But God…

Even when we were dead in sins,
hath quickened us together with Christ, (by grace ye are saved;)
And hath raised us up together,
and made us sit together in heavenly places in Christ Jesus:
That in the ages to come he might shew the exceeding riches
of his grace in his kindness toward us through Christ Jesus.
For by grace are ye saved through faith;
and that not of yourselves: it is the gift of God…”
Ephesians 2:4-8 (KJV)

In Ephesians 2:1-3 Paul describes the helpless and hopeless condition of the human race. “Dead in trespasses and sins” (hopeless) and under the control of evil desires (helpless). In our natural state we are slaves to sin (helpless), and children of wrath (hopeless) even as the rest of humanity. But God…

Then Paul begins to speak of the only solution to the problem of sin with the words, “But God…” So hopeless and helpless are we that only God can offer hope and a cure to the disease of sin. Sin is the truly great pandemic of our world today. Many of us show few symptoms of the disease of sin and many of us clearly show how sin has ravaged our souls and hearts. But God…

In our natural state we were all under sins control. We may have looked socially acceptable and appeared to be upright members of society, but we were all “dead in trespasses and sins”. But God…

Dead in sin but God…, hopelessly entangled in the evil works of darkness but God…slaves to sin but God… children of wrath but God… following Satan but God… in the grave of sin but God… God intervened and made us alive in Christ.

Long my imprisoned spirit lay,
Fast bound in sin and nature’s night;
Thine eye diffused a quick’ning ray—
I woke, the dungeon flamed with light;
My chains fell off, my heart was free,
I rose, went forth, and followed Thee.

No condemnation now I dread;
Jesus, and all in Him, is mine;
Alive in Him, my living Head,
And clothed in righteousness divine,
Bold I approach th’ eternal throne,
And claim the crown, through Christ my own.

Charles Wesley

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