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Thursday, January 7, 2010

Accurate weather forecast

 
"Accurate Forecasts"

As I write, our area is under a winter weather advisory.  Forecasters
are calling for bitterly cold temperatures and snow that could
accumulate up to three inches in the valleys, more in the higher
elevations.  Note that key word, "could".  Having seen such
predictions of the past come and go without fulfillment, I have
learned to view such warnings as less than certain.

Three weeks ago the forecasts proved accurate.  A day before the event
the weather folks were talking of a snowfall that could prove to be
significant.  When the storm passed, we had about six inches of snow
at our house.  Other areas nearby received much more.  But I could
also tell of many other instances where forecasts came up totally
empty.

Niels Bohr was a Danish physicist who won the 1922 Nobel Prize in
Physics for his work in atomic structure and quantum mechanics.  He
once made a profound observation about prognosticating: "Prediction is
very difficult, especially if it's about the future."  (Of course, if
your statement concerns events already past it doesn't qualify for
that label "prediction".)  There are just too many variables with any
situation to enable us to know what will come to pass in the days (or
even hours) ahead.

The Bible doesn't shy away from making predictions of the future.
Psalm 22, for example, spoke of a person who would be tormented by his
enemies.  "For dogs have surrounded Me; the congregation of the wicked
has enclosed Me.  They pierced My hands and My feet; I can count all
My bones.  They look and stare at Me.  They divide My garments among
them, and for My clothing they cast lots" (Psalm 22:16-18). 

Pierced hands and feet?  Gambling over another's clothing?  What an
odd set of predictions!  Who would ever expect such things to actually
come true?  Yet those who read Matthew's account of the crucifixion of
Jesus find exact fulfillment of the psalmist's forecast (Matthew
27:35-44).  Things which one would never expect to be done to the
Messiah were predicted in accurate detail hundreds of years before the
fact.  And there are many such examples found in the Bible.

Would it surprise you to learn that forecasts have also been made
about you and me?  The Bible, without naming us, speaks of things that
will certainly come to pass.  Here's an example: "And as it is
appointed for men to die once, but after this the judgment ..."
(Hebrews 9:27).  In my youth I felt fairly invincible.  As my body
ages, though, I realize that this prediction will one day be
fulfilled.  And the fulfillment might come earlier than I expect.

Jesus gave us another glimpse of what will happen in the future: "Do
not marvel at this; for the hour is coming in which all who are in the
graves will hear [Jesus'] voice and come forth - those who have done
good, to the resurrection of life, and those who have done evil, to
the resurrection of condemnation" (John 5:28,29).  Death will come to
each of us, but it will not hold us forever.

Human predictions are notoriously inaccurate.  But those forecasts of
the future found in God's word can be taken to the bank.  If God says
it, it's as good as done.  And wise are those who take time to find
out what the Lord has said (see Matthew 7:24-27).

Come to the light God offers!  Study His word, the Bible.  Worship Him
in spirit and truth (John 4:24).  Get in touch with us if you'd like
to discuss these ideas further.
 
--Timothy D. Hall

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