I thought that I’d do a special short post to draw your attention to 2 very short, but quite helpful book pertaining to our current situation. How should Christians respond to the Coronavirus? I’ve seen Christians claim that it’s God’s judgment, I’ve seen others claim that it’s the work of Satan. I’ll be honest, neither of these responses are helpful, nor do they help our witness to the world. But here are two books that can help…
In this time of uncertainty and anxiety, for some, John Piper has written this very small but helpful book about how to respond. In the typical Piper way, passionate and Christ-centred, Piper speaks about the sovereignty of God and the comfort that can be found in Him. Piper helpfully conveys the reality that true and lasting hope cannot be found in government plans or cures, the only place that true hope can be found is in Jesus, our Rock.
“The Rock I am talking about is under my feet now. I could say that the Rock is under my feet now just because hope beyond the grave is present hope. The object of hope is future. The experience of hope is present. And that present experience is powerful.”
In this season of life, one that will change all of our lives in some way or another, we must have a concrete and Biblical view of God to carry us through.
“This is not a season for sentimental views of God. It is a bitter season. And God ordained it. God governs it. He will end it. No part of it is outside his sway. Life and death are in his hand.”
This situation should make us run to Christ as our refuge and cling to Him. This book will lift your eyes to see the beauty of the sovereignty of God and the necessity of find true hope in Him, because it can be found nowhere else. The Ebook of this title and the audiobook are currently free here on the Crossway website, the printed copy will be coming out at a later date.
John Lennox has written this small (61 page) book to answer, or at least begin to talk about, the question that many people are wrestling with. Lennox asks the reader to treat this book as if you’ve just sat down in a coffee shop with him and asked him “where is God in a Coronavirus world?”, this book is his answer. Thought Lennox admits he does not answer all the questions, but it is a helpful start.
This book is slightly different from the first because it speaks more about the coronavirus in the context of suffering. The question this raises is; do we really need another book on the questions of suffering? Here is what Lennox says…
“The answer is that most of these books concentrate on the problem of moral evil. This book instead concentrates on what is called the problem of natural evil. That is, my focus is on fractured nature – principally the coronavirus, but also all kinds of diseases and natural catastrophes like earthquakes and tsunamis.”
Lennox helpfully points out that we cannot simply look at the coronavirus and panic, everyone has a different perspective depending on their situation and life circumstances. Therefore we must engage, Lennox says, intellectually, emotionally and spiritually. He also warns against those who speak as if they understand exactly what’s happening…
“Beware of anyone who interprets pain caused by natural evil as a diving punishment. But equally, beware also of anyone who says that God has nothing to say through this pandemic, particularly to Western societies that have largely turned their back on him as culturally irrelevant”
I find it very interesting that online church services have spiked in the last weeks, many people are searching for answers to the meaningful questions in life. Christian, hold out the gospel to the world for that is the answer they need!
You can buy the book here and (at the original time this post went live) you’ll get the audiobook for free too! Let me end with one of my favourite quotes from this little book…
“Perhaps the coronavirus might function as a huge loudspeaker, reminding us of the ultimate statistic: that one out of every one of us dies. If this induces us to look the God we may have ignored for years, but who wore a crown of thorns in order to bring us back into relationship with himself and into a new, unfractured world beyond death, then the coronavirus, in spite of the havoc it has wreaked, will have served a very healthy purpose”