Says one person, “I don’t need to observe these precautionary measures for I know God will protect me.” While another one says, “I do not need these vaccines because I believed God will spare my children from any viruses.” Even some religious cult groups choose not to believe in doctors and taking medicine for the reason that God can heal. There is no question about God’s all-powerful attribute to healing even the sickest person in the world. But we need to also accept the fact that God blesses us with doctors and medical personnel to help us recover. If these physicians did all they can do but to no avail then let the Lord step in for a miraculous breakthrough. He even gave us science to produce medicines. No wonder many scientists are believers in the past. By the way, Luke, the apostle, was also a physician himself (see Col. 4:14).
At present, the government has clear guidelines and stipulations for churches to temporarily stop meeting in public places because of the possible spreading of the Covid-19 virus. Despite this warning, some religious leaders may continue to exhort their followers boldly saying, “We will continue to meet as a church congregation even during this season of coronavirus because we believe God will surely protect us,” defying government warning. This is truly dangerous.
In the past, some churches in the west had this practice of snake handling, poison drinking, and even medicine shunning because doing these things involves “great” faith, according to them. This practice is known to many as hyper faith that became an issue among many small churches where they defy science accusing it as worldly.
When the apostles said to the Lord, “Increase our faith!” (Lk. 17:5) this is not “hyper faith” but faith to believe the impossible to be possible. Hyperfaith is something done without wisdom despite the available provision given by God. And sadly, there are still some believers who fell on this trap thinking its faith but moving without wisdom.
When Covid-19 spread throughout the world infecting several people, the health authorities had to come up with health guidelines on how to slow down and possibly stop the contagion. Additional precautionary measures were also given by some concerned medical personnel to prevent further spreading of the virus. Some of the things that need to be observed according to official health personnel are social distancing, crowded places, rubbing your hands with alcohol upon touching any foreign items, wearing a face mask, face shield, and goggles to protect your eyes, wearing reusable or disposable hand gloves, routine cleaning regularly touch surfaces in the house, and voluntary self-isolation for a minimum of fourteen days or more for possible infected individuals. Some also tend to suggest the use of sanitizing mat, immediate dipping of used clothes in a laundry basin with water and disinfectant, sanitizing every paper and metal currency received along with bought grocery items.
Is the believer moving without faith when he does these things? Is a believer being paranoid if he observes these precautions? Is it lack in faith when God asks the Israelites to go inside their own houses because an angel of death will roam around killing the firstborns? Was it the absence of faith when Paul told Timothy to drink a little wine for his stomach ailment?
Some Filipino believers will even reason that there are some under privilege people who don’t even wear mask yet they were not stricken with sickness and disease. Of course, this observation was not done objectively. It’s merely pure subjective opinion without any basis. If every person in our country will not continue to observe this professional advice and precaution then the number of infected people in our country will steadily inflate.
In Hosea 4:6, the Scripture says, “My people are destroyed for lack of knowledge.” Even though the context of this pertains to Israelites ignorance of God’s will in their life, the principle still applies. There is a piece of knowledge or information on our end that needs to be known to prevent further contagion and sickness. If this is faithfully observed, then we can arrest the transmission of this virus.
There is a place where we can exercise our faith. If we as Christians are under privilege with no money to buy any protective mask or face shield, then believe the Lord for a miracle to have one. If our money is not enough to buy food during this coronavirus season then believed the Lord for His hand of provision to moved. If the Lord provided you with enough money to buy some personal protective equipment but chose not to use your God-given provision then this is not moving with wisdom. If you will not also observe the proper guidelines and precaution to the best of your effort to protect yourself from this virus, thinking that God will protect you, then this is not also moving with wisdom.
This is no different from believers who are praying for a healing miracle for their sickness because they do not want to spend their money on hospitals and doctors, not understanding that God has given them some means to pay for their health. We hope that believers will not border on hyper faith, but be wise to apply the practical things in life. After all, God has given people the thinking mind to reason for His glory and honor.
And he said to him, “You shall love the Lord your God with all your heart and with all your soul and with all your mind.” Matt. 22:37