Ephesians Bible Study – Week 3


We Were Once Dead in Our Trespasses (2:1-22)


Introduction

Welcome to Week 3 of your Ephesians Bible Study.

This week we’ll be discussing Ephesians 2:1-22, which provides two contrasting portraits of our human condition:

  1. A fairly bleak description prior to coming to faith in Christ
  2. A description of our new life after coming to faith in Christ.

Let’s dive into your Ephesians Bible Study to see what this week’s lesson has to say to us.

We were dead in our trespasses

Read Ephesians 2:1-3


Questions to Reflect on the Passage


  1. In Eph 2:1 and 3, Paul uses four ways to describe how we “were” prior to coming to know Christ. What are these four descriptions? What do each of these four statements mean or imply about our former condition?
  2. In Eph 2:2 Paul describes another spiritual presence that exists in this world? How does Paul describe that entity and what is the effect it has in this world?

God made us alive in Christ

Read Ephesians 2:4-10

Paul indicates that even when we were dead in our trespasses (echoing Eph 2:1), God raised us up with Christ and seated us in the heavenly places so that he might show his surpassing grace.

This takes us all the way back to Eph 1:3-14 and the spiritual blessings we received when we came to faith.

In Eph 2:8-10 Paul states that we have been “saved through faith” and that we were “created for good works.”

  1. What do these statements mean (not to you personally) but in general given that this letter is all about how God pre-ordained the church’s existence?
    We were strangers to the covenant

Read Ephesians 2:11-22


Questions to Reflect on the Passage


  1. In Ephesians 2:11-19 Paul gives an extensive list of privileges belonging to Israel from which we (the Gentiles) were excluded. What is that list of privileges? Look for the word “formerly” or “no longer” and for the various privileges in verses 11, 12, 13, 17, 19.
  2. Likewise in Ephesians 2:11-18, Paul says that something quite remarkable has happened because of Christ’s blood to both Jews and Gentiles? What exactly has Christ accomplished through his death according to these verses? Why does Paul use mostly Jewish terms to describe what has happened?
  3. Ephesians 2:19 speaks to a new status for Gentiles who were once “aliens and strangers.” List the various descriptions for this new status? Again, why is Paul using Jewish terms to describe our new status in Christ?
  4. Finally, Ephesians 2:20-22 describes God’s people using a metaphor. What is that metaphor? What are the various facets of that metaphor? And what does that metaphor indicate about the nature of the church?

Questions to Reflect on Your Life


  1. In Ephesians 2:11-19 Paul gives an extensive list of privileges belonging to Israel from which we (the Gentiles) were excluded. What is that list of privileges? Look for the word “formerly” or “no longer” and for the various privileges in verses 11, 12, 13, 17, 19.
  2. Likewise in Ephesians 2:11-18, Paul says that something quite remarkable has happened because of Christ’s blood to both Jews and Gentiles? What exactly has Christ accomplished through his death according to these verses? Why does Paul use mostly Jewish terms to describe what has happened?
  3. Ephesians 2:19 speaks to a new status for Gentiles who were once “aliens and strangers.” List the various descriptions for this new status? Again, why is Paul using Jewish terms to describe our new status in Christ?
  4. Finally, Ephesians 2:20-22 describes God’s people using a metaphor. What is that metaphor? What are the various facets of that metaphor? And what does that metaphor indicate about the nature of the church?
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