Bradley’s Blog
A Biblical Response to an Epidemic
 
      With the world being flooded with the latest COVID-19 epidemic, many people are in a state of panic. Most places have completely shut down, sports have stopped for months, people are mass buying almost anything they think they may need, and the economy is heading down. It’s easy to look around at the things going on in the world today and feel hopeless. What’s really fascinating is when people are in a state of panic and hopelessness they are seeking someone or something to cling to that will give them hope in the midst of the chaos around them. This can be one of the greatest opportunities to share Jesus with people and the hope that He gives us all. As Christians how do we respond to this epidemic that’s striking our world
 

1. Should People Quarantine?

 

     The answer is yes. Leprosy was the major epidemic infecting the people in the Old Testament and God gave them regulations if they contracted it which included to quarantine for 14 days. Check out this passage in Leviticus.

 

     “The Lord spoke to Moses and Aaron, saying, “When a person has on the skin of his body a swelling or an eruption or a spot, and it turns into a case of leprous[a] disease on the skin of his body, then he shall be brought to Aaron the priest or to one of his sons the priests, and the priest shall examine the diseased area on the skin of his body. And if the hair in the diseased area has turned white and the disease appears to be deeper than the skin of his body, it is a case of leprous disease. When the priest has examined him, he shall pronounce him unclean. But if the spot is white in the skin of his body and appears no deeper than the skin, and the hair in it has not turned white, the priest shall shut up the diseased person for seven days. And the priest shall examine him on the seventh day, and if in his eyes the disease is checked and the disease has not spread in the skin, then the priest shall shut him up for another seven days. And the priest shall examine him again on the seventh day, and if the diseased area has faded and the disease has not spread in the skin, then the priest shall pronounce him clean; it is only an eruption. And he shall wash his clothes and be clean. But if the eruption spreads in the skin, after he has shown himself to the priest for his cleansing, he shall appear again before the priest. And the priest shall look, and if the eruption has spread in the skin, then the priest shall pronounce him unclean; it is a leprous disease.” (Leviticus 13:1-8, ESV)

 

     Leprosy was spread very easily by contact with another person, so if you had any symptom at all of possibly having this disease you were told to isolate yourself from people for 14 days so no one else has a chance of getting infected. If you were considered clean after 14 days you were free to engage in society again. If you had leprosy after 14 days you were still made to quarantine again until there was no sign of the leprosy on you. This ensured the best they could that the rest of the people in your area would not get leprosy and this had the greatest chance of ending the disease. Some that got leprosy were not in critical condition but others that got it died from it. The reason they made people isolate themselves from society is not because everyone in society would be impacted by it or end up in a critical state, but they knew if some people in their society got it, they would likely not survive and their lives were just as valuable to the society as the ones that were not badly affected. Because of this everyone took the precautions to ensure the whole society could be as healthy as possible. This is exactly what leadership in our country is asking of us right now. It’s not unbiblical and in fact it’s very biblical and it’s to ensure the best we can a healthy environment for all that live here. This is because each member of the body of Christ is just as valuable as the rest and if we have to sacrifice a little something to ensure the best we can one member is healthy and thriving that is worth it and needed.

 

2. Understand that God is still in control

 

     In the Book of Exodus, the people in Egypt experienced horrible plagues. Moses would plead with Pharaoh to let the Israelites go, but every time he decided to keep them enslaved and ignore God’s message from Moses. Because of Pharaoh’s hard heart the Egyptians faced plague after plague. When the Israelites finally broke free from Egypt, Pharaoh sent his army after them to capture them and force them to return to slavery in Egypt. As the Israelites were crossing the Red Sea that Moses parted with God working through him, the Egyptians were hot on their tail. As the Israelites were coming up on the other side of the sea, the waters crashed back down and drowned all the Egyptians. This was great news for the Isrealites as God had delivered them from the hand of the Egyptians. This was not the end of the story, however. God told the Israelites that He would bring them into the Promised Land. What He didn’t tell them was that they would have to go through the wilderness to get there.

 

     As the Israelites were going through the wilderness they started complaining about not having enough food and the type of food that God was providing for them. Because of their sins against God, He told them they would have to wander in the wilderness for 40 years before they entered the Promised Land. Throughout those 40 years many of the people died and a new generation was born. By the time God led the Israelites into the Promised Land through Joshua, a lot of the ones that started the journey were no longer there and there were many new people that joined along the way. After 40 years God did lead the Isralites into the Promised Land and it was a land flowing of milk and honey. It was everything they could have ever hoped for. God fulfilled His promise and blessed his children. Right now many of us in the wilderness and we can’t see the Promised Land. I want to encourage you to stay faithful to God and trust in Him because the Promised Land is coming. Whether we see it on earth r not, all of God’s children will one day enter into His kingdom which is the ultimate Promised Land. Put your hope in Jesus during this time because everything you see around you is temporary including the virus, but our relationship with Jesus is eternal and one day we will be in a Promised Land where there is no pain or suffering and we’ll have eternal joy.

 

3. Value Others Above Yourself

 
 

     All of this roots back to where your heart is. If your heart is all about yourself, you’ll go and hoard all the possible supplies you may need and only worry about your health and wellbeing. Life is not about us. As my fiance’ reminded me earlier this week, although the virus may not be effecting us, the way we act will affect other people. This means taking the appropriate measures to ensure the best we can we keep those the most at risk safe from the virus. This also means that we make sure that everyone can get the supplies they need. You don’t need 50 rolls of toilet paper for the next two weeks, but 5 families may and if you take all 50 then 4 families may go without any. Although this is bad with toilet paper, it’s a whole lot more serious with canned food, drinks, and produce. Think about others before yourself.

 

“Do nothing from selfish ambition or conceit, but in humility count others more significant than yourselves.” (Phil. 2:3, ESV)

 
     If you have a chance this week to help someone that is elderly or at a high risk or even someone that’s sick, let’s be the hands and feet of Jesus. If someone is afraid or can’t go out and get groceries, take some time to go in there and get them what they need and then take it to them. Take time to call those that need a little encouragement. Ask people what you can do to help. In everything we do pray for our country, those countries around the world also dealing with this, and for those that are sick, scared, or hopeless right now. Spread Jesus to all those you talk to by your actions and words and show them the hope that is in you. God bless!
 
 
– Student Pastor Bradley
TACOS Prayer Guide
 
Tomato of Thankfulness 
 
Avocado of Addaration 
 
Cheese of Confession
 
Onions of Others
 
Salsa of Self
 
 
Lettuce of Listening