On Monday I posted here about how sin being in the world, leads to a world under the judgement of God. This in turn leads on to an expectation that calamities will be known in this sin stricken world. Today I want to consider as to whether we can make a direct connection between the fact that certain sins are promoted today and the giving by God of the coronavirus.
One passage which bears upon our consideration is Luke 13:1-5. The passage read:
There were some present at that very time who told him about the Galileans whose blood Pilate had mingled with their sacrifices. And he answered them, “Do you think that these Galileans were worse sinners than all the other Galileans, because they suffered in this way? No, I tell you; but unless you repent, you will all likewise perish. Or those eighteen on whom the tower in Siloam fell and killed them: do you think that they were worse offenders than all the others who lived in Jerusalem? No, I tell you; but unless you repent, you will all likewise perish.”
Here the Lord is warning against the tendency that we have to categorise sins and sinners. Behind this tendency is the desire to “get ourselves off the hook” because we are not such bad sinners as others. It is very dangerous to engage in such thinking and we put our souls in peril if we do,. Rather as the Lord exhorts in v3 and v5 we should realise we all sin and are sinners and we need to repent.
However, this does not take away from the fact that in the Word of God we see the Lord portrayed as the One who does bring specific judgements as a result of specific sins. The fact that He does this shows that He is not some frenzied tyrant who deals out “the bad stuff” willy-nilly. Rather He is the One who brings just retribution for those involved in the pursuit of ways which are against his will.
Consider the taking away of the northern kingdom of Israel in 722 BC by the Assyrians. The Lord makes it patently clear that He did this because of their specific sins. So we read in 2 kings 17:7-17 how the nation rejected the commandments of the Lord, set up false worship and engaged in child sacrifice. That leads to the conclusion in v18a Therefore the Lord was very angry with Israel and removed them out of his sight. There is a direct connection between their sin and His judgement.
Further if we go back to the first big judgement after the fall, that of the flood, we see that it was because: the wickedness of man was great in the earth, and that every intention of the thoughts of his heart was only evil continually (Gen 6:5).
As a final representation of this principle that specific sin leads to specific judgement consider how the church at Ephesus was threatened with the termination of their existence because they had abandoned their first love (see Rev. 2:4-5).
We seem today to be possessed of a great hesitancy of attributing certain disasters to certain sins. Our forebears were more bold. J.C Ryle writing about the cattle plague of 1865-7 in the UK wrote in respect of the cause thereof:
It has come upon us because of our national sins. God has a controversy with England, because of many things among us which are displeasing in His sight. He would gladly awaken us to a sense of our iniquities. This cattle plague is a message from Heaven.
He then goes on to list the specific national sins. You can read the document here.
Matthew McMahon on The Puritan Board discussion forum here says this: A number of Puritans (including Vincent and Mead), were directly involved in the plagues and fires of London. Mead saw the plague as a direct example of God’s wrath against the city for its sin and wickedness. Vincent saw the great fire in the same way. The reference here is to the Great Plague and Great Fire which occurred in London in 1665 and 1666 respectively.
So what are we to say of the present happenings. I make two observations:
The Chinese authorities have set themselves over the last two years to seek to establish total submission from all entities in the country to the Communist party. They want control; they want to take the place of God. The Christian Church is one of the entities which has borne the brunt of the increased repression with church buildings being burnt to the ground for example.
It is interesting that China was the source of the coronavirus infection and has borne the brunt of its effects thus far. The Communist Party which sought to control everything has found itself with a phenomenon that it could not control. Surely we can see the God who truly is, showing that to defy Him has consequences.
The pernicious LGBT+ agenda has rampaged through western societies over the past twenty five years. It has all the capacities if a virus. In fact it is an ideological virus. It has been an attack on two fundamental God given teachings which lead to orderly society and the healthy development of wholesome human interactions. These are that we are born male and female and that marriage is between one man and one woman for life to the exclusion of all others. The desire and intention to indoctrinate all into the new dogmas is being undertaken with a vengeance. Most international organisations have fallen to the might of those propagating these ideas. The promise is that a new freedom will pertain which will release mankind into a new age of security, peace and advance. And woe betide anyone who will not conform!
The fact that the coronavirus has spread throughout the world makes me to ponder upon how God is signifying His disapproval of the LGBT+ virus which is increasingly infecting the whole world. In sending the coronavirus God is saying that the new zeitgeist will not bring in a utopian state. Security, peace and advance only come when He is acknowledged as Lord and His ways are held to as those which are healthy and wholesome.
I suggest that through the coroanvirus God is providentially working out His judgement purposes. To resist God in terms of His role of ultimate authority (exemplified in China), and Him in being the establisher of the way which is most healthy and best for humanity (exemplified by the LGBT+ agenda) is not consequence free.
You may feel I have overstated my case in this post. That may be so. But I do want us to be aware that God is not indifferent to the rejection of Himself and His ways on His planet. He sovereignly governs for His own glory.
If I am guilty of drawing too many connections that does not take away from the poignancy of the connections made. If you and I only take heed to the principles that to submit to God as Lord and to embrace His way as the way of life, stability, peace and advance that will be good.
And finally to be aware that sin leads to catastrophe will always be edifying for us. In fact it is a mercy of God to know that He is stepping in to show us the consequences of our errors. This all forewarns us of an eternal reality. For in hell the message resounds loud and clear, and that eternally, that ultimate outcome of sin is catastrophe upon catastrophe. As we have a sniff of these realities in the present judgement of the coronavirus let us urgently flee from the wrath to come.