Ephesians 2:3
Parallel Verses
New American Standard Bible
Among them we too all formerly lived in the lusts of our flesh, indulging the desires of the flesh and of the mind, and were by nature children of wrath, even as the rest.

King James Bible
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.

Darby Bible Translation
among whom we also all once had our conversation in the lusts of our flesh, doing what the flesh and the thoughts willed to do, and were children, by nature, of wrath, even as the rest:

World English Bible
among whom we also all once lived in the lust of our flesh, doing the desires of the flesh and of the mind, and were by nature children of wrath, even as the rest.

Young's Literal Translation
among whom also we all did walk once in the desires of our flesh, doing the wishes of the flesh and of the thoughts, and were by nature children of wrath -- as also the others,

Ephesians 2:3 Parallel
Commentary
Barnes' Notes on the Bible

We all had our conversation - see the notes at 2 Corinthians 1:12; compare 1 Peter 4:3.

In the lusts of our flesh - Living to gratify the flesh, or the propensities of a corrupt nature. It is observable here that the apostle changes the form of the address from "ye" to "we," thus including himself with others, and saying that this was true of "all" before their conversion. He means undoubtedly to say, that whatever might have been the place of their birth, or the differences of religion under which they had been trained, they were substantially alike by nature. It was a characteristic of all that they lived to fulfil the desires of the flesh and of the mind. The "design" of the apostle in thus grouping himself with them was, to show that he did not claim to be any better by nature than they were, and that all which any of them had of value was to be traced to the grace of God. There is much delicacy here on the part of the apostle. His object was to remind them of the former grossness of their life, and their exposure to the wrath of God. Yet he does not do it harshly. He includes himself in their number. He says that what he affirms of them was substantially true of himself - of all - that they were under condemnation, and exposed to the divine wrath.

Fulfilling the desires of the flesh and of the mind - Margin, as in Greek, "wills." Complying with the wishes of a depraved nature. The "will of the flesh" is that to which the flesh, or the unrenewed nature of man, prompts; and Paul says that all had been engaged in fulfilling those fleshly propensities. This was clearly true of the pagan, and it was no less true of the unconverted Jew that he lived for himself, and sought to gratify the purposes of a depraved nature, though it might manifest itself in a way different from the pagan. The "will of the mind" referred to here relates to the wicked "thoughts and purposes" of the unrenewed nature - the sins which relate rather to the "intellect" than to the gross passions. Such, for instance, are the sins of pride, envy, ambition, covetousness, etc.; and Paul means to say, that before conversion they lived to gratify these propensities, and to accomplish these desires of the soul.

And were by nature - Φύσει Fusei. By birth, or before we were converted By conversion and adoption they became the children of God; before that, they were all the children of wrath. This is, I think, the fair meaning of this important declaration. It does not affirm "when" they began to be such, or that they were such as soon as they were born, or that they were such before they became moral agents, or that they became such in virtue of their connection with Adam - whatever may be the truth on these points; but it affirms that before they were renewed, they were the children of wrath. So far as This text is concerned, this might have been true at their very birth; but it does not directly and certainly prove that. It proves that at no time before their conversion were they the children of God, but that their whole condition before that was one of exposure to wrath; compare Romans 2:14, Romans 2:27; 1 Corinthians 11:14; Galatians 2:15. Some people are born Jews, and some pagan; some free, and some slaves; some white, and some black; some are born to poverty, and some to wealth; some are the children of kings, and some of beggars; but, whatever their rank or condition, they are born exposed to wrath, or in a situation which would render them liable to wrath. But why this is, the apostle does not say. Whether for their own sins or for the sins of another; whether by a corrupted soul, or by imputed guilt; whether they act as moral agents as soon as born, or at a certain period of childhood, Paul does not say.

The children of wrath - Exposed to wrath, or liable to wrath. They did not by nature inherit holiness; they inherited that which would subject; them to wrath. The meaning has been well expressed by Doddridge, who refers it "to the original apostasy and corruption, in consequence of which people do, according to the course of nature, fall early into personal guilt, and so become obnoxious to the divine displeasure." Many modern expositors have supposed that this has no reference to any original tendency of our fallen nature to sin, or to native corruption, but that it refers to the "habit" of sin, or to the fact of their having been the slaves of appetite and passion. I admit that the direct and immediate sense of the passage is that they were, when without the gospel, and before they were renewed, the children of wrath; but still the fair interpretation is, that they were born to that state, and that that condition was the regular result of their native depravity; and I do not know a more strong or positive declaration that can be made to show that people are by nature destitute of holiness, and exposed to perdition.

Even as others - That is, "do not suppose that you stand alone, or that you are the worst of the species. You are indeed, by nature, the children of wrath; but not you alone. All others were the same. You have a common inheritance with them. I do not mean to charge you with being the worst of sinners, or as being alone transgressors. It is the common lot of man - the sad, gloomy inheritance to which we all are born." The Greek is, οἱ λοιποί hoi loipoi "the remainder, or the others," - including all; compare the notes at Romans 5:19. This doctrine that people without the gospel are the children of wrath, Paul had fully defended in Romans 1-3. Perhaps no truth is more frequently stated in the Bible; none is more fearful and awful in its character. What a declaration, that we "are by nature the children of wrath!" Who should not inquire what it means? Who should not make an effort to escape from the wrath to come, and become a child of glory and an heir of life?

Ephesians 2:3 Parallel Commentaries

Library
October 1. "That in the Ages to Come He Might Show the Exceeding Riches of his Grace" (Eph. Ii. 7).
"That in the ages to come He might show the exceeding riches of His grace" (Eph. ii. 7). Christ's great purpose for His people is to train them up to know the hope of their calling, and the riches of the glory of their inheritance and what the exceeding greatness of His power toward us who believe. Let us prove, in all our varied walks of life, and scenes of conflict, the fulness of His power and grace and thus shall we know "In the ages to come the exceeding riches of His grace in His kindness to
Rev. A. B. Simpson—Days of Heaven Upon Earth

'The Riches of Grace'
'That in the ages to come He might show the exceeding riches of His grace in kindness towards us in Christ Jesus.'--Eph. ii. 7. One very striking characteristic of this epistle is its frequent reference to God's purposes, and what, for want of a better word, we must call His motives, in giving us Jesus Christ. The Apostle seems to rise even higher than his ordinary height, while he gazes up to the inaccessible light, and with calm certainty proclaims not only what God has done, but why He has done
Alexander Maclaren—Expositions of Holy Scripture Ephesians, Peter,John

Our Glorious Transforming
"But now in Christ Jesus, ye, who sometimes were far off, are made nigh by the blood of Christ."--Ephesians 2:13. I DO not want you to feel at this time as if you were listening to a sermon, or to any sort of set discourse, but rather I should like, if it were possible, that you should feel as if you were alone with the Saviour, and were engaged in calm and quiet meditation; and I will try to be the prompter, standing at the elbow of your contemplation, suggesting one thought and then another; and
Charles Haddon Spurgeon—Spurgeon's Sermons Volume 62: 1916

"There is Therefore Now no Condemnation to them which are in Christ Jesus,
Rom. viii. 1.--"There is therefore now no condemnation to them which are in Christ Jesus, &c." All the promises are yea and amen in Christ Jesus; they meet all in him and from him are derived unto us. When man was in integrity, he was with God, and in God, and that immediately, without the intervention of a Mediator. But our falling from God hath made us without God, and the distance is so great, as Abraham speaks to the rich man, that neither can those above go down to him, nor he come up to them.
Hugh Binning—The Works of the Rev. Hugh Binning

Cross References
Psalm 51:5
Behold, I was brought forth in iniquity, And in sin my mother conceived me.

Romans 1:24
Therefore God gave them over in the lusts of their hearts to impurity, so that their bodies would be dishonored among them.

Romans 2:14
For when Gentiles who do not have the Law do instinctively the things of the Law, these, not having the Law, are a law to themselves,

Romans 5:9
Much more then, having now been justified by His blood, we shall be saved from the wrath of God through Him.

Romans 5:10
For if while we were enemies we were reconciled to God through the death of His Son, much more, having been reconciled, we shall be saved by His life.

Romans 5:12
Therefore, just as through one man sin entered into the world, and death through sin, and so death spread to all men, because all sinned--

Galatians 2:15
"We are Jews by nature and not sinners from among the Gentiles;

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