If you are a materialist, then this world is all that there is. Then the risk of losing everything however small is a panic to be avoided at all cost. If you are a Buddhist, then the material world is inconsequential, and there is nothing to fear. However the Christian believes that the material world is both consequential and not all that there is. Yes it is consequential that the fate of the eternity will be determined but the material world is under the control of our sovereign God. So what threat does the Wuhan Virus really pose?
On the surface, the threat is already minimal. What started out a mystery wrapped in big government China soon garnered the media attention to cause worldwide panic. Some of you in pure game theory fashion stocked up on goods accordingly. But the virus is here and thus far the results are underwhelming. While Italy is a hotspot in the west, the country is a lesson on the failures of socialized medicine in confronting pandemics. In America, nearly half the deaths came from a single nursing home in Washington. But it’s hardly been a significant outbreak otherwise, just one that’s gotten attention. Interestingly enough, for a virus, small children seem disproportionately better off compared to the Swine Flu epidemic in 2009. The deaths have almost all come from older individuals with underlying health issues.
As every state except West Virginia is reporting cases, the virus is everywhere and it is likely everyone will come into contact with it prior to any vaccination. I have possibly been exposed at least three times, not including the times my wife has been exposed. So the Wuhan Corona Virus is coming for us and there’s little stopping this modern day plague.
This crisis was too good to let go to waste. Already those who carry on business as usual to support their families or local businesses are being told that they hate old people, while the government usurps authority prohibited by the First Amendment. To me, there’s far greater reason to fear the precedent we are setting as it relates to national emergencies, and far more reason to acknowledge the evil mob mentality of fellow man.
But I want to remind us of two lesson that apply not only to our current situation but others as well.
1. God is in control
The virus is in God’s hands. Is it a plague on nations? I would consider America to have been already under the judgment of God, though cannot speak so affirmatively for others. But the Bible tells us how the world will end, though we differ on eschatology, we can all affirm that plague will not be the end of the world. Romans 8:28-39 reads:
28And we know that God causes all things to work together for good to those who love God, to those who are called according to His purpose. 29For those whom He foreknew, He also predestined to become conformed to the image of His Son, so that He would be the firstborn among many brethren; 30and these whom He predestined, He also called; and these whom He called, He also justified; and these whom He justified, He also glorified.
31What then shall we say to these things? If God is for us, who is against us? 32He who did not spare His own Son, but delivered Him over for us all, how will He not also with Him freely give us all things? 33Who will bring a charge against God’s elect? God is the one who justifies; 34who is the one who condemns? Christ Jesus is He who died, yes, rather who was raised, who is at the right hand of God, who also intercedes for us. 35Who will separate us from the love of Christ? Will tribulation, or distress, or persecution, or famine, or nakedness, or peril, or sword? 36Just as it is written,
“For Your sake we are being put to death all day long;
We were considered as sheep to be slaughtered.”
37But in all these things we overwhelmingly conquer through Him who loved us. 38For I am convinced that neither death, nor life, nor angels, nor principalities, nor things present, nor things to come, nor powers, 39nor height, nor depth, nor any other created thing, will be able to separate us from the love of God, which is in Christ Jesus our Lord.
If you are a Christian, there is no reason to fear for God is with us, and no plague can separate us. If you are not a Christian, if you do not consider yourself among God’s elect, call upon the name of Jesus so that you may repent and be saved.
2. Do not let the pagans define your witness
Jesus talks about rejection by the world. He did not conform his message so that the world would love him or think that he was doing good. I say this in regards to how we love our neighbors. Is social distancing loving our neighbors or continuing to support local businesses, especially while global recession is nigh? I will not let the pagans answer this question for me and neither should you.
In Christianity, we have our own relationship with Jesus as our intercessor, and the Holy Spirit in our hearts to help us navigate the application of Scripture in individual situations. Do not let the pagans who reject God define how it is that you should follow God. This is strategically unwise, if not a rebellious act that will make your faith complicit to the world.