Monday, August 29, 2005

Titanic

April 10,1912, the largest and most luxurious ship ever built slips her moorings in Southampton on her maiden voyage to New York. She is the RMS Titanic and this will be her only trip.

Titanic was the pride of the White Star Line and stood at the pinnacle of man’s technological accomplishments. Moreover, she was believed to be unsinkable. There were two schools of thought regarding this. One said, she is literally invincible. The other said that, though she could be sunk, any iceberg large enough to sink her would be easily seen in time to turn out of the way. Either way, in Titanic, man believed he had mastered nature itself.

I will now pause so that any Christians reading this can take a few seconds to think about this biblically, something Titanic's builders clearly never did (to me, the most appropriate biblical concept is that about building bigger barns). The night of Titanic's destruction was one of calm seas, and it is said that the spotters aloft did not even have binoculars to aid them. They did not have the aids to help their view! We have all seen in the movie that, although her crew had been warned about icebergs by other ships navigating through that region, she was traveling at near top speed of about 20.5 knots: after all, she was unsinkable.

Of course, the crew ultimately spotted the berg and came hard over; but it was much too late. She scraped the iceberg's side, the great ship shuddered, ice hit the deck. The ship glided forward as if unhurt. Children played in the ice, all seemed peaceful: was it possible all was well after all, that the ship was as unsinkable as had been claimed?

The men below decks knew better: invisible from above, the ship had been struck a fatal blow. As all sailors know, it is the ice below the water line, the ice beneath that which can be seen, which does the most damage. The foundational ice, the heart, the core of the berg sinks ships, not what can be seen or what falls on the deck. The visible ice is but a warning of the hidden danger. And so it proved that night.

In less than three hours, Titanic plunged to the bottom, her pumps barely buying time. She took 1500 souls with her. The world was stunned. And it would be 73 years before human eyes looked upon her again.

Like the crewman tasked with watching for icebergs, we as Christians are tasked by God to discern the times in which we live and act as the watchman, crying out a warning to all who will listen and taking appropriate steps to avoid or neutralize the danger. We have been fairly good at spotting many visible parts of our spiritual icebergs: evolutionary teaching, pro-abortion court rulings, confiscatory taxation, God's removal from our schools and public places. We picket, we vote for Christians, we pray.

But all too often we fail to regard the philosophical underpinnings or world and life views which prevail all around us. We fail to remember that it's what's beneath that tip of the iceberg, whether physical or spiritual, which does the real damage in our lives. We must attack the core beliefs, of the worldview that began with these words “hath God said?"

The first step in this battle is to understand the two pillars of the Christian faith: (1) "in the beginning God", and (2) "thy word is truth", total truth for all of life. The battle must first be won in our own hearts. We must develop an all-encompassing worldview that addresses every aspect of the creation.

All was lost in the first Adam; all is being restored in the second. Pray that God might help us develop spiritual binoculars -- employing the lenses of His Word and focused by His Spirit -- which allow us to see the whole iceberg; and when we do, to humbly share that knowledge with our other crewmembers.

May God bless,
Shawn

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