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Don’t play with dead fish! Mom said don’t bring it home thinking we’ll eat it! A dead fish is useless and worthless.

What are we to do with dead faith? Since a fish is a symbol for a Christian, maybe we can see how a dead faith isn’t much different from a dead fish.

Why do we declare a dead fish dead?  Most obvious is that it doesn’t move. Ever poke someone who was still to see if they were still alive? I try poking motionless Christians to see if their faith is alive. They don’t like it.

If our faith has no action, is it faith? James declares that faith with no action is dead (James 2:17). A living faith moves us: moves us to worship and praise our living God, moves us to pray and read his word, moves us to share Christ and bless others for His sake.  A faith without the life-giving Spirit is dead (James 2:26). And a dead faith is as useless as a dead fish because it is not living the aliveness that God intends (James 2:20).

(A faith that is about making ourselves feel good about our righteousness is not faith in Christ. I will cover that in a future article.)

If our motionless faith is just words; an empty lifeless confession that we are a Christian but no swimming in life as a Christian, then our faith is dead. If our faith is just the stripes of ancestors and heritage from days gone by but does not inspire fresh living today, then, well, even dead fish have stripes. Knowing facts about God or Christ is like a dead fish skeleton. You can see the outline, but a skeleton alone does not manifest life. A static dead faith isn’t just infertile and lifeless. Not having a living faith means we lack life-changing love, but rather are full of worry, obligation and tedium.

Why bother having a faith that is dead? Should a dead faith Christian just become an atheist to become dead to God all together?  Should we just drop the farce of faith? NO!

Embrace your dead faith. Yes, you are dead in your faith and also dead in your sins where you stand. But God excels at dealing with the dead. “But 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—it is by grace you have been saved.”(Eph 2:4–5)

You have every privilege as a dead fish Christian to call upon God to make your faith alive. You are baptized. You are baptized into the death of Christ so you can be raised to a new life in Christ. (Rom 6:3-6)

Are you content to be a motionless, dead fish Christian or will you pray for your faith? God promises to give you life. If the Spirit of him who raised Jesus from the dead dwells in you, he who raised Christ from the dead will give life to your mortal bodies also through his Spirit that dwells in you.” (Rom 8:11)

So, I invite you to drag your dead faith butt to worship. Sit there in the pew in your grave clothes of this dull, exhausting existence to hear the Word of God. Dead fish Lazarus didn’t come out of the tomb patting himself on the back but rose up because Christ spoke to him (John 11:43-44).  Christ calls you to be alive with faith.

“He died for us so that, whether we are awake or asleep, we may live together with him.” (1 Th 5:10)

Your servant in his Word, Pastor Douglas