During a recent call-in to the live SAT-7 program Chato, an Egyptian boy said, “I’m not afraid because Jesus is with me. The coronavirus helped us to be more at home and spend more time together and understand one another better as a family.”
This boy knows the virus is threatening, yet he trusts God and he’s looking at how God can turn something evil into good.
It makes us stop and think—the coronavirus pandemic is governed by God.
For some, this proposition likely provides comfort and a sense of peace and well-being. Perhaps for others this statement leaves them with a sense of loss, anxiety, frustration, or even anger.
It depends upon our perspective of God and suffering.
Who is this God that we trust? God is:
- Omniscient – He knows all things: “Oh, the depth of the riches and wisdom and knowledge of God! How unsearchable are his judgments and how inscrutable his ways! For who has known the mind of the Lord, or who has been his counselor?” Or who has given a gift to him that he might be repaid? For from him and through him and to him are all things. To him be glory forever. Amen” (Romans 11:33-36).
- Omnipresent – He is everywhere: “The eyes of the Lord are in every place, keeping watch on the evil and the good” (Proverbs 15:3).
- Omnipotent – He is all powerful. He is the source and sustainer of all creation. His sovereignty, his providential authority governs this world and all of life. “All things were made through him, and without him was not any thing made that was made” (John 1:3).
God is omniscient, omnipresent, and omnipotent. He is in control, he is there where you are, and he is the mighty God of the universe.
In the Hollywood movie, “The Ten Commandments” (1956), after God used Moses (Charlton Heston) to demonstrate again and again who the Sovereign God really is, in the end, after Pharaoh’s army had been destroyed in the Red Sea, the Pharaoh Rames’s (Yul Brynner) wife derisively said, “You couldn’t even kill him,” to which Ramses replies, “His God is God.”
Yes, Moses’s God (our God) is God, sovereign over the plagues, Pharaoh, and armies of ancient Egypt – sovereign over the coronavirus pandemic today.
This is why we can say the pandemic is providential. The virus will result in suffering and pain, but God will not allow it to destroy humanity nor thwart His purposes. God loves in the midst of suffering. God works through suffering. God blesses in spite of suffering beyond anything we can ask or think.
The program clips SAT-7’s offered in the past week illustrate these attributes of God with titles like: God loves and does not tempt us; We are under God’s protective hands; For the Lord does not forsake us; God hears and answers our prayers; and God grants peace in troubled times. God’s providence is a blessed hope.
“The steadfast love of the Lord never ceases; his mercies never come to an end; they are new every morning; great is your faithfulness. ‘The Lord is my portion,’ says my soul, ‘therefore I will hope in him’” (Lamentations 3:19-24).