Posted in theology

Our Days are Numbered

By Elizabeth Prata

*I heard an Adrian Rogers sermon several years ago that stayed with me. He talked about how people delay their decision for or against Jesus, thinking they have lots of time to go into that. Rogers shared several deaths that were unexpected, sudden, and odd that shows we don’t have the time we think we do. One was when a man was lawnmowing and ran over a nail, which the mower threw up and it went into his heart. The other was a woman walking by a building at the same time a person sitting on the edge of the sill nudged a plant pot and it fell out the window onto her head. His point was, decide now, today, what you will believe.

There have beem some equally odd deaths I’ve read about that brought his sermon to mind again. Isolated, freak accidents, they are called. But the person involved in them winds up just as dead as if the death was expected.

Grief spreads far and wide for hunting guide killed in accident near Faribault
On Sunday southwest of Faribault, a motorist who lives nearby agreed to be Pineur’s good Samaritan and attached a strap to the two vehicles intending to pull the pickup from the ditch. However, the hitch broke on Tyler Nusbaum’s vehicle and part of it went hurtling toward Pineur’s pickup. The piece went through the windows of the camper top and the back of the pickup, and it hit Pineur in the back of the head, the Sheriff’s Office said.

Rock Thrown From Mower Kills Passing Woman
“A freak highway accident left one woman dead and the Georgia Department of Transportation trying to answer questions. A Georgia DOT crew was mowing the grass on the side of a sparsely-traveled rural highway. At the exact same time, a car with five passengers passed by.” (The mower) ran over a rock. The rock was a pretty good-sized rock. But it was launched from the side of the bush hog,” said Sgt. Chad Mann, of the Troup County Sheriff’s Office. Annie Lee, 58, was sitting in the back seat with her family when the volleyball-sized rock smashed through the windshield, grazed the driver and killed her instantly. Police said it was a shocking incident, but not one that could have easily been prevented or one that would happen again.”This was an isolated freak incident,” said Mann.”

The woman was sitting in the back. The rock went through the windshield, missing the driver and the passenger, and hurtled toward Ms Lee, and she was killed.

Just like that. Tragic.

Think about it, one moment you are sitting on your truck and the next second you are in hell. Or heaven. One moment you are laughing with your family in the back seat of the car and the next second you are in heaven. Or hell. It happens that fast. Paul didn’t leave any time for there to be limbo, or to hang around and wait for the Ghost Whisperer to show up. He said if you are absent from the body you are with the Lord. (2 Corinthians 5:8) The rapture takes place in the blink of an eye, where your bodies are transformed from flesh to eternal in 1/150th of a second. The same happens with many people in the way they die. It happens instantly, just like it did for the two unfortunates in the news articles above.

The Bible says our days are numbered.

Man’s days are determined; you have decreed the number of his months and have set limits he cannot exceed. (Job 14:5).

David cried out, Show me, O LORD, my life’s end and the number of my days; let me know how fleeting is my life. (Psalm 39:4).

As Matthew Henry explains,

He prays to God to make him sensible of the shortness and uncertainty of life and the near approach of death (v. 4): Lord, make me to know my end and the measure of my days. He does not mean, “Lord, let me know how long I shall live and when I shall die.” We could not, in faith, pray such a prayer; for God has nowhere promised to let us know, but has, in wisdom, locked up that knowledge among the secret things which belong not to us, nor would it be good for us to know it. But, Lord, make me to know my end, means, “Lord, give me wisdom and grace to consider it (Deu. 32:29) and to improve what I know concerning it.”

Do you have the wisdom and grace to consider your end, and the courage to improve what you know concerning it? It could happen any time. Repenting after death is too late. Now is the acceptable time. Now.


*This essay first appeared on The End Time in June 2011. I updated one of the news articles


Christian writer and Georgia teacher's aide who loves Jesus, a quiet life, art, beauty, and children.

2 thoughts on “Our Days are Numbered

  1. A sobering message. Reminds me of that hymn, Be in Time, especially the first stanza:
    Life at best is very brief
    Like the falling of a leaf
    Like the binding of a sheaf
    Be in time
    Fleeting days are telling fast
    That the die will soon be cast
    And the fatal line be passed
    Be in time

    Even today that song haunts me. I have trusted the Lord Jesus as my personal Saviour for many years and yet I get a chill whenever we sing this song.


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