In this season of coronavirus, I have noticed these two broad groups:
1. One group is passionate about social distancing. They tend to believe that we must all be radical about staying at home until the curve is flattened beyond doubt. They reference health experts that support their view, and feel that this is much more serious than the common flu.
2. Another group also care about personal health. But they are also concerned by the economic and psychological toll from extended social distancing timeframes. They tend to believe that we must open up our societies, and that this is not any more serious than the common flu.
But what saddens me is the amount of time and energy that is consumed by Christians on debating these things. This has nothing to do with the authorities who have to make these difficult decisions or the health workers and others who are on the frontlines bravely caring for others. They are essential to me being able to live a tranquil and quiet life. So I pray for them (1 Timothy 2:1-2).
But we must also guard our hearts. The devil is a deceiver. For serious Christians, he is content to begins his work of deception by subtly dampening the fire in us, and distracting us from our mission. So I want to guard myself against all the "empty chatter" on Facebook, Twitter, WhatsApp channels, and so on.
2 Timothy 2:15-16– Be diligent to present yourself approved to God as a workman who does not need to be ashamed, accurately handling the word of truth. But avoid worldly and empty chatter, for it will lead to further ungodliness..
Daniel 11:32 – By smooth words he will turn to godlessness those who act wickedly toward the covenant, but the people who know their God will display strength and take action.
Let us ask ourselves: Are we remaining diligent to present ourselves approved unto God – who can stand unashamed before God and man? Or we are entangled by a lot of empty chatter, and consuming the endless cacophony of smooth words that distract us from our personal covenant with God through Christ.
I was reminded of a story that I heard. A man was preparing to study theology in college, and asked A.W. Tozer: “Could you give me some advice concerning the problem of Calvinism versus Arminianism?
Tozer replied, “My son, when you get to college you’re going to find that all of the boys will be gathered in a room discussing and arguing over Arminianism and Calvinism night after night after night. I’ll tell you what to do.. Go to your room and meet God. At the end of four years you’ll be way down the line and they’ll still be where they started, because greater minds than yours have wrestled with this problem and have not come up with satisfactory conclusions. Instead, learn to know God.”
Right now, there are the two legitimate groups that can exist today in debating the proper response to the coronavirus pandemic. May we be Christians who heed the instruction of Daniel, Paul, and Tozer. Let us go to our rooms and meet with God and learn to know Him. Let us take action and prepare for that one day that is appointed for all of us, so that we may stand on that day approved by God.