Positive Lessons from Coronavirus for the Church

For the first time in around 2000 years of the Christian Church,
our holiest days were spent with church doors closed. Lights off. Nobody there.

Let that sink in.

Many churches still haven’t opened on account of coronavirus. This should not be the case ever again. There are lessons to be learned if we’re to be wise Christians, refusing to let the Gospel be sidelined during such times.

It’s more important than ever that the Gospel shine forth.
People need that kind of hope!

To keep ourselves focused on the positive things to be learned in our series on 100+ positive lessons from coronavirus, so far we’ve looked at personal applications, societal lessons, and things we can learn about government itself. Today, I want to focus on the Church because only if we–as citizens of 2 kingdoms– learn today’s lessons will we be found faithful tomorrow and when Jesus returns.

But we do not belong to those who shrink back and are destroyed,
but to those who have faith and are saved.
Hebrews 10:39

Coronavirus lessons for the Church include:

  1. Modern tools like web sites, livestreams, and online giving are no longer luxuries.  The virus has shown us they are necessary for the modern mission field.
  2. A 1950s Church mindset cannot minister in a modern context where 2 or 3 are gathered, even underground.  This has been a test, a drill, and we’re likely to see it again.  Prepare now.
  3. Cultural adaptation doesn’t need to mean Gospel compromise. In fact, new communication pathways find new people with a historic Gospel message.
  4. Sorting out civil disobedience and plain old disobedience is tricky, more so for the Christian.
  5. Church leaders have shirked their responsibilities in teaching there are 2 kingdom worldviews for the Christian. Way too many feared political blowback and didn’t want to get their hands dirty with controversy.
  6. Governments shutting down churches and police arresting pastors for congregating is forcing pastors out of complacency and cowardice.  Time to start leading again as fearless disciples.
  7. The Church needs to teach an expectation of suffering and storms of life.
  8. The Church needs to help people understand the line between God’s responsibility and our own–how fear and faith interact in these responsibilities.
  9. Programs in a Church setting are more often inward than missional, and the virus has shown us which are which.  The Church exists for mission and worship and should direct resources accordingly.
  10. The Church needs to look hard at its budgetary priorities as stewardship of God’s resources.
  11. Ego builders like large staff and big buildings are unnecessary for an underground, missional Church.
    Any Church that has had multi-site or online presence for enlarging the pastor’s fame should repent and humbly recognize that one man’s folly can yet bear fruit in the hand of God.  It was never about you.  It was always about Him and He can take what man did for himself and produce good from it.
  12. The Church must set forth a biblical model and instruct individuals on the value of being cheerful givers … even from home when no one is looking. (When I was in seminary, I did a cross-cultural ministry experience at a local reform Jewish synagogue. At the end of the 13 weeks, I asked the Rabbi how they fund things when no one passes a plate like they do in Christian churches. His reply was “We bill them.”
    The amount was not decided by the Rabbi, but the person who pledged in giving. He saw the astonishment on my face since it’s not how we do things in churches. He continued, “Why should service to God’s work be of any less value to anyone than his electric bill or refuse removal?” That stuck with me. )
  13. People are more likely to give where they see results and they need both feeding with the Word and exercising of their faith through deeds.
  14. The Church is under attack on spiritual and earthly battlefields. Make no mistake on a spiritual level, THIS was all about the destruction of Christian churches and demoralizing the faithful, removing us from the very community that has held the Church together for almost 2000 years.
  15. Prayer needs to be elevated in priority since only God can truly save people. Put on the armor of God. It’s a battle out there.

Let’s not get mired in negativity and fear, shrinking back. There are many positive lessons if only we look for them.
To be continued….

Categories Articles and Devotionals, Devotionals | Tags: | Posted on May 16, 2020

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