Are you afraid?

Let’s be honest… there is much to fear during our coronavirus crisis.

You might be afraid of catching the coronavirus. Or maybe you’re afraid someone you love may catch it.

You might be afraid of what the financial fallout is going to be. Stocks are already plummeting and it’s anybody’s guess what’s going to happen. Many are being laid-off and could be in a desperate situation. Small business owners are especially vulnerable.

Whatever you’re afraid of, I have good news for you.

This week I read a verse in the Bible that jumped out at me. The context is that the Apostle Paul visited the metropolitan city of Corinth. Corinth was a large and intimidating city. It appears that Paul was afraid until the Lord encouraged him…

“Then spake the Lord to Paul in the night by a vision, ‘Be not afraid, but speak, and hold not thy peace: For I am with thee, and no man shall set on thee to hurt thee: for I have much people in this city.'” (Acts 18:9,10)

Paul was having a very positive response to the gospel. Many believed. Yet, the environment must have been overwhelming. So God gave him a night vision and spoke to him.

Paul doesn’t appear to be a person who is fearful of other people. But it may have been that he knew that if he spoke up, it would get him in trouble. The phrase “hold not thy peace” is interesting. Sometimes speaking up causes problems. As long as we’re quiet we won’t rock the boat. It seem God was more interested that the people in Corinth heard the Gospel than Paul’s peaceful existence. 

We have a tendency to keep quiet when we are afraid of someone or something. They intimidate us. But God wants you to speak the truth. This is a great time to tell people the truth of Jesus. I think this crisis is giving Christians a great opportunity to share with people about the peace that comes when we know Jesus personally. Please share Jesus.

God made three promises to Paul as he commanded him to speak. These same truths will encourage you to speak up for Jesus in our current coronavirus crisis.

1 – God is with you.

You aren’t in this alone. God is with you. Another Bible verse is Psalm 23:4: “… though I walk through the valley of the shadow of death, I will fear no evil: for thou art with me…” Isn’t that a great promise? Jesus is with you through every valley we walk through.

Jesus made the same promise to His early disciples. In Matthew 28:19-20 Jesus commanded His disciples to go and preach the gospel. His promise as they did this was “…I am with you alway, even unto the end of the world.” You may seem like you’re going through this by yourself, but you aren’t. Jesus is with you.

2 – Nothing can hurt you.

I know we all have fears about what could happen. But nothing will happen to you that God does not want. In fact, don’t you think that God will protect you as you share His message with others? This doesn’t mean we can test God by living unwisely. But God watches over His people as they share the Gospel. God will perform miracles so people can hear about His Son, Jesus.

It’s wonderful that during our lifetime we can share Jesus while we are quarantined in our home. Phone service and the internet allow us to interact with a lot of people who need Jesus. Make sure you make Jesus famous through this emergency.

3 – Many need Jesus.

It seems every generation has an event that crushes our foundations and rocks our world. For many, it was 9-11. I remember after 9-11 our churches were full of people searching for God.

This coronavirus crisis could be our 9-11. But people won’t be flooding our church. But this time the church has the opportunity to go to the people. Our church is poised to reach out through Facebook and share Jesus. We can use this opportunity for the good of the Gospel.

This worldwide event has captured the attention of everyone in the world. This could soften people’s hearts to be more receptive to the Gospel. People are in fear and anxiety and need stability in their life. Jesus can do that.Jesus will do that.

I hope you will not be afraid, but speak about Jesus to those who need Him most. Share the good news of eternal life in Jesus. I believe people in America (and the world) are more responsive to the Gospel than I have ever seen in my lifetime. I’m praying for a great revival.