Is the coronavirus a sign of the end times?
This is a good question that a lot of people are asking right now. I want to start by explaining what the “end times” are. The end times happen at the end of the world. The world will be ripe for Jesus to return.
Jesus talks a lot about the end times especially in the Gospels. The last days began on the Day of Pentecost in Acts 2. This is a time where God will move mightily before the return of Jesus. Joel prophesied that God would pour out his Spirit upon all flesh (Joel 2:28).
This is different from the way the Spirit operated in the Old Testament. He would come upon people for a task or for an office but in the new covenant that Joel and others prophesied about, the Holy Spirit inhabits believers.
When Peter preaches on the Day of Pentecost he quotes from this Scripture that adds, “In the last days…” (Acts 2:17). So many people understand us to be living in the last days. But the end times are the extreme portion of the last days.
A Sign of the End Times
Jesus gives many signs of the end times especially in Matthew 24-25. He mentions great tribulation (Matthew 24:21). Scholars and preachers have contended that as the world becomes more dangerous and tribulations increase in number and size, they become signs of the end of time.
Have there been viruses or plagues in the past? Yes. But has there been such panic as there is right now? There may have been during former plagues. But it seems that this virus not only has the attention of the world but is causing great fear.
Perhaps with the ability of news agencies around the world to give real time statistics and ramp up these fears, it seems greater than any virus we have ever faced before.
So I do believe there is scriptural evidence that the coronavirus is a sign of the end times. Because of the increased sensitivity of the world for this virus, its global reach, and the great fear that it causes, it can be categorized as a sign of the end times.
God’s Judgment and Wrath
However, I do not believe that God has brought the coronavirus as part of his judgment. No one can know the mind of God (1 Corinthians 2:16). Aside from this, I don’t believe that God brings his judgment upon believers in Jesus (Ephesians 2:3). Because this virus has affected Christians as well as non-Christians, I don’t believe it is part of his wrath or judgment.
When God’s judgment comes upon the earth in the end times, everyone will know it. He will declare it and then bring it. Will he use diseases? Yes you will. But as I said, human beings will know that God is bringing his judgment against him because he will declare it.
How to React
There is precedent in God’s Word to obey the government and authorities that God has placed over us (Romans 13:1-2). The only time we are not required to do this is if they issue unbiblical or ungodly laws. But the law to stay at home until the virus burns itself out is not unbiblical or ungodly.
I thank God that we have technology so that the church can still meet, even if only virtually for this time. That has given us this wonderful technology so that we may still have fellowship with one another and worship the Lord.
We must take care of one another and pray for one another during this time. More than ever we need a touch from God. I believe he can work in this time mightily in our lives. Take this time to spend with family and to grow in your relationship with God. Read Scripture and pray together in your homes.
Most of all, I have seen a wide swath of the Church of different denominations speak against the fear that this virus has created in the general public. I am gratified to see that the Church has put its finger on the issue of fear.
We have no need to live in fear of anything. Our eternal destiny has been set. God is in control. He is sovereign and he has sent us medical professionals who have the wisdom and skill to help us deal with this virus.
But at the same time, we must also be wise. We must listen to our leaders and medical professionals who have our best interest at heart. Let’s follow their guidance and guidelines until this virus is gone.
Let us trust God and pray for one another. Attend church online and be careful of crowds. Keep up your hygiene through this time to combat any kind of sickness or illness. Be kind to others and use wisdom.