Jerry Bridges in his book Trusting God shares the following:
God shows His love for us in that while we were still sinners, Christ died for us.(Romans 5:8
In times of prolonged adversity, we can begin to entertain thoughts that essentially assert that we are more concerned about goodness than God is.
Even righteous Job came to the place where he questioned the goodness of God. He said, “I am in the right, and a God has taken away my right”, and “it profits a man nothing that he should take delight in God”.(Job 34: 5,9)
If God is perfect in His love and abundant in His goodness, how so we take a stand against our own doubts and the temptations of Satan to question the goodness of God? What truths about a God do we need to store up in our hearts to use as weapons against the temptations to doubt His love?
There is no doubt that the most convincing evidence of God’s love in all Scripture is His giving His Son to die for our sins. “This is how God showed His love among us; He sent His one and only Son into the world that we might live through Him. This is love, not that we loved a God, but that He loved us and sent His Son as an atoning sacrifice for our sins. (1 John 4:9-10)
Our greatest need is not freedom from adversity. No calamity in this life could in anyway be compared with the absolute calamity of eternal separation from God. In like manner, Jesus said no earthly joy could compare with the eternal joy of our names written in heaven.(Luke 20)
God showed His love by meeting our greatest need- a need so great that no other can come close to it in comparison. If we want proof of God’s love, then we must look first at the Cross where God offered up His Son as a sacrifice for our sins. Calvary is the one objective, absolute, irrefutable proof of God’s love for us.
Watching the presentations of projected virus spread and the death toll, I felt I heard the Holy Spirit say that while the deaths are terrible and families are suffering such great loss may we as the church be reminded that there are many who are dying in their sins without hope of eternal life with Christ. May the mortality of humans remind us of the great need for the “gospel to be preached to every creature”. Death comes in some form for all but for those who know Christ it is not an end but the beginning of joy unspeakable. Pain and suffering may precede our natural death, but that has no comparison with the suffering of those who die in their sins. May we love as God and Christ loved and may we be compelled to share His message of love and salvation to all. Those who know me well know that my great compelling passion is for all to know Christ Jesus as Savior and this crisis has only deepened that. I beg you to pray with me that God will enable and empower us to involve our energies and resources now and in the future for the work of bringing people to Jesus.
I pray you know that your pastor loves you and is praying daily for protection and the keeping of God over you and those you love.
Dr. John Thompson