Monday, April 24, 2006

When it's your time to go...

So, this guy is apparently just sitting in a house off in the foothills of the Sierra -- when the foundation collapses, the ground opens up, he's swallowed up and killed. No lie -- just like that. Shocking, sad.

Clyde Cook, the president of Biola University, had a sermon he preached from time to time, the point of which (as I recall) was "no man knows his hour." He began it by relating a series of odd deaths -- like being hit by a part that fell off a passing jet, and the like. He collected clippings to use as his opening illustrations.

No doubt this would go on that list.

It does make a couple of points rather effectively.
  1. Death seldom asks permission of those it visits.
  2. Though it may do so (so to speak -- avoidable deaths is what I have in mind), there is no guarantee that it will.
  3. When God wants you dead, you'll die (cf. 1 Kings 22:34, and context).
  4. God can be creative in how He causes your death (compare Deuteronomy 19:5 with Exodus 21:15).
  5. If you aren't already prepared to die, you're a fool (Ecclesiastes 3:19; 9:4-5). Best to stop.
  6. If your "escape plan" is to carry off a death-bed conversion, then you're the worst kind of barking, drooling, foam-flecked, white-eyed, ankle-biting fool. What, fool -- you think a sign is going to appear in the air in front of you, helpfully noting, "You will die in five minutes. Commence last-minute saving repentance in three... two... one...." No one is guaranteed a bed, nor an opportunity to repent beyond the one he has at this very moment.
  7. If you're a Christian who feels he's outlived his usefulness, don't. If God wanted you dead, you'd be dead. Count on it. If you're alive, God has a purpose for you.
  8. Now is the best -- indeed, the only -- time to prepare. You know -- "Let's see: clothes, wallet, cell phone, lunch money, being-prepared-to-die-at-any-moment... being-prepared-to-die-at-any-moment??!" D'oh!"

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