Many are asking this question, Christians and non-Christians alike. Since it is global, it makes people wonder. All we have to do is look toward scripture and the answers are all there. As devastating and life changing as this pandemic has been, it is good to always remain focused on truth. So before answering that question, let’s see what the Bible has to say.
Jesus was asked what the signs would be before His second coming to Earth. One of His answers was, “There will be both great earthquakes, and famines and pestilences in different places. There will also be fearful sights and great signs from heaven” Luke 21:11. The word for “pestilence” in the Bible is defined as a plague. In the dictionary a plague is defined as: “a contagious bacterial disease characterized by fever and delirium, typically with the formation of buboes ( bubonic plague ) and sometimes infection of the lungs ( pneumonic plague ).” It does sound a lot like the symptoms for the Corona Virus. Based on this definition, the Covid-19 is a virus, not a bacterial disease. A virus is much smaller than bacteria and needs a host to survive. Bacteria and viruses do have a similar transmission path. With bacteria, usually antibiotics are given to treat it and kill it, but with viruses, they are made to run their course in the human body. The best form of prevention for both also include vaccinations.
Although this is global and has caused death. I do not believe this is a punishment from God, but I do believe that it is a foreshadow of plagues that will come in the future, during the Tribulation period (the seven years before the Second Coming of Christ). This plague is a much smaller one in magnitude, compared to what can be expected during the Tribulation period. Jesus, Himself said, “For then there will be Great Tribulation, such as has not been from the beginning of the world until now, and never shall be” Matthew 24:21. So that tells us how bad it will be during the Tribulation. It will be horrific. This is bad now, but what will come during the Tribulation, will be much worse!
The reason I do not believe it is a punishment is because when God “punishes” people, they are usually worldly people that refuse to have anything to do with Him. In retrospect, God “disciplines” His children. In this case, all have been affected, by the Corona virus, both Christians and Non-Christians alike. God would not be punishing His people, but I do believe that God is using this pandemic to get people’s attention and to have people seek Him, before the Tribulation begins.
Since the Corona Virus began to shut down the world and it’s economies, record sales of Bibles around the world have been happening. There has also been an increase in online sermons that have been watched because people are searching for answers. They’re not only searching for answers regarding the virus itself, but in relation to God. This is so important to note! People are aware that for the first time, this century, the world has been brought to a halt and it is within many to seek God through adversity.
I see this situation as being perhaps the forerunner to the birth pains that are mentioned in the Bible. We have seen that earthquakes, pestilences, and famines have all been slowly increasing, but I believe that the actual beginning of birth pains will not begin until the church is removed. This will initiate the beginning of the Tribulation and as the time goes by, the intensity of those birth pains will increase. By the end of the 7 years, it will be as childbirth. The pains (turmoil and natural disaster, death) will be so intense that by the time Jesus returns to the Earth the second time, there will only be a remnant left that will live to see it.
I see that many non-Christians are truly thinking that things will return to normal one day soon and that they will be so relieved when it does. From their perspective, I can see how this is their only hope. It is all they can hold onto. From a Christian’s perspective, I do get a little concerned when I hear Christians saying the same thing. The way I see it is, if this is one more thing that is leading us to the closeness of the Rapture of the Church, why in the world would I want it to go back to normal? The only reason for that would be so that more could find salvation, but other than that, I am all for Jesus coming back asap!
This culture is spreading a false hope that the Earth can repair itself and that humanity is on its way to having a “great awakening” to evolve into a more advanced culture. This is not what the Bible says. the Bible tells us that this Earth is wasting away and will meet its end through fire, when the Lord will destroy it. “But the Day of the Lord will come like a thief. The heavens will disappear with a roar, the elements will be destroyed by fire, and the earth and its works will be laid bare”II Peter 3:10. the Bible also tells us that humanity will seek to push God out completely and it will take Jesus returning to set things right again.
This world is not our home, we are only sojourners. If we feel that we are going miss this world too much in comparison to being in eternity with Jesus in perfect bliss, then I would say that the world is in that person more than Jesus ever was. Yes, we want to have some sort of normalcy, but in America, we are truly spoiled and blessed. We don’t really know intense persecution here. How would we react if suddenly the country collapsed and Christians were hunted down like terrorists? I believe intense persecution grows a person, spiritually and also truly tests a person’s faith. We are either like Lot’s wife (looking back and longing for the life in Sodom and Gomorrah) or we are like Paul, enduring persecution and running the race until we are called home with the Lord.
This time in history is the time to pause and think.
If you aren’t a Christian, it’s time to realize that this world has changed and it is not going to go back to what we knew as “normal” before 2020. There is coming a New Era of a New World Order because we are in fact in the Last Days that are spoken of in the Bible. Right now there is a window for Christians to get right with God and others and also for Non-Christians to come to repentance and accept Jesus. If you feel that God is trying to or already has your attention, simply stop and pray, talk to God. “God opposes the proud, but shows favor to the humble” I Peter 5:5. This is the world’s wake up call to realize that God is truly ultimately in control and by acknowledging that, one can truly surrender to find the peace that only He can offer. We are at a fork in the road to the future. This pandemic will either grab your attention to reach out to God or it will drive you further away from Him.
As Christians, we should remain in prayer for the people that are currently suffering and for the future because we know it is only going to get worse. We are not deceived in thinking that things will get better, but instead we have the hope that Jesus will soon come to rescue His Bride in Christ and that is something to drive us to get right with God and get right with people, bringing them to salvation by spreading the gospel message.