I get a new message in my inbox every day telling me why I should be terrified to walk outside. Network news is depressing enough, with reports of rising crime, inflation, unbridled government spending and, or course, another new strain of the coronavirus. But many Christians I know send me alarming reports describing conspiracies and sinister plots. These conspiracy theories usually go like this:
— The COVID-19 vaccine was engineered by the government (and/or pharmaceutical companies) to kill us.
— The coronavirus is not really a virus but is caused by radiation from new 5G cell phone towers.
— Bill Gates and George Soros are using the vaccine to plant a microchip in our brains to control us and to create a New World Order.
— People who take the COVID-19 vaccine become "magnetic." (One creative fearmonger in Africa made a video showing people holding keys and other metal objects against their arms, claiming the vaccines magnetized their skin.)
— A secret group of politicians, business tycoons and Hollywood celebrities have banded together to worship Satan and abuse children sexually. (This conspiracy is better known as QAnon; many of its followers believed President Trump would save us from the satanic elites.)
— During the darkest days of 2020, Pastor Dana Coverstone of Kentucky released videos claiming that God had shown him in dreams that the United States was about to descend into civil war. He advised people to stock up on food and alternative currencies because banks would collapse.
Some Christians call me naïve because I didn't buy these or other worrisome theories. Go ahead and criticize me if you want, but so far (1) there's no microchip in my body; (2) 5G radiation has no affect on me; (3) I don't waste one minute of my day worrying about Bill Gates; (4) my body shows no evidence of being magnetized; and (5) I'd rather read my Bible than waste time fretting about what Satanists are doing.
P.S. I also believe the world is round.
I know we are going through a stressful time. The COVID-19 pandemic has resulted in an estimated 4.27 million deaths worldwide. The lockdowns, masking policies, social distancing and closing of schools and businesses have triggered violence, anxiety and suicides—and the second and third waves of COVID-19 variants have pushed us all to our limits.
But I'm still sleeping soundly each night because I enjoy the peace of God. Here are four reasons why I'm not worried about the future:
1. History shows that bad times don't last forever. This isn't the first time the world has faced a pandemic. Be glad you didn't live through the Black Death of 1350, when 25 million people died—one-third of Europe's population. Between 20 and 50 million died during the Spanish flu pandemic of 1918-1920; sadly, many victims were young children.
The COVID-19 pandemic has been horrific, but when compared to previous health disasters, we should be grateful for the blessings of medical technology, easy sharing of information and better health protocols. Pandemics don't last forever. When you read history, you realize that people bounce back after hard times.
2. God has not given us a spirit of fear. The most common command in the Bible is, "Fear not." Those exact words appear in the New International Version of the Bible 70 times. I've looked at the fruit of conspiracy theories, and it's not good. Why focus on something that only stirs up anxiety?
British preacher Charles Spurgeon said: "The fear of God is the death of every other fear; like a mighty lion, it chases all fears before it." Focusing on the devil's work is depressing. I choose to keep my eyes on Jesus during this crisis.
3. God is on the throne, not evil people. Since the pandemic began, I've been parked in Psalm 2, a passage that proclaims God's sovereignty over men and nations. It acknowledges that evil men have indeed conspired to rule the earth, but it says God will overrule them. "The kings of the earth set themselves, and the rulers take counsel together, against the Lord," verse 2 says. But it goes on: "He who sits in the heavens laughs; the Lord ridicules them" (v. 4).
I'm not worried about George Soros, Bill Gates, Dr. Anthony Fauci, Hillary Clinton or leaders in China, North Korea or the Middle East. Regardless of what any of these people are plotting, the Bible says God will deal with those who oppose Him. Men are ultimately not in charge of this earth. No matter how much money or power evil men have, God will always have the last word.
4. My security is in the Lord. Don't let silly rumors steal your faith. God is saying to us today, "Don't fear what everyone else fears." Our God is victorious! He's not worried about a pandemic. His throne is immovable. He's not wringing His hands over socialist liberals, right-wing zealots, tyrants, 5G towers or pharmaceutical companies. The deep state, if it exists, is not a threat to the Lord.
God is big enough and strong enough to take care of His enemies. He's laughing. He knows how things will end. Trust God, and get a good night's rest.
J. Lee Grady was editor of Charisma for 11 years before he launched into full-time ministry in 2010. Today he directs The Mordecai Project, a Christian charitable organization that is taking the healing of Jesus to women and girls who suffer abuse and cultural oppression. Author of several books including 10 Lies the Church Tells Women, he has just released his newest book, Set My Heart on Fire, from Charisma House. You can follow him on Twitter at @LeeGrady or go to his website, themordecaiproject.org.
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