This is in response to Lloyd Omdahl’s claim that “Christian churches defy God over COVID.” Omdahl calls himself “someone knowledgeable in Scripture.” Sadly, he seems to have more faith in so-called “expert health professionals” than the One “who heals all your diseases.” (Psalm 103:3)
Omdahl falsely called out Pastor John MacArthur for resisting government-imposed restrictions based on “a single verse from Acts” (chapter 5, verse 29). The Grace Community Church’s webpage “Facing COVID-19 Without Fear” lists many other Scriptures supporting their stand. MacArthur stated: “We are convinced that governmental encroachment on basic human freedoms constitutes a more intimidating threat to individuals, a greater impediment to the work of the church, and a larger calamity for all of society than any pestilence or other natural disaster.”
In response to Omdahl’s call for Christians to submit to governing authorities, I agree with that to a point. For example, no one should violate the speed limit except for policemen catching criminals and first responders trying to save lives. However, civil disobedience is sometimes necessary when a law contradicts the higher laws of God. These individuals in the Bible wouldn’t have fulfilled their divine destinies had they followed every man-made ordinance…
- The Hebrew midwives were ordered to throw newborn boys into the Nile River (Exodus 1:16). One mother hid her son for three months and then sent him floating down the river. Moses eventually led the Israelites out of captivity.
- Esther went against protocol by appearing before King Ahasuerus even though it could have cost her life. Her actions saved the Jewish people from extermination.
- Daniel and his three friends Shadrach, Meshach, and Abed-Nego refused to worship the king of Babylon and instead prayed to the one true God. Their lives were supernaturally spared from the lion’s den and a fiery furnace.
- The apostles were commanded not to preach in the name of Jesus. As referred to earlier, Peter replied, “We ought to obey God rather than men.”
Would Omdahl consider John the Baptist “arrogant” for confronting King Herod’s illegal marriage to his brother Philip’s wife? The prophet got beheaded because of that. Yet Jesus had called John the greatest of all the prophets (Matthew 11:11).
Currently, I attend a church whose pastor had contracted COVID but recovered. He has never had a mask mandate nor enforces social distance guidelines. Churchgoers who are sick or fearful of the coronavirus have the option of staying home and watching services online. I choose to “not forsaking the assembling of ourselves together…” (Hebrews 10:25)
Omdahl closed his letter by saying, “As believers, we have a lot of repenting to do.” Hopefully, he will start with himself for not “rightly dividing the word of truth.” (2 Timothy 2:15)
Todd R. Post is a missionary living in Ashland, Va.
This letter does not necessarily reflect the opinion of The Forum's editorial board nor Forum ownership.