Friday, March 18, 2016

The Walking Dead

The AMC program The Walking Dead (TWD) is a pop-culture phenomenon. It’s one of the highest rated programs in television history, loved by viewers and critics alike. It’s gritty and sexy and realistic and fantastical and deep and action-packed and dramatic and violent. But, at first glance, it seems like a pretty shallow premise.

It’s basically a zombie apocalypse story, drawn out for years. For those of you who aren’t fans of the zombie genre (yes, that’s a thing), zombies are the walking dead. They were once human, but they’ve died and been reanimated as soul-less shells, feeling no pain, and hungry for human flesh. Because they feel no pain and are obviously powered by something other than normal body function, they’re hard to stop. Terminating zombies usually involves stopping their brain function somehow, normally through decapitation or severe head trauma.

So, in some ways, TWD is a typical zombie story. But, there’s a twist. A big one.

In most zombie stories, zombie-ism is passed on from a bite, like rabies. But in TWD, (BIG spoiler alert) at the end of season one, we learn that zombie-ism isn’t caught; we ALL have it. Everyone who dies with brain function in the TWD universe, turns. Everyone becomes a “walker.” Everyone’s a ticking time bomb.

This changes everything.

Consequently, in the TWD universe, we’re all the walking dead. The show’s title doesn’t refer to the zombies, it refers to the survivors - the people looking for safety and hope and a life without fear. Which is interesting, because this is exactly how Paul describes people who have not discovered God’s love.

"You were dead in your transgressions and sins...gratifying the cravings of (your) flesh and following its desires and thoughts." *

We’re like the survivors on TWD, ticking timebombs walking around, dead in our sin. But once we figure that out, there’s hope. 

"Because of his great love for us, God, who is rich in mercy, made us alive with Christ even when we were dead in transgressions." *

We have the answer. We have the cure. Amen?

There’s hope!
Pastor Ed

* (Ephesians 2)


MAIN PASSAGES: 1 John 4:7-8, 11-12, Matthew 25:31-40

Some questions for use in group or personal study.
  • Share a time you thought you had it all figured out, but you found out you were wrong. 
  • What’s the difference between being “dead in transgressions” and “alive in Christ?” 
  • What are the similarities between being a “walker” and hell?
  • What would be heaven to the survivors?

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