by J. Randal Matheny, editor
Last Friday, Cliff May started his article, “Future Shockwave,” this way:
“If you don’t live in Washington, New York, or another big city, you may think: ‘Even if the terrorists do strike again on American soil, my hometown and my family probably aren’t in danger.'”
Won’t happen to me. I’ll let New York go down the tubes, but I’ll be OK.
Human nature thinks it will happen to the other guy, or it will happen sometime down the road, so I don’t have to worry about it.
People get killed, maimed and mangled on the streets and highways every day, but plenty of souls refuse to wear seat belts and drive carelessly because they tell themselves, “It won’t happen to me.”
Drugs burn out users’ brains, and alcohol robs life from millions, but people keep drugging and drinking, because they tell themselves, “It won’t happen to me.”
Singles and marrieds have sex with multiple partners and never dream of getting a disease from their immorality, because they tell themselves, “It won’t happen to me.”
Good king Hezekiah got his life extended by 15 years and bungled when he showed the Babylonians all his treasures. When Isaiah told him his wealth would be carried away to Babylon and his descendants would be made eunuchs, he thought, “At least there will be peace and stability during my lifetime” (2 Kings 20:19 NET).
Even good guys can think it won’t happen to them.
Israel had suffered from Babylon’s incursions, exiles lived far from their homes and Ezekiel still spoke of more judgment to come from God’s hand. But they thought, “Ah, this is too far ahead to think about.”
“The word of the Lord came to me: ‘Take note, son of man, the house of Israel is saying, “The vision that he sees is for distant days; he is prophesying about the far future.” Therefore say to them, “This is what the sovereign Lord says: None of my words will be delayed any longer! The word I speak will come to pass, declares the sovereign Lord”‘” (Ezekiel 12:26-28).
A rich man had his portfolio stuffed with stocks and futures, so he decided to retire and live the good life. Death? Won’t happen to me!
“But God said to him, ‘You fool! This very night your life will be demanded back from you, but who will get what you have prepared for yourself?’ So it is with the one who stores up riches for himself, but is not rich toward God” (Luke 12:20-21).
I mustn’t tell myself it won’t happen to me. If the Israelites of Ezekiel’s day and the rich fool are any indication, the Lord may MAKE it happen to me for payback for my foolishness and arrogance.
The worst spot to think this is about my soul.
I can lose it before I blink. So I must be prepared. Every minute. Every place.
Here’s my paraphrase of an apostle.
“Don’t let your salvation slip between your fingers. God said, ‘I heard you in the nick of time, I helped you when it really mattered. Salvation Day.’ When is that day for you? It’s right now. Today. This very minute. Act now. Get right with God.”
Now go read 2 Corinthians 6:1-2.