America—Christian in Name Only?

Is America really a Christian nation?

Sam Rohrer, president of the American Pastors Network, says that how people answer that question is more often determined by what they would like America to be than what America is.

Rohrer explored this complex topic with well-known social science researcher George Barna on Friday’s episode of APN’s popular, live, daily radio program “Stand in the Gap Today.” On the program, Barna, a monthly guest to the show, discussed new research he has conducted about Americans’ biblical worldview as well as their views on the Bible and Christianity.

“The atheist insists America is not a Christian nation, nor ever was,” Rohrer said. “The patriot and most Christian citizens would resist that statement and insist that indeed America is a Christian nation. Just look at our history, all the engravings of Scripture in our government buildings and the motto ‘In God We Trust’ on our coins. With over 70% of all Americans claiming they are Christians, the argument sounds convincing, and many would say those evidences prove it. But is America truly Christian or Christian in name only? What does the evidence show?

Barna shared on the program the “big picture” about the incidence of biblical worldview in the United States—that just 6% of adults have that perspective. This, he says, stems from some dramatic shifts in the relationship between peoples’ faith and their worldview.

The most incredible changes relate to how Americans view the Bible. These insights come from the first annual nationwide worldview survey conducted by the Cultural Research Center at Arizona Christian University, titled the “American Worldview Inventory 2020.”

“A biblical worldview, by definition, is based upon belief in and application of the truths, principles and exhortations contained within the Bible,” Barna said. “However, the results of the American Worldview Inventory point out that the changes in perceptions and acceptance of the Bible have facilitated the continuing decrease in the incidence of a biblical worldview in America.”

Barna noted that research suggests that more than eight out of every 10 Americans own at least one Bible. As many as four in 10 adults claim to have read the entire Bible. Two out of every 10 adults say they read the Bible on a daily basis.

“Clearly, the Bible is a book with a broad presence and substantial influence in the U.S.,” Barna said. “As would be expected, the AWVI survey revealed that peoples’ beliefs about the Bible are directly correlated with whether they develop a biblical worldview.”

For instance:

* 41% believe the Bible is the word of God and contains no factual or historical errors; 14% of those have a biblical worldview. While that percentage is low, it is more than double the national average.

* Among the 13% of adults who believe the Bible is the inspired word of God but contains some factual or historical errors, only 2% possess a biblical worldview.

* 23% possess a positive view of the Bible but do not believe it is the literal or inspired word of God, or that it is completely accurate. (They see it as a “holy book” of religious teachings or as a valuable guidebook for societal development.) Less than 1% of these people develop a biblical worldview.

* 13% are indifferent to or dismissive of the Bible, citing it as merely a descriptive narrative of how its authors viewed the ways and principles of God, or as an unrealistic book of fables and myths. Not quite 1% of the people in this category hold a biblical worldview.

* The remaining 9% of the general public do not know how to describe the nature or value of the Bible. About 1% of that segment has a biblical worldview.

“Describing these data differently, only half of the nation’s adult population (54%) believes that the Bible is the word of God,” Barna said. “Even fewer—just four out of 10 (41%)—believe that the Bible is totally true in all of its empirical and historical statements. Stunningly, when comparing the current data with that from 2000, there has been a 21 percentage point decline in the proportion of adults who believe the Bible is the word of God (from 75% to 54%) and a 17-point drop in the number who believe the Bible is without error (from 58% to 41%).”

Adds Rohrer, “In Luke 18:8-9, Jesus said this, ‘Nevertheless when the Son of Man comes, will He find faith on the earth? Jesus told this parable to some who trusted in themselves that they were righteous yet treated others with contempt.’ This verse ties in with the warnings Jesus gave to the Disciples in Matthew 24 about the evidences before Christ’s second coming. In Matthew 24:4, Jesus’ first warning and first greatest indication is deception—where people are fooled or deceive themselves. He said, ‘Take heed that no man deceive you, for many will come in my name, professing to be Christians, but are not, and they will deceive many.’ As such, and knowing this warning by Jesus Himself, and based on the findings of George Barna’s latest research, I ask the question: Is America really a Christian nation? Even though the majority of Americans say they’re Christians, does that make us a Christian nation? Or does the evidence suggest that we are deceived and are Christians in name only?”

Barna, currently in a leadership role at the Cultural Research Center (CRC) at Arizona Christian University (ACU), has filled executive roles in politics, marketing, advertising, media development, research and ministry.

Photo by Joshua Hoehne on Unsplash

Followup RESOURCES from CARES Act Conference Call

On Tuesday, May 5, Sam Rohrer, President of APN, presented biblical principles for Pastors and Church Leaders when considering the use of funds made available from the government via the CARES Act.

To WATCH the video of the conference call, please click HERE.

To READ the transcript of the video, please click HERE.

To READ the letter originally sent to Pastors, please click HERE.

APN President Sam Rohrer: COVID-19 Is a Slow-Motion 9/11, A Wake-Up Alarm

For decades, America has been seen as a bulwark of security and prosperity—seemingly impenetrable. But, says American Pastors Network (APN) President Sam Rohrer, the COVID–19 plague has exposed the soft underbelly of the nation’s weaknesses.

Rohrer says that most Americans have falsely believed that our security and economy was invincible. And this point has been arrogantly touted by the political elite.

“But even the proud and ignorant have stumbled and grasped for answers during this plague,” Rohrer says. “Our nation’s response to this unexpected and invisible enemy has separated families, divided grandchildren from their grandparents, prevented physical church gatherings, cancelled thousands of preplanned events and ceased regular education. It’s even confined people to their own homes like house arrest. So what needs have been showcased? What should we be learning?”

To not intentionally refocus our lives and our trust will be to pivot to some lesser false god, the god of man or government, or some other lie. So, Rohrer asks, what do we need to understand and what do we need to do?

“Is this a wakeup call to America as a whole? Certainly. But a trumpet alert to God’s people? Absolutely! A slow-motion 9/11. The questions to those who say we know God are: What will we do about this wake-up alarm? In whom will we now trust? How will our priorities and understanding of God’s role in our lives and our nation’s future be reordered?

“Before us,” Rohrer continued, “we have two choices with two different paths and two different results. Choices have consequences, and we’re all making choices in our forced-altered lives. Government leaders are choosing how to spend more money and how far to plunge our indebted nation even more into debt. Our leaders are choosing more government subsidies and programs and greater limitations on our freedoms. Medical professionals are choosing among more impact models, supposed solutions, surveillance and other unheard-of violations of civil liberties.”

How we choose to act in this time—right now, not next year—will determine the future, Rohrer adds. Is God and God’s way our choice or is it the god of government? Will God’s people choose Him and His ways, or will we choose our own way and with the culture re-erect the false gods of entertainment, sports or materialism?

“Through this plague,” Rohrer says, “certain physical needs have been exposed. Making policy and personal adjustments are wise. Yet, our greatest need is spiritual and revolves around which god we will trust and conform our lives. If our sick and divided nation is ever to be restored, our broken and hurting families healed, prosperity renewed, security from our enemies and God’s favor on our land returned, God’s people must choose God and then lead the way.”

Rohrer then outlines 10 needs we must understand and live, after choosing to serve the Lord:

      1. Develop a healthy fear of God. (Have no other god before Me—Exodus 20:1-6; Obey God, serve Him and fear Him—Deuteronomy 13:4; Rehearse history and teach of God’s power so your children learn to fear God—Deuteronomy 31:13; It is whole duty of mankind—Ecclesiastes 12:13-14)
      2. Re-embrace the biblical authority of Scripture. (All Scripture is profitable for life and living—2 Timothy 3:16: Living it establishes a person’s path—Psalm 119:11)
      3. Know that the ‘Church’ is disobedient, lethargic and asleep. (Christ’s warnings to the seven churches and to Laodicea—Revelation 2-3; Revelation 3:14-22)
      4. Be aware that 70% of the pulpits in America are occupied by ‘hirelings.’ (Hirelings refuse to warn of spiritual danger and the wolvesJohn 10:12-13)
      5. Be bold to identify and call out the false prophets in the wolves among us. (Christ warned of the false prophets and wolves—Matthew 7:15, Matthew 10:16, Matthew 24:24; Jesus warned of mass deception in the last days—Matthew 24:4-5)
      6. Understand that national blessing or national judgment hinges on the actions of the remnant. (“If my people, who are called by my name, will humble themselves and pray and seek my face and turn from their wicked ways, then I will hear from heaven, and I will forgive their sin and will heal their land.”—2 Chronicles 7:14)
      7. Accept the reality that persecution is coming and is normal for the believer and those still standing for truth. (All who live according to God commands will suffer persecution—2 Timothy 3:12; the enemies of truth will persecute you—Luke 21:12; John 15:20)
      8. Discover that the preparation for prayer and meeting God’s requirements for prayer is far more important than the act of praying. (God demands a broken spirit and obedience before sacrifice—Psalm 51:16-17; God demands we pray His way: No unconfessed sin—Psalm 66:18)
      9. Realize that the continuance of freedom is a result of God’s blessing, which hinges on obedience and conformity to God’s commands. (Don’t forget that all blessings came from God and if you forget and become ungrateful, God will replace blessings with bondage—Deuteronomy 8:1-20, 1:19-20; 30:1-20)
      10. Understand that the choice for president or other elected leaders, while critically important, is secondary to repentance toward God and the choice for God. (Obey, and I’ll make even your enemies to be at peace with you—Proverbs 16:7)

“I pray that America,” Rohrer concluded, “led by the pulpits, implemented by fathers and mothers, elected leaders and citizens, will do as Joshua did: ‘As for me and my house, we will serve (choose) the LORD!’ (Joshua 24:15)”

Photo by Markus Spiske on Unsplash

Is the COVID-19 Crisis a Setup for Revival in America?

As national leaders, from the president’s administration to a federal task force to state governors, make daily decisions about American life during an increasingly challenging time, the American Pastors Network (APN) is looking at the nation’s current situation from a different perspective—one that is biblical and constitutional.

“Many of the decisions being made for Americans during the coronavirus pandemic seem to have little consideration for precedent or constitutional implications,” said APN President Sam Rohrer. “For example, the list of ‘essential businesses’ has changed quite a bit, and more will change, I believe, as the days unfold. On Easter, we saw Kentucky churchgoers faced with quarantine notices on their cars. Rules are always followed by enforcement. Enforcement always limits actions and sometimes rights. The limiting of rights always produces a reaction from the citizens. Reactions from citizens produces potential rebellion and chaos, which means more government. I’m afraid we have entered that zone.

“Certainly,” Rohrer added, “our actions and our attitudes will determine whether or not we are living by faith or fear, but a significant range of fundamental thoughts and considerations are impacting people’s minds. For instance, is government now becoming hostile to the Christian faith and attacking the Constitution? Is what’s happening a setup for a great revival that brings America back to all it was in the early days of our nation or are these clear evidences of worldwide birth pains that indicate a true closeness to the rapture and tribulation? Should we as Christians disregard what’s going on, expecting that all of a sudden we will be raptured, or should we think more seriously about preparing in greater earnestness for the protection and provision for our own families and the family of God—or both? Regardless of any of these things, we ought to focus on the communication of the Gospel and biblical truth, as well as how to think and act in these days.”

Rohrer also commented that the COVID–19 plague has exposed the underbelly of America’s security and prosperity, as it is falsely believed by most Americans and arrogantly touted by the political elite that the American security and economy was invincible.

“Even the proud and ignorant have stumbled and grasped for answers during this plague,” he added. “Like the statue of Baal in the Philistines’ temple of long ago, America’s ‘gods’ of security, wealth, entertainment, sports, personal gratification and busyness now lie humbled, face down in obeisance to Someone greater. As God divinely demonstrated His power over the gods of ‘mighty Egypt 3,500 years ago, He’s allowed something powerful to happen to us. A wakeup call to America as whole? Certainly. But a trumpet alert to God’s people? Absolutely! A slow-motion 9/11. The questions to those who say we know God are: What will we do about this wake-up alarm? In whom will we now trust? How will our priorities and understanding of God’s role in our lives and our nation’s future be reordered?

“Through this plague, certain physical needs have been exposed,” Rohrer continued. “Making certain policy and personal adjustments are wise. Yet, our greatest need is spiritual and revolves around which god we will trust and conform our lives. If our sick and divided nation is ever to be restored, our broken and hurting families healed, prosperity renewed, security from our enemies and God’s favor on our land returned, God’s people must choose Him and then lead the way.”

APN recently offered pastors a COVID-19 Pastoral Response Kit, with suggestions, ideas and guidances for pastors and church leaders.

APN also hopes thousands will join the ministry for its national prayer movement called “52 Tuesdays,” in which the faithful from around the country will come together to pray for the moral and spiritual renewal of our nation every Tuesday leading up to Election Day 2020. This dedicated season of prayer not only addresses the important 2020 presidential election but also other topics close to Christians’ hearts. Prayer warriors nationwide can add their name to the growing “52 Tuesdays” list here.

Photo by Michael Amadeus on Unsplash

Connecting COVID-19 and God’s Message to the World

While the nation is struggling to respond to the forced lifestyle changes initiated by the coronavirus, there is another larger consideration that we as Christians and God-fearing Americans must address.

Is God playing a role in this pandemic? And if so, what is God saying to America and to the world through this coronavirus plague? Is this pandemic happenstance or is it in part a consequence of some action?

Sam Rohrer, president of the American Pastors Network, explored the topic this week on the daily radio program, “Stand in the Gap Today.”

“Whereas our government officials, along with health and public policy experts, react to the ‘what’ and the ‘how’ of the coronavirus plague or other major events like natural disasters such as tornadoes, hurricanes and earthquakes, it is essential that true leaders look to the ‘why’ of such events,” Rohrer said.

“From a biblical worldview perspective, we should ask, could this event and others be occurring as a result of God speaking to the world and thereby truly answering at least part of the ‘why’ this is happening? Is it possible that the coronavirus and the unfolding economic damage, not only here in the U.S. but worldwide, is the consequence of some major decision that God has clearly warned against and previously responded to in earlier examples?”

Rohrer added that God has clearly said in a number of Scriptural passages not to divide the land or curse Israel, but to bless Israel, meaning that to advance God’s plan and promise to Abraham, He demonstrated that He will fight against all those who oppose Israel.

“Because the U.S. and U.S. presidents have taken the initiating role in seeking a peace plan with Israel that has to this point involved dividing Israel or drawing boundaries that contradict what God has already defined, the U.S. has received the bulk of these timely natural disaster consequences immediately after announcing such recommendations,” Rohrer said. “Yet with the coronavirus and the resulting economic carnage that is worldwide, it seems to change the model just a bit.”

Rohrer concluded by suggesting if there is one lesson to learn, it is simple. Don’t divide Israel.

Listen to the program HERE.

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Easter Has Always Been—and Always Will Be—About the Power of God

What is Easter all about? Is it attending church services and hearing choirs? Gathering as a family for a spring meal with flowers on the table and children’s baskets nearby?

Most Christians would admit that, of course, these things are not what Easter is all about, says American Pastors Network  President Sam Rohrer, even though they have become a part of why we may look forward to the sacred holiday.

This Easter, Rohrer suggests, because many of these traditions will be impossibilities, may all consider what this solemn yet celebratory week says about God, about Jesus and to mankind. What difference should Easter make in our lives today—especially this year?

“Easter is about God’s plan for the ages, the humans created in His image, the reality of sin, Satan and rebellion, God’s wrath and justice against sin and His plan of redemption,” Rohrer said. “Early in Genesis, God promised that one day His heel would be bruised but the head of Satan would be crushed. Christ’s crucifixion and death on the cross bruised God’s heel but His resurrection crushed Satan’s head, confirming His victory over sin and death. Christ’s blood paid the debt of mankind’s sins and fulfilled God’s demand for justice, providing salvation for all people. All those putting their trust in the Risen Savior, the Promised Redeemer, receive eternal life with Him.”

God’s promise to crush Satan’s head continued with God’s promise to Abraham of a Promised Redeemer through a promised people. Through time, Satan tried to destroy the lineage through whom the Redeemer would come. He led Pharaoh in Egypt to kill the young males and led Herod to kill all baby boys under the age of 2. On the Mount, he tempted Jesus to avoid the cross and tried to destroy God’s redemption plan.

“But the devil could not trick Jesus, kings could not kill Him, and haters of Israel could not destroy God’s plan,” Rohrer added. “That plan included a day 2,000 years ago when Jesus entered Jerusalem riding on a borrowed donkey. The crowds shouted, ‘Hosanna!’—blessed is the king of Israel who comes in the name of the Lord.”

But, Rohrer noted, the envious Pharisees said, “the world’s gone after him,” and they plotted His murder. Their plot worked, at least physically, and Jesus gave His life to pay a debt of sin He never owed because we had a debt of sin we could never pay.

“Some by faith alone accept Jesus as Savior and receive eternal life,” Rohrer said. “Others reject Him and sadly choose eternal death. It is truly a matter of life or death. Ultimately, Easter is not a freestanding or initiating event. It’s a confirming event. While Easter is a witness of God’s power over death and sin—a fulfillment of his promise of redemption and proof of His victory over Satan—it’s also historical. Proven and witnessed by hundreds, the power of Easter is also very personal because it was Christ’s willing death on the cross to shed His blood.

“Easter is a fact. It happened. Jesus died. He rose from the dead. He paid our debt. This Easter, it’s crucial that all who are willing become children of God, restored in relationship to their Creator God. And as Christians mark Good Friday, they remember that the greatest battle ever fought was won. Victory was declared. The end of the war was certain. From the cross, bloody and beaten, Jesus declared, ‘Into thy hands I commend my spirit.’”

With those solemn words, Rohrer said, Jesus died, fulfilling His words that no man would take His life. The perfect Lamb—God’s promised redeeming sacrifice—became sin for us and died so we could live. What Satan schemed as victory over Christ was Christ’s victory over Satan, death and hell.

“As Christians, let us rejoice in the finished work of Jesus Christ on the cross,” he continued. “Because three days later, to the disciples’ ecstatic joy, they heard the glorious words from the angel’s mouth: ‘Remember what He said to you? He is not here. He has risen!’ To that we reply, ‘He is risen indeed.’ For all who trust in Him alone—by faith alone—death is swallowed up in victory. And that’s the best news ever. Easter is about the power of God, His hatred of sin and His great love for an undeserving mankind.”

Photo by Jon Tyson on Unsplash

COVID-19 Pastoral Response Kit

With the advent of the Coronavirus—COVID-19—pandemic, the world is facing an increasingly challenging time. This biblical pestilence is taking lives, altering lifestyles, impacting our economy, and challenging our families and culture. Beyond anything we’ve seen in our lifetimes, this pandemic’s impact, while seemingly draconian for the moment, could well extend for many months. This means that our civil and church leaders are not only immediately faced with difficult choices, but may be facing a longer-term challenge as the U.S. and world population is faced with a deadly and invisible enemy.

COVID-19 Pastoral Response Kit A

COVID-19 Pastoral Response Kit B

New George Barna Research: ‘Dangerously’ Low Percentage of Americans Have a Biblical Worldview

Well-known social science researcher George Barna introduced brand-new research about Americans’ worldview on the American Pastors Network’s (APN, www.americanpastorsnetwork.net) popular, live, daily radio program “Stand in the Gap Today” last week.

APN President and “Stand in the Gap Today” host Sam Rohrer said the program was aptly named “The True Deficit: Americans with a Biblical Worldview.”

“In recent days, many more than before have become deeply concerned about the country’s national debt, as the government is set to spend $2 trillion to provide needed aid to Americans affected by the coronavirus pandemic,” Rohrer said. “Yet I would suggest that before budget deficits, before deep political infightings and before the moral crumblings of our culture, there is first a deficit in our relationship with God—a deficit of spiritual understanding and a deficit of how to view life and living from God’s perspective. This is the root of our national and cultural problems, the root of our pandering politicians and salivating citizens who only wish for more and bigger government, the root of our complacent churches and passive pulpits.”

Throughout the program, Rohrer and Barna discussed the key findings of “The American Worldview Inventory,” which Barna led in his role at the Cultural Research Center (CRC) at Arizona Christian University (ACU). The research is the first wave of what will be an annual survey. The assessment is based on 51 worldview questions, examining both beliefs and behavior, which were provided to a nationally representative sample of 2,000 adults.

Barna has called the research the “most sophisticated nationwide survey of worldview conducted in the United States.” Results include the following:

  • Although 7 out of 10 Americans consider themselves to be Christian, just 6% actually possess a biblical worldview.
  • Just one-fifth of those attending evangelical Protestant churches (21%) have a biblical worldview, as compared to one-sixth of those attending charismatic or Pentecostal churches (16%). The study finds even smaller proportions in mainline Protestant (8%) or Catholic (1%) churches.
  • The number of American adults holding a biblical worldview has declined by 50% over the past quarter century.
  • Regarding the youngest adult generation, the numbers are even more startling. A mere 2% of those 18 to 29 years old possess a biblical worldview.

“The fact that fewer than one out of five born-again adults hold a biblical worldview highlights the extensive decline of core Christian principles in America,” Barna said.

Among the differentiating factors between the new study and previous research, he noted, is the more robust measurement of action.

“In the American Worldview Inventory, we measure not just beliefs, but also the application of those beliefs—our behavior—because people do what they believe,” Barna added. “If you truly believe something, you integrate into how you live, and your lifestyle reflects those beliefs. As a result, our research always balances examining both what we believe to be true with how we translate such beliefs into action.”

Going forward, Barna will be a regular monthly guest on “Stand in the Gap Today.” He has filled executive roles in politics, marketing, advertising, media development, research and ministry. He founded the Barna Research Group in 1984 (now The Barna Group) and helped it become a leading marketing research firm focused on the intersection of faith and culture before selling it in 2009. He has written more than 50 books and his work is frequently cited as an authoritative source by the media.

 

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A Simple Lesson, A Profound Truth – Purpose Within Challenges

by Sam Rohrer

This morning the Lord brought a practical illustration to my mind that I trust will help encourage you as it did me —-from just a little thing in life. While listening to our Pastor’s devotional this morning, he reminded us of the practical application of Eccl 3:1 where Solomon the Preacher, wisely said, to ‘everything there is a season’. Indeed, that is true. In everything God’s hand is evident, His power and truth can be seen and His timing and planning perfect, if we but open our eyes and see.

On Friday I was outside raking leaves, trimming berry bushes and enjoying the sunshine of God’s creation. In the front flowerbed as you know is the bird bath. Last Fall I removed the basin from the pedestal and leaned it against the well casing to protect it during the freezing and thawing of winter. I was ready to put the basin back on the pedestal when I noticed that peeking from behind the basin were green daffodil tips that looked like all the other strong and blooming plants around it. I was excited that perhaps behind this cement basin I would find a large clump of healthy and ready to bloom daffodils.

I proceeded to pick up the cement bird bath basin and to my amazement, there was a very large clump of daffodils with the tips in bud waiting to bloom in a few days. Here’s where God showed me an eternal Biblical Truth that can apply to each of us who have a fear of God and are being redirected in our lives and thoughts during this Coronavirus epidemic. This is what I’d like to share with you.

When I put the basin back on the pedestal, I saw daffodils, as tall as all the others, with stems, and buds about to bloom. But here’s the lesson. As soon as I removed the basin which had provided a shield for the daffodils, they immediately fell over.  Growing in the shadow of the basin, blocked from the sun, the stalks were yellow and white, full of potential, identical DNA as the those growing in the full sun, yet unable to stand erect. Protected and shielded from the wind, the sun and the pressures of normal life, these daffodils were still daffodils. They had God-designed purpose and potential but could never realize all that God had intended hidden behind the basin. The tips I saw peeking out from behind the basin were as green as the others around, and they  would have bloomed as vibrantly yellow as the others, But, when the artificial protections of the basin were removed, they were unable to stand.

You can see the lesson I’m sure. The winds, the beating rain, the sun and normal life which confronts us all are necessary for strength and resilience, for color and for beauty, as God intends for us. This Coronavirus with its threat of pain or death, economic hardship and uncertainty for some and an altered lifestyle for all could well be that bird bath basin.

The removal of certain normal ‘guarantees, assumptions, and protections we’ve enjoyed are nice, but removing of them is part of God’s plan. There’s a season for everything. There’s a reason for everything. Therefore, be anxious for nothing. Consider the lilies of the field… Our Father above knows our needs. He will take care of us.

Now back to the daffodils, the pictures I took this morning still shows a weakly clump of daffodils. However, when I removed the basin two days ago the daffodils were exposed to the sun and wind for the first time. They had no choice in the matter. Yet, I as the gardener decided that the basin needed to be placed back in position for its good and the value it would be for the birds who use it and the beauty it affords for us when we look at it. These daffodils had their security removed and some would say, how sad. Yet, their God designed beauty was being prevented and they now have a chance to stand up, turn their natural color, and open their blooms to the world. I suppose that within another week, they will be standing stronger and greener than they are now.

God’s purpose for us in this life is to reflect the beauty and the strength, the hope and glory of our Creator. Difficulty and less than pleasant circumstances are often how God designs His Perfect Plan to evidence to the world around the power of His Saving grace and wonderful Plan of Redemption to be shown through us.

I pray that as we continue to face Coronavirus disruptions, we’ll thank God for Who He is, all He does, and pray that we can reflect His magnificent glory. For everything there is a season…

Approaching COVID-19 from a Biblical Perspective

by Dr. Gary Dull**

Originally posted on the Christian Post website HERE.

In the past few weeks, people all around the world have become familiar with coronavirus (COVID-19), which has resulted in great fear and concern by many. And just when we think we have learned all there is to know about COVID-19, a new day comes, and we find out something else that results in even greater concern. Only God knows how serious this virus is and how many people will be infected by it in the near future.

As a pastor, I have had many come to me with concerns about how COVID-19 can and should be approached. In addition, I have received numerous suggestions from various ministry, medical and governmental sources offering guidelines to adapt what eventually may bring a resolve to this tragic worldwide situation.

I thank God for those in the medical science field who are searching for a solution to COVID-19. I am also grateful for political leaders who are attempting to provide direction that will keep the general citizenry informed, calm and peaceful. But I realize that those of us who are in pastoral ministry have a great responsibility before God to provide the spiritual leadership necessary to guide America through this tragic circumstance.

Certainly, there is no lack of secular advice being given as to how to approach COVID-19. But I believe the ultimate approach should be from the biblical perspective that presents God’s way of dealing with this issue. Yes, we need to look at COVID-19 through the eyes of a biblical worldview.

One passage of Scripture to consider is Psalm 91, which teaches how God takes care of His own. Take time to read all 16 verses of this precious passage. To summarize the psalm, we are told that those who belong to God through faith in Jesus Christ dwell in the inner sanctum of the presence of God, who protects them as a mother bird cares for her young under her wings. The promise is that no evil shall befall them because God will keep them in all of their ways. Through God’s grace, love and mercy, He will “set them on high” and show them his salvation that involves the deliverance through whatever may come their way. This applies to COVID-19 and all other trials of life.

Realizing God’s promise to provide for His own as taught in Psalm 91, and then trusting God to keep His Word, as He always does, will erase the greatest of all fear, anxiety and panic in the hearts of the deeply concerned.

So how does one get to the place of trusting God and seeing His provision? Perhaps remembering the following facts about God will help.

  • God is in control. So depend upon Him to do what is right.
  • God has a purpose. So watch for Him to work.
  • God will provide. So trust in Him to deliver.
  • God has a mission. So declare His truth abroad.
  • God has a remedy. So praise Him for what He will do.

Even though there is a lot of advice being given in the world as to how to approach COVID-19, the sooner one focuses on Who God is, what God expects and how God works, and then is convinced of the fact that God causes, allows and directs all things according to His sovereign plan, the more one will experience the strength, hope, peace, comfort and confidence that only God can provide.

As Philippians 4:6,7 says, “Be anxious for nothing, but in everything by prayer and supplication with thanksgiving, let your requests be made known unto God. And the peace of God, which passes all understanding, shall keep your hearts and minds through Christ Jesus.”

Yes, those who follow that comforting admonition from Scripture will surely experience all the provision of God that is needed to face COVID-19 or any other troublesome issue that will come upon us in life.

Remember the words of the old hymn written by Civilla D. Martin that says:

“Be not dismayed what-e’re be-tide, God will take care of you.
Beneath his wings of love abide, God will take care of you.

“Through days of toil when heart does fail, God will take care of you.
When dangers fierce your path assail, God will take care of you.

“All you may need he will provide, God will take care of you.
Nothing you ask will be denied, God will take care of you.”

**Gary G. Dull is executive director of the Pennsylvania Pastors Network, board member of the American Pastors Network and co-host of APN’s “Stand in the Gap Today” radio program. He pastors Faith Baptist Church of Altoona.

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