Sunday, May 13, 2007

The Way Death Comes . . .

People have died in peculiar- almost unbelievable- ways.

Harold Lee Duncan was mowing his lawn. His wife and two children were watching. Suddenly, Duncan grabbed his left side, walked a few steps, staggered, collapsed, and then died. A half inch piece of wire, no bigger than the lead of a pencil, had been flicked into his heart by the blades of the power mower he was using. His death was sudden.

A twenty four year old newspaper reporter, Jost Lehmann, put a bottle on top of his head and asked another man to shoot it off. J. Poetschke took aim with a .38 calibre revolver, pulled the trigger and missed. The bullet penetrated the head of Jost Lehmann. He died on the spot and the "William Tell" episode ended in tragedy.

A young girl named Theresa Conn, was playing hide and seek with her dog. She hid a ball on the table and waited for her dog to find it. The large collie dog jumped up on the table to get the ball. In doing so, the steel table was upset and crashed on Theresa's head. She was pronounced dead on arrival at hospital. The dog had unwittingly killed her.

Carlos Umbros was fishing in Pampanga, in the Philippines. Police reported that he opened his mouth to yawn. A fish jumped in and became stuck in his throat. He choked to death before it could be pulled out.

Mario Clana entered a funeral parlour and saw a man rise with a satisfied smile from a coffin. He died of shock. Pedro Fernandez, the owner of the parlour had been measuring the coffin for a client about his own size. The shock of what he thought he saw was too much for Mario Cianca.

People have died in different and amazing ways. But the most important things to consider is, "Were they ready?" How they died is not so important, but they should have been ready. Death- with one's boots on or off- is final. To be ready is all important.

Goliath died, being hit by stone; he was not ready for death. He had defied the God of Israel. "The stone sunk into his forehead; and he fell upon his face to the earth" (1 Sam. 17:49).

Stones also caused the death of Stephen, but he was ready. He had glorified the name of Jesus by his outstanding witness. When the stones struck his body, his face shone as the face if an angel. "They stoned Stephen, calling upon God and saying, calling upon God and saying, 'Lord Jesus, receive my spirit' " (Acts 7:59).

King Saul of the Old Testament was not ready either. He had disobeyed the Word of God. Samuel told him, "To obey is better than sacrifice, and to hearken than the fat of rams... Because you have rejected the Word of the Lord, he has also rejected you" (1 Sam. 15:22, 23). "Saul took a sword, and fell upon it" (1 Sam. 31:4).

Saul of Tarsus died by a sword too, but he was ready when he bent his head at word of the executioner. His testimony was, "I am now ready to be offered, and the time of my departure is at hand. I have fought a good fight, I have finished my course, I have kept the faith" (2 Tim. 4:6,7).

When death comes your way, friend, what matters how you die? Wire, bullet, dog, fish, shock, stone or sword will make no difference. The big question is: Where will you be in eternity? God's solemn word is: "It is appointed unto men once to die, but after this the judgment" (Heb. 9:27).

He further says, "Come now, and let us reason together, saith the Lord: though your sins be as scarlet, they shall be as white as snow; though they be red like crimson, they shall be as wool" (Isa. 1:18).

Believe on the Lord Jesus Christ and thou shalt be saved (Acts 16:31).

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