Fear vs. Faith
With all the hype and news media blasting us with a never-ending barrage of headlines of the Coronavirus epidemic, people are once again losing their minds and living in fear of the “what ifs.” Especially now, as of March 11th, The World Health Organization has labeled the Coronavirus a “pandemic.” So, what is the Coronavirus?
I go to Wikipedia quite frequently as they usually have a line on anything you seek. They define Coronavirus as: Coronaviruses are a group of viruses that cause diseases in mammals and birds. In humans, coronaviruses cause respiratory tract infections that are typically mild, such as the common cold, though rarer forms such as SARS, MERS, and COVID-19 can be lethal. Symptoms vary in other species: in chickens, they cause an upper respiratory tract disease, while in cows and pigs they cause diarrhea. There are yet to be vaccines or antiviral drugs to prevent or treat human coronavirus infections.
Also, for a better understanding, maybe it would be a good idea to define what is an epidemic and the difference between that term and “pandemic.” According to Difference.Wiki, “Epidemics and Pandemic relates to the spread of disease. Epidemics is the outbreak of the disease in a community may be during a season in which a lot of people of the community got that disease. Pandemic is also the outbreak of a disease that is spread globally. Based on this definition, we could call the common cold a pandemic every winter!
Also, from the CDC and World Health Organization are the current statistics on the spread of Covid-19: USA Cases Confirmed- 1,401 Fatal- 40 Recovered-15
Global Cases Confirmed- 133,039 Fatal-4,947 Recovered-68,891
These statistics were updated as of March 12th, 2020 at 2 PM.
To put it perspective, as an example, the population of China is 1.386 billion. Even if we assume that 16.5 million people in China were to get this coronavirus, that would only be 0.0012% of the population! So why all the panic?
Satan loves to create panic and he is the father of all lies (John 8:44). He loves nothing better than to deceive God’s people (Rev. 12:9) and challenge our faith in Our Creator. How many of us have sat around wondering if “will I catch this virus?” or maybe even cancel plans for fear of contracting the Coronavirus?
Well hopefully this short essay can reassure you of who we are, Who we serve and not to give in to the spirit of fear. “For God has not given us a spirit of fear, but of power, and of love and of sound-mindedness,”-2 Timothy 1:7.
The Word of God is replete with His assurances not to fear and that He is always with us. “Say to those of a fearful heart, “be strong, fear not; behold, your God will come with vengeance, with the full recompense of God. He will come and save you.”-Isaiah 35:4.
The enemy would have us crawl into a cave at every rattle of his sword, causing us to doubt Our God and His Word. Fearing Satan and his wiles should not be in our thoughts if we are a true called saint (James 4:7). If we are to fear anything or anyone it is to be The Lord. “The fear of the Lord is the beginning of wisdom; and the knowledge of the holy is understanding.”-Proverbs 9:10 “But I tell you, My friends, you should not be afraid of those who kill the body, and after that are not able to do anything more. But I will show you Whom you should fear. Fear Him Who after He has killed, has authority to cast into the fire of Gehenna. Yes, I tell you, fear Him!””-Luke 12:4-5.
The news media will never let a good crisis go to waste. They will fan the flames of rhetoric and definitely make mountains out of mole hills. Every network channel on the nightly news is full of stories on the Coronavirus outbreak. People are clearing shelves in supermarkets of hand cleaner, toilet paper, bottled water and so on. Fear driven. We see people wearing particle masks all over the globe, afraid they’ll catch something. As soon as they take it off, they touch their faces with their hands.
Does this mean we are to be foolish and ignore such things as the Coronavirus? Certainly not. But we have wisdom, discernment, prayer and faith in God and His Word to stand on. “For we walk by faith, not by sight.”-2 Corinthians 5:7.
We must live in this world but we have been called out of it, set apart, chosen. “But you are a chosen stock, a royal priesthood, a holy nation, a people for a possession of God, that you might proclaim His excellent virtues, Who called you out of darkness into His marvelous light.”-1 Peter 2:9. “Do not be conformed yourselves to this world, but be transformed by the renewing of your mind in order that you may prove what is well pleasing and good, and the perfect will of God.”-Romans 12:2.
We must not allow ourselves to be pulled back into the mindset of anxiety or worry, nor succumb to the frenzies forced upon us by the evening news. Falling into this trap is a display of our lack of faith in God and His Word. It will serve as a poor example to our brothers and sisters of faith (1 Timothy 4:12). We know Our Savior Jesus Christ has overcome death and this world. “These things I have spoken to you, so that in Me you may have peace. In the world you shall have tribulation. But be courageous! I have overcome the world.”-John 16:33. We know He will never leave or forsake us (Hebrews 13:5-6).
Trials and tribulations will come. They will get worse (Matthew 24:21). The most important thing we can do as God’s elect is to be ready for when Our Savior returns (Matthew 25:13, Mark 13:32). That He may find a bride ready and presentable to The Father. We will not be in the image of Christ if we yield to the fears of this world. We may even risk our inheritance, “But the cowardly, and the unbelieving, and the abominable, and the murderers, and the fornicators, and the sorcerers, and the idolaters, and all liars, shall have their part in the lake that burns with fire and brimstone; which is the second death.”-Revelation 21:8.
So rather than live in fear and fall into the mainstream of paranoia, let us rather remember who we are, Who has chosen us and stand on His Word and His promises. “You are of God little children, and have overcome them because greater is He Who is in you than the one who is in the world.”-1 John 4:4