A RESPONSE TO THE CORONAVIRUS
I read a handful of news stories recently where I learned of fellow image bearers of God reportedly taking their own life in light of having contracted the COVID-19. I wish to say to those whom this post reaches that suicide will not help. It will not help in the prevention of the spread of the virus nor will it help if guilt is a motivating factor for suicide. Let me say another way. There is no instance in which suicide is ever a viable option to deal with life’s problems.
The very fact that COVID-19 exists and has spread across the world with such force in itself testifies to two things:
1. THERE ARE THINGS MIGHTIER AND MORE POWERFUL THAN HUMANITIES’ GREATEST STRENGTH
Sickness and disease are stronger and more powerful than us, and in one sense should be feared in light of their ability to take human life, even almost without notice. COVID-19, like many other diseases before it, has shown us once again just how vulnerable we are; how easy it is for our lives to be snuffed out and taken from us. Although every medical procedure in response to COVID-19 should and ought to be as strictly obeyed as possible; yet, even the one who is best at complying with the best advise cannot control the uncontrollable.
Hopelessness is what leads to suicide, and control over that which contributes to hopeless is the goal of suicide. My heart breaks for the families who are now suffering from the tragic loss their loved one whose decision to end their life was not only a senseless tragedy but a reminder of a greater need we have when we are overtaken by an enemy (like sickness and disease) that is more powerful and mightier than us.
2. WE NEED ONE WHO IS MIGHTIER AND STRONGER THAN THE STRONGEST DISEASE
No, it is not your doctor, although I will say you should obey the medical advice that is now very common to all at this point. I have confidence that an antidote will be coming, and like my pastor stated in a sermon very recently, facing calamities such as this a hundred years ago looked much differently. This is true because of the wonderful advancement of medicine. Yet, with all our advances, why are we still so weak and vulnerable?
We need someone who can help us in a way that no antidote ever could or no doctor could ever dream of. We need outside support. We need someone who is not only stronger and mightier than disease, but we need someone who has the ability to control it and subdue it. This person needs to be able to control the uncontrollable. But what is more, we need someone who is able to overcome even the worst effects of sickness and disease; namely, death. We need someone who can save us when we cannot save ourselves.
WE NEED A SAVIOR
I, like many others, sometimes wrestle with questions about why does God allow bad things to happen to people. No doubt that question applies here. Why would God permit the spread of COVID-19? I don’t know but I do know that God’s thoughts are much higher than our thoughts. We also know that he controls the uncontrollable. We know that God has the ability to heal sickness and diseases. It may be the case that we never know ‘why’ the disease has been given the reign it has on humanity at this point, but I am not concerned about this per se. I am more concerned about what happens to us when disease has forced us to the threshold of death.
LIFE’S MOST IMPORTANT QUESTION
If you are overcome by COVID-19 and are brought to the point of death, where does your hope rest when you take your last breath? Do you have assurance that you will be with the One who is mightier than disease, controls everything (even disease) and has the power to heal the worst of diseases, and even able to overcome the worst effects of such diseases, that is death? If not, then let me introduce you to the person and work of Jesus.
THE GOSPEL OF JESUS
The gospel of Jesus is the ‘antidote’ to death (diseases’ worst case scenario outcome). So, even if you die in the body, your soul can live forever with Jesus. How is this possible, you might ask.
It is possible because Jesus himself defeated death. He was nailed to a cross, according to God’s plan, but then after he died, God raised him from the dead, freeing him from the agony of death, because it is impossible for death to keep its hold on him.
HOW CAN I KNOW GOD AS HE’S MEANT TO BE KNOWN?
By being born again and so to become a child of God. 12 “But to all who did receive him, who believed in his name, he gave the right to become children of God, 13 who were born, not of blood nor of the will of the flesh nor of the will of man, but of God.” [John 1:12-13 ESV]
HOW DO I BECOME A CHILD OF GOD?
By repenting of your sins, turning to Jesus in faith, and receive forgiveness. 19 “Repent therefore, and turn back, that your sins may be blotted out,” [Act 3:19 ESV]
WHO SHOULD DO THIS?
Everyone. 30 “The times of ignorance God overlooked, but now he commands all people everywhere to repent,” [Act 17:30 ESV]
HOW CAN I BE CERTAIN JESUS’ RESURRECTION FROM DEATH GUARANTEES MY RESURRECTION FROM DEATH?
You can be certain because when you repent of your sins, come to God in faith and so become a child of God, he gives you His Spirit who lives and dwells in you guaranteeing your future state. 13 “And you also were included in Christ when you heard the message of truth, the gospel of your salvation. When you believed, you were marked in him with a seal, the promised Holy Spirit, 14 who is a deposit guaranteeing our inheritance until the redemption of those who are God’s possession–to the praise of his glory.” [Eph 1:13-14 NIV]
COUNSEL TO YOU IF COVID-19 HAS HEIGHTENED YOUR FEAR OF DEATH & DYING
Believe the gospel.
Here is an expanded version of God’s plan of Salvation for your reference.