The Walking Dead
John 11:38-44 – 38 So Jesus, again being deeply moved within, *came to the tomb. Now it was a cave, and a stone was lying against it. 39 Jesus *said, “Remove the stone.”Martha, the sister of the deceased, *said to Him, “Lord, by this time [a]there will be a stench, for he has been dead four days.” 40 Jesus *said to her, “Did I not say to you that if you believe, you will see the glory of God?” 41 So they removed the stone. Then Jesus raised His eyes, and said, “Father, I thank You that You have heard Me. 42 I knew that You always hear Me; but because of the [b]people standing around I said it, so that they may believe that You sent Me.” 43 When He had said these things, He cried out with a loud voice, “Lazarus, come forth.” 44 The man who had died came forth, bound hand and foot with wrappings, and his face was wrapped around with a cloth. Jesus *said to them, “Unbind him, and let him go.” A man dead for four days and Jesus comes up to the burial tomb and brings him back to life and tells him to come out. Only Jesus can perform such a great miracle. This scripture reaffirms the power Jesus has over death and that includes spiritual death. Are you living the abundant life or are you the walking dead? There is a TV show that deals with The Walking Dead, otherwise known as Zombies. Zombies can walk and move around, but in a trance, because they are dead. Are you that kind of a Christian. You have accepted Jesus, but because of a lack of pursuing a closer relationship with Jesus you are moving around, sitting in church, singing praise songs, and even doing churchy things, but you are dead inside. This should not be. The church of today is struggling to even get Christians to participate and serve as commanded by the Lord. Members are leaving the church in record numbers and it shows that we do have many who are the “walking dead.” The Apostle Paul dealt with this issue when writing to the church at Thessalonica and in 2 Thessalonians 2:10-12 he writes 10 and with all the deception of wickedness for those who perish, because they did not receive the love of the truth so as to be saved. 11 For this reason God will send upon them a deluding influence so that they will believe what is false, 12 in order that they all may be judged who did not believe the truth, but took pleasure in wickedness. In speaking about the coming of the Lord and the events leading up to it Paul refers to a time when people will believe all sorts of falsehoods about the faith and many will not actually be saved. The truth is veiled and a deluding influence will cloud their minds and they will believe what is false. Here is a question to ponder. Is your hope in what people say, or is your hope in the Lord? This is a very important question to answer because it makes everything very black and white. Truth or falsehood. Oh, you might say, “of course I choose truth.” But if you live in a falsehood, how can you say that? Some of the false teachings are: “Truth is relative to my circumstances” “The Bible is a book of stories and they don’t apply to modern day problems.” “Tolerance is the new norm in Christianity.” “Church life is no longer applicable to my life.” “I can hedge on commitments made to God because of His grace.” It goes on and on, and the continued “watering down” of the Word of God is birthing more and more “walking dead.” Disobedient people have always tried to fit God into their little box to make living for him “user friendly.” We need to change our attitude about that and become “God friendly.” The dangerous part about being the walking dead is they seek out others and try to inoculate them and feed off their weakening faith. This is all from our enemy, Satan. So, how do you deal with the walking dead? Do not get near them or they will turn you into them. In 1 Corinthians 15:33 Paul wrote “Do not be misled: “Bad company corrupts good character.” Avoid those kind of people and strengthen your resolve as you grow in your faith. I am constantly aware that new Christians can be discipled in the opposite way they should be by people who are the walking dead. They teach them a marginalized faith that will fail at best. Instead of growing them up in the Word of God. They are inoculated with the faith that causes delusional thinking and there is no growth, but just them becoming the walking dead as well. Here is what to do: Get involved with people who love God’s Word, love God, and are growing in their faith and you will grow also. Then start taking back territory we have long ago lost to this weak condition that causes the walking dead. Paul didn’t just identify the disease, he knows the cure. In 1 Timothy 6:12 Paul says, “Fight the good fight of faith, take hold of the eternal life to which you were called, and you made the good confession in the presence of many witnesses.” The eternal life to which we were called is the source of our hope and joy and that brings about a new life that can only be explained as the Holy Spirit living in us. Back to the story of Lazarus. Dead and buried for four days, to those who were there he seemed like a lost cause. But he wasn’t. Why? JESUS! Jesus always makes the difference and he called Lazarus out of that grave and into the breathing air. He was alive!!! Jesus is the only hope for the condition of the walking dead, and He is the best hope for fighting this dreaded condition that so many believers have today. It is my prayer and the pray of many I know that Jesus call forth those who have been dead way to long, and revive their spirits and cure them of their walking dead condition. Won’t you join with me in praying to God to bring the dead back to life by curing the walking dead condition that is plaguing the spread of the Gospel. Here is how we stand and pray per the word of the Lord through Ezekiel in chapter 37 The hand of the Lord was on me, and he brought me out by the Spirit of the Lord and set me in the middle of a valley; it was full of bones. 2 He led me back and forth among them, and I saw a great many bones on the floor of the valley, bones that were very dry. 3 He asked me, “Son of man, can these bones live?”I said, “Sovereign Lord, you alone know.”4 Then he said to me, “Prophesy to these bones and say to them, ‘Dry bones, hear the word of the Lord! 5 This is what the Sovereign Lord says to these bones: I will make breath enter you, and you will come to life. 6 I will attach tendons to you and make flesh come upon you and cover you with skin; I will put breath in you, and you will come to life. Then you will know that I am the Lord.’”7 So I prophesied as I was commanded. And as I was prophesying, there was a noise, a rattling sound, and the bones came together, bone to bone. 8 I looked, and tendons and flesh appeared on them and skin covered them, but there was no breath in them.9 Then he said to me, “Prophesy to the breath; prophesy, son of man, and say to it, ‘This is what the Sovereign Lord says: Come, breath, from the four winds and breathe into these slain, that they may live.’” 10 So I prophesied as he commanded me, and breath entered them; they came to life and stood up on their feet—a vast army. It is time for the army of God to fight the good fight and quit fighting among ourselves and focus our eyes on the Lord. It is time to allow the Holy Spirit of God to revive our spirits and for His gospel to be proclaimed as never before. No more walking dead. Just those who were dead, now alive forevermore. I pray for the breath of God to revive our hearts and for a sweeping revival to take place in the church and out of the church. I can hear the rattling of the bones. Can you? I believe Jesus is calling each of us by saying “Church come forth!” It is time. Are you ready? Of course you are, if you know Jesus!!
The Pilgrimage continues…