... and were by nature children of wrath, even as others. Eph.3:3
Are you a believer? Are you what is called a saved person, a child of God? If so, how did that come about? Why did God save you? If your answer is, "because I believed in Jesus," then you are over-qualified to be a candidate for the mercy of God and are therefore deceived and lost. God saves sinners who are "even as others" and if you have distinguished yourself from "others" by some kind of faith that you produced, you have disqualified yourself from receiving the unmerited, free, sovereign, distinguishing grace of God in the Lord Jesus Christ.
Our text and its context clearly show that when God, Who is rich in mercy, displayed and dispensed that mercy upon men, that He did so when they were just like everybody else. If God saved me because I believed in Jesus and did not save "others" because they did not believe in Jesus, then the scriptures are meaningless and there is no such thing as pure grace.
What does it mean to be “even as other?” Read Ephesians 2. It means to be "dead in trespasses and sins," in the "lusts of our flesh," and to be "by nature the children of wrath." You may say, "Well I was a sinner and God saved me by grace, but I 'improved' upon that, grace whereas others did not." Then you are not "even as others"; God has surely passed you by and shall until you become so.
This was the Pharisee's problem. Luke 18:11. The Pharisee stood and prayed thus with himself, “God, I thank thee, that I am not as other men are, extortionist, unjust, adulterers, or even as this publican.” Real sinners, such as the publican referred to here, make no such claim, but only cry out for mercy! If we have any objection to the title "even as others," it is only that surely there is no one quite as wretched as ourselves.
What is your definition of grace? God saved me out of a world full of drowning worms just like me. If that's not grace, then I don't know what grace is. -- Chris Cunningham
Chris Cunningham is Pastor of College Grove Grace Church, 6490 Arno College Grove Road, College Grove, TN 37046-9127. You may contact him by phone at...