Paul says I die daily. Since the life we are called to live in Christ is a resurrection life, our death is something that is not just implied; it is a prerequisite. God is looking for those who although they are not really dead, they are as good as dead; for in that state, although they are not perfect, they are as good a perfect to God in Christ. Just like Abraham didn’t really kill Isaac for Isaac’s death to be considered a real death, when Abraham was called to sacrifice him; Isaac was considered as good as dead. In this way Isaac is very much like his parents who themselves were as good as dead. When Abraham and Sarah conceived Isaac, they were as good as dead. So often we boast of having the Faith of Abraham, and yet not understand the faith of Abraham.
The scripture says of Abraham and Sarah, they were as good as dead: (Through faith also Sara herself received strength to conceive seed, and was delivered of a child when she was past childbearing age , because she considered God to be faithful who had promised . 12 Therefore sprang there even of one, and him as good as dead , so many as the stars of the sky in multitude, and as the sand which is by the sea-shore innumerable). One of the most revealing statements as to the faith of Abraham, makes clear his reasoning when facing the greatest challenge of his life…..obey God’s request to offer Isaac the only son he had in his old age as a sacrifice, which involved cutting Isaac’s throat like a sheep on a stone altar. Scripture reveals that Abraham’s reasoning at that point was: that it was from the dead that he received Isaac in the first place, so God would have to bring Isaac back from the dead in order to be true to his word saying that, in Isaac is the lineage of Christ “the seed” to continue; and God who promised cannot lie. Therefore even if he were to kill Isaac, God would have to raise him up from the dead; Not a problem.
Most of the problem we encounter walking with God is not realizing that the things he promises us, lie in the valley of the shadow of death. The process of obtaining them calls for our deaths, where we cease from the ways of man that we are acquainted with from birth, like the way Abraham had to leave the familiar country, and culture of his birth to obtain the promise. Paul speaks of that process in his experience; he said we were pressed out of measure (the measure of man’s capacity), and above the strength of man’s endurance until he relinquished any hope of his life continuing into the next moment. He considered himself as good as dead. In certain instances he was actually stoned and left for dead. When we reach to the end of our human extremities God usually shows up to begin a new resurrection life. Scripture says we are the circumcision who rejoice in Christ Jesus, and have no confidence in the flesh. In order to have the ways of God become our ways we have to be as good as dead to be as good as perfect; no more we who live, but Christ who lives in us.