The coroner checked for Walter Williams’ heartbeat. Nothing. He was soon pronounced dead. The funeral home workers were preparing to embalm him when he suddenly began to move. Obviously Walter was very much alive. Walter’s nephew, Eddie Hester, recounted, “I stood there and watched them put him in a body bag and zip it up. That was at 10:30 PM, and at 2:30 AM my cousin called me and said ‘Not yet.’ I said ‘what do you mean not yet?’ He said, ‘Daddy’s still here’” (Mirror News).
What an incredible story! Interestingly, this is much more common than we might think. In fact, there are many people who have died and yet continue to live. Scripture talks about these very people:
“And you were dead in your trespasses and sins, in which you formerly walked according to the course of this world, according to the prince of the power of the air, of the spirit that is now working in the sons of disobedience. Among them we too all formerly lived in the lusts of our flesh, indulging the desires of the flesh and of the mind, and were by nature children of wrath, even as the rest. But God, being rich in mercy, because of His great love with which He loved us, even when we were dead in our transgressions, made us alive together with Christ (by grace you have been saved)” (Ephesians 2:1-5).
At one point in time we were all spiritually dead. We were engaging in sin, making bad choices, and participating in evil. The consequence of these decisions was spiritual death (Ephesians 2:1; Romans 6:23). Thankfully, God made us spiritually alive again by extending His grace through baptism (Ephesians 2:5; 1 Peter 3:21; Acts 2:38).
However, let’s remember what Paul said, “What shall we say then? Are we to continue in sin so that grace may increase? May it never be! How shall we who died to sin still live in it?” (Romans 6:1-2).
It is an awesome blessing to be a Christian, to be dead to sin but alive to Christ. Spiritually speaking, we are literally dead men walking. Therefore, let’s remember that we died to our old lifestyles of sin. Let’s stop living like the spiritual dead, and walk like the spiritually living (Ephesians 2:1-5; 1 John 1:6-7).