OceanSide church of Christ
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HURRICANES, TYPHOONS, CYCLONES, AND FINAL JUDGMENT
Victor M. Eskew
time of this writing, Hurricane Gustav has made landfall in
These types of storms have often been referred to as “acts of God.” They are so-called because they are out of the control of man. The phrase, “acts of God,” is deceiving. It indicates that God creates these storms, directs their paths, and intentionally causes them to crash into the coastlines causing great damage and loss of life. In reality, these storms are caused by our climate and atmosphere. They are believed to provide balance within nature. Occasionally, they do cross paths with men. Their great strength can, and does, bring destruction and death at times.
Due to the constant media attention given to these storms, this writer has given much thought to them. It occurred that these hurricanes can be likened unto an event that is an act of God, the final judgment. Atop Mars’ Hill, Paul boldly proclaimed: “Because he (God) hath appointed a day, in the which he will judge the world in righteousness by that man whom he hath ordained; whereof he hath given assurance unto all men, in that he hath raised him from the dead” (Acts 17:31). Let’s look at some of the comparisons that can be made between hurricanes, typhoons, cyclones, and final judgment.
First, both of them are predictable events. The invention of satellites and radars
has enabled meteorologists to have the ability to track these monster storms
called hurricanes. They spot them
developing in the
Second, both events should be events for which one is prepared. When news of a hurricane’s impending landfall is issued, most people begin to prepare. Water, food, and batteries are purchased in bulk. Boats, trailers, and lawn furniture are either secured or stored away. Windows and doors are covered with shutters or with plywood. Many prepare by leaving the disaster area. They spend a few days with friends, or family, or in a hurricane shelter. Those who take such precautions are thought to be extremely wise. Judgment is also an event for which one should be prepared. Not one person is going to escape that day. “So then every one of us shall give account of himself to God” (Rom. 14:12). Several times Jesus issued forth the command to watch. “Watch therefore: for ye know not what hour your Lord doth come” (Matt. 24:42). And again: “Watch therefore, for ye know neither the day nor the hour when the Son of man cometh” (Matt. 25:13). The word “watch” does not mean to constantly be looking into the sky for the coming Lord. It means to prepare, to get ready. Sandwiched between the two verses just mentioned is the “Parable of the Ten Virgins.” These ten virgins went out to meet the bridegroom. Five of them took their lamps and extra oil; five failed to take the extra oil. When the cry was made that the bridegroom was approaching, it happened that the lights of the five foolish virgins had gone out. Having no oil to fill their lamps, they went to buy more. “And while they went to buy, the bridegroom came; and they that were ready went in with him to the marriage: and the door was shut. Afterward came also the other virgins, saying, Lord, Lord, open to us. But he answered and said, Verily I say unto you, I know you not” (Matt. 25:10-12). Note that those who were ready, went in. Preparation is the key. The Lord is coming to judge all nations. Now is the time to prepare.
Third, both hurricanes and final judgment involve matters of life and
death. There have been numerous
hurricanes that have brought death to hundreds of people. Gustav was responsible for several
deaths on the