A New Attitude.

My wife and I came to the realization that it will just be the two of us for Thanksgiving. Why? COVID-19. That was a hard pill to swallow. 

There’s a bigger picture to all this that we reminded ourselves of. This disease didn’t appear out of the blue. Satan didn’t create it. He creates nothing. Zero. Zilch. If he has a hand in this at all, it is only with God’s authorization. 

Ultimately, it is God who knows all and always has. He is the Creator of all things. He is everywhere at once. Nothing happens without his divine knowledge. As R.C. Sproul says, “There are no maverick molecules in the universe.”

Of course, that does not mean that God endorses sin or is the author of it. God cannot sin, but he did make two creatures that had the ability to deny him – angels and humans. Some angels chose to sin; all humans do. God allows this and even uses our sin to accomplish his ends – which are always good.

This means that the virus was known by God before it appeared which begs the question, “Why?” We’ve covered this ground many times, but the short answer is that the biblical record proves that God sends this type of thing to get our attention.

Attention for what?

To honor him as God and give him thanks. To turn from our wicked ways and bear fruit in repentance. Everyone is commanded to repent and bow to Jesus because the day of judgment is near. Those who do before their death or Jesus’ return (whichever comes first) will join him in everlasting life. Those who don’t will be thrown into the lake of fire where “they will be tormented day and night forever and ever.” (Revelation 20:10, 15)

When you think about it, everything points to judgment. And judgment points to Jesus. Really, everything looks to and focuses on Jesus. It doesn’t matter if we don’t realize that fact. Our ignorance changes nothing.

The bottom line is this: the Day of the Lord is coming. We are to be prepared and ready for it. The coronavirus is a wakeup call to that fact. It’s a wakeup call for me. It’s a wakeup call for my family and friends. It’s a wakeup call for our nation. It’s a wakeup call for the entire world.

What the prophets of old warned is still true all these centuries later.

Zephaniah 1:14-18

14 The great day of the Lord is near,
    near and hastening fast;
the sound of the day of the Lord is bitter;
    the mighty man cries aloud there.
15 A day of wrath is that day,
    a day of distress and anguish,
a day of ruin and devastation,
    a day of darkness and gloom,
a day of clouds and thick darkness,
16     a day of trumpet blast and battle cry
against the fortified cities
    and against the lofty battlements.

17 I will bring distress on mankind,
    so that they shall walk like the blind,
    because they have sinned against the Lord;
their blood shall be poured out like dust,
    and their flesh like dung.
18 Neither their silver nor their gold
    shall be able to deliver them
    on the day of the wrath of the Lord.
In the fire of his jealousy,
    all the earth shall be consumed;
for a full and sudden end
    he will make of all the inhabitants of the earth.

That’s what this virus is warning us of, and, through it, salvation that is only possible through Jesus. Look, God could come today to snatch his church and begin the tribulation which will lead to Judgement Day. Anything in between is an opportunity for the world to wake from its slumber.

I see this as a God who is merciful. Even with those he knows will never bow their knee to Jesus, God warns over and over. If God didn’t care, he wouldn’t warn. He does care. Indeed, he does.

John 3:16 16 “For God so loved the world, that he gave his only Son, that whoever believes in him should not perish but have eternal life.

Christian, do you understand the magnitude of sin and the incredible opportunity God is giving the world in his call to repentance through this virus? This virus is kid’s stuff compared to plagues of the bible. Yes, it’s terrible, but we might wish we had the worst illness compared to an eternity in hell.

God is so, so merciful, even to his enemies, those who hate him. There is none other like that.

And, if God is so incredibly merciful to his enemies (most who will never repent and thus spend eternity in the lake of fire), how much more gracious is he to those whom he forgives of their sin?

Romans 5:8-11 but God shows his love for us in that while we were still sinners, Christ died for us. Since, therefore, we have now been justified by his blood, much more shall we be saved by him from the wrath of God. 10 For if while we were enemies we were reconciled to God by the death of his Son, much more, now that we are reconciled, shall we be saved by his life. 11 More than that, we also rejoice in God through our Lord Jesus Christ, through whom we have now received reconciliation.

Folks, this virus is an INCREDIBLE act of mercy by God for the entire world to wake up! Don’t you see this? We should be rejoicing over these circumstances rather than grumbling and complaining. Sure, people are dying, but, again, this virus is nothing compared to the day when God says, “Enough!” 

We’re supposed to rejoice in all things, right? Well, folks, I suggest we wrap our heads around the reasons to be joyful for COVID-19 because, indeed, there are reasons.

Doesn’t it make you want to talk about this with people? It should.

Father, wake up your church. We are like the disciples in the garden, sleeping while you are at work. Put a boot to our side, if need be. Amen.

Copyright © 2020 Scott Powers

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