The COVID pandemic has emptied churches this Easter. What’s up with that?
“Have nothing to do with such people.”
Birds roosting in the branches of the church is a metaphor used by Christ to describe the spiritual enemies of truth, worshipers of self and wealth. Jesus likened a mustard seed as the tiny bit of goodness that grows into a great tree… the Kingdom of God. Jesus said:
“Though it is the smallest of all seeds, yet when it grows, it is the largest of garden plants and becomes a tree, so that the birds come and perch in its branches.”Matthew 13:32
Days before Passover, Jesus cleared the temple of money changers and merchants. He chased them away with a whip made of “small cords.”
“So he made a whip out of cords, and drove all from the temple courts, both sheep and cattle; he scattered the coins of the money changers and overturned their tables.”John 2:15
Notably, the day Jesus died, He was scourged with a Roman Flagellum. A whip that could literally kill with a few blows. The whip of small cords was a very asymmetrical weapon, and very prophetic. Which is another picture for a different time.
And now, in our lifetime! The Lord has once again flushed scavengers from the branches of the mustard tree. COVID19 has cleared our churches. Many churches will be silent, empty.
A kind reverence has descended upon places of worship that is unprecedented.
“It is written,” he said to them, “‘My house will be called a house of prayer,’ but you are making it ‘a den of robbers.'”Matthew 21:13
In a different way, He’s cleared His house again. This Easter Sunday, most churches will be empty. What portion of “believers will be found wasting the day? Will it be a monumental day of prayer and rejoicing over the resurrection of Jesus? True believers have wept over His death, knowing it was our sin that put Him on the cross. And now He is resurrected; We will see Him again. Nothing is more worthy of praise and worship.
Remember: The Seventh Seal and the Golden Censer?
When he opened the seventh seal, there was silence in heaven for about half an hour. And I saw the seven angels who stand before God, and seven trumpets were given to them. Another angel, who had a golden censer, came and stood at the altar. He was given much incense to offer, with the prayers of all God’s people, on the golden altar in front of the throne. The smoke of the incense, together with the prayers of God’s people, went up before God from the angel’s hand. Then the angel took the censer, filled it with fire from the altar, and hurled it on the earth; and there came peals of thunder, rumblings, flashes of lightning and an earthquake.
But what about the online evangelical parasites? They’ll be on TV more urgent than ever before with calls for “seed money.” We should all be wise by now.
They are the kind who worm their way into homes and gain control over gullible women, who are loaded down with sins and are swayed by all kinds of evil desires, always learning but never able to come to a knowledge of the truth.2 Timothy 3:6
We now face a “new normal.” But not like we have so far encountered. It will be much worse.
Lovers of Self and Wealth.
“People will be lovers of themselves, lovers of money, boastful, proud, abusive, disobedient to their parents, ungrateful, unholy, without love, unforgiving, slanderous, without self-control, brutal, not lovers of the good, treacherous, rash, conceited, lovers of pleasure rather than lovers of God— 5having a form of godliness but denying its power.”2 Timothy 3:3-5
With silence in church for Easter Sunday it’s time to pray. Really pray! Pray for God’s justice, His perfect will. I am asking for hearts to break and to find deep, abiding gratitude for being alive now. We are his witnesses. What a privilege and honor to be a watchman on the wall.