COVID-19: Two Truths, One Caution, One Challenge :: By Joe Southerland

“For my thoughts are not your thoughts, neither are your ways my ways, saith the LORD.  For as the heavens are higher than the earth, so are my ways higher than your ways, and my thoughts than your thoughts” (Isaiah 55:8-9; scriptures KJV).

“Declaring the end from the beginning, and from ancient times the things that are not yet done, saying, My counsel shall stand, and I will do all my pleasure” (Isaiah 46:10).

In my first message on COVID-19, I stated the obvious; we are in a pestilence of global proportions. Then, I further stated that there is no doubt in light of Matthew 24:3-8. We are indeed living through one of the birth-pain sorrows prophesied by Jesus Christ, which will occur before His second coming.

I also stated that while we CAN KNOW the Biblical prophetic timeline which God has provided in His Word, the LORD GOD has and will intentionally veil the details of prophetic events from Mankind.

Then, I cautioned Believers to be on guard, warning them that we must know the difference between people’s speculation, illumination, inspiration, and revelation. Since these are very different ways of hearing from God, we must demand of preachers and teachers clarity on what they are proclaiming.

Lastly, we MUST arm ourselves with the knowledge of God, God’s Divine Word, so we may rightly judge truth in this time of global turmoil.

Delving into the Truth Behind COVID-19

As a lifetime Prophecy Watcher and student of God’s Word, and a Bible Teacher, like many of you, I keep my finger on the End-Times’ pulse.

Now, more than I have ever, I have seen a tremendous amount of speculation out there in the secular world, as well as in prophetic circles. Is the COVID-19 virus the result of:

– eating wild exotic animals which contained the virus?

– a Chinese biological weapon lab experiment gone bad?

– an intentional release by Communist China in order to reduce their aging population and/or attack or weaken the West?

– the US Army generating a bio-engineered virus to thwart the inevitable rise of the great People’s Republic of China?

– Bill Gates creating a “eugenics” virus to kill off the world population to a sustainable level and implant a vaccine with a personal marker within the COVID-19 survivors?

– the “Illuminati” releasing a bio-engineered virus to collapse world governments and economies to bring in the New World Order…and the Antichrist’s rise?

I WILL NOT and CANNOT address the validity of any of the current speculations and theories out there… and believe me, these are just a sampling. Undoubtedly, there will be many more theories, conspiracies, and speculations coming from the secular world, from Satan and his deceivers, and from fellow Believers.

As Believers we must apply the gifts we have been given by God to judge what is truth. God has given us: His Holy Word, the guidance of the Holy Spirit, rational and logical minds, and fellow Bible Believers to consult and commune with (using prescribed social distancing, of course). Thusly armed, Believers can discern the difference between true teachers/preachers and false teachers/preachers, and their speculations, illuminations, inspirations, and revelations. For we must become End of the Church Age Bereans (Acts 17:11) for those around us.

And always remember…TRUTH is NOT about what or how you feel; it is about what the WORD OF GOD SAYS!

Truth Behind COVID-19 – Number One

Regardless of which COVID-19 speculation/theory/conspiracy you may be judging on validity, know that whether or not any may be true…there is but one root cause… SIN!*

For SIN is the source of all destructive acts of nature: earthquakes, volcanoes, asteroid strikes, tsunamis, floods, tornadoes, mudslides, firestorms – and yes, this includes plagues, pestilence and pandemics. That goes for whether COVID-19 is man-made or Satan-made or not. For every kind of wickedness, evil, greed, depravity, envy, murder, strife, deceit, malice, gossip, slander, lying, insolence, arrogance, boastfulness, disobeying of parents, and faithlessness… and all heartlessness, ruthlessness, rape, incest, anger, theft, covetousness, sexual immorality, idolatry, adultery, homosexuality, drunkenness, and swindling are the result of sin; and the source of all death, decay, illness, disease, and sickness.

Scriptural Proof behind SINs reign on earth

“And unto Adam he said, Because thou hast hearkened unto the voice of thy wife, and hast eaten of the tree, of which I commanded thee, saying, Thou shalt not eat of it: cursed is the ground for thy sake; in sorrow shalt thou eat of it all the days of thy life; Thorns also and thistles shall it bring forth to thee; and thou shalt eat the herb of the field; In the sweat of thy face shalt thou eat bread, till thou return unto the ground; for out of it wast thou taken: for dust thou art, and unto dust shalt thou return” (Genesis 3:17-19; emphasis mine).

“Wherefore, as by one man sin entered into the world, and death by sin; and so death passed upon all men, for that all have sinned” (Romans 5:12).

If you do not know what occurred in Genesis Chapter 3, you will never make any sense of the world we live in!

A CAUTION: I am compelled to provide this CAUTION because there is a huge misperception that I have seen among Believers in the internet/blogosphere, and it goes like this:

“COVID-19 came from the LORD GOD.”

We must be very careful what we lay at the feet of the LORD GOD; blessed be His name! And that goes for any type of natural or man-made disaster… for there is a huge, Biblical difference between these two statements…

“COVID-19 came from the LORD GOD” and

“COVID-19 is being allowed by the LORD GOD.”

There are two types of disasters which come upon the earth: one is “God initiated” and the other, as we just discussed, is loosed due to the fallen nature of our world because of sin.

God’s initiated disasters are specific judgments directly generated by Him for specific purposes. The next specific plagues and pestilences found in the Bible are found in Revelation Chapter 6 and onward in the seal, and bowl, and trumpet judgments. We are not there yet, even though we are experiencing COVID-19 as a major birth pain.

Believers CANNOT presume to know which events, like COVID-19, can be laid directly at the feet of the LORD. Therefore, we should be very cautious attributing these calamities to anything other than the result of the post-Adam fallen nature of the world. We know from Job that God hedges Satan’s actions, and He may have done just that by allowing these things, which were once held back, to come forth.  Mere mortals can but speculate.

The Truth Behind COVID-19 – Number Two

Events like COVID-19 always leads to the question, “Why does God allow such horrendous things, like COVID-19, to happen?”

To answer that timeless question, we are going to turn to Acts 17:26-27, where the Holy Spirit gave the Apostle Paul the answer we seek while he addressed the Athenians on Mars Hill.

Scriptural Proof for “Why God Allows Disaster?”

Acts 17:26 “And hath made of one blood all nations of men for to dwell on all the face of the earth, and hath determined the times before appointed, and the bounds of their habitation:”

Notice here the underlined bounds of their habitation. God has set forth many bounds/boundary-lines within Mankind’s habitation**, and loosed within Mankind’s habitation are disasters, like pestilence and plague we are living through. As previously stated, these are historically part of the fallen world which Mankind has inherited as children of Adam.

So why does God allow these disasters according to the scripture?

Acts 17:27 “That they should seek the Lord, if haply they might feel after him (grope/search), and find him, though he be not far from every one of us.”

The Greek word here, “feeling after,” implies much more…as a person groping around in the darkness, reaching out desperately for the light.

Here is the answer we seek. So that in these times of turmoil and strife, caused by the boundaries within our habitation, Mankind will reach out and seek their LORD GOD Creator.

Why is that necessary? Because God knows the fallen, sinful, self-centered nature that Mankind inherited from Adam. God knows in times of good health and plenty that Mankind believes their conditions are the result of their works and wisdom. It is often only when the predictable and controllable are shaken that many people will seek spiritual answers to explain their changing, tumultuous new reality.

But why does God include Christians?

Invariably this leads to a question I get from Believers: “But why does God include Believers in these tribulations?”

Scriptural Proof for Believers Facing Tribulation

“That ye may be the children of your Father which is in heaven: for he maketh his sun to rise on the evil and on the good, and sendeth rain on the just and on the unjust” (Matthew 5:45).

These disasters occur to all Mankind because we all share the same habitation, Christians included.  Christians are in this world, but not of this world. God never declared Christians a safe physical harbor, but a secured spiritual one in heaven. Our earthly bodies can die and our souls can be attacked even though they will live eternally. However, our quickened spirits are sealed for eternity.

We, children of our Father, are here for a purpose. God allows Christians to go through trials not only to refine us, but because…

We are Christ’s light in this world.

We are Christ’s salt of this world.

We are Christ’s sons and daughters of grace and love unbounded in this world.

For who better than God’s children to help this fallen world deal with this situation.

Mankind needs Christ to shine through His children now more than ever!  So shine forth with the truth, light, passion, mercy, grace, and love of GOD! Leverage the gifts God has given you. Therefore, work in the unique and specific field which God specifically has planted you for this season. I pray that God may richly bless you for the works he has planned for you in advance.

Time is short! The harvest fields are ripe! Come, Lord Jesus, come!


J&J Ranch Ministries “But as for me and my <ranch>, we will serve the LORD” (Joshua 24:15)

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* A tip of my hat to John MacArthur whom I heard say in a message some time ago.

** From my “Taking 10 Minute” Series  see, “God – Created and Bounded” V2.