What the world is experiencing in the coronavirus is a pestilence and a plague! Vocabulary.com defines a pestilence as “an overwhelming disease that affects entire communities.” A plague is defined as “a contagious bacterial disease characterized by fever and delirium...and sometimes infections of the lungs.” These definitions and accounts I have read from medical professionals who have worked with patients describe perfectly what we are witnessing in this virus. The term “pestilence” is used numerous times in the Bible, interchangeably with the word “plague.” It is also one of the Four Horsemen of the Apocalypse in Revelation 6:8. (The pestilence we are experiencing now is not the one in Revelation 6:8. That one is yet to come and will be worse). Luke 21:11 names plagues as one of the signs just prior to the return of Christ. This verse, along with the parallel chapter 24 of Matthew, compares a pestilence, or plague, as well as other signs, with “birth pangs,“ which are world events that occur with greater and greater frequency and intensity leading up to the return of Christ. Most certainly there have been other pandemics throughout history, so is this pestilence especially significant? Along with this virus the world is seeing famines, huge infestations of locusts, lawlessness, intense storms, more frequent amd intense earthquakes, and other signs and birth pangs too numerous to mention. Here is the kicker: For the first time in history all the signs are converging. The Bible teaches that all these signs will occur at the end of the Church Age of Grace, which has lasted for over 2,000 years since the death and resurrection of Christ. God‘s “grace period“ is coming to a rapid end. Next is judgment. This brings me to my next point. Every time pestilence or plague is mentioned in the Bible it is always connected with judgment!
No, God did not cause this virus, but He is in control of what happens on the earth. Is he allowing a consequence of human activity to be used as a means of judgment? Is this pestilence a preview of worse things to come upon an unbelieving world that has rejected God?
God is a God of grace and love, but He is also a God of judgment. Humanity is accountable to Him. But He will use any means to draw people into His grace, to come to a knowledge of the truth, and to be saved from eternal judgment. Perhaps this pestilence and plague is being used for that end. Hopefully, many people will recognize this and turn their hearts toward God.