"But even though we were dead in our sins God, who is rich in mercy, because of the great love he had for us, gave us life together with Christ—it is, remember, by grace and not by achievement that you are saved…"
Oh goodness! The flow of words here is the absolute glory of our story in Jesus!
Who were we? “We were dead in our sins.” The Greek word used here connotes “corpse,” not some ethereal, spiritual state of deadness. We were actually dead as a doornail.
Who is God? “Rich in mercy.” The word Paul utilizes really means “opulent,” like God is smoking cigars lit with hundred dollar bills while lounging beside pools of His glorious grace.
What motivates God? “The great love he had for us.” The word for “great” there is better translated as “mighty”; every movement, every action, every word of Jesus (even the hard ones) are entirely borne from His mighty love for us.
What did He do? “Gave us life together with Christ.” You and I have been given life just as Jesus, the Crucified One, was given life at the Resurrection! You get the picture of Jesus, only recently a lifeless corpse Himself, suddenly springing out of the tomb with a spring in His step. And you and I are right alongside Him, rubbing the sleep out of our eyes! Perhaps this was the visual that Paul imagined when he penned Galatians 2:20 – “I have been crucified with Christ and I no longer live, but Christ lives in me.”
What’s our situation now? “It is, remember, by grace and not by achievement that you are saved.” You can really hear the tone of Paul’s words here! He’s essentially said, “Look, you were actually dead. But God, because He’s rich in mercy and because He’s crazy enough to love you crazily, has actually made you not dead. So let’s not get any stupid ideas about earning this!”
Brothers and sisters, may we live out a day like today with a hope like this hope! We are so wrapped-up in His love that's overwhelmingly, consumingly overpowering; we really don't have any chance of getting away from it, no matter what today holds! Live from that truth. Live in that reality.