What can we learn from the coronavirus pandemic, and what does the Bible say we should focus on during this difficult time?
[Darris McNeely] We’ve been inundated in dealing with the avalanche of the Coronavirus, the COVID-19 virus that has become a pandemic. We made many comments here on BT Dailies about this. The numbers are changing daily. We are grappling with all of the disruption to our lives and as we do this, I think we should understand something that will at least help us again keep it all in perspective. And that is, as we deal with this pandemic, the world continues, events are taking place. And when we get beyond this, we’re going to have to pick up where the world left off just a few days ago when all of the pandemic hit virtually every nation in the world. Let’s talk about a few of those. Let’s look for a moment at abortion. It just seems like about two weeks ago or more that a major protest was held on the steps of the Supreme Court in Washington, D.C. as the Supreme court took up a case from the State of Louisiana where a law was in place that required abortion doctors to have admission rights at hospitals before they could perform an abortion.
What struck Americans in many ways about that was the presence of a United States senator, a former Majority Leader of the Senate who spoke to the crowd on those steps and then turned and made a very threatening statement to two of the justices of the Supreme Court, threatening them with retribution if they in their judgments ruled against a woman’s right to abortion. It shocked many people and made calls for even a censure of this senator. It was an unprecedented step taken in public by a senator. It’s almost forgotten. The Democratic primary that just happened this week in several states in Illinois, there was a pro-life Democratic Congressman who lost in his bid for reelection to a more progressive pro-abortion candidate. This particular long-standing senator had been more toward pro-life, but he was a Democrat. And the Democratic Party is rapidly moving toward a completely pro-abortion setting advocating and pushing this culture of death that has swept America and the world for that matter, and they are not going to back down.
There’s a Proverb that perhaps we should note on this, it’s Proverbs 28:5 Proverbs 28:5Evil men understand not judgment: but they that seek the LORD understand all things.
American King James Version×, it says, “Evil men do not understand justice, but those who seek the Lord understand all.” Those of us that do understand God’s protection of the unborn and the sanctity of human life coming from God must continue to understand how God looks at it and the point of view that He teaches from the Bible regarding the sanctity of human life and not be overcome, not be overwhelmed by the dominating culture that is a part of our life. Evil men, it says, do not understand justice. We can never forget that particular point, but that’s what we see continually even as we battle this pandemic, this Coronavirus.
Now, let’s switch for a moment to a larger scale. Remember Brexit? Something that for the past few years has dominated the discussion in the United Kingdom as Great Britain had decided to exit the European Union and finally earlier this year, at the end of January, it was done. Great Britain was no longer a part of the European Union. What was left was just mopping up all the details and now that has been put on the back shelf because the United Kingdom is on the verge of a lockdown as they grapple with the Coronavirus. What has started and what has always been an effort to reduce nationalism, do away with national borders to focus on just being European and do away with the time-honored and time-understood approach of nation-states in the EU has now taken a change. Germany has put barriers on their borders. Austria has as well. In Italy, the one European nation that has been hit the hardest with this virus, they have understood now all too sadly, the ramifications of globalization. They’ve come to realize that as it was centered it seems on one large Northern industrial city where they had a large influx of Chinese workers coming in because of relationships that had developed between Italy and China, that was the source of the Coronavirus coming in as people went back and forth between Italy and China and they’ve been hit hard. Their medical infrastructure has not been able to keep up with it, but it’s being traced back to this idea of globalization once again.
So, the EU, they’re going to have to deal with this in the aftermath while even at the same time they try to implement certain agendas to grapple with their populations at the level of the European parliament. Let’s look at Iran for instance as well. Just a few days ago, they set off bombs that killed an American and a British soldier. Well, what normally would have seen a massive retaliation on the part of either the UK or America, nothing has happened because everybody is fighting the Coronavirus. That’ll have to be dealt with later. But Iran hasn’t gone away. Its nuclear ambitions and its agency within the Middle East in creating a lot of the mayhem and tension that is going on there. Then there’s an individual called Vladimir Putin, remember him? The leader of Russia. During all of this crisis, Mr. Putin has persuaded his Russian legislature to basically make him czar for life, czar for life. And it’ll probably be ratified giving him complete control over Russia for the remainder of his life. Russia is continuing to be a major player in the Middle East at least with Turkey and Iraq and Iran in that whole complex situation there. So, that’ll have to be visited once we get past the Coronavirus. Turkey itself has got hundreds of thousands of Syrian refugees massed on its borders, all who want to pass through and go into Europe where they would be much, much safer.
And that too is an ongoing issue of human rights and human migrations that we’re overloading countries beforehand who now, again, have their resources all taken up with the Coronavirus. Many nations that do business with China are going to have to step back and take a hard look at the business that they do with them. America, in particular, has outsourced so much to the workshops of China. Penicillin is no longer made in the United States. So many drugs, critical drugs that people rely on are manufactured in China. Supply chains for automobiles and industry in so much of the world, China is right there. And once the dust settles, again, there’s going to have to be a reckoning. There’s going to have to be some decisions made by individuals as they look at what all of this is going to mean for their livelihood and the future of these nations and these countries.
And so, all of this is going to come back. And that is something that again, we’ve just got to focus on and realize the world continues to turn as we deal with the impact of the Coronavirus. But you know, as you and I look at this and as we think about its impact on our own life, every one of us has been impacted. Probably the biggest question for us to think about is what will we learn and what will we be like once we come out on the other end of this epidemic, this pandemic that’s taken place? But you know, while we think about the social distancing that we have to do, let’s not forget that we are social beings, that we are created in the image of God and we are created to need a relationship with God, but also to need a relationship with one another. No matter how introverted we might be in our own lives, we do need one another. And at a time like this, we do need to step up and look after one another and care for one another. We’ve been heartened by so many great stories that you hear of how people have been generous, how people have helped. I heard of one restaurant in Florida that was, I guess in its last hours before it was shutting down and someone came in with a lot of money, had the spare cash to do this and distributed $10,000 among the workers that were there in this restaurant as they were facing layoff.
You’ve probably seen the videos of Italians standing on their balconies singing to one another, playing accordions and socializing in that way. Keep in touch with your family, with your co-workers, with your friends, with your neighbors. Text them, see how they’re doing. Stay in touch. The sound of a human voice. The idea that someone else is out there thinking about us and caring about us goes a very, very long way. And let’s make sure that we use all of those tools that are in our disposal. If you don’t see that neighbor walking the sidewalks or the streets in front of your house for a day or two, check in on them. Give them a call, see how they’re doing. Let’s not forget one another during this time. There’s a Psalm that has struck me as I’ve thought about this. It’s in Psalm 139. It’s a Psalm that actually speaks directly from King David to God about God’s presence, God’s ever-watchful care. The fact that we can’t really escape God’s presence and His knowledge and understanding about us and what’s taking place. And there’s a passage of this I thought that was very good. That I think helps us to show how we should be with one another as God is with us.
Let me read it to you. It’s in Psalm 139 beginning in verse 7. He writes, “Where can I go from your spirit? If I take the wings of the morning and dwell in the outermost parts of the sea, even there, your hand shall lead me.” And certainly, this is very comforting as we think about God’s presence with us and His care for us, but let’s again make sure that we turn that to our fellow man because we are to love our neighbor as we love God as the teaching of Christ is. In verse 11, it says, “If I say, “Surely the darkness shall fall on me, even the night shall be light about me. Indeed, the darkness shall not hide from you, but the night shines as the day, the darkness and the light are both alike to you.”
Let’s keep the lights on. God keeps the lights on with us, let’s make sure that we keep the lights on with one another in whatever way we can to make sure that our relationships are deepened first with God, but with one another. The world continues to turn, and once we get through this time, we’re going to need to touch base even closer with God and with one another to make sure that we keep a proper perspective of what has happened and what is yet to lie ahead in the world, in our lives.
That’s BT Extra. Thanks for joining us and we’ll see you next time.