Individuals and states have not responded well to the virus:
Walking with my dogs a few hours ago I was thinking about how we have responded to the corona virus over the past 15 months or so. It seems that both as individuals and as governments we have responded very poorly indeed. And being a Christian, I cannot leave God out of this discussion. Where does he fit in all this?
One obvious question that always arises in times like this is the following: Is the corona virus the judgment of God on a sinful and rebellious world? Short answer: it certainly could be. Back in March 20 of last year I wrote about how God can and does use plagues, sickness, disease and related measures as acts of judgment: billmuehlenberg.com/2020/03/20/plagues-panic-and-providence/
If this is at least being allowed by God – if not something much more direct – the real issue it seems to me is how have we responded? As mentioned, both the state and individuals have responded quite badly in my books. Let me speak to each in turn.
The state and corona
This is now my 127th article on this virus. A few folks have said I have written too much on this. But with a virus sweeping the world for over a year now, it is not some light and passing topic. It is something all of us, and all states, are thinking about and having to deal with – big time.
And as I warned very early on, statists love a crisis, and will use it to the max to further consolidate power and control over the masses. They will ramp up the fearmongering and the panic porn. And worse yet, the sheeple, fully buying all the alarmism and fear, will happily give up basic human rights and freedoms to the State so they can be kept “safe”.
Indeed, the third piece I wrote on corona, back on March 12, 2020, was about this very issue. In it I said this:
The state is ever willing to seize control of things, but is very loathe to give up control. Thus a public health crisis is just the sort of thing that power-hungry politicians will latch onto in order to grab more control and power. And that means much less liberty and freedom for ordinary citizens. If politicians only had the best interests of its citizenry at heart we could all relax. But they seldom do. Any excuse will do to take more power while leaving individuals less free. That is certainly one of the clear lessons of history. billmuehlenberg.com/2020/03/12/crises-liberty-and-the-state/
And I did not have to be a prophet to say that over a year ago. In fact, things have become far worse than I could have imagined. The insane lockdowns, border closures and deprivation of basic freedoms have been staggering to behold. Right now we have most Australian states going into full-tilt tyranny with a handful of new cases.
Even NSW under Berejiklian, which had been doing rather well so far, has now gone full-blown alarmist. All of these leaders of course insist that they are simply following the best medical advice. Yeah right, advice that changes by the day, that seems to have no empirical or scientific basis, and that is simply all over the place.
For example, one day the experts are telling us the Rona is dangerous for 23 hours a day, and then they tell us it is now only deadly for 22 hours a day. Or the virus can get you if you go over five kilometres away from home, but then it can only attack you from ten kms from home.
And the other day we had – again, on ‘sound health advice’ – the utterly absurd decision as to how some fans were allowed into a Geelong Cats football game. The stadium can hold 36,000 people, but our elites decided to cram all 7000 spectators into one small section of the stadium! Idjuts!
Most states have just gone nutso with over-the-top restrictions, lockdowns and all the rest, with no regard to any strong evidence or a sense of proportionality. It is all about the big stick approach, and let the masses be damned. Yet plenty of studies have shown just how counterproductive and even harmful most of these severe measures have been.
Sure, some political leaders have been quite sensible in all this, but they seem to be in the minority. In the US one thinks of Kristi Noem, governor in South Dakota, and Ronald DeSantis, governor in Florida, as a few champions who are putting the people ahead of attempts at dictatorial government control.
And thankfully some new revelations from those who still put truth ahead of ideology and health fascism are now confirming what we have long suspected. It seems the virus was indeed the manmade product of Wuhan labs. Check out this piece for more on this: www.skynews.com.au/details/_6260259898001
Worse yet, Western science – which is supposed to be our saviour – keeps getting implicated in all of this. Even our own top Australian science body, CSIRO, seems to be up to its ears in gain-of-function research, and fully in bed with the Wuhan labs: www.skynews.com.au/details/_6260962459001
See also this piece: www.skynews.com.au/details/_6260960165001
While much of the mainstream media is covering this up, or under-reporting it, thankfully groups like Fox News and Sky News are running with it. Indeed, Australian Sky News journalist Sharri Markson has even penned a brand-new book on this which is full of explosive revelations of just what is going on here. Check out the HarperCollins volume, What Really Happened in Wuhan: The Cover-Ups, the Conspiracies and the Classified Research.
The individual and corona
But how have individuals responded to this crisis? There would be plenty of different responses, but let me focus on just one area. If the Rona is in fact a means by which God is judging the earth, or at least trying to get our attention, then one would have to say that most folks are not responding very well at all.
Now divine judgment can have at least two main purposes. One, it can simply be the judicial penalty and punishment for sin. It is about people getting what they deserve – about receiving their just deserts. We are all ripe for divine judgment, and God is under no obligation to spare us sinful and disobedient rebels of it.
But often it is also an act of God’s mercy and grace. It can be used to drive people back to God. It is hoped that God’s judgments will help sinners (which we all are) see the evil of their ways, repent, and turn back to God. So judgment and mercy often cohere.
But the question is: are we seeing any waves of repentance and revival so far? Let me repeat here a story I have shared before. A few days after some severe bush fires swept through the nation’s capital Canberra some years ago, destroying numerous homes, I was driving around with a Christian leader there looking at some of the damage. I asked him: “So, did this result in any moves of turning to God?” He laughed and said “No”.
Even great calamities and disasters are no guarantee that people will turn to God and that sinners will repent. Often they will keep right on living their sinful and selfish lifestyles. Scripture certainly bears this out. Some of the most shocking and alarming passages found in all of the Bible come from the book of Revelation in this regard.
The book is of course in large measure all about the judgment of God on unrepentant mankind. Heavy duty judgments are dished out by God, but still people do not repent! Consider what we find in Rev. 9:20-21: “The rest of mankind, who were not killed by these plagues, did not repent of the works of their hands nor give up worshiping demons and idols of gold and silver and bronze and stone and wood, which cannot see or hear or walk, nor did they repent of their murders or their sorceries or their sexual immorality or their thefts.”
Wow. But there are other passages like this as well. Rev 16:8-11 says this:
The fourth angel poured out his bowl on the sun, and it was allowed to scorch people with fire. They were scorched by the fierce heat, and they cursed the name of God who had power over these plagues. They did not repent and give him glory. The fifth angel poured out his bowl on the throne of the beast, and its kingdom was plunged into darkness. People gnawed their tongues in anguish and cursed the God of heaven for their pain and sores. They did not repent of their deeds.
Also, Rev. 16:21 says the following: “And great hailstones, about one hundred pounds each, fell from heaven on people; and they cursed God for the plague of the hail, because the plague was so severe.” No matter how bad things get, these folks refuse to turn to God, but instead hate on him even more.
But it is not just individuals who need to repent. In the past entire nations have sought God together to deal with calamities. For example, if widespread drought or famine or war was impacting a land, good leaders would often make a covenant with the people to seek the Lord. They would even proclaim national days of prayer and fasting.
We have not just many biblical examples of this, but history itself records cases of this. President Lincoln for example had done this more than once. See my write up about this here: billmuehlenberg.com/2019/10/11/on-national-prayer/
So prayer and repentance is the order of the day. It does not matter if we know for sure that corona is a definite judgment of God. We still all need to seek God’s face and ask for his mercy and deliverance. Individuals and nations should both be involved in this.
Will such a turn to God happen today with the Rona? Time will tell. Let’s pray that it does.