Welcome to the age of widespread panic and fear! Never before have I seen such fear in the lives of people around me. WHY? It is not because of the virus itself that is circulating (Coronavirus), it is because of what is happening in our communities around the world, it is the fear of the unknown that has been hyped because of the virus. I am going to preface this blog with the statement that I am not saying that you should disregard this virus. Yes, you should practice good hygiene, that is not a new thing! Yes, if you don’t feel well, do not go to work, school or to any functions that you had planned, also not a new idea. What I will say is that for those who have placed their faith in Christ you have NOT been given a spirit of fear! (2 Timothy 1:7)
Some I have talked to in the last few days have said, “well I don’t fear the virus itself, but I’m afraid of the chaos that it is wreaking on society. What if hospitals don’t have enough beds for the sick, what if the economy shuts down and tanks, what if I can’t finish my degree, what if I contract the coronavirus, etc.” Okay, so let me pose this to you. EVEN IF these things happen, why are you afraid? EVEN in these circumstances, God still occupies the throne. EVEN when you are faced with the unknown in your life, the cross has the final word. One of my favorite passages in scripture is Hebrews 6:17-20. God has shown us convincingly of His unchanging character of his purpose through an oath. Scripture here says “so that by two unchangeable things, in which it is impossible for God to lie, we who have fled for refuge might have strong encouragement to hold fast to the hope set before us. We have this as a sure and steadfast anchor of the soul, a hope that enters into the inner place behind the curtain, where Jesus has gone as a forerunner on our behalf.” So think about it. God has promised us who believe in Him and in His Son, Jesus a guarantee of salvation; life eternal. This is what anchors us in these chaotic times, this is what gives us peace. Jesus in His finished work on the cross opened the veil that separated us from accessing the “Most Holy Place”, the place where God’s presence resides. Those unchangeable things of God are His promises/ purpose and his oath. He is the same today as he was yesterday and will be in the future. He DOES NOT change his mind!
God has told us before, warning us, that in this life we will have trouble, but he has also encouraged us to be courageous and not be afraid. Look at what he tells us in John 16:33, “I have said these things to you, that in me you may have peace. In the world you will have trouble (tribulation). But take heart; I have overcome the world.” When we rest in his promises and the hope that he has given to us through Jesus, we can experience peace through the darkest of times. Those who do not have this assurance only see and experience the fear that is running rampant. They are caught up in it which is what the evil one wants. Those whose eyes are on the chaos, the fear, do not have their eyes fixed on Jesus! God has promised those whose trust is in him that NOTHING can separate us from his love, WE ARE SEALED! Romans 8:35 asks the question “Who shall separate us from the love of Christ? Shall tribulation, or distress, or persecution, or famine, or nakedness, or danger, or sword?” God answers through Paul, in verse 37, “No, in all these things we are more than conquerors through him who loved us. For I am SURE that neither death nor life, nor angels nor rulers, nor things present nor things to come, nor powers, nor height nor depth, nor anything else in all creation (including the coronavirus and it’s effects), will be able to separate us from the love of God in Christ Jesus our Lord.” Evil can put up it’s strongest fight (as The New’s Boys song goes), but again, there is nothing stronger than the name of Jesus; His cross has the final word! As we go forward in the next days and weeks, encourage those who are struggling with fear and remember that “God is our refuge and strength, a very present help in trouble. Therefore we will not fear . . .” (Psalm 46:1-2a).