised Christ, this process, as we have seen, was the example and pledge of our spiritual vivification. When He was raised physically, all His people were ideally raised in Him; and in consequence of this connection with Him, they are, through faith, actually quickened and raised, Ephesians 1:19-20. The object of the apostle, however, is not merely to affirm that spiritual life and resurrection have been secured by such a connection with Jesus, but that, having been so provided, they are also really possessed. The writer tells the Ephesians that they had been dead, and he assures them that life in connection with Christ had been given them, and not merely through Christ potentially secured for them, and reserved for a full but future enjoyment. The verb συνεκάθισεν, on which Olshausen and Harless lay stress as supporting their view, does not, as we shall see, at all support their exegesis. In a word, the apostle appears to intimate not only that the mediatorial person of Jesus had a peculiar and all-comprehending relation to His whole people, so that, as Olshausen says, “Christ is the real type for every form of life among them,” but that the Ephesian believers possessed really and now these blessings, which had their origin and symbol in Jesus, the Saviour and Representative. And therefore the notion of Beza and Bloomfield, that συν- in the verb glances at a union of Jew and Gentile, is as wide of the truth on the one side, as is on the other the opinion that it means “after the example of”-the opinion of Anselm, Marloratus, Koppe, Grotius, a-Lapide, and Rosenmüller. See on κατά in Ephesians 1:19. Calvin limits the possession too much to objective happiness and glory laid up for us in Christ. The language of Crocius is better-nos excitatos esse in Christo, ut in capite membra; idque non potentia, non spe, sed actu et re ipsa.

Now, the life given corresponds in nature to the death suffered. It is therefore spiritual life, such as is needed for man's dead spirit. The soul restored to the divine favour lives again, and its new pulsations are vigorous and healthful. As every form of life is full of conscious enjoyment, this too has its higher gladness; truth, peace, thankfulness, and hope swelling the bosom, while it displays its vital powers in sanctified activity: for all its functions are the gift of the Vivifier, and they are dedicated to His service. That life may be feeble at first, but “the sincere milk of the word” is imbibed, and the expected maturity is at length reached. Its first moment may not indeed be registered in the consciousness, as it may be awakened within us by a varying process, in harmony with the quickness or the slowness of mental perception, and the dulness or the delicacy of the moral temperament. The sun rises in our latitude preceded by a long twilight, which gradually brightens into morning; but within the tropics he ascends at once above the horizon with sudden and exuberant glory. (For an illustration of God's power in giving this life, the reader may consult under Ephesians 2:19-20 of the previous chapter.) Then follows the interjected thought-

χάριτί ἐστε σεσωσμένοι—“by grace have ye been saved.” The δέ or γάρ found in some MSS. is a clumsy addition, and οὗ, the genitive of the relative pronoun, occurring in D†, E, F, G ( οὗ τῇ χάριτι, or οὗ χάριτι), and plainly followed by the Vulgate and Ambrosiaster, is rejected alike by Lachmann and Tischendorf. The grace referred to is that of God, not of Christ-as Beza supposes. The thought is suddenly and briefly thrown in, as it rose to the apostle's mind, for it is a natural suggestion; and so powerfully did it fill and move his soul, that he suddenly writes it, but continues the illustration, and then fondly returns to it in Ephesians 2:8. This mental association shows how closely Paul connected life with safety-how mercy and love, uniting us to Christ, and vivifying us with Him, are elements of this grace, and how this union with Jesus and the life springing from it are identical with salvation. But he proceeds-


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Eadie, John. "Commentary on Ephesians 2:5". John Eadie's Commentary on Galatians, Ephesians, Philippians and Colossians. https:https://www.studylight.org/commentaries/jec/ephesians-2.html.

Whedon's Commentary on the Bible

5. Even… dead—His mercy was alive when we were dead. He loved us even when we were most unlovely. Hence how truly is all by grace.

And, here, at the commencement of the picture of the redemptive process, at the first mention of our life-dawn in Christ, Paul flings abruptly in this hint, by grace… saved, preparatory to his expanding the complete statement at the close of the process, Ephesians 2:8. Mercy, goodness, grace, and all from nothing less than God, is what he is so impatient to bring out that he can hardly wait to state the process in which those glorious and melting attributes display themselves. This grace is understood best by emphasizing the even… dead—intensely. Dead; given over to darkness, depravity, the devil, and wrath; over that scene it is that the light of grace breaks with healing in its beams.

Quickened—Inspired with life; life for soul first, life for body next, life in eternity last.

With Christ—Who was raised, as pictured in Ephesians 1:20.


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Whedon, Daniel. "Commentary on Ephesians 2:5". "Whedon's Commentary on the Bible". https:https://www.studylight.org/commentaries/whe/ephesians-2.html. 1874-1909.

Expository Notes of Dr. Thomas Constable

Unbelievers are spiritually dead in their sins (cf. Ephesians 2:1). However, God has given new life to believers. The only way a dead person can have any fellowship with the living God is for God to give him or her new life (cf. Romans 4:17). Regeneration is an act of God in grace. Regeneration results in the commencement and continuation of new life. "Have been saved" is in the perfect tense in Greek indicating an ongoing permanent condition.


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Constable, Thomas. DD. "Commentary on Ephesians 2:5". "Expository Notes of Dr. Thomas Constable". https:https://www.studylight.org/commentaries/dcc/ephesians-2.html. 2012.

Schaff's Popular Commentary on the New Testament

Ephesians 2:5. Even when we were dead by (or, ‘on account of’) our trespasses. The word rendered ‘even’ might mean ‘and,’ but seems to have an intensive force here. ‘We’ is to be taken in its widest sense, else the force of what follows is weakened. ‘Dead on account of our trespasses’ is precisely as in Ephesians 2:1; the E. V. unfortunately rendering the same word ‘trespasses’ there and ‘sins’ here. The article before ‘trespasses’ has the force of ‘our.’

Quickened us together with Christ. Spiritual quickening is meant, since the contrast is with those spiritually ‘dead,’ but the prominence given to the fact of Christ’s resurrection leads us to include a reference to bodily quickening also. ‘Together with Christ’ points to fellowship with Him. The tense in the original (both here and in Ephesians 2:6) indicates a single past act, and is properly explained thus: ‘When He was raised physically, all His people were raised ideally in Him; and in consequence of this connection with Him, they are, through faith, actually quickened and raised’ (Eadie).

By grace ye are, or, ‘have been,’ saved. A past act with permanent results is indicated. The emphasis rests on the word ‘grace,’ love to the undeserving. ‘This emphatic mention of grace (grace, not works) is to make the readers feel what their own hearts might otherwise have caused them to doubt,

the real and vital truth, that they have present and actual fellowship with Christ, yea and even in the resurrectionary and glorifying power of God’ (Ellicott).


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Schaff, Philip. "Commentary on Ephesians 2:5". "Schaff's Popular Commentary on the New Testament". https:https://www.studylight.org/commentaries/scn/ephesians-2.html. 1879-90.

The Expositor's Greek Testament

Ephesians 2:5. καὶ ὄντας ἡμᾶς νεκροὺς τοῖς παραπτώμασιν: even when we were dead by our trespasses. The condition of death in which we are by nature is now reaffirmed, and in a still more emphatic way than in Ephesians 2:1. The καί is not the copula, simply attaching one statement to another (Mey.), nor a mere repetition of the καί of the opening verse, nor = “also,” “also us” collectively (which would require καί ἡμᾶς), but the ascensive καί = even (Syr.-Phil., AV, RV, Ell., etc.). It qualifies the ὄντας (while the νεκροὺς is thrown emphatically forward), and heightens the sense of the greatness of the Divine power—as a power operating on us when we were yet held fast in the state of inexorable death. The τοῖς defines the trespasses as those already mentioned in connection with that state of death, and so has much the sense of “our”.— συνεζωοποίησεν τῷ χριστῷ: quickened us together with the Christ. Some authorities (including B 17, Arm.) insert ἐν before τῷ χριστῷ; which is favoured so far by Lachm. and gets a place in the margin with WH and RV. But the mass of authorities omit it. The συν-, therefore, of the compound verb refers to the χριστῷ, and the idea expressed is that of fellowship with Him, not the fellowship or comprehension of Jew and Gentile alike in the Divine act of quickening (Beza). Here again the article probably designates Christ in His official relation to us. The quickening here in view is understood by some (including Meyer) to refer to the first act in the raising of the dead at the great day; the following verbs συνήγειρεν, συνεκάθισεν being similarly understood in the literal sense, as referring proleptically to events that belong to the ultimate future. Thus the standing rather than the moral condition is supposed to be primarily in view, the idea being that when Christ was raised from the dead we also as members of His body were raised in principle with Him, so that the resurrection of the future which we await will be simply the application to the individual of what was accomplished once for all for the whole of His members then. It must be admitted that the analogous passage in Colossians 2:12-13, which associates the quickening with the forgiveness of trespasses and the blotting out of the hand-writing of ordinances, on the whole favours that interpretation. Looking, however, to the express and particular description of the worldly walk and the conversation in the lusts of the flesh, which is given in Ephesians 2:2-3, and which seems to explain what is said in Ephesians 2:1 of the state of being “dead by trespasses and sins”; and having regard also to the application to the moral life which is made in the second half of the Epistle, most interpreters understand the quickening here affirmed to be that of regeneration—the communication of spiritual life.— χάριτί ἐστε σεσωσμένοι: by grace have ye been saved. So the RV, while the AV is content with “are ye saved”. The idea is that they were saved and continued to be so. The χάριτι is put emphatically first—“by grace it is that ye have been saved”. The parenthetical mention of grace is in place. Nothing else than grace could give life to the dead, but grace could indeed do even that.


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Nicol, W. Robertson, M.A., L.L.D. "Commentary on Ephesians 2:5". The Expositor's Greek Testament. https:https://www.studylight.org/commentaries/egt/ephesians-2.html. 1897-1910.

George Haydock's Catholic Bible Commentary

Quickened us together in Christ. Faith, baptism, and grace, are pledges of our future resurrection and glorification in heaven. Our present conversion is also a kind of resurrection. The time is come, when the dead shall hear the voice of the Son of God, and those who hear shall live. (St. Augustine upon St. John, No. 7.)


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Haydock, George Leo. "Commentary on Ephesians 2:5". "George Haydock's Catholic Bible Commentary". https:https://www.studylight.org/commentaries/hcc/ephesians-2.html. 1859.

Mark Dunagan Commentary on the Bible

Ephesians 2:5 “even when we were dead through our trespasses, made us alive together with Christ (by grace have ye been saved)”

“Even when we were dead”: Such love was demonstrated while we were yet sinners (Romans 5:8). “It is astounding that God would love mankind while every individual human being has rebelled against Him” (Caldwell p. 76). “Through our”: Once again, the sins that condemned us were our own. “Made us alive together”: Notice the statement "alive together with Christ". This is the language associated with baptism (Romans 6:3-5; Romans 11:1-36; Colossians 2:12-13). Spiritual life is impossible for sinners outside of Christ. Believing in Christ includes being baptized. Compare this statement with John 5:24. “By grace have ye been saved: This will be further mentioned in 2:8. Being saved by grace inherently involves faith and baptism. Many people like the term “grace” but they do not like the verses that mention people perishing or God’s wrath. What they forget is that grace is only meaningful if we are being saved from something horrible. Every time we see the word “saved” in the Bible we need to realize that God has saved us from something!


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Dunagan, Mark. "Commentary on Ephesians 2:5". "Mark Dunagan Commentaries on the Bible". https:https://www.studylight.org/commentaries/dun/ephesians-2.html. 1999-2014.

E.W. Bullinger's Companion Bible Notes

sins. As trespasses in Ephesians 2:1.

hath. Omit.

quickened . . . together = made . . . alive with. Greek. suzoopoieo. Only here and Co Ephesians 1:2, Ephesians 1:13.

Christ. App-98.

by No preposition. Dative case. grace. App-184.

are = were.


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Bullinger, Ethelbert William. "Commentary on Ephesians 2:5". "E.W. Bullinger's Companion bible Notes". https:https://www.studylight.org/commentaries/bul/ephesians-2.html. 1909-1922.

Commentary Critical and Explanatory on the Whole Bible - Unabridged

Even when we were dead in sins, hath quickened us together with Christ, (by grace ye are saved;)

Dead in sins - `dead in our [ tois (Greek #3588), the] trespasses.'

Quickened - `vivified' spiritually; by consequence, hereafter, corporally. There must be a spiritual resurrection of the soul before there can be a comfortable resurrection of the body (Pearson) (John 11:25-26; Romans 8:11).

Together with Christ. The Head being seated at God's right hand, the body also sits there with Him (Chrysostom). We are already seated there IN Him ("in Christ Jesus," Ephesians 2:6), and hereafter shall be seated by Him: IN Him already as in our Head, which is the ground of our hope; by Him hereafter, as by the conferring cause, when hope shall be swallowed up in fruition (Pearson). What God did in Christ, He did (by the very fact) in all united to and one with Christ.

(By grace ye are saved) , [ sesoosmenoi (Greek #4982)] - 'ye are in a saved state.' Not merely 'ye are being saved,' but already "passed from death unto life" (John 5:24). Salvation is to the Christian not to be waited for hereafter, but already, in some degree, realized (1 John 3:14). This parenthetic clause (cf. Ephesians 2:8) is to make them feel what otherwise their remaining corruptions would make them doubt-namely, their present fellowship in the quickening with Christ. Not their works, but God's grace throughout, is the sole source of salvation; hence, he says "ye," not 'we.'


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Jamieson, Robert, D.D.; Fausset, A. R.; Brown, David. "Commentary on Ephesians 2:5". "Commentary Critical and Explanatory on the Whole Bible - Unabridged". https:https://www.studylight.org/commentaries/jfu/ephesians-2.html. 1871-8.

Ellicott's Commentary for English Readers

(5) Even when we were dead in sins.—These words should be connected, not with “loved us,” but with “hath quickened,” or rather, quickened. He brought life out of spiritual death.


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Ellicott, Charles John. "Commentary on Ephesians 2:5". "Ellicott's Commentary for English Readers". https:https://www.studylight.org/commentaries/ebc/ephesians-2.html. 1905.

Treasury of Scripture Knowledge

Even when we were dead in sins, hath quickened us together with Christ, (by grace ye are saved;)
dead
1; Romans 5:6,8,10
quickened
1; 5:14; John 5:21; 6:63; Romans 8:2
grace ye
Gr. whose grace ye.
8; Acts 15:11; Romans 3:24; 4:16; 11:5,6; 16:20; 2 Corinthians 13:14; Titus 2:11; 3:5; Revelation 22:21

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Torrey, R. A. "Commentary on Ephesians 2:5". "The Treasury of Scripture Knowledge". https:https://www.studylight.org/commentaries/tsk/ephesians-2.html.

Hodge's Commentary on Romans, Ephesians and First Corintians

καὶ ὄντας ἡμᾶς. The conjunction καὶ does not serve merely to resume the connection; nor is it to be referred to ἡμᾶς, us also, us as well as others; but it belongs to the participle. — ‘And being,' i.e. even when we were dead in trespasses. Notwithstanding our low, and apparently helpless condition, God interfered for our recovery.

συνεζωοποίησεν τῷ χριστῷ, he quickened us together with Christ. ζωοποιεῖν means, to make alive, to impart life. In the New Testament it is almost always used of the communication of the life of which Christ is the author. It either comprehends everything which is included in salvation, the communication of life in its widest scriptural sense; or it expresses some one point or moment in this general life-giving process. As the death from which the Christian is delivered includes condemnation (judicial death), pollution, and misery; so the life which he receives comprehends forgiveness (justification), regeneration, and blessedness. Thus in Colossians 2:12 the apostle says, "And you being dead in your sins and the uncircumcision of your flesh, hath he quickened together with him, having forgiven you all trespasses." As, however, in the passage before us, the words "hath raised us up," and "hath made us to sit in heavenly places," are connected with the word "he hath quickened," the latter must be limited to the commencement of this work of restoration. That is, it here expresses deliverance from death and the imparting of life, and not the whole work of salvation.

We are said to be ‘quickened together with Christ.' This does not mean merely that we are quickened as he was, that there is an analogy between his resurrection from the grave, and our spiritual resurrection; but the truth here taught is that which is presented in Romans 6:6, Romans 6:8; Galatians 2:19, Galatians 2:20; 2 Corinthians 5:14; 1 Corinthians 15:22, 1 Corinthians 15:23, and in many other passages, viz. that in virtue of the union, covenant and vital, between Christ and his people, his death was their death, his life is their life, and his exaltation is theirs. Hence all the verbs used in this connection, συνεζωοποίησε, συνήγειρε, συνεκάθισε, are in the past tense. They express what has already taken place, not what is future; not what is merely in prospect. The resurrection, the quickening and raising up of Christ's people were in an important sense accomplished, when he rose from the dead and sat down at the right hand of God. εἰ γὰρ ἡ ἀπαρξὴ ζῆ, καὶ ἡμεῖς, is the pregnant comment of Chrysostom. The life of the whole body is in the head, and therefore when the head rose, the body rose. Each in his order however; first Christ, and then they that are Christ's.

The apostle says, by way of parenthesis, by grace are ye saved. The gratuitous nature of salvation is one of the most prominent ideas of the context and of the epistle. The state of men was one of helplessness and ill-desert. Their deliverance from that state is due to the power and the unmerited love of God. They neither deserved to be saved, nor could they redeem themselves. This truth is so important and enters so deeply into the very nature of the Gospel, that Paul brings it forward on every fit occasion. And if the mode in which he speaks of our deliverance, does not of itself show it to be gratuitous, he introduces the declaration parenthetically, lest it should be for a moment forgotten.


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Hodge, Charles. "Commentary on Ephesians 2:5". Hodge's Commentary on Romans, Ephesians and First Corintians. https:https://www.studylight.org/commentaries/hdg/ephesians-2.html.

The Bible Study New Testament

He brought us to life with Christ. "God acted in history at a time when the world was spiritually dead. God brought Jews and Gentiles to life with Christ by raising Him from the dead (Acts 13:32-33; 2 Corinthians 5:15-17), and we share in this life by acting out the events of the Cross (Colossians 2:11-13; 1 Peter 3:21). I say it is by God's grace you have been saved, since only God's grace could give life to the dead!!!"


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Ice, Rhoderick D. "Commentary on Ephesians 2:5". "The Bible Study New Testament". https:https://www.studylight.org/commentaries/ice/ephesians-2.html. College Press, Joplin, MO. 1974.

Commentary by J.C.Philpot on select texts of the Bible

Ephesians 2:5

"By grace you are saved." Ephesians 2:5

Oh! the volumes of blessed truth that are couched in these few words; thrown in out of the Apostle"s full heart as if to give a moment"s vent to his love of salvation by grace! Mercy, love, and grace are all in the bosom of God toward his saints; and yet they differ from each other. But how? Mercy regards the criminal; love regards the object; grace, perhaps, is a blending of the two—the union of mercy and love. God loves the holy unfallen angels; there is an object of love in which there is no mixture of mercy; for having never sinned, mercy they do not need. Again, God showed no mercy to the fallen angels; there we have justice and wrath, without mercy; but in the case of the saints of God, the election of grace, we have not only mercy and love, but we have the joint attribute, that uniting mercy and love in one stream flows onward to the Church, as the river of the water of life; the pure crystal river of grace.

Grace means, as you well know, the pure favor of God, and, as such, is sovereign, distinguishing, free, and super-abounding. Every attribute of Jehovah is distinct, and yet so blended that the whole shine forth in one glorious effulgence. The rays of the sun united form one complete body of pure, bright light; but the prism or the rainbow separates these rays into distinct colors. So the attributes of God are not confused though blended, and all shine forth in one pure bright glory. But this is the peculiar character of grace, that any intermixture of worth or worthiness in the object would destroy it. For if the gospel require merit, we are damned by it as inevitably as by the law. This Luther felt when, racked and torn by the words "the righteousness of God without the law is manifested," he cried out in the agony of his soul, "What! am I damned not only by the law, but damned by the gospel also!"

This pure, free, unadulterated grace is the joy of every soul that is able to receive it; for it comes as a blessed cordial when sinking and swooning under a sight and sense of the deserved wrath of God. When, then, the pure gospel of the grace of God comes as a cordial from the Most High, it lifts up his drooping head, revives his sinking soul, and pours oil and wine into his bleeding wounds. By this grace we are justified, pardoned, accepted, sanctified, and saved with an everlasting salvation. Oh! glad tidings to perishing sinners! Oh! blessed news to those who are sinking under a sense of guilt and misery, in whom the law of God is discharging its dreadful curse!

When we get a view by faith, and a sweet taste of the pure grace of God, what a balm, what a cordial, what a sweet reviving draught it is. It is this which makes us prize so highly, and exalt so gladly the free grace of God; because it is so pure, so free, and so super-abounding over all the aboundings of sin, guilt, filth, and folly. It never can be laid down too clearly, it never can be too much insisted on that "by grace," and grace alone, "you are saved." If free grace has reached your soul, it has saved your soul; if free grace has come into your heart, it has blessed you with an everlasting salvation, and you will live to prove it, when your happy soul joins the throng of the blessed.

If anything can lift up a drooping sinner, restore a backslider, break a hard, or soften a stony heart; draw forth songs of praise, and tears of contrition; produce repentance and godly sorrow for sin; a humble mind and a tender conscience; it is a sweet experience of the super-abounding grace of God. Can we then exalt it too much? Can we prize it too highly? Can we cleave to it too closely? No; in proportion as we feel our ruin and misery, we shall cleave to it with every desire of our soul; for it is all our salvation, as it is all our desire.


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Philpot, Joseph Charles. "Commentary on Ephesians 2:5". Commentary by J.C.Philpot on select texts of the Bible. https:https://www.studylight.org/commentaries/jcp/ephesians-2.html.

Now we take up the second little statement I want to concentrate on.

Ephesians 2:5. Even when we were dead in sins, hath quickened us together with Christ, (by grace ye are saved).

As I like to put it, He is not only rich in mercy but He is great in love. When did He start to love you and me? When I believed? Oh, no. When we were dead in sins. When we had absolutely no spiritual life.

God puts everyone on the same plane. You and I make a difference of sins. We talk about big sins and little sins; we talk about outbroken sins and secret sins. We talk about all kinds of sins and we catalog them, saying that we are not as bad as somebody else and we are better than most.

Now God doesn't do that. We were dead. You take a dead body and fix it up, it is still dead. And every one who has not accepted Jesus Christ as personal Saviour is dead in trespasses and sins. My friend, dead people need life; they don't need to be just powdered up and fixed up. They need life. But before we can have life, something must be done with our sins; something must be done to get rid of this corruption. God is rich in mercy and great in love; and what His righteousness could not do, what His holy character could not do, His love has accomplished.

You see, we're dealing with a righteous God. We're dealing with a holy God. No one in sin can come into the presence of God. When Christ came, He came because of God's love for you and me. He is great in love. That's why we have all of those wonderful verses like John 3:16 where "God so loved" and Romans 5:8 where "God commendeth His love toward us" and 1 John 3:1 "Behold, what manner of love the Father hath bestowed upon us." John 13:1 tells us "Having loved His own who were in the world, He loved them unto the end." Jeremiah 31:3 says—and God was talking to a wayward people when He said it—Yea, I have loved thee with an everlasting love.

In the book of Romans it is a question of unrighteousness, whereas in the book of Ephesians it is a question of death. In Romans we had a revelation of the righteousness of God and the sinfulness of man. But when you come to Ephesians it is a question of life and death. To have Christ means life and not to have Christ means death. In other words, the difference between life and death is the person of Christ. The difference between heaven and hell is the person of Christ, not our badness, not our goodness.

Now God is rich in mercy and He is great in His love toward us even when we were dead in sin. And He not only did this, but in verse five He made us alive together with Christ. Even when we were dead in sin, He has made us alive. The old English word "quickened" means to "make alive." He has made us alive together with Christ.

You know, I have met so many people who told me they were raised in a Christian home, went to Sunday school and church all their lifetime; but for some reason, they never came into the reality of a relationship with God where they experienced life. They say they've been baptized and they know the Bible. They say, "I'm not living like those old Pharisees, like those old sinners on the streets. I've never been drunk in my life and I've never done this and I've never done that."

And I ask them, "But are you alive in Christ? Do you have LIFE?"

When you meet people like this, give them John 1:4 which I think is the key to the Gospel of John , "In Him (Jesus Christ) is life." In the third chapter of John , Christ says He is going to give us eternal life. In John 4:1-54, He talks about the water of life. In chapter5 , He talks about everlasting life. In chapter6 , He talks about satisfying life, resurrection life, indwelling life. In chapter10 , He talks about an abundant life. In chapter11 , He says, "I am the resurrection and the life."

In chapter14 , He says, "I am the way, the truth and the life. No man cometh to the Father but by me." In John 20:31, He says that these things are written that we may know that we have eternal life.


Copyright Statement

Bibliography
Mitchell, John G. D.D. "Commentary on Ephesians 2:5". "Mitchell's Commentary on Selected New Testament Books". https:https://www.studylight.org/commentaries/jgm/ephesians-2.html.

Even when we were dead in sins, hath quickened us together with Christ, (by grace ye are saved;)

Even in our completely dead state, He reached down and saved us. Made us completely alive. As I mentioned, "quicken" to some might indicate something of an improvement, but not the full range of what salvation is, however here we see that it is the full process of salvation.

We were quickened together with Christ. Quickened would relate to that washing away of the old and installation of the new, the regeneration that was needed to make us alive. We were reborn, or rebirthed anew. Our first birth by man was to death, but our rebirth by God is to life.

Some suggest that God washed away some of the stuff we have studied in this section - the death, but that He left the lust, the flesh, the rotten side that we were born with and poured in a new nature. The result of this is a new/old nature struggle that we are caught between.

I prefer the truth that God washed away all that stuff, completely and finally and left us with a completely new nature, one that is pure, one that can be maintained as pure, and one that ought to be maintained as pure. 1 John 1:9 and the forgiveness it promises is that maintenance that is needed to be a pure living believer. We may choose to sin, we may choose to thumb our nose at God, and we may falter, but it is not because we are dead, it is not because the Devil made us do it and it is not because of any external or internal force that is working on us - it is simply that we decide to follow self and do what we want rather than what God wants.

Many label this sinless perfection - mostly because they don"t want to accept the implications of the teaching - that they should live a fairly pure and righteous life. It is not sinless perfection, that false teaching that once we attain a certain level of spirituality we stop sinning and become one without sin - what a farce that is and many there are that have fallen in their attempt to attain such an ethereal plateau.

I do not teach sinless perfection, I teach what I believe the Word of God teaches - God recreated us new, rather than this illogical view that our being can be made up of two natures at the same time. The word nature means the sum of the whole. What we are is our nature. We can"t have two natures, that would make our nature two natures, and that is illogical.

Webster suggests, among others, "...The essence, essential qualities or attributes of a thing, which constitute it...." I suppose you could have an old characteristic and a new characteristic or some such terminology, but nature has to do with the total makeup of a thing. We are a new creation - if we fall into sin, we are a new creation that has erred and which needs restoration, but we do not become a fallen being again, we don"t become dead again, and we certainly don"t need to be requickened or re-regenerated to correct our being. We need only forgiveness from the merciful and loving God and Father that has released us from our death unto life.

Paul adds "by grace ye are saved;" to clarify that leaving the works of the world for good works would not be enough. It is the quickening of God that saves us and nothing we can do - it is His grace that saves, not ours or someone else"s grace. This counters the false teaching of the Roman church which tells us that the "extra" grace that is collected from others overflow is given to those that are in need.

There is an interesting use of verbs in this verse. We were continuingly dead, but God at a point in time quickened us (regeneration) and grace saves and keeps on saving until we are complete in the heavenlies with Him. Saved is a perfect tense, showing something that has happened, and the results will extend into the future to some future end when all will be complete. The Net Bible says that "you have been saved" and "you are saved."

Another of those many indicators that the believer is eternally secure in Christ, but easily rationalized away by those that don"t believe in the doctrine.


Copyright Statement
Copyright 2008. Used by Permission. All rights reserved. No part of this publication may be reproduced, stored in a retrieval system or transmitted in any form by any means, electronic, mechanical, photocopy, recording or otherwise without the prior permission of the author, except as provided by U.S.A. copyright laws. Do feel free to make copies for friends that might be interested as long as you do not make profit from the copies. This is God's work and I don't want anyone to profit from it in a material way.

Bibliography
Derickson, Stanley. "Commentary on Ephesians 2:5". "Stanley Derickson - Notes on Selected Books". https:https://www.studylight.org/commentaries/sdn/ephesians-2.html.


Lectionary Calendar
Saturday, November 17th, 2018
the Week of Proper 27 / Ordinary 32
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