“And you were dead in the trespasses and sins in which you once walked, following the course of this world, following the prince of the power of the air, the spirit that is now at work in the sons of disobedience— among whom we all once lived in the passions of our flesh, carrying out the desires of the body and the mind, and were by nature children of wrath, like the rest of mankind.” Eph. 2:1-3
Ephesians 2 tells it like it is. Before Jesus, we were DEAD in our trespasses and sins. We followed the ways of the world and the devil, we did what our bodies and minds wanted to do. We were, by very nature, children of wrath. Yes, wrath. No one likes to think about the wrath of God. We’d rather He be a jolly old grandfather or a cosmic vending machine. But God is holy and He hates sin.
If we do admit our sin, we’re soft on it. We can be blind to it. It becomes comfortable and part of “who we are.” We might call it quirky, a personality bent, or a hundred other things. Or we minimize our sin (“it’s not THAT bad”), rationalize it (“I have my reasons), or compare it (“I’m not as bad as others”).
But Eph. 2:4-5 changes the trajectory of this sad state of affairs. “But God, being rich in mercy, because of the great love with which He loved us, even when we were dead in our trespasses, made us alive together with Christ – by grace you have been saved…”
If we minimize our sin, then Jesus’ sacrifice on the cross doesn’t mean much. Little sin, little God. But if we understand the depths of our sin, the cross means something because we realize how much we need it. When we “right-size” our sin, we have greater appreciation for our right-sized, perfect Savior, Jesus.