Remembering Our Roots 

Bible Reading: Ephesians 2:1-10 

“What do you have that you did not receive?” (1 Corinthians 4:7). 

The believer in Christ has been incredibly blessed by Jesus Christ (Ephesians 1:3). While we are sometimes not mindful of our blessings, and though we can’t even now imagine the full extent of all we possess in Christ (Ephesians 3:8), to lose sight of the cause and source of these blessings is a grievous thing. 

Sadly, it is possible for any of us to act like a spoiled child. Spoiled children live in a fantasy world of prideful expectancy, mistakenly assuming they deserve all that they are given. Even looking down on others who lack what they have, not realizing they have what they have because it has been given to them. 

It is possible for us, as believers, to act in this same way. We forget our roots and the reason we are so blessed. We forget we have what we have, solely because of grace. Paul wrote to the believers in Ephesus and reminded them of their roots (Ephesians 2:1-3). They had been dead in their trespasses and sins before Christ saved them. It was by God’s grace they were made alive (Ephesians 2:5). They had walked according to the course of this world. It was by only God’s grace they were led and empowered to walk in an altogether different manner (Ephesians 2:2, 10; 4:1). They had been duped and led by the prince of the power of the air, and it was by God’s grace they had been delivered from his domain (Ephesians 2:2; Colossians 1:13). They had been children of wrath and it was by God’s grace they were given the right to become children of God (Ephesians 2:3; John 1:12; 1 John 3:1). 

The sole difference between me and a lost person is only this–I have experienced the grace of God in salvation. I did nothing to earn or merit my salvation. My spiritual resume was no different, or no better (Romans 3:23, 5:12). Yet by grace I’ve been saved (Ephesians 2:5). It is important for me to keep this in mind lest I relate to others in a prideful and God-dishonoring way. Do they do stupid things? Do they walk in sin? Do they take the devil’s side? So did I. Are they lost? So was I. The only reason I am any different now in any measure is because God has intervened in my life (1 Corinthians 1:30). 

Lost people don’t need our condemnation, they need the gospel. To be sure, sharing the gospel demands we address the issue of sin because the good news cannot be understood, apart from the bad. Yet it is important we endeavor always to speak the truth in love—as Christ did (Ephesians 4:15). 

Someone has said that sharing the gospel can be compared to one beggar telling another beggar where to find bread. In the Bread of Life, we have found One—the only One—who can fully meet our needs and satisfy our deepest longings (John 6:35). He’s blessed us beyond measure, that we might prove to be a blessing to others. God “desires all people to be saved and to come to the knowledge of the truth” (1 Timothy 2:4). We speak from a more compassionate place in our hearts when we remember our roots. 

At 82, John Newton, the author of the hymn Amazing Grace, said, “My memory is nearly gone, but I remember two things: that I am a great sinner — and that Christ is a great Savior!” His tombstone reads: “John Newton, once an infidel and libertine, a servant of slaves in Africa, was, by the rich mercy of our Lord and Savior Jesus Christ, preserved, restored, pardoned, and appointed to preach the faith he had long labored to destroy!” In remembering his roots, John Newton made much of the grace of God and was mightily used in the cause of the gospel. 


I was sinking deep in sin,
Far from the peaceful shore,
Very deeply stained within,
Sinking to rise no more;
But the Master of the sea
Heard my despairing cry,
From the waters lifted me–
Now safe am I.

Love lifted me, Love lifted me,
When nothing else could help,
Love lifted me; Love lifted me,
Love lifted me,
When nothing else could help,
Love lifted me.

All my heart to Him I give,
Ever to Him I’ll cling,
In His blessed presence live,
Ever His praises sing.
Love so mighty and so true
Merits my soul’s best songs;
Faithful, loving service, too,
To Him belongs. [Refrain]

Souls in danger, look above,
Jesus completely saves;
He will lift you by His love
Out of the angry waves.
He’s the Master of the sea,
Billows His will obey;
He your Savior wants to be–
Be saved today. [Refrain]

Author: looking2jesus13

Having served as pastor at Lewis and Clark Bible Church, in Astoria, Oregon, for almost three decades, my wife’s cancer diagnosis led to my retirement and subsequent move to Heppner to be near our two grandchildren. I divide my time between caring for Laura and working as a part time hospice chaplain and spending time with family and spoiling my chocolate lab.

Leave a Reply

Fill in your details below or click an icon to log in: Logo

You are commenting using your account. Log Out /  Change )

Twitter picture

You are commenting using your Twitter account. Log Out /  Change )

Facebook photo

You are commenting using your Facebook account. Log Out /  Change )

Connecting to %s

%d bloggers like this: