May 04, 2020
“The only thing constant in life is change.”
This quote by the Greek philosopher, Heraclitus, might be cliché, but it has never been as glaringly true as during this pandemic.
Are you tired of the constant and sudden changes around us?
Are you weary of plans constantly being disrupted?
Are you sick of constantly hoping that the ECQ will end, only to end up being frustrated by an extension?
Sometimes you can’t help but ask, “Is there any hope left?”
The short answer is, yes, there is still hope. Heraclitus missed the truth that there is another constant aside from change: God. His character, His love, and His promises.
In fact, let’s look into what the Bible has to say about God’s unchanging nature.
Jesus Christ is the same yesterday and today and forever.
Hebrews 13:8 (ESV)
And when we know Jesus Christ, we know God Himself (John 14:7).
Let’s look at the significance of this verse.
This truth is an invitation for us to look at God’s sovereignty over any circumstance throughout history. It invites us to trust in His faithfulness in the midst of every calamity.
If you examine world history and the Bible, you will see that COVID-19 is definitely not the first pandemic mankind has experienced. Even God’s people were not exempt from being affected by the plagues or calamities in the Bible.
Elijah experienced drought. David experienced a plague. Isaiah experienced war.
Most of the Bible characters we know and love had their faith tested and strengthened by at least one calamity. Many of them knew hardship for most of their lives.
Yet it’s amazing that even in the midst of trials, a prophet in the Bible still declared:
Even though the fig trees have no fruit
and no grapes grow on the vines,
even though the olive crop fails
and the fields produce no grain,
even though the sheep all die
and the cattle stalls are empty,
I will still be joyful and glad,
because the Lord God is my savior.
Habakkuk 3:17,18 (GNT)
Come to think of it, can a farmer really rejoice in the midst of a famine when his source of income is wiped out? Can he rejoice when his family’s survival is at stake? How can we have this confidence?
We have this confidence by remembering God’s faithfulness, displayed many times in the past. This is God’s historical record of saving people across different generations, as well as our personal experience of God’s redemption.
History is a vehicle to prove God’s unchanging faithfulness throughout the generations.
The Old Testament, which is a product of Jewish oral tradition, contains stories that tell of God’s holiness, power, and might in saving the people He loves.
These stories serve to remind His people about how God rescued them again and again from slavery and oppression (Exodus 8–10; Joshua 24:17; Judges). While these stories never shied away from painting the gory picture of man’s sin and its painful consequences, they also serve to highlight man’s need to be rescued and God being the sole and ultimate source of salvation.
In the Bible, God proved over and over again that He is a keeper of His promises—the ultimate proof was when He came through Jesus Christ to demonstrate His love and power by dying on the cross and rising from the dead in order to save us from our slavery to sin and death.
Even throughout post-biblical history, any form of crisis has led to much spiritual revival. In our own nation, spiritual revival was at its peak in the midst of our worst political turmoil in the 1980s. And every single revival was powered by sharing the good news of God’s faithfulness to His people throughout history.
But it does not end there.
If history proves God’s faithfulness yesterday, we can have hope that our eternal future is secure because of God’s unchanging character. He is the same forever.
We are faced with the glaring truth that everything in this world is fleeting. This ongoing pandemic highlights the truth that the things we deemed necessary are dispensable, the things we hold dear can be shaken, and the people we love can be taken away. We cannot place our hope in the temporal.
In fact, Hebrews 12:27 (NLT) says, “This means that all of creation will be shaken and removed, so that only unshakable things will remain.” This verse signifies that change is God’s grace for us, to wake us up to the fact that we may have been placing our hope on the flimsy promises of the world, and that we need to place our faith on the solid Rock that is Jesus Christ.
We need to come to the point of being discontented with this temporary and broken world, so that we will long for the eternal and perfect heaven He offers. He wants to assure us that this pandemic is not the end. He opens our eyes to the reality of a better future where “He will wipe every tear from their eyes, and there will be no more death or sorrow or crying or pain. All these things are gone forever” (Revelation 21:4, NLT).
That is the glorious ending that God has for us who have faith in Jesus Christ; and this hope remains unchanging, no matter what happens today.
Both history and hope assure us about today.
Today, when we are being shaken by changes.
Today, when we struggle with doubting God’s character and love.
Today, when we battle loneliness and depression from being disconnected.
Today, when we question what the future holds for us.
Today, allow Him to remind you of His faithfulness in the past—when you went through trials and knew He never left you; when you experienced breakthroughs and miracles you couldn’t have achieved with your own strength.
Today, let Him open your eyes to the beauty of His eternal plan of perfection. Let it give you hope that this is not the end, and you can cling to the certainty of victory.
Today, let His eternal word assure you that He will never change throughout your lifetime and beyond.
“I have cared for you since you were born.
Yes, I carried you before you were born.
I will be your God throughout your lifetime—
until your hair is white with age.
I made you, and I will care for you.
I will carry you along and save you.
To whom will you compare me?
Who is my equal?”
Isaiah 46:3–5 (NLT)