“The coronavirus was sent… by God. 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.” ~ John Piper, Coronavirus and Christ, pg. 42
I received an unsolicited copy of John Piper’s Coronavirus and Christ. It came with my copy of World Magazine this month. In this book Piper tries to comfort people during this crisis in our world. His main argument in part one of his book is that God is sovereign, and that is good news. He says, “The same sovereignty that could stop the coronavirus, yet doesn’t, is the very sovereignty that sustains the soul in it” (pg. 38).
What Piper is saying to us is God sent this virus to the world; the sickness, suffering, and death, all of it have been sent by God, governed by him, and controlled by him.
“Nothing is excluded… He is totally involved. Totally. This health, or that sickness. This economic collapse, or that recovery. This breath, or not.” John Piper, Coronavirus and Christ, pg. 18
I for one believe the coronavirus is evil. And Piper would make God the originator of evil. What Piper is doing is putting God in league with the Enemy, in league with Death itself. Has not Jesus our Lord conquered Sin and Death? Is not Death the last enemy to be defeated?
How are we to pray to God to heal the sickness if God himself is behind the sickness?
Piper says God could take away the coronavirus but will not. He has the power to do so, but obviously doesn’t, so it must be for our good, somehow. Then again, Piper says, “God would be holy and righteous to withhold his goodness from us” (pg. 36). Does Piper believe God is holding back his goodness with this virus? We are sinful creatures, he argues, so God has every right to bestow his wrath, which is withholding his goodness.
I am sorry, what? Could you repeat that?
The coronavirus is God’s wrath. He is purposefully withholding his goodness.
Would you call a god good if it withheld goodness?
I thought we believers were not destined to God’s wrath? I thought there is no condemnation for those who are in Christ Jesus? Wasn’t Jesus’ work on the cross sufficient enough? Yet, for Piper, this coronavirus is God’s wrath upon the world, to which we believers are experiencing.
Jesus conquered Sin and Death once and for all on the cross. His life, death, burial, resurrection, and ascension sealed his love and goodness for all humanity. And now he calls upon humanity to join with him in bringing about this victory. The sickness, suffering, and death we are witnessing now is not a result of God’s doing, but the Enemy’s doing.
We are called to fight this Enemy! Not with the weapons of the world but by our gospel and the power of the Holy Spirit.
Piper forgets a war is raging even now and will not stop until Jesus Christ has put all under his feet. Until then the Enemy still fights back.
p.s. I have a new book coming out June 19 that highlights the love of God the Father towards humanity. Click here to learn more!