Many have penned histories, novels, songs, films and other retellings of the tragedy of April 15, 1912.
Considered unsinkable, the passenger liner was called the largest ship afloat at the time. Her sinking after striking an iceberg was shocking. But perhaps more alarming was the recognition that many of the more than 1500 persons lost need not have died in the icy waters of the North Atlantic. Safety precautions and regulations had not been followed, the wireless communications had been inadequate and warnings had been unheeded.
Through the years preachers have admonished their congregations of the necessity of staying alert in a dangerous world. They have seen the pursuit of pleasure lull first-class passengers into a false sense of security.
However, a bigger lesson to be gleaned from the disaster is that of incompletely filled lifeboats failing to turn and rescue those calling out for help. Only six survivors were pulled from the frigid waters although the lifeboats could have held 500 more.
One of the six rescued related an outstanding story from that dark night. The young man told about a Scotsman, John Harper, who was on his way to fulfill an engagement to preach for three months at the Moody Church in Chicago. In the short time he had in the water, Harper swam to the later-rescued man who had climbed up on a piece of debris. Harper called out, "Are you saved?" When the trembled answer was, "No", Harper yelled the words of Scripture, "Believe on the Lord Jesus Christ and thou shalt be saved."
In desperation, the young man called upon Christ for salvation. Harper sank down into a watery grave even as his soul rose upward.
No matter where a person may be, God hears that earnest cry for salvation through Christ.
"...whosoever believes in Him should not perish..." John 3:16b