You probably might have heard of the term ‘the walking dead’- people who are dead but walk about. It could also mean people whose days are numbered i.e. who have few days to live and then die. In any way when you are walking, make sure you are not feeling sleepy because it can make you appear like a zombie; it’s pretty scary to observers 🙂
The dead is a doctrine that John the beloved disciple received from Christ himself. It is relayed in such a way that it is peculiar to him only i.e. it appears or is used in his text only. Who are the dead? They are those who haven’t received Christ – or his name – or received life from him (cp. John 5:24). The dead simply are those who are not in Christ but of the world.
In Revelation 20:12, the dead have classes. They have great and small people, rich and poor ones, CEOs and board members, healthy and sickly, and so on. In the kingdom of Christ, there is no division or differentiation, we are all the same or equal. We are one in Christ, and all of us are brothers and sisters, Christ being our elder brother. Aside the ministries given which define our callings, there are no leaders and/or members.
From Matthew 22:32, we know that God is not the God of the dead i.e. those who are not in Christ. He is the God of all those who – have – believed in Christ including Abraham, Isaac and Jacob. How do I know this? When Christ died, he went into hell, specifically into Abraham’s bosom and redeemed all the saints to Paradise. So, the Lord God Almighty is not the God of the dead; He is the God of the living, even Christ (cp. 1 Corinthians 15:28-29).
The dead have no place in the new heaven and earth as Revelation 20:13 relays. Their portion is the judgment of fire. We can say many things about the dead. The dead are blind and cannot see, they are entangled with worldly affairs and not the things of God, they are damned to hell because they do not have the Spirit of God, and they are ruled by the king of darkness.
The doctrine of the dead is such a simple doctrine that it does not require any degree in theology. If you haven’t received Christ Jesus into your life, know that you are dead even though you may be breathing air through your lungs. Those who have received Christ and have been baptized in his name will live forever, though they may pass away from this earth. God bless you.