COVID- 19 & the Hope of the World
ROMANS 5:17: "For if by one man's offence death reigned by one; much more they which receive abundance of grace and of the gift of righteousness shall reign in life by one, Jesus Christ"
Monday March 16th 2020; The number of COVID- 19 infections continues to climb with approximately 175,000 total infections and 6,700 deaths. 77,000 having recovered from the virus, according to the official statistics. (for detailed numbers see the link; https://www.coronatracker.com/)
The focus of the pandemic has moved to Europe where Italy is the country which to date is bearing the brunt of the virus. Approximately 25,000 have been infected with 1,800 deaths. Italy has seen an increase in the last 8 days of around 18,000 new cases of infection. The Italian health system, one of the best in Europe is now struggling to cope with the scale of the outbreak and the demand on the resources of the health care system. Extraordinary measures have been introduced to try to cope with the crisis including bringing doctors out of retirement and accelerating the graduation of trainee medical students.
See article: https://apnews.com/837274f1bab9af1aab12f1b9481b2d62
Full nationwide quarantine has been implemented in Italy with the Italian people demonstrating the unquenchable fire of the human spirit singing songs of solidarity, applauding those on the front line of the health system and playing music from their homes and balconies.
100 million people across Europe are now under full or partial lockdown, a scenario unimaginable just a few short weeks ago. Spain has seen a particularly high spike in the numbers infected by the virus currently at around 9,500 with over 330 deaths. Many European countries including Germany are closing their borders and in Ireland the world renowned St. Patrick's Day celebrations have been cancelled along with all pubs and bars being closed from Sunday 15th March until at least 29th March.
China, the country at the centre of the original outbreak has curiously all but disappeared from the news.
A country that has sprung to the forefront of world attention is Iran. On Saturday March 14th, television network CNN aired a report showing satellite images of mass graves being dug in the country with piles of white powder thought to be used on victims to sterilize their remains. The CNN report included an interview with Professor of Epidemiology at the University of Toronto in Canada, Ashleigh Tuite in which she spoke on the official numbers coming out of Iran and also the mainstream media which at the time of the interview stood at around 10,000 infected with 450 deaths. Professor Tuite went on to give further details on the virus and it's impact in Iran, stating that when the official figure coming out of Iran was set at 50 infected, the University of Toronto estimated the real figure was more likely to be between 18 to 20 thousand which Professor Tuite said was quote " basically 400 fold more cases than the official estimates would suggest."
This potential drastic misrepresentation of the numbers being infected seems to be a theme emerging from the COVID- 19 crisis, with similar reports coming out of China and from countless alternative media sources about the real numbers that are affected. The numbers and exponential growth in one country, Italy, would also corroborate this narrative. The tragedy in this case being people and health authorities failing to see the real danger and urgency to prepare in time.
Airline companies across the world including British Airways, KLM, Virigin, Aer Lingus, EasyJet, Ryanair and Delta Airlines are grounding up to 75% of their fleets and as reported on msn (Microsoft) news, global aviation consultancy firm CAPA have issued a dire warning that quote "By the end of May-2020, most airlines in the world will be bankrupt. Coordinated government and industry action is needed - now - if catastrophe is to be avoided."
Stock markets around the world continue to be decimated with the Dow Jones, S & P and Nasdaq all falling by more than 12% today alone, with the 3,000 point drop the worst single point drop for the Dow Jones in history.
It seems that overnight "a perfect storm" has descended upon the world. The COVID- 19 virus outbreak and what we are witnessing is unprecedented in our time. People all around the world are struggling to process the reality of a situation which most have only ever experienced on the silver screen. It is surreal and bewildering what is happening.
Tragically and inevitably there will be many deaths and many difficult times to come. The positive that most who contract the virus will recover. This crisis is here for a season. And it will be a dark season. But this too will pass.
In a world that has pushed God, the Creator of all things, out of the public sphere and out of modern life, we must now turn back to Him and to the good news of the gospel of our Lord & Saviour Jesus Christ.
Psalm 118:8: "It is better to trust in the Lord than to put confidence in man."
The eschatology of the Bible, the current culture and world events point to this time as being a divine appointment with God.
Psalm 119: 105: " Thy word is a lamp unto my feet and a light unto my path."
In a time of great darkness, Jesus is the light and the way, the truth and the life.
It is His divine promise that those who turn to Him, surrender their lives to Him and put their faith and trust in Him will be protected from the darkness.
2nd Thessalonians 3:3: "But the Lord is faithful, who shall stablish you, and keep you from evil."
In this time of darkness, God will reveal His light and His awesome presence in the world like never before and He will raise His people up like bright shining lights for all to see. He has decreed that we will reign in this life...
Romans 5: 17: "....much more they which receive abundance of grace and of the gift of righteousness shall reign in life by one, Jesus Christ"....
COVID- 19 will not reign in this life....we will reign in this life.
May a blessing of supernatural strength and protection be upon every health worker on the front line across the world, in Jesus' name.
Psalm 91: 1 & 4: "He that dwelleth in the secret place of the most High shall abide under the shadow of the Almighty. He shall cover thee with his feathers, and under his wings shalt thou trust: his truth shall be thy shield and buckler."