Luke 13:1–5 Now on the same occasion there were some present who reported to Him about the Galileans whose blood Pilate had mixed with their sacrifices. And Jesus said to them, “Do you suppose that these Galileans were greater sinners than all other Galileans because they suffered this fate? “I tell you, no, but unless you repent, you will all likewise perish. “Or do you suppose that those eighteen on whom the tower in Siloam fell and killed them were worse culprits than all the men who live in Jerusalem? “I tell you, no, but unless you repent, you will all likewise perish.”
In this time it is tempting to ask “why?”. Why is this happening, why are people dying? Why are jobs being lost? Why have our daily lives been halted? We live in a sin cursed world. Every single person ever born is under the curse of Adam and unless they repent and turn to Christ they are storing up wrath for the day of wrath. This trial that we are living in should point believers and unbelievers to repentance.
What is happening today is nothing in comparison to what any sinner deserves. This may very well be judgement on us for living in a blood soaked land amongst an evil people. If it is judgement it is rightly deserved. However no trial or difficulty that we may experience on earth would ever satisfy the payment that sin requires. Sin requires perfect obedience, a perfect sinless sacrifice as payment. That is only found in Jesus Christ.
For believers all things work together for our good. We do not have to be alarmed at the trials that we are currently enduring. Although there may be uncertainty in exactly what our coming days may entail we can trust that God has a purpose in it. Ultimately all things are for His glory. In view of that what can we learn about this time of trial?
All things for the believer are to work out their sanctification. This time of illness, job loss, and sheltering in place is meant to burn off our impurities and make us more fit for heaven. We should grow in this to be more conformed into the image of Christ. Rather than focusing on what we can not know or on what we do not have we must turn our hearts to God and focus on what we can know.
Blessed be the God and Father of our Lord Jesus Christ, who has blessed us with every spiritual blessing in the heavenly places in Christ. God gives us every necessary thing to make us like Christ. If we are being afflicted, please let us be thankful. This is for our good. We must die to ourselves and to the world and live to God. Our sin and flesh must die. Our lusts and desires must be weakened and mortified. Let us take this time as a time to be still and draw near to God, to be strengthened in saving graces, to practice true holiness, without which no man will see the Lord.
Let believers be the first to repent. For it is time for judgment to begin with the household of God; and if it begins with us first, what will be the outcome for those who do not obey the gospel of God? AND IF IT IS WITH DIFFICULTY THAT THE RIGHTEOUS IS SAVED, WHAT WILL BECOME OF THE GODLESS MAN AND THE SINNER? Therefore, those also who suffer according to the will of God shall entrust their souls to a faithful Creator in doing what is right.
Because we have been given the gospel and granted repentance we have a gift to share with the world that is afraid and sick and dying. You may be under quarantine, or sheltering in place, or in a hospital. Wherever you are share the gospel. Explain why your fear does not overcome you in this time. There is hope and it is found only in Jesus Christ. Whether we endure sickness, famine, are without shelter, in wars, we are not hopeless.
Let us teach the world that they must repent, or they will likewise perish. Whatever fear or difficulty they face here is nothing compared to the terror of an eternity in hell. If you are in your home with your family, share the gospel, if you have the internet, share the gospel. Find a way to send the gospel out. Reach out to others, ask how you can pray for them and share the gospel.
As God reveals indwelling sin in you- repent – and share that repentance with a dying world that hates God and loves death.