The Winter 1991 issue of the “University of Pacific Review” offered a chilling description of the 1986 Chernobyl (Soviet Union) nuclear disaster: There were two electrical engineers in the control room that night. The best things that could be said for what they were doing is they were “playing around” with the machine. They were performing what the Soviets later described as an “unauthorized experiment.” They were trying to see how long a turbine would “free wheel” when they took the power off it.
Taking the power off that kind of nuclear reactor is a difficult, dangerous thing to do, because these reactors are very unstable in their lower ranges. To get the reactor down to that kind of power, where they could perform the test they were interested in, they had to override manually six separate computer-driven alarm systems.
One by one the computers would come up and say, “Stop! Dangerous! Go no further!” And one by one, rather than shutting off the experiment, they shut off the alarms and kept going. You know the results: nuclear fallout that was recorded around the world, from the largest industrial accident ever to occur in the world.
It was not an accident; it was a deliberate violation of instructions and warnings. The instruction and warnings in Scripture are just as clear. We ignore them at our own peril, and tragically, at the peril of innocent others.
Related Text Illustrations
Contributed by Rich Young on Jan 17, 2001
Obedience is seeking God with your whole heart. Performance is having a quiet time because you’ll feel guilty if you don’t. Obedience is finding ways to let the Word of God dwell in you richly. Performance is quickly scanning a passage so you can check it off your Bible reading ...read more
Contributed by Richard Jones on Nov 3, 2000
An old American Indian tale recounts the story of a chief who was telling a gathering of young braves about the struggle within. "It is like two dogs fighting inside of us," the chief told them. "There is one good dog who wants to do the right and the other dog always wants to do the wrong. ...read more
Contributed by James Wilson on Mar 2, 2001
For thirteen extraordinary days in October of 1962, the world stood on the brink of an unthinkable catastrophe. Across the globe, people anxiously awaited the outcome of a harrowing political, diplomatic and military confrontation that threatened to end in an apocalyptic nuclear exchange between ...read more
Contributed by Johnny Carver on May 12, 2001
As a boy growing up in the country I had heard scary stories about a snake called a "Black Racer" that would chase you. These stories kept me very alert as I walked up and down the gravel roads around where we lived. One day mom asked me to go to the neighbors house and borrow an iron because ours ...read more
Contributed by Melvin Newland on May 15, 2001
F.B. Meyer preached in London, England, while Charles Spurgeon & G. Campbell Morgan were preaching there, too. They were all great preachers, but Spurgeon’s church & Morgan’s church were both bigger than Meyer’s church. And he admitted to being a bit envious of them. So he ...read more