A elderly man and his wife were sitting in the lounge one day watching TV. The man turned to his wife and said, “Honey, I think I’m dead.”
“What?!” She replied, “But you’re sitting there talking to me right now.”
“No, no, I’m definitely dead. I just know it.”
She started to worry a great deal, and so took him to a psychologist. The psychologist could not get through to him and referred him to a doctor who could medically and scientifically prove that he was not dead.
So they went to the doctor, and the doctor showed the man his pulse, showed him all sorts of tests. Finally the doctor got a whole group of doctors and scientists together and they sat this man down in front of a giant screen. They told him that only living people bled.
They showed him charts and figures, documentaries and studies, all proving without a doubt that only living people bleed.
Finally the man threw up his hands in surrender and said “Fine! I agree! Only living people bleed.”
The doctor then in one swift motion took a needle and plunged it into the man’s arm, causing the man to bleed.
The man looked at his arm in utter shock and exclaimed, “Great Scott! It looks like dead people can bleed too!”
You and I are surrounded by this thing we call death every single day. Yet there is more to death than what we see physically. There is a form of death far more pressing, and dreaded that we somehow forget. Spiritual death.
We’ve down – played the consequences of sin tremendously in this generation. We’ve taken lying and called it “Small white lies”, we’ve called greed “ambition”, we’ve called lust an “alternative lifestyle”, and so many other sins we have covered up and labelled something else.
God never once forgot what sin is and what it does. It is death. Sin is not a by-product of not being in relationship with God, as books like “The Shack” may have us believe. Sin is what causes spiritual death, and what nailed Jesus to the cross.
Dead in sin
“Once you were dead because of your disobedience and your many sins.” – Ephesians 2:1
“For everyone has sinned; we all fall short of God’s glorious standard.” Romans 3:23
We are not good people who sometimes fall. We are sinners that have broken the law of a Holy and righteous God.
When you see people who are not saved, you are looking at the spiritually dead. The world and the people who are of the world are dead in their sin. They cannot act outside their nature, and they cannot do anything BUT produce a life of sin.
And we were all like that at one point in our lives. Outside of Christ, we lived our lives in complete disobedience to Him and complete hatred of Him.
This is something we must realize when witnessing to unsaved people, or when coming under mockery. They are dead in their sin. Do not get angry at people for acting out of their sinful nature, since we were all like that once. We as the children of God are no longer under our sinful nature but those outside of Christ are.
At the same time, we must not be ashamed of proclaiming the Gospel. Those that are dead in their sin are destined for God’s eternal judgement in hell. If we as Christians claim to have the love of Jesus in us, and if we claim to love all people as God first loved us, then our priority should be to proclaim the Gospel and prevent their path to hell.
Imagine seeing someone in a burning building and simply watching idly by out of fear of being too intrusive or judgemental. What kind of a madman would do such a thing? And yet so many of us in the church are too afraid to proclaim the truth of God’s Word out of fear of being ridiculed.
You and I who have received great love ought to give and share that love to those around us, as urgently, but also as kindly as possible.
Dead to sin
“Likewise reckon ye also yourselves to be dead indeed unto sin, but alive unto God through Jesus Christ our Lord.” – Romans 6:11
When we are exposed to the grace and majesty of God, and we surrender ourselves to His will, becoming adopted sons and daughters of God, we become dead to sin. It is a complete 180 degree switch from our state before salvation.
This is vitally important. Do not discount the utter importance of being dead to sin. Sin is not something we as christians should even be playing around with. We should not be toying with sinful ideas, or harbouring small sins because “They’re not harming anyone really”.
A perfect example of this is Cain in Genesis 4. Cain let something small into his life, and let it stay there. He didn’t get rid of it, he didn’t kill that sin, but instead just let it dwell. He let it take refuge in his life, and it began to grow. On one day it was a small temper tantrum, the next it was murder.
How often do we as christians let this happen?
“Just a quick look at that 18+ website. It won’t harm anyone right?”
“Just one drink. It’s not like I’m turning into an alcoholic.”
“It’s just a white lie. Nobody will know.”
“It’s just harmless flirting. It’s not really cheating”
These are all excuses people have used and do use to justify sins that they refuse to put to death. Sin is not something to play around with.
In the words of John Owen, “Be killing sin, or sin will be killing you.”
“But every man is tempted, when he is drawn away of his own lust and enticed. Then when lust has conceived, it bringeth forth sin: and sin, when it is finished, bringeth forth death.” – James 1:14 – 15
God does not tolerate sin. Which is exactly the reason why Jesus had to die on the cross. God’s full wrath was poured out on Christ for the exact reason that he hates sin.
Which is why, when we are saved, God makes us dead to sin and alive to Him. Someone who knows Jesus as their personal Lord should no longer long for the desires and actions that their flesh dictate to them. We should no longer wilfully disobey God’s law or live a life that is completely the opposite of biblical doctrine.
Being dead in sin, we are dead to God. This is why atheists do not believe and refuse to acknowledge God in any way. They are dead to His existence. They do not live according to the desires of God, but according to the desires of their flesh.
We as the children of God are dead TO sin, but alive to God through Jesus Christ. This means that we do not live according to the desires of our flesh, but according to the desires of God.
If you are struggling with sin, examine yourself. Make sure that you are in Christ by examining yourself in the light of scripture, and seek Him. Kill those sins that you harbour in your life. They will not bring about satisfaction, but will bring about death.
Author: Justin Berrisford