Dead Man Walking

November 9, 2015
by Martin Wiles

Ephesians 2:1 – Once you were dead because of your disobedience and your many sins. (NLT)

Dead people don't move … or do they? I've also heard that dead people don't tell tales. But maybe they do. Because of my upbringing and my profession, I've seen more than my share of dead people. As a pastor, my father performed numerous funerals. When I followed in his footsteps, I did, as well. There was the elderly lady sitting in her recliner and enjoying life when death overtook her. There was a small child who was killed because his mother was driving drunk and wrecked her car. I recall the 99-year-old woman who had the privilege of seeing some of the first airplanes and cars. My own father stopped breathing in an Atlanta hospital. None of these moved after they breathed their last. They never got back up off the bed or chair and moved around. They were dead. As badly as I wanted to talk to them again, their lips never moved, and their voices remained silent.

I'm also familiar with another type of death. These dead people do walk and tell tales. I see and hear them every day. I've worked with them, attended church with them, and belonged to community organizations with them. I even have some of them in my family. In fact, I'm one myself. We are the walking dead … the talking dead.

Physical death and spiritual death are both realities. Physical death ends my earthly existence, but I can live for many years while spiritually dead. What kills me spiritually is my disobedience to God, and the reason that I disobey is because of my sin nature. I'm born with it, and unless I allow God to give me a new one, I'll live and die with it. If I die with it, I'll miss eternity with God.

The good news is that I don't have to be a dead man walking. New natures are available — natures that God has breathed life into. I can be a live man walking: alive to spiritual things; alive to God and His plan for my life; alive to the abundance that He offers. All that He requires is that I ask. Jesus died physically to give me life spiritually.

Why walk around dead in your sins when you can enjoy the freedom of forgiveness?

Prayer: Father, thank You for giving us the possibility to live life truly alive. Amen.

About the author:

Martin Wiles <mandmwiles@gmail.com>
Greenwood, South Carolina, USA

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1 Comment

  • PresbyCan Feedback says:

    AMEN. Martin. Well said.


    Thanks Martin, love your insights.


    SIMPLY profound and Simply true. Praise be to God Almighty for The profound truth. Blessings and prayers.


    Powerful statement Martin,
    Succinct and right to the point.
    To God be the glory.


    Thanks for sharing this message with us today. May God’s blessings be upon you, your family and your witness for Christ Jesus as you minister to others who grieve the loss of a loved one. Blessings.


    Amen to this my brother in Christ!! How reassuring.
    Thank you for keeping it real!
    May the good Lord continue to bless you as you share your inspiring devotions.


    Great devotional Martin encouraging us to let go of our sinful nature so we can live in the power of Christ’s eternal Spirit. Your message also sheds light on the Lord’s words in Luke 9:60: Jesus said to him, “Let the dead bury their own dead, but you go and proclaim the kingdom of God.” All we need to do is be obedient and answer His call.


    Dear Martin:
    This is a very powerful message. And it is extremely well crafted and well written.
    I was reading today that there has been a big increase in the death rate for middle aged men. Difficult economic times have led to despair and drug taking. Lots of men without hope. Thank God for the hope that Jesus brings.


    Hello Martin,
    Thank you for your devotional today.
    As a 50 year old I, too have been to a number of funerals.
    Thankfully, they knew the Lord and so the funeral was a message of hope of being reunited one day in Heaven praising Jesus and casting our crowns at his feet.
    I’ve been to funerals where the deceased did not know the Lord. Oh, my what a cloud of hopelessness was over the family who mourned for him or prayed over the deceased asking desperately for God to take his soul to Heaven.
    As for being spiritually dead or stagnant I sometimes find myself in that state of “walking dead”. Thank the Lord for His mercy and kindness to not allow me to stay in that state. In this “down” time it has given me time to reflect, to read the Bible, and to pray to not stay stagnant in my walk with the Lord.
    (Ontario, Canada)


    Dear Martin;
    Awesome devotional, thank you.


    This is an interesting analogy Martin. But why do you say, (I quote) “in fact I am one of them” when you are now alive in Christ?
    If you had said I WAS one of them it would make sense to me.

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