Citizenship on Earth and in Heaven | The Institute for Creation Research
Citizenship on Earth and in Heaven
As the number of those infected with COVID-19 grows dramatically with each passing hour, governments tighten their grip, trying desperately to slow the spread of the virus and mitigate the damage being caused. How are Christians to respond to these ever-increasing restrictions? Some claim that the closing of churches over the novel coronavirus is a form of persecution, or that any church that shuts its physical doors does not truly trust in the Lord. Is that true?

Christians must recognize that this global pandemic is affecting believers and non-believers alike. Thousands of people are suffering, if not from the coronavirus itself, at least from economic strain. Even aside from the thousands of deaths, many have lost their jobs, and a number of companies, especially smaller businesses, are in danger of failing altogether. The rules and regulations placed by governments on their citizens are not to persecute anyone, but instead to save lives. In Matthew 5:45b, Jesus states, “For He makes His sun rise on the evil and on the good, and sends rain on the just and the unjust.” All humans in this fallen world are experiencing this pandemic together. In Romans 13:1-2, Paul says,

Let every soul be subject to the governing authorities. For there is no authority except from God, and the authorities that exist are appointed by God. Therefore whoever resists the authority resists the ordinance of God, and those who resist will bring judgment on themselves.

This was in a time when persecution of the church was much more prominent, and even then Paul urged those who followed Christ to obey the law. The coronavirus restrictions may seem draconic, and they may be, but they do not prevent believers from practicing their faith. It is a blessing to the church that technological advancements are so widespread that Christians can still encourage, exhort, learn, and serve together, even if leaving the home is not an option!

In following these restrictions passed by our government, a Christian is also being a good neighbor, which we are commanded to do. 1 Corinthians 10:24 says, “Let no one seek his own, but each one the other’s well-being.” Staying home right now, even if it is restrictive to personal liberty, is being a good neighbor to the vulnerable populations to whom this virus is most dangerous.

Finally, during these difficult times, there are many who do not know the Lord—neighbors, government officials, first responders, and so many more. They are consumed with anxiety, fear, and unrest because the future is uncertain. While they are citizens of earthly kingdoms, they do not have the assurance and peace of being a citizen of the heavenly kingdom. This is an excellent time to share the good news of the gospel!

It can be difficult to navigate the turmoil that this world has been thrown into during the last few months, but that does not mean that Christians are exempt from these passages from Paul! Obey the law. Be a good neighbor. Above all, have faith.

*Trey Bowling is Customer Service Manager for the Institute for Creation Research.
The Latest
NEWS
Creation and Climate Science with Dr. Jake Hebert
ICR physicist Dr. Jake Hebert* recently made a guest appearance on Good Heavens! A Podcast About the Universe with Wayne and Dan. Dr. Hebert presented...

NEWS
Inside May 2021 Acts & Facts
How should Christians respond when authorities are in conflict with God’s Word? Can we trust scientific measurements and reports about fossil...

ACTS & FACTS
Creation Kids: Volcanoes
Christy Hardy and Susan Windsor* You’re never too young to be a creation scientist! Kids, discover fun facts about God’s creation with...

ACTS & FACTS
Tributes of Honor and Remembrance
At the end of a long day, a boss I had early in my career would often tell me, “No more today, Henry. My brain is full.” I found his comments...

APOLOGETICS
Guided by Lynx to Appreciate Christ
Not all tour guides in Alaska are human. Amazing animals of Alaska can guide us into learning creation truth. In fact, such animals should direct us—like...

ACTS & FACTS
Zion National Park: Evidence of Deep Water Sand Waves
Brian Thomas, Ph.D., and Tim Clarey, Ph.D.* It was like driving into another world when we emerged from Zion-Mount Carmel Tunnel right at dawn....

ACTS & FACTS
Is the Bible Evidence for Creation?
Have you ever had a skeptic tell you to keep the Bible out of it when discussing origins? Skeptics claim we Christians argue in a circle, that we are...

ACTS & FACTS
Vertebrate Origins on the Ropes…Again
In 1859, the Western world was turned upside down by the publication of Charles Darwin’s The Origin of Species by Means of Natural Selection or...

ACTS & FACTS
The Fossils Still Say No: Enigma of the Carboniferous Explosion
Many creationists and evolutionists alike are familiar with the initial huge explosion of complex marine life buried in the Cambrian rock layers at...

RESEARCH
Archaeopteryx by the Numbers
Sometimes scientists get a chance to collaborate. This happened last year when a fellow creation-based researcher invited me to contribute comments...