Live or Die
In this life, it seems we are born with a clean slate and over the course of our lives we have the choice to either ‘live or die’ so to speak. You can choose to waste your life by being selfish or you can make use of your life by being generous and contributing to society. For example, you’re either Kony or trying to stop Kony. You’re either Osama Bin Laden or Seal Team 6. You’re either the robber or the cop. Your life is like a gas gauge. It’ll be empty or full depending on what you put into it. If you live your life to the fullest according to the values you believe are good, then you can die with total contentment knowing you made it count.
Don’t believe it.
The bible teaches that your gas gauge is EMPTY. Completely empty. The needle is floored to the ‘E’. And it’s going to stay that way until the day you die. There is nothing you can do fill it up to the level of contentment you think you should have. You are in fact already a dead man and unable to come back to life to do any good.
Why is that? It’s because of sin. Every man is born with a sinful nature. We are inclined to disobey and dishonor God. This sinful nature is a curse and it affects us to our core. It is not like a sickness. A sinful nature does not mean some are more sick than others. Sin means you are spiritually dead and will experience death forever. If a spiritual doctor evaluated each and every one of us, this would be the results: the diagnosis is that we have sin and the prognosis is that we’re already dead.
I realize this could be considered an offensive statement. After all, isn’t there some good in us? Aren’t some people worse than others? Keep in mind that I am talking about your spiritual nature. We do express our sinful nature in different ways but the biblical message is that the nature itself is totally dead. The result is that you will sin, you will dishonor God, offend our creator and you will experience death forever as a consequence “for the wages of sin is death”. This goes for you and me.
Is there no hope then? If there is, it would take a miracle. Those spiritually dead in sin would need to be revived and brought to life, really for the first time, so that they can honor God according to his standard. Well here is the great news of the gospel. We in fact can be brought back to life. There is a hope and that hope is only is Christ Jesus. Jesus, who is God in the flesh without that sin nature, paid the penalty for the sin of mankind on the cross and if you trust in him, you will be brought back to life both spiritually and physically. Physically because Jesus rose from the dead and we can take part in that resurrection, spiritually at first, and when he returns to judge mankind, he will raise our physical bodies as well. It is in that perfect state that we will live under the Lordship of Christ in the new heaven and new earth forever.
How can we trust in Christ if there is absolutely no good in us? That is a good question for how can a dead man revive himself through his faith? There is more good news. This miracle to revive your dead spirit is a gift. Just like any gift, it is given to you lovingly. God can give you the desire to trust in him and such faith will save you from eternal death. Question is, do you have this gift? Do you desire God? If you are unsure, won’t you take time to learn more about God, that you may learn more about his glory?
I’ll let the beautiful words of the book of Ephesians tell it like it is:
And you were dead in the trespasses and sins in which you once walked, following the course of this world, following the prince of the power of the air, the spirit that is now at work in the sons of disobedience—among whom we all once lived in the passions of our flesh, carrying out the desires of the body and the mind, and were by nature children of wrath, like the rest of mankind. But God, being rich in mercy, because of the great love with which he loved us, even when we were dead in our trespasses, made us alive together with Christ—by grace you have been saved—and raised us up with him and seated us with him in the heavenly places in Christ Jesus, so that in the coming ages he might show the immeasurable riches of his grace in kindness toward us in Christ Jesus. For by grace you have been saved through faith. And this is not your own doing; it is the gift of God, not a result of works, so that no one may boast. For we are his workmanship, created in Christ Jesus for good works, which God prepared beforehand, that we should walk in them. (Ephesians 2:1-10 ESV)