Prophecies and Proclamations of Faith - Are They Trustworthy?
In the last few days, there have been prophetic declarations that believers should “have no fear because the cure will come in a few days.” On the other hand, one world renowned faith teacher declared, “Any fear of the coronavirus will cause you to get the virus because of your unbelief.” So, what are we to believe?
The Bible is filled with both faith and wisdom, and they are not contradictory. In this time of worldwide panic AND justifiable concern, believers need to be an example of both. It seems clear to me God’s Word teaches us that wisdom is taking sane precautions and faith is trusting Him for the final outcome. As believers, shouldn’t we do both and be an example to the world?
We Have Many New Covenant Examples to Follow:
When Paul made his last visit to the Temple, the other apostles told him there was great anger in Jerusalem towards him and some had sworn to kill him. Paul decided to take a few other men and go to the Temple to make Jewish vows to calm the crowd. Paul knew this didn’t add to his relationship with God but considered it wisdom. As a result, he was arrested and eventually ended up in a Roman prison. Rather than regret, he often wrote that his “chains” were furthering the Gospel and told his friends to never be ashamed of his imprisonment. Wisdom and trust that God will use the outcome for good.
Prov 9:10-12- “Fear (reverence) of the LORD is the beginning of wisdom. Knowledge of the Holy One results in understanding. Wisdom will multiply your days and add years to your life. If you become wise, you will be the one to benefit. If you scorn wisdom, you will be the one to suffer.”
If we believe something, then we should be able to see a clear Biblical pattern for it. Jesus just walked right through the crowd who tried to kill Him at Nazareth, and they couldn’t hurt him. But they slipped Paul over the city wall, in a basket, at night, so the crowds wouldn’t kill him. When violence occurred, Paul frequently left cities where he had just planted a church, leaving young believers alone. Jesus was in a boat when a storm arose, and He told it to “Stop.” Paul was in a ship when a storm arose, and an angel appeared to him. But the angel didn’t say, “Do what Jesus did!” Instead, the angel said, “Tell everyone to stick together, grab something that floats, and you will all make it!”
Was this lack of faith or wisdom? Or both?
Concerning Contagious Diseases, Think About This Logic:
If we believe that “if we ask, then the Lord will protect us from this virus,” then it seems to make sense that we should never worry about exposing ourselves to any contagious disease...SARS, MERSA, Ebola, etc. If we believe that God will protect us from ANY disease, then to take ANY precautions would be a sign of unbelief, wouldn’t it?
I do believe that “the wisdom of the righteous will guide them,” and if I do what I firmly believe the Lord wants me to do, then I trust Him for the outcome. Whether I stay well or get sick, I won’t complain against Him. I postponed my Africa trip because my lungs are deeply scarred from many bouts of pneumonia so I’m in the high-risk group. Oh yeah, and I’m old! It is wisdom for me to avoid what exposure I can, without panic, and go later. This is wisdom, not fear.
Yesterday, This News Release Was Posted:
Bethel Church suspends faith healing work at hospitals amid Coronavirus outbreak
By Leonardo Blair, Christian Post Reporter | Wednesday, March 11, 2020
Bethel Church, the controversial megachurch in Redding, California, that also runs a school of supernatural ministry, suspended their “faith healing” ministry at local hospitals where they are known to lay hands on the sick, due to Covid-19. The suspension of the church’s faith-healing work at hospitals has come in the wake of increased panic over the rapid growth of the new infections and death around the globe.
Bethel Church framed their response to the coronavirus as part of God’s wisdom.
“Through email communications, signage, and church announcements, we are actively encouraging health practices and precautions to our whole community,” he said. “We believe that wisdom, modern medicine, and faith are meant to work together, and express the value for each in the pursuit of continued health and healing.“
Wisdom AND Faith. I like it!
3/29/2020 05:42:15 pm
Thank you for such good words of wisdom. Following is quote from Martin Luther during the time of the Bubonic plague." I shall ask God mercifully to protect us. 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 foolhardy and does not tempt God." from Luther's Works, Volume 43, pg 132, the letter "Whether one may flee from a Deadly Plague" written to Rev. John Hess
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Mark Drake is an internationally known author, teacher and leader. He focuses on equipping leaders around the world in New Covenant Grace.