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Catastrophic snow-slides are not uncommon in the Canadian Rocky Mountains. Suddenly and without warning, massive build-ups of snow take off rapidly down the mountain sides, overcoming or burying everything in their paths. One such slide buried a British Columbia motel and gasoline station, killing several people, in 1974. A short time later a skier died there beneath an avalanche. During one fateful week in March years ago over eight hundred people are said to have died in Rocky Mountain snowstorms and slides.
It was during that week that one hundred passengers on an eastbound train barely escaped a catastrophe which could have added them all to the death toll— a disaster described as “missed by the narrowest margin.”
Less than one minute after the train had passed a certain point east of Field Station, a snow-slide buried the track behind it for one thousand feet, to a depth double that of the engine.
Almost simultaneously another tremendous slide completely buried the track just ahead. The train was hopelessly stranded, caught between two slides. Escape on foot was impossible as blinding snow, whipped on by terrific winds, filled the pass. The position of all aboard was one of gravest danger.
But what would have been the horror of the already frantic passengers had they been told that a third avalanche would bury them alive unless the train moved immediately— that they were doomed if they stayed where they were?
And yet, dear reader, if unsaved, your danger is infinitely greater. You are between two slides. A lifetime of sin lies behind you; the judgment of God lies ahead.
And what threatens to overtake you at any moment like an avalanche of destruction? It is the imminent return of the Lord, which will close the day of His grace, and with it the door of heaven, leaving you forever outside. Or, the cold hand of Death may take you away suddenly if the Lord hasn’t come yet.
These railway passengers missed death by the narrowest margin, huge rotary plows arriving in time to clear the track. But your doom draws ever nearer and may claim you in an instant. How terrible! Is there not one hour of escape for you? Yes, thank God, there is. There is One— only One— who can save us from this extremity of peril. It is Jesus.
“I am the door.” He says, “by Me if any man enter in, he shall be saved” (John 10:9).
If you remain where you are you will surely be lost; but if you yield to the pleadings of the One who died to save your soul you will surely be saved. Why not come to Him now— just as you are?
“Him that cometh to Me I will in no wise cast out” (John 6:37).
How far may we go on in sin?
How long will God forbear?
Where does hope end, and where begin
The confines of despair?
An answer from the skies is sent:
“Ye that from God depart,
While it is called Today, repent,
And harden not your heart.”
“Today, after so long a time; as it is said, Today if ye will hear his voice, harden not your hearts” (Hebrews 4:7).