And you were dead in your trespasses and sins, Ephesians 2:1 (NASB)
There is a new program on one of the cable channels with the title of today’s post. The premise is that something has happened in the world and people have become walking dead. There is also a group of people who have not been affected and have to learn to live in this world now ruled by these grotesque zombie-people who want to destroy them (and eat them). The walking dead look foul and decomposing, as you would expect them to look so spotting them is not hard, and since they are diligent in seeking out the living, the survivors have to be pretty smart and aware of where these zombies are traveling. Apparently, all the zombie has to do is scratch you and you are done for.
You might be wondering about now what this has to do with the biblical counseling blog! Well, this show has got me thinking about the parallels to real life it represents. In a very real sense, Christians are living among the walking dead. Ephesians 2:1 says that before Christ we were dead, and that those who are unregenerated are presently dead in their sin and we live among them.
I have learned to view all things through spiritual eyes. When I see unbelievers acting like unbelievers I am not surprised. I don’t expect spiritually dead people to act any other way. I am also reminded that I was once one of them. In fact for 20 years of my life I was disobedient, living in the lusts of my flesh, and indulging my own desires. That I am no longer counted among the walking dead is by the grace of God alone!
This is true of every single regenerated Christian who has ever been.
While unregenerated people surely don’t have the hideous external features like those in the television program, we can still see the affects of their state of being on their faces. Many look so hopeless and worn; their eyes are vacant and sometimes the evil that lurks within is visible when looking within them. We also know they are walking dead by what they reveal to us through their actions.
Now the deeds of the flesh are evident, which are: immorality, impurity, sensuality, idolatry, sorcery, enmities, strife, jealousy, outbursts of anger, disputes, dissensions, factions, envying, drunkenness, carousing, and things like these, of which I forewarn you, just as I have forewarned you, that those who practice such things will not inherit the kingdom of God. Galatians 5:19-21 (NASB)
It is not that the unregenerate are dead because they live this way, but the reality is it is because they are dead that they live this way. The spiritual deadness of the heart is revealed in their actions. The internal death is on display in their everyday lives.
Like the walking dead in the series, the desires of the unbeliever is to press you into abandoning your faith and become as they are.
For the time already past is sufficient for you to have carried out the desire of the Gentiles, having pursued a course of sensuality, lusts, drunkenness, carousing, drinking parties and abominable idolatries. In all this, they are surprised that you do not run with them into the same excesses of dissipation, and they malign you; 1 Peter 4:3-4 (NASB)
Unlike the surviving people in the television program we cannot separate ourselves from the unbelievers- we cannot run and hide. The call of the Christian is to make disciples of those spiritually dead people. We must live among them, work among them, and love them the way Christ would love them all while remaining separate from their lifestyles.