bits from bob....

Living Dead or Dead Living?

by Robert J. Young
©, 2002, Robert J. Young
[permission is given to reprint with credit noted]

When the Vietnam Veterans Memorial was constructed in Washington, D.C., it included the names of fourteen people who should not have been included. The problem was not that they were not Vietnam veterans. The problem was that these fourteen, listed among the 58,175 names engraved in polished granite, were not dead. The computer error was corrected, but the names of the "living dead" could not be erased. What an irony--listing the living among the dead.

A greater irony may be found in churches all across our land where many dead are listed among the living. What church does not have in its directory or on its membership roll Sardisites--those with a reputation of being alive who are in fact dead?

God's church is a living organism! It has members who contribute to the effective work of the body (1 Cor. 12; Eph. 4). These body parts are involved in the activity of the body, because that is how a body functions. No body part severs itself from the rest of the body and refuses to go along with an activity. Such is certain death! Yet what is unthinkable in the physical realm is often seen in the spiritual realm.

Hosts of spiritually dead body parts do not regularly praise the Head in worship, do not assemble for encouragement, do not serve, do not give, do not grow, do not support, do not share fellowship.... These spiritually dead want to be listed among the living despite the fact that they do not do anything.

Every church has them. Every church is weakened by them. The condition might be called "spiritual gangrene." It infects the body. It threatens real spiritual life and vitality. From time to time, some churches try to cut off the spiritually dead who are listed among the living, to remove the "gangrene" (2 Tim. 2:17). Such often causes quite a furor!

The National Park service says the "living dead" on the Memorial cannot be changed. It really doesn't matter, they are alive regardless of what the Memorial says. Many sensitive elders know that the "dead living" on membership rolls cannot be changed. It really doesn't matter, they are dead regardless of what the church directory says. Whether the church takes action is immaterial...BECAUSE GOD WILL! Read Rev. 20:12 again!

Go to Articles Index

Return to Home Page
Last updated January 2, 2002.