15 December 2017

Be Sure of Your Facts

Given the level of national interest, I think it safe to say that, even the dogs in the street by now know that Titanic sank because it hit an iceberg. Many people realise that 1503 people lost their lives as a consequence. Certain individuals will be able to tell you that it happened at 11:40pm on the 14th of April 1912, but other than that most of us know very little of the events that day. Those who do, have been labelled Titanoraks, from the term anorak, slang for ‘a person with a very strong interest in niche subjects.’

Titanoraks know, for example, that the Captain cancelled a lifeboat drill the same day as the disaster. Many believe that had the drill taken place, more lives could have been saved. Were you aware that there were insufficient lifeboats to save everyone on board; only capacity for 1178 was available, yet even more tragically, most of the lifeboats that were launched were not filled, hence only 705 people survived. Lifeboat 7 carried only 24 people but had room for 65, and worse still, Lifeboat 1, had on board only seven crew and five passengers, despite having a capacity of 40. A further little known fact was that the ship which was closest to the Titanic at the time of the disaster did not respond to Titanic’s pleas for help. Had it done so many more lives could have been saved. This happened because the ship’s wireless operator had already gone to bed, and when some crew members saw mysterious lights in the sky, which were distress flares sent up from Titanic, and woke the Captain to tell him, he issued no orders. A catalogue of lost opportunities, but for me the biggest tragedy of all was that there were 6 ice warnings received by Titanic on the day of the collision but they were all ignored by the wireless operator because he was too preoccupied transmitting passenger messages.

Warning ignored because of business, could that be your epitaph, or mine? Is God trying to get a message of impending danger through to you, but you are choosing to ignore it? Could a visit to church be the lifeboat drill you’re missing? Or have you failed to provide a lifeboat at all? Perhaps you have seen the distress flares of those around you, but you have gone to sleep, and even when awakened, choose to take no action.

They said Titanic was unsinkable. Was that tempting fate? No, for there is no such thing. It may have been imprudent, but I think those who constructed Titanic believed it to be true, but therein lies the rub. The fact that the builders earnestly believed it to be true did not make it true, yet their belief remained strong until that terrible day 100 years ago, when a tragic set of circumstances, showed it to be false.

What do we believe to be true that may one day be proven to be false, and could it have the same disastrous consequences as it did for the souls lost on Titanic? For some it may be their belief that there is no God. The Bible says that everything around us points clearly to God’s existence. For others it may be their belief that God will accept them because they have always tried to be good and never done anyone any harm. Unfortunately believing that won’t make it true. God has clearly stated that we do not get to heaven by our actions, but by trusting in what Jesus has done for us.

Believing you’ll get to heaven won’t get you there; your faith has to be in an object. Those who wished to go to America did not just believe they could get there on their own; they placed their trust in the Titanic to carry them across the Atlantic. Unfortunately that trust was misplaced, and if you are trusting in anything other than the sacrificial death and resurrection of Jesus to get you to heaven, then you too will be lost as were so many of the passengers that fearful night.

To find out how you can be sure of your passage to heaven, visit our website at www.rejoicealways.org, or if you would like to speak to someone about the Christian faith, phone our office and we would
be delighted to talk with you.