Tom Hanks says the blood he and his wife, Rita Wilson, donated after recovering from coronavirus should go toward a “Hank-ccine.” He and his wife also hope to donate plasma to COVID-19 patients.
They were the first celebrities to test positive for a disease that has now infected more than three million people and killed more than two hundred thousand. Their illness is a reminder that this virus knows no status and is restricted to no social class.
Their story came to mind when I read Isaiah 24 recently and found this description of God’s judgment: “And it shall be, as with the people, so with the priest; as with the slave, so with his master; as with the maid, so with her mistress; as with the buyer, so with the seller; as with the lender, so with the borrower; as with the creditor, so with the debtor. The earth shall be utterly empty and utterly plundered; for the LORD has spoken this word” (vv. 2–3).
I do not read these verses as predicting the coronavirus pandemic. In fact, interpreters typically consider them to be apocalyptic descriptions of the end of history and God’s judgment against sinful humanity.
But I did notice the degree to which such judgment will be administered equally, from people to priest, from slave to master, from buyer to seller. This fact shows that God’s sovereignty transcends every division and classification of human history. He is truly Lord over all.
Trusting God’s sovereign love with our needs
There is another side to this principle: just as God can judge all who sin, he can pardon all who seek his forgiving grace (1 John 1:9). Just as he can punish all who transgress, he can forgive all who repent.
Jesus encountered no illness he could not cure, no need he could not meet, no leper he could not cleanse, no corpse he could not raise.
In other words, our God is more than able to meet every need we bring to him (Philippians 4:19). If he does not answer your prayers in the way you wish during this pandemic, it is not because he is unable to do so or because he does not know or care about you. There are times when his timing is not ours. There are mysteries to his divinity that humanity cannot unravel on this side of glory (Isaiah 55:8–9; 1 Corinthians 13:12).
But we know this: we can give him our needs and know that he hears us and that he loves us. He is both our sovereign King and our loving Father.
Why do you need him to be both today?