Written By: Nicole Floyed
There have been a lot of plagues lately around the world, the most prevalent of which is the coronavirus. However, we are commanded not to live in fear. “Is there a case where one can say, “Look, this is new”? It has already existed in the ages before us. There is no remembrance of those who came before, and those to come will not be remembered by those who follow after.” Ecc 1: 10-11
Throughout the Bible, plagues have been sent to judge the World. The most familiar of these is in Exodus when Pharaoh wouldn’t let the Hebrew slaves walk free. If you notice, all through the Bible plagues are used as God’s judgement when people are acting in disobedience or impeding the spread of the Gospel. Some plagues come in the form of people, such as invading armies that kill or enslave, they can be animals, like the bears that killed the boys who mock God’s prophet. Yet still other times it’s a sickness that wipes people out until they turn to God such as the Israelites learnt in the desert. Through it all, we learn that God can use plagues to further His work and demonstrate His power. God’s Hand has two faces, Deliverance and Judgement. To the Hebrews, the ten plagues upon Egypt were a prelude to their deliverance but to the Egyptians, it was God’s wrath. When Jesus died on the Cross, a great darkness covered the Land, this plague came as a reminder of the judgment that we all face when we are dead in our sins just moments before the greatest deliverance was completed. The Hebrew phrase “ arm of God” connotes two separate images for the receiver. From one view, the arm of God represents strength, protection, and comfort even to those who have placed their trust in Him. To another, it strikes fear because that same strength coming against you means certain death. Isaiah says “ Who has believed our message and to whom has the arm of the Lord been revealed? (Isaiah 53:1) In other words, are we all doomed to utter destruction because it seems like so few can hear God? The Chapter then continues into one of the most famous Prophecies of Jesus in which we learn that He would come as a suffering servant. One thing is for certain, We are never left without hope or a way out. Pharaoh had the ability to spare his people from harm but his pride allowed Him to be hardened against the Will of God. The Israelites were given a bronze statue to come and look at when they were plagued with poisonous snakes for their blasphemy in recognition that only one can save them. Our hope in the coming plagues that this world will face, is that the faithful are delivered by the same hand that is causing the judgment. The Hebrews were never touched by the plagues in Egypt but were kept safe until they in turn also gave in to their own pride and disobedience. Our God is the same yesterday, today and tomorrow and I urge you to respond to the same commandment that God gave to Abraham “I am God Almighty; walk before me faithfully and be blameless.(Genesis 17:1)” So my dear Christian, do not be troubled by the news, be it a plague of death or sickness or the rumors of wars because the arm of our God shields us from harm.