As we continue to feel the shock waves of this worldwide plague, what do we really believe in our moments of fear, and even panic in the face of what’s going on? One thing is certain, no one is looking for platitudes and pat answers, including our children. They will see through ‘fake’ answers a mile away.
Through the ages, Christians have faced times of tremendous economic uncertainty, persecutions, isolation, wars and deadly plagues. Every time, the response has been consistent: we are going to persevere, ride the storm and put our trust in Jesus. This sort of ‘yankee’ no-nonsense attitude is precisely what John the Apostle conveys in Revelation. He sugar-coats nothing. If I may paraphrase the apostle:
The source of all evil is Satan but God allows Satan some measure of freedom to unleash his evil schemes on earth. Satan is the one who has come to “steal, kill and destroy” (John 10:10). But the larger picture is there is an end game, a Day of Judgement and Satan and evil won’t have the last word, far from it:
- The Day when creation will be set free from bondage to decay (Romans 8:21)
- The Day when we will be healed of all our diseases chief of which is death (I Corinthians 15:26)
- The Day when Satan himself will be destroyed for ever (Revelation 20).
So as we ride this storm, there is an end game to this present darkness and His name is Jesus. The story line from Christmas to Easter is that he came to save the World (John 3:17). The offer of salvation is now. So we are summoned to answer His call to believe in Him. If we put our faith in Jesus, we are set free and have already passed from death to life, from spiritual death to eternal life (John 5:25-29). This is why Christians through the ages have faced death so bravely. They know the Jerusalem above is home, not this present evil age. There is a day of reckoning coming when all wrongs will be made right. I am reminded with tears of that courageous Christian doctor in Wuhan who blew the whistle on this deadly virus, unheeded, and who is now singing the praises of the Living God in His presence. This is why John’s clarion call to endure (Revelation 14:12) rings so true today. The storms of life are real, but with the One who has conquered death “nothing will be able to separate us from the love of God (Romans 8:39)
In the coming days, allow yourself as families and individuals time to reflect how we can reach out and be a voice of mercy to those around us. Now is the time to share in active ways the comfort of Jesus; it may be words of encouragement, or, more directly, the message of salvation that is found in the mighty Name of Jesus.