Bad Things Happen: Be Ready


Do you think that these…were worse sinners? No, I tell you; but unless you repent, you will all likewise perish. Luke 13:2a-3

No one has to convince you that bad things happen in life, often without reason.

It was a horrible story. Jesus had been talking with the crowds when He was interrupted with a report:  Some Jews had been murdered by Pilate, the Roman ruler, while they worshipped at the temple.  Pilate had mingled their blood with their temple sacrifices. Jesus knew where the minds of the people were going. They wanted to know why—why did this awful thing happen to those people? Jesus asked them, “Do you think that these …were worse sinners than all the other[s] … because they suffered in this way?” (Luke 13:2).

Then Jesus brought up an instance of a natural disaster: Eighteen people had been killed when a tower fell on them. “Do you think that they were worse offenders than all the others who lived in Jerusalem?” He asked again (Luke 13:4). His answer to his own question wasn’t what the people were expecting. “No, I tell you; but unless you repent, you will all likewise perish” (Luke 13:3,5).

We, too, want to focus on others.  “That person must have lived a very bad life,” we conclude. No, this is the issue, Jesus says: All will die, one way or another. Scripture is clear:  God does not want anyone to die without relationship with Him (2 Peter 3:9) and that only comes through aligning ourselves with what God says about us.

Yes, disasters and death, come to all. Bad things happen but we can be ready.  In the words of martyred missionary, Jim Elliot, “When it comes time to die, make sure that all you have to do is die.”[1]

[1] “A Quote from the Journals of Jim Elliot.” Goodreads, Goodreads, 7 August 2022,