THE DAY AFTER TOMORROW is a great SF. Science fiction was intended to look into the future and predict the end result of trends. In other words, if what’s going on today continues far into the future, this is what the future will look like.
I like SF because of that. It’s logical, and it has the attitude all of us should nurture, the idea of looking ahead.
I’m going to focus on only one scene to start, but before I do let me say a few things about a sudden ice age. It happened before. Mammoths with the food still in their mouths have been found frozen in the Arctic permafrost. The scene in THE DAY AFTER TOMORROW where people are frozen alive is simply a filmmaker’s depiction of what it would look like if the same happened again today.
The problem people have is they can’t separate SF from science. Science fiction only takes what scientists tell them and project it to it’s ultimate, most logical conclusion. Science speaks in scientific language, SF is communication on steroids. While scientists theorize about the nature of the universe, SF writers are travelling around the universe through worm-holes and by hyper-drive. This is often criticized as sensationalism, but if I had told Shakespeare that I had a device that could send Hamlet around the world to everybody at the same time, he would have labelled me a sensationalist.
SF is just a vehicle for fleshing-out concepts that are difficult to grasp in their scientific language. Certainly there is exaggeration when a concept is actualized in a Hollywood movie, but movies don’t have the luxury of a captive audience. They have to get their point across in a “tight” two hours. Scientists can expostulate for hours on some esoteric point of physics. That’s their job. But it’s our job (I’m talking about me, us, the man in the street) to try to make sense of the universe and sometimes the only way we can do that is to have somebody look far enough ahead and tell us what could possibly happen. And when they turn it VISUAL, it stops being inaccessible. People cannot visualize travelling through space-time, but they can see a pretty good version of what it might be like (if it were possible) by watching Ellie Arroway transported to Vega in the movie CONTACT. (I’ll post an ANALOGY for that film shortly.) “Realists” can say what they like, but fiction is an excellent way of getting a point across without all the technical jargon.
The same can be said for religious folk. Many of them talk endlessly in theological jargon that loses people (if it doesn’t put them to sleep). What is needed at times is theological concepts fleshed out in ordinary language, made visual to where they can be seen and felt. And where they are accessible.
What do I mean by accessible? I mean where you can not only understand something, but DO something about what you’ve just understood. You may not have darkened the doorstep of a church in a long time, but you’re probably aware of all the talk about “END TIMES”. There’s certainly enough stuff on the internet about “Blood Moons” and “the Rapture” ,”the Great Tribulation”, and “the antichrist”. This is pretty serious stuff. The people teaching this stuff really believe it. Unfortunately, for an outsider who hasn’t studied these subjects in-depth, how are you going to get up-to-speed if it turns out these people are on to something? Running off to church might be a good start. Reading books on the subject and watching videos might help. But then again, you could also read the source of all this END TIMES stuff from where others have got it… from the Bible itself. (See my link at the bottom of this essay.)
But if all of that seems a bit daunting— if catching up seems almost impossible— I must admit you may have come too late to do something about it. I don’t want to discourage you from looking into the facts, but time seems to be running out. From all the predictions in Matthew Chapter 24, this age is rapidly coming to a close.
END-OF-THE-WORLD PROPHECIES THAT NEVER HAPPENED
I know you were probably disappointed in 2012 when the Mayan Calendar didn’t pan out. But remember, the Mayans were not God’s People. The Jews are God’s people. It’s their Torah that makes up 2/3 of the Bible. It’s Israel you’ve got to watch. Israel is the Epicenter. Keep your eye on Jerusalem, because that’s what God has His eye on. The Apostle Luke warned: “And when ye shall see Jerusalem compassed with armies, then know that the desolation thereof is nigh. “(Luke 21:20)
So what’s all this got to do with THE DAY AFTER TOMORROW?
Well, there’s ONE SCENE that is an exact analogy of our present situation. (There are so many other analogies throughout the film, but for now, I’ll leave you with only one.) The scene is the one where they have just discovered that a massive winter storm is going to send the entire northern hemisphere into a new Ice Age.
Climatologist Jack Hall (Dennis Quaid) reports his findings by computer hookup and telephone to Professor Terry Rapson (Ian Holm) of the Hedland Climate Research Centre in Scotland. With the computer projection of the expected course of the storm developing on the screen in front of them, they exchange words with their crews waiting and watching beside behind them.
“Our previous estimates of six to eight weeks weren’t even close,” says Jack Hall, projecting computer simulations on the screen. The computer depicts three massive storm cells slowly growing over Scotland, Canada, and Siberia.
“This one storm is going to change the face of our planet.” says Jack Hall, clicking from slide to slide.
” Here’s the projection of 24 hours out… ”
“This is 48 hours out….”
“and in seven to 10 days… ”
” when this storm is over, we’ll be in a new ice age.”
“My God,” says the professor.
The two men have had their crews overhearing the conversation on conference call. Now they each pick up a receiver for a private conversation.
“Professor,” says Jack, “It’s time you got out of there.”
“I’m afraid that time,” relies the professor, “has come and gone, my friend.”
Jack realizes his friends in the Hedland Center are doomed. “What can we do?” he asks.
“Save as many as you can,” replies Professor Rapson — and then the line goes dead.
This conversation is powerfully reminiscent of what must have transpired in the days of Noah just before the flood. The New Testament book of Matthew compares the days before the Flood to our day:
“But as the days of Noah were, so shall also the coming of the Son of man be. “(Mat 24:37)
“The coming of the Son of Man” is another way of saying “the day of the LORD.”
(If you want to find out what the Bible has to say about the day of the Lord, click the article at the bottom of this page and study this out for yourself.)
Matthew continues: “For as in the days that were before the flood they were eating and drinking, marrying and giving in marriage, until the day that Noah entered into the ark, and knew not until the flood came, and took them all away, (drowned them all), so shall also the coming of the Son of man be. ” (Mat 24:38.39 )
In other words, the Flood took them all by surprise. But should it have surprised them? Not at all. Noah preached for 125 years while he was building the Ark. The problem is, nobody believed Noah that here would be a flood. The same is true in our day. Nobody believes that the Day of the Lord is coming.
In the same way, nobody believed Jack Hall when he warned of a dangerous climate shift. THE DAY AFTER TOMORROW is fiction, but the principle holds true. If an event in the future can be predicted either by scientific evaluation of prevailing trends or a prophecy from God himself, why don’t people act? (Many people were warned of the imminent eruption of Mount St. Helens, and still people were killed when they refused to evacuate.)
The point is, God has warned that the Day of the Lord will mark the end of the Age. When will this day be? We do not know exactly. But a great deal of evidence has accumulated, that it will come in the generation when “the fig tree blossoms.”
Jesus told his disciples: “Now learn a parable of the fig tree; When her branch is yet tender, and putteth forth leaves, ye know that summer is near: so ye in like manner, when ye shall see these things come to pass, know that it is nigh, even at the doors. Verily I say unto you, that this generation shall not pass, till all these things be done.” (Mark13:28-30)
What is this “fig tree?” Most Christian and Jewish scholars agree that it is the nation of Israel. Israel became a nation on May 14th, 1948. Apparently the fig tree has already blossomed.
Now all of this information would be pointless if I did not conclude with a solution. If the American President had acted when Jack Hall made his predictions in THE DAY AFTER TOMORROW, millions of people would have been saved. But because nobody listened, many died that could have been saved.
Those of you reading this, when you saw the film the first time you probably said to yourself, “I would have listened.” Would you? You see, we are all experts in hindsight. But none of us are exempt from the danger of our own incredulity. Incredulity means lack of belief, doubt. We all have the power to doubt the best evidence. All throughout history, millions of people caught in various types of disasters have died who could have been saved. (For instance, the eruption of Mount Vesuvius.) They were warned with plenty of time to escape.
But they didn’t act.
Why not? Because they found the warning too hard to believe.
How do we know when a warning is legitimate? Usually we can trust the highest authority in any field. The highest authority when it comes to humans is the Creator. If HE gives a warning, shouldn’t we listen?
Do YOU listen when God warns?
A DIFFERENT PERSPECTIVE
Now here is where I present a slightly different perspective from most of those who warn of the “end-of-the world“. Men have been mocked throughout the ages for predicting the end of the world. What is usually missing is perspective.
If I were to warn you that the world will end in September 2015, you may or may not believe me. That’s because my end of the world prediction may not happen. We all know of folk who have set dates and then the end of the world didn’t happen. So these guys who made the bad predictions look like fools, and then people begin to have serious doubts about the reliability of all Bible prophecies.
But all of this ignores a fact that seems to be missed by almost everybody. We must remember that of all those people who were warned that the world would end on January 1, 2000, (for instance) or on December 21, 2012 (for instance), the world did end for some of them on that day. On average 155,000 people die every day on earth. Of those who were warned throughout the year 1999, and those who were warned between 1999 and December 21st 2012, many lived to laugh at the doomsayers, but remember, some died.
Now you say, “most of them died a natural death, not from any accident or disaster or predicted doomsday event .” Yes, the world did not get destroyed by fire on December 31, 1999, but 150,000 people did not make it to greet the New Year.
And yes, the world did not end on December 21, 2012, as some people predicted would happen at the “end” of the Mayan calendar. But at least 150,000 people did not make it to greet the morning of December 22, 2012.
“But ” you may say, “150,000 people is not a lot of people.” Still, you’d think different if you or some of your family had been one of the dead. “Do not send to know for whom the bell tolls,” wrote John Donne, “It tolls for thee.” Don’t you ever forget that one of these days it will be your turn.
“But predictions of the end of the Age, or the end of the World, have nothing to do with the death of the thousands of people who die naturally every day of the year.”
That’s not true.
Every day people die that could have been and should have been READY TO DIE, but were not ready. They died unprepared for death.
Say I warn everybody that the world will end on Wednesday September 23rd 2015. (just using that as an example) If it actually happens, how many people will die? (7.3 billion people)
OK. But say the world doesn’t end on that day. (We’re not struck by a nova or an asteroid.) Still, at least 150,000 of us will die on Wednesday September 23rd 2015.
Now of the 7.3 billion people that COULD die, how many do you suppose would be ready to die? I pose this question to point out, whether or not there is a world-ending event on a particular day in September, some people will die on that day. And if one of those people is you, what difference does it make if on that day you die or the whole world is annihilated? All that will matter will be, were you ready.
That’s why the BIBLE has predicted the end of the world for thousands of years, not because God is a liar, or a poor planner, or is trying to cover all the bases, but because God is not so much concerned about the END of the World, as he is concerned about the END of every single living human being living on it. Have you ever read 2 Peter 3:3 to 12? It says that God does not want ANYBODY to die unprepared. So He has always warned about the end of the world, because essentially the world ends for every man or woman in his/her lifetime. Not the whole planet, but their part in it.
What all the warning is about is to GET YOU PREPARED. The point is, are you ready to die? If the world really did end on September 23rd 2015, if you’re reading this the day I post it (August 25 2015) you’ve got about a month to get prepared.
Who has got a month to be prepared?
I don’t know.
But do I know it could be one of you reading this essay.
You get my point?
One of these days (and I think it will be sooner rather than later) we will encounter the day the Bible calls THE DAY OF THE LORD. The Bible warns that we must be prepared for it: “For yourselves know perfectly that the day of the Lord so cometh as a thief in the night. Then they shall say, Peace and safety; then sudden destruction cometh upon them, as travail upon a woman with child; and they shall not escape.” (1Thessalonians 5:2,3)
So my point is, it’s not a matter of IF or WHEN the world will end, it will always be necessary that YOU as an individual be READY. So the film THE DAY AFTER TOMORROW is an excellent analogy of a situation that has always been true for all people— nobody knows when they are going to die. You could die of a heart attack tonight in your sleep, or you could die tomorrow, or next year, or next decade, in a world-wide catastrophe. The details of how and when are not as important as were you ready?.
What do you need to do to BE READY?
If you were to die THE DAY AFTER TOMORROW, it sure would be better if you got ready TODAY. The Bible wants you to get ready TODAY. In fact, there’s even a verse that says this in the New Testament:
“Behold, now is the accepted time; behold, now is the day of salvation.” (2Corithians 6:2)
“Salvation” is Bible terminology for being saved from death.
In fact, the whole purpose of the Bible is to show you WHY you need to be saved from death, and HOW to be saved from death. (I’ve attached a link to a summary of this HOW and WHY at the end of this essay.)
Ironically, people can see THE DAY AFTER TOMORROW and still put off dealing with this issue. As far as I’m concerned, such movies are supposed to get our attention. They may be fiction, but what does it matter what it is that drives us to the truth? to the light?
Did the movie (made in 2004) drive you to getting prepared?
There is a very sad verse in the Bible that you need consider before you dismiss what I have written here . The Jewish people in Jeremiah’s day ignored the warning of the prophet, just like so many of you will ignore what I have written here, and when they finally saw destruction coming over the horizon, they cried,
“The harvest is past, the summer is ended, and we are not saved.” (Jeremiah 8:20 )
LINK TO: 1.WHAT YOU NEED TO DO TO BE READY (TO BE SAVED)
LINK TO: 2. WHAT YOU NEED TO KNOW ABOUT THE DAY OF THE LORD