Arise O Sleeper

Ephesians 5:14Therefore He says: “Awake, you who sleep, Arise from the dead, And Christ will give you light.”

This is a call to the dead.

Who are the dead you might ask?

Ephesians 2:1 “As for you, you were dead in your trespasses and sins,”

Those who are living in sin, who have no qualifying sacrifice for their sin are considered spiritually dead.

Bodily death is a condition that indicates a particular physical status. To be declared “dead” in health care is determined by the attending physician. He examines the evidence and then makes a determination as to whether a person is clinically dead. To determine such a condition, the physician weighs the status of a couple key factors.

The ceasing of brain activity is one essential condition for a person to be declared deceased. If the brain no longer functions, then it is impossible for the rest of the body to stay alive, unless that person is artificially kept alive by machines. Certain areas of the brain may die and at the least, impairment of function follows. If the brain stem is dead, the body cannot control the autonomic functions that keep them alive. If a person is found unconscious and not breathing, this news is a factor in how aggressive they are treated on arrival to the emergency center. If the brain goes without oxygen for 10 minutes or more, it begins to die and the effects are almost immediate.

The heart is another key component for survival. If it stops beating, blood stops flowing and oxygen deprivation ensues. The brain is not the only organ that needs oxygen to survive, the entire body uses it for basic metabolism. If the heart goes into any type of non-functioning rhythm, unless life saving maneuvers are performed, the body begins to die thereafter. The cycle happens rather quickly in catastrophic circumstances, once the heart stops, blood to the heart arteries stops as well and the recovery becomes even more difficult.

Why such a morbid introduction to death?

The spiritual parallel of death is not far removed from bodily death.

Romans 8:10 “And if Christ is in you, the body is dead because of sin, but the Spirit is life because of righteousness.”

You see, our flesh is in a constant state of decay. The incredible ability of the body to rejuvenate cells is a losing battle the older we get. The consensus of death in the world population is 1:1. In other words, you will not get off this planet alive… least in terms of your flesh.

Some believers may say that they may escape this inevitable conclusion if the Lord raptures His church before we die. Even if that were to happen, this flesh that we are currently clothed in will be shed away.

We have been corrupted by sin and its effects are irreparable.

Our brains and our hearts are not going to survive. No amount of knowledge, skin cream, staying out of the sun, eating healthy, or exercise will preserve your life…..your going to die and there is nothing you can do about it!

The crazy thing is—-your body should be the least of your worries.

Mark 9:43-48 “And if your hand causes you to sin, cut it off. It is better for you to enter life crippled than with two hands to go to hell, to the unquenchable fire. And if your foot causes you to sin, cut it off. It is better for you to enter life lame than with two feet to be thrown into hell.  And if your eye causes you to sin, tear it out. It is better for you to enter the kingdom of God with one eye than with two eyes to be thrown into hell,  where their worm does not die and the fire is not quenched.’ 

*This teaching Jesus was so radically illustrating was a reality check on what is truly important and what isn’t. You may be the strongest man on earth, the most intelligent woman on the planet, the fastest, most athletic, most accomplished human on the planet and it won’t buy you one day in God’s presence.

If you have all the world’s praise and die in your sin, you will suffer eternally in Hell.

1 John 3:14 “We know that we have passed from death to life, because we love the brethren. He who does not love his brother abides in death.”

Love is the key indicator of God’s presence. I’m not talking about the lust that the world claims as love. A person “hooks up” with a date and the hormone exchange deceives them into thinking they are now “in love”. It is a fanciful illusion that promises eternal happiness and yet the illusion of true happiness is soon realized.

Love in God’s universe originates with Him. The love Jesus demonstrated on the cross. The love the disciples and martyres after them demonstrated in their commitment to the gospel. The love a person shows a stranger because they see God’s value in them. The love that is imparted by the Spirit of God upon salvation. That is true love.

Godly love builds up—worldly love destroys. Godly love is imparted—worldly love is stolen. Godly love is generous—-worldly love is selfish.

Watch a movie, listen to a godless co-workers dating experience and you’ll witness the destructive nature of “worldly love”, it takes and takes and when it is no longer valuable to imitate, leaves ashes behind.

God’s Love was demonstrated perfectly in Jesus.

John 5:24 “Truly, truly, I say to you, he who hears My word, and believes Him who sent Me, has eternal life, and does not come into judgment, but has passed out of death into life.”

Our lives are but a breath in the greater scope of eternity. How do you want to be remembered? What legacy do you want to leave behind? How do you want to stand before your Creator one day?

How do we pass from death unto Life?

We must seek out the love of God with all our hearts, souls, minds, and strength. All that we have poured our earthly energy into must now be sacrificed upon the altar of repentance. That altar runs red with the blood of Christ. His sacrifice for you was made perfect on the cross, His resurrection from the dead has brought life into your bones and the same Spirit in Christ will fill you with NEW LIFE!

Arise O sleeper, arise from the dead and know the Life that Jesus imparts is a life that continues on into eternity.

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