Thursday, June 25, 2020

51. Pandemics, Plagues, and Natural Disasters

Pandemics, Plagues, and Natural Disasters. Erwin Lutzer. 2020. Moody publishers. 176 pages. [Source: Review copy]

First sentence: COVID-19, is the pandemic that changed everything. The “new normal” will not be the same as the “old normal.” For years to come we will talk about BC (Before COVID) and AC (After COVID). Normal might not be back.

Erwin Lutzer's newest book is current-event driven. Many, many, many things are going on in 2020. When this book was written, I believe the biggest issue was COVID 19--and to some degree some natural disasters (tornadoes, locusts, etc.). I do not believe the racial tensions had escalated with protests and looting.

Lutzer uses the Word of God AND the historical past to speak to this generation of believers. Lutzer shows readers that they are not the first generation to experience pandemics, plagues, and natural disasters. How believers choose to respond and do respond perhaps has changed a great deal. For sadly we live in a culture that would rather God be a caring bystander powerless to do anything but say, "there, there" while patting believers on the shoulder than a sovereign, providential God that allows pandemics, plagues, and natural disasters as part of His will.

In chapter one, Lutzer writes, "In the following pages I will discuss God’s relationship to pandemics, plagues, and natural disasters. I believe that realistic answers have to be given that will ground our faith in our sovereign Lord even in a time of fear and grief—or I should say especially in a time of fear and grief. Although God appears to be silent, I want to point out that He has actually spoken through the Scriptures, and furthermore, His promises are to be believed."

 God has a message for believers; it's not a new message, but an old one. "No special revelation from God here, just the Bible in one hand and a hurting world in another." He encourages believers to cling to hope AND to also offer comfort to those that are grieving and confused. Lutzer writes, "We must begin any discussion of tragedy by grieving for those who are in pain. Many of us are better at trying to explain the whys and wherefores of pandemics and disasters than we are weeping over them!"

© Becky Laney of Operation Actually Read Bible

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