Teaching Notes are Bible studies we taught before GraceLife Ministries began publishing articles online in 1995. Some were presented as sermons, others as group studies.

Our hope is that these older studies will be a blessing to you in your life and ministry. Please use them in any way God leads you.

These teaching notes are part of a study about the lost sinner’s need for salvation and the saved sinner’s opportunity for service.

[These notes are from a Bible study taught more than 40 years ago. The notes are in outline form.]

And you hath he quickened, who were dead in trespasses and sins; Wherein in time past ye walked according to the course of this world, according to the prince of the power of the air, the spirit that now worketh in the children of disobedience: Among whom also we all had our conversation in times past in the lusts of our flesh, fulfilling the desires of the flesh and of the mind; and were by nature the children of wrath, even as others. But God, who is rich in mercy, for his great love wherewith he loved us, 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: Not of works, lest any man should boast. For we are his workmanship, created in Christ Jesus unto good works, which God hath before ordained that we should walk in them.” Ephesians 2:1-10

The Lost Sinner

I. The sinner’s hopeless state (vss 1-3)

A. The death (v 1)

  1. “dead” is nekros – “spiritually destitute of a life that recognizes and is devoted to God.”
  2. “tresspass” is paraptoma – “to deviate from the right path, to wander”
  3. “sins” is hamartia – “to miss the mark”

B. The walk (v 2)

  1. “walked” is peripateo – “to order one’s behavior”
  2. “according to” is kata – “dominated by”

The sinner’s behavior is dominated by –

a. “the course of this world”

  1. “course” is aion, which is all that “floating mass of thoughts, opinions, maxims, speculations, hopes, impulses, aims, aspirations, which may be impossible to seize and accurately define, but which constitutes a most real and effective power” (authorship unknown)
  2. “world” is kosmos, which speaks in this context of all the unsaved alienated from God during all history

b. “the prince of the power of the air”

  1. “prince” is archon, which refers to the first one with power and authority in his kingdom
  2. “air” is aer, “the lower, denser atmosphere”

C. The conversation

“conversation” is anastrepho, “to conduct or behave one’s self”

The sinner “conducts” himself in the “lusts” (cravings) of the “flesh” (sarx)

In conducting our behavior in the sphere of the totally depraved nature, we “were fulfilling the desires of the flesh and of the mind.”

“flesh” is sarx

“mind” is dianoia, “feeling, desiring”

D. The desires

“fulfilling” is poieo, “habitually performing”

“desires” is thelema, “desires that come from the emotions”

The life of the unsaved is swayed by the emotions rather than the reason.

E. The nature

“children” is teknon, “to give birth to”

“wrath” speaks of God’s holy hatred of sin, His essential antagonism to everything evil. The sinner is under the wrath of God from birth – “he that believeth not on the name of the Son of God is condemned already because he hath not believed.” (John 3:18)

The Saved Sinner

II. The sinner’s marvelous salvation (vss 4-9)

But God, being [so very] rich in mercy, because of His great and wonderful love with which He loved us, even when we were [spiritually] dead and separated from Him because of our sins, He made us [spiritually] alive together with Christ (for by His grace—His undeserved favor and mercy—you have been saved from God’s judgment). And He raised us up together with Him [when we believed], and seated us with Him in the heavenly places, [because we are] in Christ Jesus, [and He did this] so that in the ages to come He might [clearly] show the immeasurable and unsurpassed riches of His grace in [His] kindness toward us in Christ Jesus [by providing for our redemption]. For it is by grace [God’s remarkable compassion and favor drawing you to Christ] that you have been saved [actually delivered from judgment and given eternal life] through faith. And this [salvation] is not of yourselves [not through your own effort], but it is the [undeserved, gracious] gift of God; not as a result of [your] works [nor your attempts to keep the Law], so that no one will [be able to] boast or take credit in any way [for his salvation].” Amplified Bible

The Serving Sinner

III. The sinner’s glorious service (v 10)

“For we are His workmanship [His own master work, a work of art], created in Christ Jesus [reborn from above—spiritually transformed, renewed, ready to be used] for good works, which God prepared [for us] beforehand [taking paths which He set], so that we would walk in them [living the good life which He prearranged and made ready for us].”

[Thank you for reading these teaching notes from more than 40 years ago. My prayer is they will be a blessing to you, your family and your ministry.]