Here is a summary of a little book worth reading. It is entitled Coronavirus and Christ and is written by John Piper. You can access it here:
One of the saints in our church summarised it for us, and it will be our devotion for the next few days.
Where is God in the suffering? This is an often-heard taunt from unbelieving friends, immature Christians or those who call themselves Christian but who adhere to a liberal theology and therefore do not have a biblical knowledge of God.
John Piper in his most recent publication entitled Coronavirus and Christ poses the question “What is God doing through the Coronavirus?” He then proceeds, from scripture, to lay a foundation of elaborating on the glory of knowing God as our Rock (e.g Ps 18:2; 62:2) and as a Solid Foundation (Math 7:24). He states,
No man can comfort our souls in this pandemic the way God can. His comfort is unshakable. It is the comfort of a great, high Rock in the stormy sea. It comes from his word, the Bible.
This of course relates to any suffering any Christian will encounter.
Piper proceeds to expand on this foundation by highlighting and expanding on the wonderful attributes of God’s holiness, his righteousness, his goodness and his sovereignty. God rules over all creation. As God declares in Isaiah 46:9-10
for I am God, and there is no other; I am God, and there is none like me, declaring the end from the beginning and from ancient times things not yet done, saying, ‘My counsel shall stand, and I will accomplish all my purpose,’
or as we learnt in our memory verses last year in Psalm 115:3
Our God is in the heavens; he does all that he pleases.
But our God reigns in holiness and with righteousness and goodness and Piper states it this way:
God’s goodness is his disposition to be generous—to do what blesses human beings. The transcendent fullness and perfection of God—his holiness—is like a fountain that overflows. This is why he is disposed to be generous. But his goodness is not disconnected from his righteousness. It is not bestowed in a way that would deny his infinite value and beauty and greatness.
This is why God’s righteousness involves final punishment as well as goodness. When God punishes the unrepentant in hell, he is not bestowing his goodness on them. But he does not cease to be good. His holiness and righteousness govern the bestowal of his goodness.
This is why his goodness flows especially toward those who fear him and take refuge in him. “Oh, how abundant is your goodness, which you have stored up for those who fear you and worked for those who take refuge in you” (Ps. 31:19).
Having set this scene John Piper then offers six biblical answers to the question posed, “What is God doing through the coronavirus?”
Those six questions will be our meditation in the coming days.