Elba and his wife have both tested positive for the virus but have not shown any symptoms.2 In a video interview with Oprah Winfrey, the actor said, “Our world has been taking a kicking. We have damaged our world and it’s no surprise that our world is reacting to the human race.”1
Although Elba didn’t explicitly say so, it seems he was referring to environmental damage caused by pollution and/or “climate change.” He compared the Earth to an organism attempting to defend itself against an infection.1 He also said,
It is no surprise that a virus has been created that is going to slow us down, and ultimately make us think differently about our world and ourselves….This is almost like the world’s cry out. Like: “Hey, hey, hey—you are kicking me and what you’re doing is not good, so we will get rid of you.”1
Elba’s comments are of interest because they illustrate how one’s beliefs about origins dramatically influence the way we interpret observations and events. Elba seems to view the Earth as a living organism, an idea promoted by New Agers and some environmentalists like James Lovelock.
It is also interesting that he says the virus was “created.” Does he mean that God created the virus to protect the Earth? Possibly, but it seems more likely that he thinks the Earth created the virus to protect itself against us. This is just another example of the tendency to honor the creation instead of the Creator.3
Elba is right, however, about at least one thing: Now is a good time for serious introspection. But instead of fretting over supposed environmental sins, we should take this time to consider our relationship, not with the creation, but with our Creator. This pandemic is a reminder that we are all mortal. But why do we die? The engineering behind the human body is literally, in many cases, beyond our comprehension. Why would a Creator wise and powerful enough to design such amazing biological machines allow them to break down and degrade?
The Bible answers this question. Death and suffering entered the world because of the disobedience of the first man, Adam.4 Despite what you may have been told, Adam was a historical person. There is overwhelming historical, geological, and archaeological evidence to corroborate the events described in the book of Genesis, and this evidence is documented on this website in thousands of articles and videos. Here at ICR we encourage you, during this time of forced isolation, to study this evidence for yourself. Why? Because the same Bible that tells us about the early history of this planet also tells us that God is going to hold us all accountable for the wrong we have done in this life. This prospect should terrify us, as every single one of us have broken God’s commandments many times over, and the Bible contains terrifying examples of God’s judgment on sin.5
Fortunately, God has provided a way of escape. God became a man, the Lord Jesus Christ, and lived a perfect life that none of us could live. He died on a cross in our place, as our substitute. Then He rose from the dead to demonstrate his victory over sin and death.6 The Bible promises that whoever turns from his sins and believes in Him will be saved from the wrath to come.7
Elba is wrong about the conclusions we should be drawing from this pandemic, but he is right about the need for self-reflection. It is our prayer that you would take this time to think seriously about spiritual matters, for as the apostle Paul writes, “Behold, now is the accepted time; behold, now is the day of salvation.”8
1. O’Conner, R. Coronavirus: Idris Elba suggests pandemic is Earth’s response to being ‘damaged’ by humanity. The Independent. Posted on independent.co.uk March 22, 2020, accessed March 24, 2020.
2. France, L. R. Idris Elba’s wife, Sabrina Dhowre, also tests positive for coronavirus. CNN. Posted on CNN.com March 22, 2020, accessed March 24, 2020.
3. Romans 1:25.
4. Genesis 3.
5. Genesis 6-9, 19:1-26; Leviticus 10:1-2; Numbers 16:1-35.
6. 1 Corinthians 15:3-4.
7. John 3:16, Acts 16:30-31, Romans 10:6-13.
8. 2 Corinthians 6:2.
Stage image: Idris Elba
Stage image credit: Denis Makarenko / BigstockPhoto. Used in accordance with federal copyright (fair use doctrine) law. Usage by ICR does not imply endorsement of copyright holders.
*Dr. Jake Hebert is Research Associate at the Institute for Creation Research and earned his Ph.D. in physics from the University of Texas at Dallas.