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CRISIS CONVERSION!
DEAD! QUICKENED! RAISED!

by Dr. R. L. Hymers, Jr.

A sermon preached on Lord’s Day Morning, January 28, 2007
at the Baptist Tabernacle of Los Angeles

“Even when we were dead in sins, hath quickened us together with Christ, (by grace ye are saved;) And hath raised us up together, and made us sit together in heavenly places in Christ Jesus” (Ephesians 2:5-6).


The first nine verses of Ephesians chapter two are, I believe, the clearest in the Bible on the subject of salvation by grace through our Lord Jesus Christ. The core message of this passage is found in our text, in verses five and six. Three words stand out in this text: “dead,” “quickened,” and “raised.”

I. First, you are dead in sins.

The text says,

“Even when we were dead in sins…” (Ephesians 2:5).

That is the state of every unconverted person – “dead in sins.” It does not mean that your body is dead. It is not. It does not mean that your mind is dead. It is not. You can think with your mind, and decide to come to church. You can move your body out of bed on Sunday morning and come to church. You are capable of those mental and fleshly exercises. You can pick up the song sheet and sing the hymns. You can open the Bible and read the words. You can learn the plan of salvation and repeat it when the pastor asks you to do so. You can say the words of a prayer. But there is no life in your religion. It is all just the dead works of your mind and body. There is no life in your Christianity, just dead words and dead works, no life or power in your religion at all.

Why is that? It is because you are dead in your spirit, “dead in trespasses and sins” (Ephesians 2:1). The Apostle Paul spoke of the deadness of your spiritual understanding when he said,

“The natural man receiveth not the things of the Spirit of God: for they are foolishness unto him: neither can he know them, because they are spiritually discerned” (I Corinthians 2:14).

In this state of spiritual death you can only come to church out of habit, or for human friendships, or out of superstition, thinking that things will be better if you come to church, and worse for you if you don’t. All of these reasons for coming to church rise out of your carnal, dead heart. And your heart is “dead in sins” (Ephesians 2:5). Without the movement of God within you, you will continue in this dead condition until you die, and then you will experience eternal death in Hell. The power and grace of God must impart life to your dead soul or you will continue to be spiritually dead in God’s sight,

“Having the understanding darkened, being alienated from the life of God through the ignorance that is in them, because of the blindness of their heart” (Ephesians 4:18).

In this spiritual state of death, you may occasionally pray, but your prayers will have no life in them. Think, man, could you stand and pray with the power and authority of God on your lips, and throw yourself into mighty prayer – as you have heard the deacons and the men in our church pray in the prayer meetings? Could you pray with zeal as they do? And if you say, “no,” then why do you think that is so? Why, it is because you are still “dead in sins,” that is why (Ephesians 2:5)! And yet it is not because you haven’t been in the church long enough to learn to pray as they do! Not at all! Some very young Christians, new to the faith, can pray quite well in the prayer meetings. But you would not dare to pray like them, would you? And I say that you would not even dare to pray as strongly and confidently as they do. You would be afraid to even try. Now, ask yourself why that is so. I think you know the answer: you simply don’t have the life and power of God within you, and so you couldn’t pray like them even if you tried. You could not pray with their zeal and passion simply because you are “dead in sins” (Ephesians 2:5).

Prayer is a spiritual thing, and those who are “dead in sins” cannot do it with any zeal or godly power until the dead condition of their hearts is made alive by a true conversion in Christ Jesus.

And so it is with your “testimony” as well. There are many in our church who could give wonderful testimonies of salvation through the Blood and righteousness of Christ. They could speak for ten minutes or more on the wonderful effects of the Blood and righteousness of Christ, on the way He saved them, and what a great change He brought about in their hearts. But you could not give such a Christ-exalting testimony. All you could do would be to say a few faltering words about yourself, but little if anything about what Christ has done for you, and what Christ means to you! You cannot testify of the love and sweet mercy of Christ simply because you are “dead in sins” and, thus, have no real words to say about the love and saving power of the Lord Jesus Christ.

Now, aren’t those things true of you? And if you admit that they are true of you, then I beg you to consider that you have never been born again, that you have never truly been converted, that you are in “a far country,” as was the Prodigal Son in Luke 15. And so the Prodigal Son’s father said, “My son was dead” (Luke 15:24).

There is only one medicine that can bring you to life – and of that medicine I will speak next.

II. Second, you must be quickened.

Our text says,

“Even when we were dead in sins, [God] hath quickened us together with Christ” (Ephesians 2:5).

The Greek word translated “quickened” is “suzoopoieo.” It means “to make alive.” God must make you come to life spiritually by a sudden conversion or you will continue to be “dead in sins.”

Now that “quickening,” that “making alive” of a spiritually dead sinner, comes about in a particular way, and only in that way. It doesn’t come by learning the plan of salvation or by saying a “sinner’s prayer,” or by attending church services, or by going again and again into the inquiry room to be counselled by the deacons after the sermon.

The quickening begins when God dries up your false hopes of salvation and shows you how dead you are spiritually. The prophet Isaiah gave a perfect description of the withering work of the Holy Spirit in a dead sinner’s heart when he said,

“The grass withereth, the flower fadeth: because the spirit of the Lord bloweth upon it: surely the people is grass” (Isaiah 40:7).

The people are the grass. The Spirit of God blows like a hot wind on the grass, and it withers, shrivels, dries up, and dies. That is what Spurgeon called “the withering work of God’s Spirit.” The Spirit of God comes blowing down like a hot wind from the desert that dries out the grass and flowers in the yard, and withers them until they die. The prophet Isaiah said, “Surely the people is grass.” He means that dead sinners must have all their false hopes, and all their false ideas shriveled, dried up, withered and killed, “because the Spirit of God bloweth upon it.”

I think that is happening to some of you that we have been talking with in the inquiry room after the services. You have many false thoughts about how to be converted. But God must blow on them with the hot breath of His Spirit; He must shrivel them up, dry them out, and kill these false thoughts by the withering blast of His Spirit upon your mind and heart. Only when all of your false ideas about salvation have been blown away by the hot blast of God’s Spirit will you see clearly that you are “dead in sins” (Ephesians 2:5). That is the first thing the Holy Spirit does as He begins to “quicken,” to “make alive,” a dead soul. He must blast your false ideas away, wither them and kill them, with the hot wind of the Holy Spirit. Only when this work is done will the spiritually dead sinner be ready for the second work of quickening.

The second work of quickening is to show you your need for Jesus Christ and Him alone. When your false ideas and foolish thoughts about salvation have been dried up and thus killed by the hot breath of God’s Spirit, then, and only then, are you ready for Him to draw you to Christ, the fountain of life! After the Holy Spirit withers and kills your false ideas of salvation, and you stand before Christ without hope of any kind apart from Jesus, then the Holy Spirit says to your heart,

Come, ye sinners, poor and wretched,
   Weak and wounded, sick and sore;
Jesus ready stands to save you,
   Full of pity, joined with power.

Let’s stand and sing that good old hymn. It is number 4 on your song sheet.

Come, ye sinners, poor and wretched,
   Weak and wounded, sick and sore;
Jesus ready stands to save you,
   Full of pity, joined with power.
He is able, He is able,
   He is willing, doubt no more.
He is able, He is able,
   He is willing, doubt no more.

Let not conscience make you linger,
   Nor of fitness fondly dream;
All the fitness He requireth
   Is to feel your need of Him;
This He gives you, this He gives you,
   ‘Tis the Spirit’s rising beam;
This He gives you, this He gives you,
   ‘Tis the Spirit’s rising beam.

Come, ye weary, heavy laden,
   Bruised and broken by the fall;
If you tarry till you’re better,
   You will never come at all:
Not the righteous, not the righteous,
   Sinners Jesus came to call;
Not the righteous, not the righteous,
   Sinners Jesus came to call.

View Him prostrate in the garden,
   On the ground your Maker lies;
Then, on Calvary’s tree behold Him,
   Hear Him cry, before He dies,
“It is finished! It is finished!”
   Sinner, will not this suffice?
“It is finished! It is finished!”
   Sinner, will not this suffice?

Lo, th’incarnate God, ascended,
   Pleads the merit of His blood;
Venture on Him, venture wholly,
   Let no other trust intrude;
None but Jesus, none but Jesus,
   Can do helpless sinners good;
None but Jesus, none but Jesus,
   Can do helpless sinners good.
("Come, Ye Sinners" by Joseph Hart, 1712 - 1768). 

You may be seated.

The poor, withered, dried out, dying sinner may then come to Jesus in a crisis conversion. I say “a crisis conversion,” because all other hope has withered away and you moved to come to Jesus and find in Him the true life your soul now longs for. Then, when you come to Jesus in that crisis moment, you are fully quickened, made alive from the dead!

“Even when we were dead in sins, [God] hath quickened us together with Christ, (by grace ye are saved” (Ephesians 2:5).

But there is a third thing that happens in that moment when your dead soul is made to live.

III. Third, you must be brought to Christ –
raised by God to unite with His Son.

Please stand and read the second verse of our text, verse six.

“And hath raised us up together, and made us sit together in heavenly places in Christ Jesus” (Ephesians 2:6).

As you are quickened, God draws you to Christ. Yes, Christ is in Heaven, at God’s right hand.  When you are finally brought to see your need for Jesus, God draws you up to Him and you come to Christ, and are united with Him for,

“No man [said Jesus] can come to me, except the Father which hath sent me draw him” (John 6:44).

You may say, “Preacher, are you sure God will draw me to Christ?” Yes, I am sure He will, for He has promised to do so in the Bible. Jesus said,

“Him that cometh to me I will in no wise cast out” (John 6:37).

If you truly see that you are lost without Christ; if you see that all your ideas and hopes of how to be saved have been withered and are dead, then God will draw you to Jesus,

“And him that cometh to me I will in no wise cast out”
      (John 6:37).

I read John Bunyan’s testimony to you last night. That was true for him. I read you C. H. Spurgeon’s testimony last night. That was true for him as well. And I say to you on the authority of God’s Word, the Bible, that it will be true of you as well. Jesus said,

“Him that cometh to me I will in no wise cast out” (John 6:37).

Let us stand for prayer. Mr. Prudhomme will lead us in prayer. When he has finished praying for you, you may go to the back of the room and our deacon Dr. Cagan will show you to the inquiry room where the deacons and I will speak to you more about what I have said in this sermon. Amen.

(END OF SERMON)
You can read Dr. Hymers' sermons each week on the Internet
at www.realconversion.com. Click on "Sermon Manuscripts."


Scripture Read Before the Sermon by Dr. Kreighton L. Chan: Ephesians 2:1-9.
Solo Sung Before the Sermon by Mr. Benjamin Kincaid Griffith:
“No One Ever Cared for Me Like Jesus” (by C. F. Weigle, 1871-1966).


THE OUTLINE OF

CRISIS CONVERSION!
DEAD! QUICKENED! RAISED!

by Dr. R. L. Hymers, Jr.


“Even when we were dead in sins, hath quickened us together with Christ, (by grace ye are saved;) And hath raised us up together, and made us sit together in heavenly places in Christ Jesus” (Ephesians 2:5-6).

I.   First, you are dead in sins, Ephesians 2:5a, Ephesians 2:1;
I Corinthians 2:14; Ephesians 4:18; Luke 15:24.

II.  Second, you must be quickened, Ephesians 2:5b; Isaiah 40:7.

III. Third, you must be brought to Christ – raised by God to unite
with His Son, Ephesians 2:6; John 6:44; 6:37.