The text below is taken from a small tract our ministry handed out during summer of 2020.
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The coronavirus has been afflicting many people. What is the Christian response?
Did you know that the Biblical law contained rules for responding to disease?
The law required the sick to isolate, cover their mouths, and wash themselves and those they touched with running water (Lev 13:45-46; Lev 15:10-13). Those laws helped the nation that followed them. Modern suggestions have not changed much from what God said.
In the past, Christianity expanded when outbreaks of plague and disease occurred. This is because Christians taught to care for the sick knowing that Christ gave his life for the weak. The first civilian medical hospitals were created by Christians as charities and ministries.
Christianity teaches to meet the physical needs of the sick and hurting, but that it is more important to provide spiritual ministry to comfort the feeble and remove the fear of death.
During the Bubonic plague in Europe a third of the population died. Martin Luther, who lived during that plague said this:
“When people are dying, they most need spiritual ministry which strengthens and comforts.”
While most people will not die of the coronavirus, most are infected by the fear of death. Far less than .1 percent of the population has died from COVID-19, but everyone will eventually die of something. The fear of death is much more contagious.
To those that trust Christ, the Bible says this:
“For God hath not given us the spirit of fear; but of power, and of love, and of a sound mind.” (2 Tim 1:7)
The greatest response Christianity provides to the coronavirus fear, despair, and death is the essential message of hope, life, and peace in Jesus Christ.
The reason we must face death at all is due to the consequences of sin that breaks the natural order of life (Rom 5:12). Jesus Christ died to pay for sins, defeated death by his resurrection, and returned to offer us all the grace of eternal life, hope, and peace.
We all must face death, but without Christ it is just an hopeless end.
Trusting in what Jesus Christ did for us we have peace (Rom 5:1). By His power in resurrection, we can have eternal life freely. While we face death, we have a greater hope of glory afterward.
This gives the Christian courage (strength in the face of fear) to respond to the coronavirus with power, love, and a sound mind rather than the irrationality of fear and despair. For the Christian “the sufferings of this present time are not worthy to be compared to the glory that shall be revealed in us.” Romans 8:18
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This text was adapted from a lesson taught about the coronavirus and fear early in 2020. Listen to it here.