COVID-19 and Passover
The COVID-19 pandemic currently sweeping across the world is occurring during the time of the year that we celebrate Passover.
Passover marks the time when the Israelites left Egypt. The Exodus event, which happened thousands of years ago, is a blueprint for us today. It shows us how to respond to the current crisis we are facing.
The Secular State and Egypt
The nation of Egypt refused to listen to the Almighty God and rejected His commands. As a result the land was decimated by ten plagues, culminating in the death of all the first born of the land.
The strength of Egypt was gone.
The secular state of today is one that rejects the authority of the Almighty God. It no longer operates within the jurisdiction that God has given it, enacting and enforcing law that arbitrarily rejects the Word of God.
We can therefore equate the secular state with Egypt.
As COVID-19 spreads its way across the world it is decimating countries in its wake. Health care systems are under huge strain, thousands are losing their lives, economic activity is at a standstill.
Just as Egypt was decimated by the ten plagues so is our secular state today by COVID-19. The secular state has lost its strength.
Why did Israel need to leave Egypt?
The Israelites needed to leave Egypt in order to worship God. They all needed to leave – men, women, children and livestock. The Israelites were not able to worship God within Egypt (Exodus 7:16; 8:25-27; 10:9,24-26).
The Israelites worship of the Almighty God was an abomination to the Egyptians – the two systems were polar opposites (Exodus 8:26), and therefore incompatible with each other.
Today we also face a similar situation. As laws are enacted and enforced that reject the authority of God it has become impossible to worship God fully within the secular state. His ways are an abomination to the people.
We are facing a modern day Exodus. The world is in turmoil. Lives have been unimaginably changed. Life is very different to what it was only a few weeks ago. New realities have emerged… social distancing, hibernation, lockdowns. When we emerge from this current crisis the world will be a changed place… it will not be as it was.
The question is, will we, as a nation, come to recognise the identity of our Almighty God? Will we collectively turn to, and follow, Him, or will we return to our state of bondage? From where will we source our help?
Israel’s Flight and the Loss of a Workforce
Not long after the Israelites had commenced their flight from Egypt the Egyptians set off in hot pursuit. Why did the Egyptians have a change of heart? Why did they want to force the Israelites to return?
When the King of Egypt was told that the people had fled, the mind of Pharaoh and his servants was changed toward the people, and they said, “What is this we have done, that we have let Israel go from serving us?”.Exodus 14:5
The Egyptians recognised that by allowing the Israelites to leave they had lost their workforce.
We see a similar pattern occurring today.
Our secular state, the modern day version of Egypt, is doing all it can to retain its workforce.
As COVID-19 decimates businesses and creates massive unemployment there is talk of our economy entering a deep recession, or even a depression. As a result governments around the world are spending massive amounts of money to prop up businesses, subsidising wages in an attempt to retain their workforce.
Denying the Worship of God
By attempting to recapture their workforce the Egyptians were also denying the Israelites the ability to go out into the wilderness to worship the Almighty God… the real purpose of their Exodus.
Today we see this same pattern also emerging in the response of the secular state to the crisis.
“No one can serve two masters… You can not serve God and money.”Matthew 6:24
The secular state’s response to the crisis is to spend massive amounts of money, rather than leading the nation into humble repentance and turning back to God.
“If my people who are called by my name humble themselves, and pray and seek my face and turn from their wicked ways, then I will hear from heaven and will forgive their sins and heal their land.”2 Chronicles 7:14
By throwing money at the crisis the secular state is seeking to retain the status quo. It seeks to assert its position that money, which represents man’s power or strength, is able to avert the crisis. The secular state, acting independently of God, asserts that it is the ability, strength, power and knowledge of man that will get us through our current crisis.
By doing so it is attempting to deny us the ability to go out to worship our God… it seeks to keep us in bondage.
We are faced with a very real choice today… will we trust in the saving power of the one true God, or will we place our trust in the power of Egypt? Which God will you serve?
The Drowning of the Egyptians and the Death of the Secular State
The Egyptians pursuit of the Israelites was unsuccessful. The entire army of Pharaoh drowned in the Red Sea (Exodus 14:9,28).
If we take this as a blueprint we can see that the power currently held by the rebellious secular state will also fail.
On to Mount Sinai
Having been delivered from Egypt the Israelites went on to Mount Sinai. This is also where our focus needs to be. This is the place where God spoke and where He gave His Law, His Word…
Jesus himself is the fulfilment of the law, and is the Word. He is our King and we are to worship Him (Isaiah 9:6)
As we all face this COVID-19 crisis, as the world as we knew it crumbles around us, let us not look to Egypt for our deliverance. Let us not look to our own strength. Let us not trust in those that reject the true King.
Our focus should be on our risen King, the risen Christ. In Him we find life. Let us not place anything before Him. Let us apply His Word in our lives in a practical way. By applying and upholding His Word we worship Him. He is our deliverer. May His Kingdom come.
“Hear, O Israel: The Lord our God, the Lord is one.”Deuteronomy 6:4