Speaking of Excrement And Fans. . .
Vol: 127 Issue: 19 Thursday, April 19, 2012
Our recent column on “Doomsday Preppers” has sparked something of a debate about whether or not Christians should be prepping for what is coming our way, or if making preparations in some way betrays a lack of faith.
It also appears to have given the impression that I come down on the side of those that believe making preparations demonstrates a lack of faith, so let me address that first.
“But if any provide not for his own, and specially for those of his own house, he hath denied the faith, and is worse than an infidel.” (1 Timothy 5:8)
It is not a lack of faith to make provision for one’s family. Quite the opposite. The Scripture mandates it. Paul characterizes the failure to provide for one’s family as a denial of the faith. This means more than providing a home and daily bread, or paying child support.
“Husbands, love your wives, even as Christ also loved the church, and gave Himself for it. . .” (Ephesians 5:25)
What does Paul mean by, He “gave Himself for it”? Obviously, the Lord died for the Church when He died for the sins of the world. But the Lord didn’t just die for the Church, He lived for it.
He spent His every waking moment providing for His Church, nurturing, teaching, feeding and preparing them for what was to come upon them, as well as preparing us for what is to come upon us.
His death was only part of how He provided for us.
“For if, when we were enemies, we were reconciled to God by the death of his Son, much more, being reconciled, we shall be saved by His life.” (Romans 5:10)
To provide for His Church, He lived, died and rose again. We are commanded to emulate Christ when providing for our families and to do less makes one “worse than an infidel.”
So let me make this point clearly before moving on: I believe we should prepare for the coming storm with all the resources at our disposal. It is not evidence of a lack of faith. Any more than laying down in the middle of a freeway at rush hour is a demonstration of faith.
I have faith that the Lord will return for me before the onset of the Tribulation Period, but I have no reason to believe that, (to quote the New York Times’ reference) the event involving excrement and a fan won’t happen until after the Rapture.
I have made my own “bug-out” plans in the event it becomes necessary. We are also stockpiling food and other necessary supplies, just in case. Plus a whole lot of other measures that I’d rather not put into print.
But my plan is limited to surviving until the Rapture.
The Bible predicts the Rapture will take place before the antichrist takes the reins of government, (2nd Thessalonians 2:7-8) but nowhere can I find where the Rapture takes place before anything bad happens.
Just that the Rapture happens before that one, specific bad event takes place.
“And I saw when the Lamb opened one of the seals, and I heard, as it were the noise of thunder, one of the four beasts saying, Come and see. And I saw, and behold a white horse: and he that sat on him had a bow; and a crown was given unto him: and he went forth conquering, and to conquer. “(Revelation 6:1-2)
There is no reference to any nation resembling the United States during the Tribulation Period. Given the state of national affairs under Obama, there is almost no nation resembling the United States right now.
No wonder there are reality shows like “Doomsday Preppers.” But being fearful doesn’t equate with being faithless.
Fear is a natural, God-given emotion, and is one of mankind’s most basic survival tools. Pain hurts, so that we fear it, and therefore, we are careful not to damage ourselves.
It is the fear of pain that makes us run from danger, preserving our lives. Without fear, few of us would survive to adulthood.
The Bible doesn’t tell us not to fear so much as it teaches us how to redirect our fear. Jesus said to fear not those who can destroy the body, but rather to fear Him Who can destroy the soul.
“Yea, though I walk through the valley of the shadow of death, I will fear no evil: for Thou art with me; Thy rod and Thy staff they comfort me.” (Psalms 23:4)
“Therefore will not we fear, though the earth be removed, and though the mountains be carried into the midst of the sea . . .” (Psalms 46:2)
“In God I will praise His word, in God I have put my trust; I will not fear what flesh can do unto me.” (Psalms 56:4)
So, if scary news scares us, does that mean that we are faithless Christians? No. There is a difference between being scared from time to time and living in fear.
“Sudden fear” comes upon us all, saved and unsaved alike. Don’t let it worry you. It’s part of our existence in this world. We all get scared. We may not be of this world, but we are in it.
“Be not afraid of sudden fear, neither of the desolation of the wicked, when it cometh. For the LORD shall be thy confidence, and shall keep thy foot from being taken.” (Proverbs 3:25-26)
What is the purpose for Bible prophecy if not to give the warning to prepare for what is to come?
“For when these things begin to come to pass, then look up, and lift up your heads; for your redemption draweth nigh.” (Luke 21:28)
The things the Lord is referring to are the same things that Doomsday preppers are making preparations for. That’s the bad part.
But these events also mean that the Lord is also making preparations to return for His Church. That’s the good part.
“Wherefore comfort one another with these words.” (1 Thessalonians 4:18)