Summary: As I write this on April 3, 2020, the worldwide coronavirus pandemic has billions of people living in fear and isolation. Medical facilities are overrun with COVID-19 cases, and national economies have been tanking. Where can a person turn for hope in this planetary crisis? Or in any crisis? Please read on.
In the midst of the aggression of the savage armies of the Assyrian empire, the prophet Isaiah spoke a word from God that brings hope to every generation: Look to God and be saved. Who should look to Him for salvation? “All the ends of the earth”! Why? Because He is God Almighty, the Sovereign of the universe. And thankfully, God is open and attentive to the prayers of those who look to Him in faith: "You who answer prayer, to you all people will come" (Psalm 65:2).
Today (early April 2020) the entire world is under attack by another savage army, an invisible army of coronaviruses.
Is there hope that a vaccine will be found? Yes, we can hope for that. How about a cure? That too can be our hope. But the prophet pointed us to a higher hope in any crisis: “Look unto Me and be ye saved, all the ends of the earth, for I am God, and there is none else.” God has creative powers and can call into existence whatever He decides to do.
Both the Old Testament and the New Testament speak many times of “God our Savior” (e.g., 1 Chronicles 16:35; Psalm 65:5; 1 Timothy 1:1; Jude 1:25). He is ready, willing, and able to help all those everywhere who call on Him in sincere faith. Look at His amazing promises — very relevant in the COVID-19 crisis! — in Psalm 91:
• vs. 2 - “I will say of the Lord, “He is my refuge and my fortress, my God, in whom I trust.”
• vs. 3 - “Surely He will save you from … the deadly pestilence.”
• vss. 5-6 - “You will not fear … the pestilence that stalks in darkness, nor the plague that destroys at midday.”
• vss. 9-10 - “If you say, ‘The Lord is my refuge’ … no harm will overtake you, no disaster will come near your tent.”
• vss. 14-16 - “ ‘Because he loves me,’ says the Lord, ‘I will rescue him; I will protect him, for he acknowledges my name. He will call on me, and I will answer him; I will be with him in trouble, I will deliver him … and show him my salvation’.”
Jesus spoke of great heavenly shaking in the end times (Matthew 24:29f; Mark 13:25f; Luke 21:26f). The author of Hebrews (scripture above), writing decades after Jesus’ time on earth, likewise pointed to a yet-future time of great shaking. As I write this, our planet is being shaken by a lethal, worldwide virus, and the casualties are mounting and economies are collapsing. Now is urgently a time to believe God! Created things will be shaken, says Hebrews, but things that cannot be shaken will remain. Then he tells us what the unshakable is: “We are receiving a kingdom that cannot be shaken”!
This is in full agreement with the Psalmist who wrote (125:1) that “those who trust in the Lord are like Mount Zion, which cannot be shaken but endures forever.” The Bible speaks extensively about the kingdom of God. He is God Almighty, and the heavens and the earth are His. He rules with 100% authority in the affairs of this world. And entrance into the eternal protection, safety, and blessings of His kingdom is open to everyone who will come to God the way He has prescribed in Scripture:
Jesus said clearly that He is “the Way,” the only way, for us to come to God the Father. John the apostle (3:16) encourages us to do exactly that — to come to God through faith in His Son Jesus. And John reminds us that this is not some harsh commandment. To the contrary, it is out of God’s great love for the world that He sent Jesus to earth to live, minister, die on the Cross for our sins, and be raised to life again.
Closing thoughts: The Bible speaks of ominous times in these latter days. There are extensive descriptions of end-time crises and catastrophes in Matthew 24, Mark 13, Luke 21, and much of the Book of Revelation. The nations, the “kingdoms” of this world, will be shaken. But there is another kingdom, God’s kingdom, that is in this world right now, in the hearts and lives of His followers. And that kingdom, He says, cannot be shaken.
My appeal: Believers, walk in the unshakable authority and power of God and His kingdom, even as you see dramatic crises unfold around you. Our kingdom can’t be shaken!
To those who have not yet entered the blessings and security of God’s kingdom, you can do that right now, in the next few minutes. God says, “Look unto Me and be ye saved, all the ends of the earth.” And He offers you that salvation through His Son Jesus Christ. Jesus paid the supreme price for you — a horrible death on the cross to bear our sins — in order to offer you eternal salvation in return. Accept His offer. Come to Him in repentance for sin and faith in His sacrifice on the cross for you. You’ll be born again into God’s family for all eternity as a son or daughter of God Almighty (2 Corinthians 6:18). Secure in the promise of eternity with the Lord, you’ll walk in this life with the confidence of a citizen of the unshakable kingdom of God.
If you would like to make that life-changing decision for Jesus right now, please let the late, respected evangelist Billy Graham lead you in a prayer that will bring you into the family and kingdom of God. You’ll be eternally grateful to Jesus!
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©April 3, 2020. James H. Feeney.
Pentecostal Sermons & Bible Studies
by Pastor Jim Feeney, Ph.D.