Cloudy, with a Chance of Jesus

“Then we who are alive and remain shall be caught up together at the same time with them in the clouds to meet the Lord in the air. And thus we shall always be with the Lord.”  1st Thessalonians 4:17


Everyone has seen and experienced, whether partly or fully participating in the precautionary measures placed on citizens of their respective countries around the world regarding COVID-19, governmental and medical professionals dictated measures that were both voluntary and involuntary throughout their respective states and areas of authority.  Many followed these guidance measures out of fear of contracting the virus and becoming very ill or dying from doing so. 


To this day, even in South Dakota, there are still a measure of people who continue to follow certain policies, even though they are no longer enforced or in many cases recommended.  The fear is still held in their heart regarding their longevity and well-being.  Yet where is the fear of God (Matt. 10:28)?


Late last week I noticed that the forecast had a chance for substantial snowfall in the Black Hills region of South Dakota.  Paying attention, as I must plan accordingly my work schedule, there was first a winter storm watch and finally a warning.  The snow began late Tuesday afternoon.


While both Dakotas have a well-known history of severe blizzards from time to time, nothing of that sort was being called for.  What would be considered simply a winter storm, in the era of an insurance based risk assessment from governmental weather forecast centers, was all that was forecast.  However, turning on the nightly news, there was much talk of this storm that was to come.


A lot of this was focused on preventive measures to be taken to secure oneself and one’s safety in the events that would be unfolding over the next couple of days.  (This mini article being written during the middle of this cold event.)  There was advice about picking up groceries, a pharmacy that was filling scripts early to prevent people who couldn’t get them, as well as a lot of warnings against traveling in the soon-to-be nearly impassable roads.


Don’t get me wrong, South Dakota can produce a blizzard that can hit the record books, though nothing like this was being forecasted.  For myself, with 3/4 million miles behind my belt and coming from areas such as northern Michigan and northwest Montana, six inches of snow is not going to prevent me from traveling on roads. 


On my regular weekly shopping trip, which happened to be the day before the snow storm, there was talk at the checkout of preparing for the coming storm.  In fact the woman in front of me had quite a cart full of food and non food items, of which she attested was preparation for the storm to come.  Even at the local bank, the lines were a bit longer, though it was a day after a holiday.


As I was leaving the store, I once again looked out in the largely full parking lot, shrugging off the way some South Dakotans behave regarding a bit more snow than usual, but knowing that much of the country behaves the same way regarding snow fall.  I thought of those who were still passing me in the store wearing masks, of those who were up and down the aisles picking up a couple of extra items, of these people who were following to a certain extent the warnings from local media, law enforcement, the medical industry, the local and state government and others.  My conclusion was simple:


What about the Bible’s warnings of every man needing to repent towards God and by faith believe into Jesus Christ as their Lord and Savior (Acts 20:21)?  What about the fact that by all means it appears that we are heading fast into the moment where Christ could appear ‘in the clouds’ and the Rapture would have taken place, leaving the vast majority of people Left Behind in the Tribulation (“time of Jacob’s trouble” Jer. 30:7)


“Truly, these times of ignorance God overlooked, but now commands all men everywhere to repent, because He has established a day on which He will judge the world in righteousness by the Man whom He has appointed. He has given assurance of this to everyone by raising Him from the dead.”  Acts 17:30-31


“Jesus said to him, I am the Way, the Truth, and the Life. No one comes to the Father except through Me.”  John 14:6


“Nor is there salvation in any other, for there is no other name under Heaven given among men that is required for us to be saved.”  Acts 4:12


Where are the preachers warning of such things?  Why will not the people who heed warnings for other things, also not heed warnings to things that have eternal consequences? 


Today, tomorrow or at any point in the future, there is a chance that Jesus could come and receive those who are His and the world would be thrust into the Tribulation.  Likewise there is a chance that these same people who are apt to heed warnings regarding other things, but not the things of God, could die in their sins and eventually find themselves standing before God Almighty at the Great White Throne judgment!  Beware!


“And I saw a great white throne and Him who sat on it, from whose face the earth and the heavens fled away. And there was found no place for them.  And I saw the dead, small and great, standing before God. And books were opened. And another book was opened, which is the Book of Life. And the dead were judged according to their works, out of the things which were written in the books.  And the sea gave up the dead who were in it, and Death and Hades delivered up the dead who were in them. And they were judged, each one, according to their works.  And Death and Hades were cast into the Lake of Fire. This is the second death.  And anyone not found written in the Book of Life was cast into the Lake of Fire.”  Revelation 20:11-15