Hubby and I just finished watching this 1962 “sci-fi fantasy” thriller directed by, and starring, Ray Milland.
The premise is this: A family of tightly knit (not wound) people embark on an early morning fishing trip – trailer in tow. About 2 hours into the trip, they notice “lightning flashes” and stop to check the windows on the trailer. What they discover is a mushroom cloud billowing over what used to be their hometown of Los Angeles. The story is not so much about the war that ensues – mentions of cities bombed, but not who bombed; near the end a message that the US had won the war…
This movie was about survival of a nuclear holocaust. This normal, moral man (who, btw, only took off his sport coat once and I don’t think ever was seen without his hat) had to go to measures way outside the bounds of morality.
When faced with $3.00 a gallon gas prices – “The pump says .34 per gallon, i owe you $10, not $90!” – Ray Milland’s character. Harry Baldwin, socks the guy, rendering him unconscious. He then places a $10 where the attendant will easily find it when he comes to.
He arms his son and himself with rifles and handguns from a hardware store off the beaten path. When the total comes to more than he has, he offers a check to cover the difference between what he has in cash. The store owner does not take out-of-town checks, especially for weapons. So, he is held at gun point as the family gets in the car and leaves. Now, mind you, Harry leaves the money – and he’s shown the store owner his identification, and he has promised to make up the difference when he can.
When faced with hoodlums on the highway – “We’re the new highway patrol” – who are going to hurt his family, son Rick – played by Frankie Avalon – shoots the leader in the shoulder with a rifle. Rick enjoyed it – too much. So, Dad reminded him that civilization had been damaged, not broken, and that they needed to do ONLY that necessary to survive. “I want you to shoot when you have to, and I want you to hate it!”
Okay, so people robbing each other, hoodlums, people shooting at each other, stealing food and gas. Price gouging. Road rage. Several young ladies raped.
The sad thing is, today – just 46 years later – our civilization doesn’t need a nuclear holocaust for people to behave in this manner. People have left their moral compasses behind – or at best turned them off or developed a way to ignore them.
God’s word talks about this time. It is called “the end times”. Now God doesn’t live by our time table – no one knows the hour or the day, not even the Son – so these end times aren’t necessarily going to be a year or two… it seems we have been in them for awhile. It appears we are sliding further and further away from morality and good values. We no longer temper our anger – we just engage our temper!
This is why it is vital that believers continue to share the gospel. Don’t water it down, don’t smooth out it’s edges….stick to what the book says. Don’t package it in a slick sales pitch, don’t shove it down people’s throats. Don’t think there will be a notch on your belt for each convert. Don’t think “I’m gonna do good for God’s Kingdom.” Our job is to share the good news properly. God does the rest.
I’m just saying.