By Sandy Mittelsteadt
Contributor, Valley Ag Voice
Is the Coronavirus a sign that we are living in the end times?
I don’t know, but in my lifetime (and I am 73 years old), I have never lived in such a time as this. Even if this is not the end times, we all should be concerned how quickly this virus spreads.
However, this could be the beginning of the “Birth Pains” as described in Matthew 24. These pains are like contractions experienced by a woman giving birth, which will intensify before Jesus comes again. Jesus called these wars, famines, pestilences, and earthquakes “sorrows.”
How did Christians in earlier times live when there was a plague?
An excellent example is Martin Luther. You may think of Martin Luther nailing his 95 Theses to the Church Door in Germany, but Luther also lived through the Black Plague in 1527. The people of Wittenberg fled the city. However, Martin Luther and his wife, who was pregnant at the time, stayed in the city to treat the sick. Luther believed that it was not wrong for those weak in faith to leave the city, but those strong in faith should stay. In fact, Luther wrote a letter: “Whether One May Flee from a Deadly Plague.” Here is a paragraph of what he wrote to Rev. Dr. John Hess:
“I shall ask God mercifully to protect us. Then I shall fumigate, help purify the air, administer medicine and take it. I shall avoid places and persons where my presence is not needed in order not to become contaminated and thus perchance inflict and pollute others and so cause their death as a result of my negligence. If God should wish to take me, he will surely find me and I have done what he has expected of me and so I am not responsible for either my own death or the death of others. If my neighbor needs me however I shall not avoid place or person but will go freely as stated above. See this is such a God-fearing faith because it is neither brash nor fool hardy and does not tempt God.
What Bible verses should I pray in times of a crisis?
Psalm 91 is a good place to start. In fact, verse three states, “For he will deliver you from the snare of the fowler and from the deadly pestilence.”
Other verses include:
Exodus 23:25: “And ye shall serve the Lord your God, and he shall bless thy bread, and thy water; and I will take sickness away from the midst of thee.”
Psalm 107:10-20: “Then they cry unto the LORD in their trouble, and he saveth them out of their distresses.”
Isaiah: 41:10: Fear thou not; for I am with thee: be not dismayed; for I am thy God: I will strengthen thee; yea, I will help thee; yea, I will uphold thee with the tight hand of my righteousness.
In Matthew 11: 28 & 29, Jesus says, “Come unto me, all ye that labour and are heavy laden, and I will give you rest. Take my yoke upon you, and learn of me; for I am meek and lowly in heart: and ye shall find rest unto your souls.”
May God keep us all safe in these perilous times and may He spread His wings over us to protect us.