2 in which you once lived following the age of this world, 4 following the ruler of the power of the air, the spirit that is now at work in the disobedient.
5 even when we were dead in our transgressions, brought us to life with Christ 5 (by grace you have been saved),
7 that in the ages to come he might show the immeasurable riches of his grace in his kindness to us in Christ Jesus.
12 were at that time without Christ, alienated from the community of
14 8 For he is our peace, he who made both one and broke down the dividing wall of enmity, through his flesh,
15 abolishing the law with its commandments and legal claims, that he might create in himself one new person 9 in place of the two, thus establishing peace,
17 He came and preached peace to you who were far off and peace to those who were near,
20 built upon the foundation of the apostles and prophets, with Christ Jesus himself as the capstone. 10
1 [1-22] The gospel of salvation (Eph 1:13) that God worked in Christ (Eph 1:20) is reiterated in terms of what God's great love (Eph 2:4), expressed in Christ, means for us. The passage sometimes addresses you, Gentiles (Eph 2:1-2, 8, 11-13, 19, 22), but other times speaks of all of us who believe (Eph 2:3-7, 10, 14, 18). In urging people to remember their grim past when they were dead in sins (Eph 2:1-3, 11-12) and what they are now in Christ (Eph 2:4-10, 13), the author sees both Jew and Gentile reconciled with God, now one new person, a new humanity, one body, the household of God, a temple and dwelling place of God's Spirit (Eph 2:15-16, 19-22). The presentation falls into two parts, the second stressing more the meaning for the church.
2 [1-10] The recipients of Paul's letter have experienced, in their redemption from transgressions and sins, the effect of Christ's supremacy over the power of the devil (Eph 2:1-2; cf Eph 6:11-12), who rules not from the netherworld but from the air between God in heaven and human beings on earth. Both Jew and Gentile have experienced, through Christ, God's free gift of salvation that already marks them for a future heavenly destiny (Eph 2:3-7). The language dead, raised us up, and seated us . . . in the heavens closely parallels Jesus' own passion and Easter experience. The terms in Eph 2:8-9 describe salvation in the way Paul elsewhere speaks of justification: by grace, through faith, the gift of God, not from works; cf Gal 2:16-21; Romans 3:24-28. Christians are a newly created people in Christ, fashioned by God for a life of goodness (Eph 2:10).
3 [1-7] These verses comprise one long sentence in Greek, the main verb coming in Eph 2:5, God brought us to life, the object you/us dead in . . . transgressions being repeated in Eph 2:1, 5; cf Col 2:13.
4  Age of this world: or "aeon," a term found in gnostic thought, possibly synonymous with the rulers of this world, but also reflecting the Jewish idea of "two ages," this present evil age and "the age to come"; cf 1 Cor 3:19; 5:10; 7:31; Gal 1:4; Titus 2:12. The disobedient: literally, "the sons of disobedience," a Semitism as at Isaiah 30:9.
6 [11-22] The Gentiles lacked Israel's messianic expectation, lacked the various covenants God made with Israel, lacked hope of salvation and knowledge of the true God (Eph 2:11-12); but through Christ all these religious barriers between Jew and Gentile have been transcended (Eph 2:13-14) by the abolition of the Mosaic covenant-law (Eph 2:15) for the sake of uniting Jew and Gentile into a single religious community (Eph 2:15-16), imbued with the same holy Spirit and worshiping the same Father (Eph 2:18). The Gentiles are now included in God's household (Eph 2:19) as it arises upon the foundation of apostles assisted by those endowed with the prophetic gift (Eph 3:5), the preachers of Christ (Eph 2:20; cf 1 Cor 12:28). With Christ as the capstone (Eph 2:20; cf Isaiah 28:16; Matthew 21:42), they are being built into the holy
8 [14-16] The elaborate imagery here combines pictures of Christ as our peace (Isaiah 9:5), his crucifixion, the ending of the Mosaic law (cf Col 2:14), reconciliation (2 Cor 5:18-21), and the destruction of the dividing wall such as kept people from God in the temple or a barrier in the heavens.
10  Capstone: the Greek can also mean cornerstone or keystone.