June 10, 2017
Proverbs 3:25-26 - Do not be afraid of sudden terror or of the ruin of the wicked, when it comes, for the LORD will be your confidence and will keep your foot from being caught.
Most Midwesterners are used to hearing public service announcements on radio and TV. Usually those messages concern a thunderstorm, extreme winds, or even a tornado.
Never have I seen an alert like the one that was sent to Cumberland and Salem counties in New Jersey a few weeks ago. For a moment, imagine you were unwinding at home after a day at work and this notice flashed on the television screen:
• A Civil authority has issued a Nuclear Power Plant Warning for the following counties/areas: Cumberland, Salem, NJ at 8:54 p.m. on May 23, 2017. Effective until 9:54 p.m. Message from NJ0-01.
My question is what would you do?
Some people I've asked said, "I'd check to see if the warning was legitimate." Then they thought and said, "No, that's a waste of time. I'd get in the car and go, and as I went I would call and warn everyone I knew."
A few folks said they would collect their valuables and then go to the car.
When I asked, "What would you take?" they replied, "I'd have to think about that for a bit." They quickly concluded, "No, that's a waste of time, I'd get in the car and go, and I'd call and warn everybody I knew."
The last group of replies came from folks who had lived through more than one great tragedy. They said, "I'd call up everybody I know, tell them what was happening, and then I'd apologize for wrongs I'd done in the past and say thanks for friendships shared."
So, what would you do?
Well, the New Jersey folks near the Salem/Hope Creek nuclear facility didn't have to do anything. It seems the police were conducting a "worst-case scenario drill," and a practice alert made it into the Emergency Broadcast System.
You've heard what people would do in a disaster situation. Now what would you do if this showed up on your TV screen:
• The Lord has issued an "I'm here" statement for the following counties/areas: all counties/all countries. The statement was issued a moment ago and is effective until ... well, forever. Message from Heaven #1.
The truth is on Judgment Day there will be no such warning. The Lord won't be here -- and then He will be here. Period. But suppose, just suppose, He gave you a short notice, a warning. What would you do then?
No point in checking out the validity of the announcement; no point in gathering together your valuables. The only sensible thing to do would be to warn everybody you know. And what would you say? There would be only one thing to say: Jesus Christ is the Savior of the world. He has carried your sins and mine. Now, while there is still time, believe on the Christ who has done everything necessary to save you.
Which leads me to suggest that since you won't have time to give that warning on Judgment Day, why not deliver it now?
THE PRAYER: Dear Lord, I give thanks -- that by the Holy Spirit's warning -- I am safe for the coming of the Last Day. While there is still time, bless and be with us so that Your words of warning may be heard by all those who, this day, remain lost. In Jesus' Name. Amen.
The above devotion was inspired by a number of sources, including one written by Michael Harthorne for Newser on May 24, 2017. Those who wish to reference that article may do so at the following link, which was fully functional at the time this devotion was written. Please click here
Pastor Ken Klaus
Speaker emeritus of The Lutheran Hour®
Lutheran Hour Ministries