Obey & Pray for Governing Authorities
Romans 13:1-5 “Let everyone be subject to the governing authorities, for there is no authority except that which God has established. The authorities that exist have been established by God. 2 Consequently, whoever rebels against the authority is rebelling against what God has instituted, and those who do so will bring judgment on themselves. 3 For rulers hold no terror for those who do right, but for those who do wrong. Do you want to be free from fear of the one in authority? Then do what is right and you will be commended. 4 For the one in authority is God’s servant for your good. But if you do wrong, be afraid, for rulers do not bear the sword for no reason. They are God’s servants, agents of wrath to bring punishment on the wrongdoer. 5 Therefore, it is necessary to submit to the authorities, not only because of possible punishment but also as a matter of conscience.”
1 Timothy 2:1-4 "I urge, then, first of all, that petitions, prayers, intercession and thanksgiving be made for all people— 2 for kings and all those in authority, that we may live peaceful and quiet lives in all godliness and holiness. 3 This is good, and pleases God our Saviour, 4 who wants all people to be saved and to come to a knowledge of the truth.”
One of the easiest ways we can all help “flatten the curve” (slow the spread of the virus) is to comply with government recommendations. Remember, we do this not in fear and self-preservation, but as an act of love to the vulnerable whom this sickness might kill.
Also, remember to pray for them as well as everyone else in the world. Our government leaders will make major decisions in the days, weeks, and months ahead that will have profound impact on all our lives. They need God’s help.
Meet the Needs Among us
Galatians 6:9-10 “Let us not become weary in doing good, for at the proper time we will reap a harvest if we do not give up. Therefore, as we have opportunity, let us do good to all people, especially to those who belong to the family of believers.”
The Corona virus appears to discriminate. Children (praise God!) aren’t being affected nearly as much as the elderly. Further, healthy people will most likely be fine, while the immunocompromised, pregnant or those with chronic health conditions are at greater risk. If you have any needs please contact Jordan King (0404 000 913). He will coordinate with the uni students and young professionals who are eager to serve in whatever way they can. Over the next few months our lives will be filled with the inconvenience of canceling cherished events—but it so happens that self-sacrificial love is always inconvenient.
Love your Actual Neighbours
Luke 10:36-37 “Which of these three do you think was a neighbour to the man who fell into the hands of robbers?” 37 The expert in the law replied, “The one who had mercy on him.” Jesus told him, “Go and do likewise.”
In the summary of the Parable of the Good Samaritan we are charged to have mercy on those in need as a way to fulfil the second greatest commandment (Matthew 22:39). We’ve attached to this email a card you can print and give out to your neighbours. Cyprian, an Elder in Carthage, during the plague between AD 249- AD 262 urged the believers with the following: “There is nothing remarkable in cherishing merely our own people with the due attentions of love, but that one might become perfect who should do something more than heathen men or publicans, one who, overcoming evil with good, and practicing a merciful kindness like that of God, should love his enemies as well. . . . Thus the good was done to all men, not merely to the household of faith.”
Serve the Healthcare Workers
Colossians 4:14 “Our dear friend Luke, the doctor, and Demas send greetings.”
There is little doubt that Luke must have helped Paul many times with his wounds from his frequent beatings and stoning’s, hence the use of the term of endearment “dear friend”. Paul clearly valued and honoured Luke for the service he provided as a Doctor & a disciple, we should do the same. Please remember to pray for and serve all those among us who work in the healthcare industry: Frans & Doret, Almayne, Pansey, Fiona, Pam, Jeab, Mia and Bunmi. Pam Lam will be helping to coordinate any help the above people may need during this time.
Hebrews 10:23-25 “Let us hold unswervingly to the hope we profess, for he who promised is faithful. 24 And let us consider how we may spur one another on toward love and good deeds, 25 not giving up meeting together, as some are in the habit of doing, but encouraging one another—and all the more as you see the Day approaching.”
Time and again, history has shown that our bodies don’t just need health; our souls need hope. The human capacity to endure in the harshest of circumstances is incredible—so long as there is hope. For Christians, this means reminding ourselves and one another that Jesus is our only hope in life and in death. Christian community is the primary place where we process our anxieties, and preach the good news of Jesus to each other. While now is a time where we absolutely must significantly alter the way we meet, we must not give up small and safe gatherings, even if that means we have to connect by digital means (call, text, fb message, skype, facetime, zoom, etc).