Eph 2:1-3 “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.”
Paul has spoken in the closing verses of chapter one about the mighty power of God that raised Jesus from the dead. Now he says to us who make up the body of Christ here that we have first-hand knowledge of this same power. We were dead (Thayer definition: destitute of a life that recognizes and is devoted to God). We were physically animated beings without any ability to see the things of God or any desire to do the things of God. It was not in us to desire any change in that condition. The power that raised Jesus from the dead worked in us to raise us from our dead state in sin to a living state in Jesus. God did this according to the counsel of His own will.
There was a time when the spirit that works in the disobedient worked in us. We did not differ in the least from those who seem to take pleasure in all things ungodly. Their behavior, which we find so distressing, is no different from the way we behaved until the mighty power of God quickened us! It is only by the unmerited favor of our heavenly Father that we walk according to His will. We have no personal goodness that we can cling to.
We all have the nature of our human father, Adam. All of mankind shares the same natural disposition. Our character is tainted with sin; we are marred from conception (Psa 51:5). We have no power of ourselves to change this anymore than we have the power within our selves to change our height or other physical characteristics (Mat 6:27). We are all the children of wrath until God quickens us.
May we never look upon our fellow man with an air of superiority, knowing that the same love and grace that quickened us can quicken them, and that it is God alone who has the power!