Hey Church Family!
Next week I hope to start a study through the book of Revelation. I am waiting for some study material on Revelation to come in the mail. So this week I decided to write about something that has convicted me and that God has laid on my heart.
A lot of folks are irritated by this disruption of our lives due to the outbreak of the Coronavirus. A lot of people are frustrated by the loss of jobs and incomes. People are sad because we cannot be with loved ones. And some of us are just irritated that we cannot operate the way that we have always operated. But let’s be clear, ignoring and rebelling against social distancing is sinful. I’m writing this knowing that I too am guilty of consciously ignoring social distancing by shaking someone’s hand or just allowing myself to be closer than six feet from another person, and I feel convicted to repent. “What’s the big deal?” “Why is this sinful?” I can hear you asking these questions. But at its core ignoring/rebelling against social distancing is selfish and sinful.
At Ector Baptist we have been conducting parking lot services. The aim of the services (at least from my perspective) is to have the safest, most inclusive, services we can provide during these irregular times. The church has placed signs out asking people to park at least six feet from the car next to them and asking people to stay in their cars. We have been pretty good at parking six feet apart, but we still have folks getting out of cars and coming up to other’s windows. I’m not trying to call anyone out or shame anyone because I find myself guilty too! The temptation is great! We long for human interaction, especially with our fellow church members who we love and care about.
So, what makes ignoring social distancing sinful? Coronavirus and social distancing are not found in the Bible but obeying the government is in the Bible!
Let every person be subject to the governing authorities. For there is no authority except from God, and those that exist have been instituted by God. Therefore whoever resists the authorities resists what God has appointed, and those who resist will incur judgment.
Romans 13:1-2 ESV
The only time a Christian can break the law is when that law would cause you to disobey the higher authority which is God. Social distancing is not sinful. President Trump, Governor Abott, and other governing authorities have all asked us to practice social distancing. You may not agree with social distancing. I sometimes don’t agree with the speed limit. But we still must listen to our governing authorities who God has placed in authority over us and obey them.
In 2020, in the face of the Coronavirus, social distancing is how we consider others more important than ourselves. “Do nothing from selfish ambition or conceit, but in humility count others more significant than yourselves. Let each of you look not only to his own interests, but also to the interests of others (Philippians 2:3-4 ESV).” Former President George W. Bush recently made a video addressing the nation. In the video he said:
“And it is frustrating that many of the normal tools of compassion, a hug, a touch, can bring the opposite of the good we intend. In this case we serve our neighbor by separating from them.” -President George W. Bush
Christians must be the example. We must practice what we preach. If we say we love God then we must love our neighbors. If we love our neighbors, we will keep a six foot distance. If we say we want to obey God then we must obey the authorities He has placed over us.
“For our sake he made him to be sin who knew no sin, so that in him we might become the righteousness of God.” 2 Corinthians 5:21 ESV
Jesus humbled, and sacrificed Himself for our sake. At this time when we are longing for interaction with our neighbors and friends, we must, for their sake, lay that desire at the altar. Let us be obedient to what has been asked of us, and let us show the world that we love them and care for them by practicing social distancing.
Love you guys!