On today’s Bible Answer Man broadcast (09/14/18), Hank addresses Hurricane Florence, which is currently causing massive flooding and destruction in the Carolinas. Americans have long considered their country impervious to natural disasters so common in the rest of the world. We see the suffering of people in third world countries and somehow think that here in America things are different. We live in a civilization that believes in natural and moral evil from an intellectual perspective, but think that it could never happen to us. That was precisely the condition of a man described by Jesus in Luke 16. One day he lived in pampered luxury—the next he found himself in a tragic condition that trumps a natural disaster. While we may wake up to devastation in the aftermath of Florence, he woke up to a far more horrific reality—the reality of eternal conscious torment in hell. Too late he perceived the unbridgeable chasm between heaven and hell. Too late he supposed that he should have been a witness to his brothers. Too late he postponed repentance.
It is our prayer that images of devastation will arouse us from our lethargy and engage us to give water and food to those in need and to use the testimony of our love and of our lives as an ultimate witness which will lead us to give them the bread and the water of life so that they may truly never hunger and thirst again. The worst thing that can happen is not to die in the waters of a flood or in a hurricane or in any other human tragedy. The worst thing that can happen is to live a long, robust life and then to forever be separated from the love and grace of the one that knit you together in your mother’s womb. Ultimately we cannot rightly cope with disasters, disease, and our own eventual deaths apart from an eternal perspective.