What does the coronavirus / COVID-19 teach us?

Hi friends, @Interested_in_Bible, @Interested_in_Theology,

As news of coronavirus / COVID-19 dominates headlines and social media, my first concern is to have my heart fixed on the knowledge of God and walking in friendship with him. My second priority is to ask, “how can I serve my neighbors in love?”

Of course, these were always the priorities. The goal in this trying and uncertain time is to keep those priorities when overwhelming circumstances tempt me to focus on something else.

And I know that for many of you, the greatest challenge is the sudden loss of a job, or a business, or retirement income, or closest to home, unexpected and unfortunate news about your own health or that of a loved one.

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Hebrews 10:23-25 reads,

And let us consider how to stir up one another to love and good works, not neglecting to meet together, as is the habit of some, but encouraging one another, and all the more as you see the Day drawing near.

To stir one another on today, and to encourage each other, I want to ask: what is God teaching you during this global pandemic?

For me, I am understanding in a new way the meaning of Isaiah 40:6-8,

A voice says, “Cry!”
And I said, “What shall I cry?”
All flesh is grass,
and all its beauty is like the flower of the field.
The grass withers, the flower fades
when the breath of the LORD blows on it;
surely the people are grass.
The grass withers, the flower fades,
but the word of our God will stand forever.

Our human frailty is being exposed in a severe and painful way right now.

My prayers are that with God’s help we will find new ways to control and cure this virus.

But until then - and even then - the only firm grounding for our lives is the word of our God.

May we each come to see our weakness and neediness for God and his word in this difficult season. May he renew our strength in this time of weakness.


Please do share how God is speaking to you from his word in this time.

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Carson, it has had positive ramifications. As Carrie talk about in her thread on the subject, it has made for more family time. My daughter has 9 children and her husband is a department head at a major university. She just takes her kids to school and runs after them for sporting events. They finally have family time.

The other thing that has hit me is it is a time that we need to be in prayer. Many are afraid and much more open to discussions about life. We need to pray, pray, pray. I have proposed that there must be an app or we use Google Meet, etc, that we can utilize to pray with a group of people. It is imperative that we pray hard right now.

I often see prayer as a call to action. We need to be sensitive to the Holy Spirit’s leading as how we can reach out. It’s difficult when we are all advised to stay home but maybe it is a phone call or a Facetime that we are prompted to use.

I’m so grateful that I serve a sovereign Lord who, unlike us, is not taken by surprise by all of this and sees how it can be used mightily for the Kingdom.

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For me Corona virus opened the door for great conversations with those who are not believers. A few days ago I had a conversation with a friend in which I told her that our life is so unpredictable and fragile and that Corona virus.
I live in an apartment building, so I have been leaving gospel tracts in the laundry room and people have been reading them. The building has some people from Many countries including Syria, Iraq.
Since My job is in medical care, I have been going to work.

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Hi Carson, thank you for sharing this.

One passage that the Lord has been constantly bringing to my mind in this time is Phi 4:6-7

6 Do not be anxious about anything, but in every situation, by prayer and petition, with thanksgiving, present your requests to God. 7 And the peace of God, which transcends all understanding, will guard your hearts and your minds in Christ Jesus.

I believe that, as Christians, we ought to be careful and use wisdom in seasons like this. Follow guidelines from our local authorities and physicians.

However, what makes us different is what, or actually Who, we carry inside. These verses remind me that we can have peace even in the midst of such difficult times.

I’ve being sharing this message with my congregation and it has have a very positive impact. We are all being careful and watchful, at the same time we are encouraging each other to find peace and rest in the Lord.

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I love this distinction! Everyone can be wise and follow the best public health guidance. But as followers of Jesus, we have the unique opportunity to walk in the peace of Christ!! Thank you for encouraging my heart today.

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The pandemic has prompted me to think a lot about a lot of things:

  • Corporate sin: 1 Chronicles 21 talks about the sin of national pride. King David counted Israel’s military strength. He forgot that God delights not in military strength, but in “those who fear him, in those who hope in his steadfast love” (Psalm 147:11, ESV). Israel became guilty of national pride through David’s sin (1 Chronicles 21:3), and, therefore, suffered plague for it. Israel learned that military power cannot defeat this enemy. Tens of thousands fell. It stopped only because God ordered his angel to halt at the gates of Jerusalem (verse 15). The threat ended after King David–and Israel through him–repented. I see exactly the same thing in our present day. God has sent this plague in order to show us how feeble we truly are before Him. Military, scientific, and economic power have not stopped this plague. It will stop when we repent of pride and hope in Him and His eternal love. I think that we are seeing evidence around the world that people are starting to do this. I am seeing a little less chest-thumping, and a little more chest-beating. Let this continue.
  • The Meaning of Sabbath: Others have touched on this here as it pertains to family relationships, so I will not belabor that point. I have gained a deeper understanding of Leviticus 26:34-35, however. We have been consumed by business in all aspects of life. Everyone is on the go all the time, at least in industrialized nations. This plague is forcing the entire world to rest. It is an amazing thing, and not to be ignored. A friend asked me, “What will happen to the economy?” We will need to trust God for that, I think. God is forcing us to turn to Him.
  • God Reveals Hearts: I saw a look of panic in another person’s eyes for the first time in my life. I also saw in another person a look of love and security. I do not think that there is any in between at this time. This pandemic is a test for me to see how far God has carried me.

These are just some thoughts that I have been thinking.

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This teaches us that God is sovereign over all things and that we are at his mercy. With work and schools shutting down, and businesses, events, and even whole countries in lock down mode, Psalms 46:10 echos loud and clear “He says, Be still and know that I am God.”

I feel pain for those who are suffering. My work and my family’s financial situation and health is at risk. But I praise the Lord that there is a place such as this where we can come together to build each other up by God’s word, his promises, and his peace. Let us pray, pray, pray.

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True and very interesting encouragement
God bless you :pray:

Hello, The things I have taken note of are some similarities I see.

Fear and panic when someone knows they are in Christ, and those who profess to know Him.
Some times there are lost people sitting In the same pew.

From the White House to the row house, no one is exempt.

Mans inate desire to make sense of it all but still leave God out of it.

How some choose to blame God and/or others, being judemental to cope with frustration anger.

The true thoughts and intents of all hearts are being revealed.

I see parallels, similarities to His word in these.

I think people will become less receptive to personal prayer, as virus progresses.

Will He save us? YES
Will He forgive us? YES
Will He find us faithful? YES
Will He stand up with us ? YES

His promises are all, YES and AMEN!!!
God bless and keep.
Mike

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I have been thinking about the Israelites going into Babylonian captivity.
The Lord said, the land would have it Sabbath rest which it had not been given, by the nation of Israel, while they occupied the land. In other words, they didn’t do what God commanded, and God is faithful to His word.
There are benefits we will see at first.
My concerns are what will be the long range results. Governments and societies are fragile human organizations.
My mind wants to stop short when I think of what may come…if God doesn’t sovereignly intervene to change rebellious hearts … (“To translate them from darkness into the kingdom of His dear Son”).
“The kindness of God, leads you to repentance.”

Good Morning :sun_with_face:
Dear Brother Mike…I feel happy to read your message.

I feel lonely, in the house,. Even the Church service is not possible, fear panic is every where here in Saint Louis, Senegal.

My greatest surprise is that, many Muslims are still keeping encouraging each other… many Christians friends are more than afraid? We call God our Father in heaven :pray: and Corona virus came. We started calling our President, Medical records Doctors become the Lord :pray::raised_hands:

I feel very concerned about the behavior of some, though, we need to be very careful with others,. But,. Christ Jesus is our refuge Psalms 19:1-14. 91-1-3.

People are locking the door and hardly coming out. For me, am indoor, but going many domestic work, Study, re organized things with out fear and praying :pray: it’s good for your encouragement. Brother Mike,. Many people need it in silence.

Million thanks!

Dear Mike,

God bless you and Protect you and your family. Amen :pray:

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@Billie I would “like,” but I exceeded my limit yesterday–alas! Here is my “like” :arrow_right: :heart: Nevertheless, I agree. I see some encouraging signs, though. People that I meet are thinking twice and seem more subdued. I do not see a lot of hostility. Today we had really good family time together, and I suspect that a lot of others did the same. Keep praying!

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Yes. There are some encouraging signs.
Sadly, I am very pessimistic about how long these side benefits will last.

While praying for people to be softened in their hearts through this present crisis, as I pray, the verses in Revelations comes into my mind. The ones that speak of the plagues being poured out on the earth and people rather being repentant…hardened their hearts even more and blasphemed…raging against the God of Heaven.

I will have to look of the specific verses now that I have said this so that I am not misquoting or misconstruing scripture. (Rev. 16: 9, 10, 11, 21)

It is hard to think that things can or will likely get worse. But, in a godless age…I can come to no other conclusion. God is righteous in all His ways. We deserve His wrath and judgement.

All praise, thanks and glory be to Him and to the Lamb…because He has washed us, cleansed us and reconciled us to Himself. Woe be to the inhabitants of the earth, who do not willingly humble themselves before Him, in repentance and faith.

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@Billie I happened to be doing classwork on my computer when you posted. I share your concern and prayers. I listened to my pastor’s voice crack with grief just now as he prayed on a video recording of the morning service that he preached to an empty auditorium. He felt the emptiness at that moment. A lot of people feel that.

You are right, though, that God is righteous in all his ways and that we deserve his wrath. I think that we should also keep in mind 2 Peter 3:9-10. God does not want anyone to perish. He wants all to come to repentance. The last day will come suddenly and with great fanfare. There have been many plagues much worse than this one before. I think that this one is another shot across the bow in keeping with God’s desire. That is not to say that you are necessarily wrong; far be it from me too doctrinaire in this matter.

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It touched me to hear of your pastor’s voice cracking speaking to an empty auditorium. Feeling the grief…it is so important that we feel that.

Yes, God is long-suffering, patient and kind, not willing that any should perish. Truly, I hope there will be a softening of hearts and a genuine turning to the Lord.

I was talking with a friend today…about how our culture has defended itself so resolutely against the very idea of God … and now, as a result of staunch atheism, God’s Word is unknown to many.

Nonetheless, God is not limited…
Throughout history He has sovereignly drawn sinners to Himself…
He will continue to do so until the end.

To resolve the conflict of these realities in living life, I have settled into prayer as a means of comfort and relief. When lift my eyes from an attitude of prayer, like Peter walking on the water to Jesus, I see little outward evidence for hope…and start to sink on account of the wind and waves.

The Holy Spirit always directs me back to the posture I need to maintain…The gospel of Christ reinforces and reminds me…
He alone is my hope.

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