Christians Should “Rest” During the COVID-19 Shutdown

In light of the current coronavirus crisis, I want to highlight at least three ways—under the New Covenant and Christ’s finished work on the cross—that believers can and should rest.

Many institutions that serve as gathering places of large amounts of people have shut down all over the country due to the COVID-19 crisis. Schools, churches, sporting events, concerts, and the like are canceled. Even movie theaters are selling limited quantities of tickets to curb the amount of people in proximity to one another.I think it bears repeating over and over—DO NOT PANIC. These are all precautionary measures taken to help “flatten the curve.”As I sit in my home office on Saturday, March 14, thinking about how my family will be relegated mostly to our home over the next couple of weeks, the phrase that comes to my mind as a believer is, “Take this time to rest.”What does it truly mean to rest?We learn early on in Scripture that God designed, instituted, and even himself practiced rest. We also see that God instituted Sabbath rest for Israel—not only was this a command, but also a sign displaying God’s covenant relationship with Israel (Exod. 31:12-18). Fast-forwarding to the Gospels, we see rest in a Christo-centric light.In light of the current coronavirus crisis, I want to highlight at least three ways—under the New Covenant and Christ’s finished work on the cross—that believers can and should rest.First, we must rest in Christ.The spread of and effects of this virus remind us of the fallenness of our world. And while we can take precautions to limit the spread and thus the effects, the underlying diagnosis is the same—the world is sinful and in desperate need of redemption.Many human beings since the Enlightenment think that humanity can usher in some type of utopia—purging the world of its darkness and chaos. Christians know better. While …

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