Leader Unaware of Even Greater Authority
In his press conference on Sunday, March 22 (which is like 7 months ago in Coronavirus time), Governor Jared Polis said:
“There is no enforcement authority here. There is a far greater enforcement authority in these matters, and his name [pause for emphasis] is The Grim Reaper.”
I admit in my naïveté in that for a fraction of a second, I thought our Colorado Governor might refer to God. Obviously his response was much more creative.
However he also showed some naïveté. A 3 minute study of humanity reveals people don’t exactly take death seriously. Not on a day-to-day basis. We kinda think it’s something that will happen to the people in Pueblo or maybe even to our neighbor, but not to us.
And while death is real and serious business, personifying it as a means of motivation is just silly, not sobering.
COVID-19 is a deadly virus—I’ll resist quoting statistics that will be obsolete in 10 minutes—but I have Good News.
“Do not be afraid; I am the first and the last, and the living One; and I was dead, and behold, I am alive forevermore, and I have the keys of death and of Hades.” —Jesus Christ
Jesus has a grip on the Grim Reaper. We can rely on a higher Higher Authority—the One Who died and now lives. Because of Him, I can obey the government out of love and respect, not fear.
The Bible Tells Me So
A Look at Hebrews 2
There is not just hope in Christ, be we can be free from the fear of death—you know, that funny guy with the scythe. In the event you have a few extra minutes, I invite you to do a quick study with me in Hebrews.
Therefore, since the children share in flesh and blood, He Himself likewise also partook of the same, that through death He might render powerless him who had the power of death, that is, the devil, and might free those who through fear of death were subject to slavery all their lives. Therefore, He had to be made like His brethren in all things, so that He might become a merciful and faithful high priest in things pertaining to God, to make propitiation for the sins of the people. —Hebrews 2:14, 15, 17 (NASB)
“ … since the children …” that is, humanity, the people God created.
“ … share in flesh and blood …” have physical bodies
“ … He Himself also partook of the same, …” Jesus was conceived by a virgin, born in a manger, lived in Nazareth, was raised by a carpenter along with brothers and sisters, and died on a cross.
“ … that through death He might render powerless …” destroy, make useless, nullify
“ … him who had the power of death, that is, the devil.” Satan has been neutralized, overcome, and superseded.
“ … and might free those who through fear of death were subject to slavery all their lives.” He released people from their life-long fear of death, a terror that held them captive.
“Therefore, He had to be made like His brethren …” human, not poetically personified, but actual flesh and blood.
“ … to make propitiation …” to gain and regain the favor of God, to atone for humanity’s sin, to be the scapegoat (merriam-webster.com).
“ … for the sins of the people.” He took the guilty verdict and capital punishment for our wrong-doing.
Wow! I can just see the Grim Reaper menacingly waving his dulled scythe. Jesus is resurrected! Satan is defeated. And even in a pandemic, we can live without fear of dying—the Bible tells me so.