Coronavirus and Spiritual Warfare
By Anne Reed
“The virus we cannot see.” That’s how the Coronavirus was described at Monday’s White House press briefing by Ambassador Debbie Birx, scientist and physician who is an expert in infectious disease and vaccine research. That’s why she has been appointed to the position of Coronavirus Response Coordinator. She understands how these types of unseen things work.
We have an invisible enemy, however, that goes far beyond what can be seen under a microscope.
President Donald Trump also said, “We have an invisible enemy.”
Although he holds the most powerful position in the world, this unseen world operates far above him.
This spiritual reality is referenced in Ephesians 6:12:
“For we do not wrestle against flesh and blood, but against the rulers, against the authorities, against the cosmic powers over this present darkness, against the spiritual forces of evil in the heavenly places.”
We have an unseen enemy who means to destroy us. There is no doubt about it. But God is sovereign, and He loves us with an immensity we cannot possibly understand.
What Satan means for evil, God means for good. And let’s just be clear. Everything Satan does is saturated in evil.
Whatever is allowed into this world, we can be assured God intends to use it for good – including this global pandemic known as the Coronavirus, or COVID-19.
What if He plans to wake up the church ushering in revival?
I cannot think of a better time for the church to go into the prayer closet and put Ephesians 6:10-11 into action:
“Finally, be strong in the Lord and in the strength of his might. Put on the whole armor of God, that you may be able to stand against the schemes of the devil.”
I don’t mean, necessarily, the type of armor that will protect you from the virus. There is enough instruction out there about that.
This is spiritual armor – for those who have surrendered to the lordship of Christ and entered into His kingdom.
Therefore take up the whole armor of God, that you may be able to withstand in the evil day, and having done all, to stand firm.Stand therefore, having fastened on the belt of truth, and having put on the breastplate of righteousness, and, as shoes for your feet, having put on the readiness given by the gospel of peace. In all circumstances take up the shield of faith, with which you can extinguish all the flaming darts of the evil one;and take the helmet of salvation, and the sword of the Spirit, which is the word of God, praying at all times in the Spirit, with all prayer and supplication. To that end, keep alert with all perseverance, making supplication for all the saints, and also for me, that words may be given to me in opening my mouth boldly to proclaim the mystery of the gospel … (Ephesians 6:13-19).
Within this text, instruction is found that applies to our current state of affairs:
Commit to faithfulness.
By fastening on the belt of truth, we are less susceptible to deception. As we are all forced to adjust our lifestyles, let us not fall into the trap of the enemy and simply find new ways of entertaining ourselves. Rather, than seeking our own pleasure, let us faithfully seek Him and His will – truth itself.
Rely on, trust in Christ.
We are to put on the breastplate of righteousness. We have no righteousness of our own, so the only righteousness we have is that of Christ’s. We can lean into Him, draw close, and guard our hearts with His pure goodness – to help us overcome fear, doubt, and temptation.
Be ready to tell others.
In 2 Timothy 4:2 we read,
“Preach the word; be ready in season and out of season; reprove, rebuke, and exhort, with complete patience and teaching.”
I dare say we are in season! When the world is in a panic, and so many questions about the future and safety abound, we have the message of ultimate, eternal security!
Hold onto God as your strength.
Psalm 91:4-5 says,
God is our shield and refuge; he is our hiding place in the day of difficulty; his faithfulness will keep us safe when we are being shot at by arrows, flaming or otherwise.”
Know that your ultimate security is in the salvation Christ bought by sacrificing His own body for you.
We are to put on the helmet of salvation, knowing we were rescued from the fear of death through the work of Christ. 1 John 5:13 says, those
“who believe in the name of the Son of God … may know that you have eternal life.”
And Romans 8:15 says,
“For you did not receive the spirit of slavery to fall back into fear, but you have received the Spirit of adoption as sons, by whom we cry, “Abba! Father!”
Spend time in God’s presence.
Most of us will have more available time. We can use this opportunity to change our habits, spending time in God’s presence – reading, studying, and meditating on Scripture (privately and as a family).
This piece of armor is intertwined with prayer –
“praying at all times in the Spirit, with all prayer and supplication…making supplication for all saints.”
“Man shall not live by bread alone, but by every word that comes from the mouth of God” (Matthew 4:4).
And we know He is forever interceding on our behalf (Hebrews 7:25, 1 John 2:1). And He wants us to be one with Him (John 17:20-23) – warriors in the faith!
What if we would allow this pandemic to be used to change us? What if the slowing down caused us listen, to heed the still small voice, to bring us to our knees,
“to humble [ourselves], and pray and seek [His] face and turn from [our] wicked ways” (2 Chronicles 7:14)?
Would He then, “hear from heaven and forgive [our] sin and heal [our] land?”