Early January in 2020, the world was struck by the COVID-19 virus which devastated many lives. Various methods of management were implemented to manage the outbreak ranging from the use of drugs like antivirals and dexamethasone to rapid COVID testing and preventative measures using supplements such as zinc and vitamin D, to homemade herbal remedies.
During the summer of 2020, there was a race to produce an effective vaccine to combat this virus; Moderna, Astra Zeneca and Pfizer were successful in creating this. The COVID vaccine has been a topic of division since its genesis, a point of contention even within the Christian community. There is the debate that the vaccine is God-inspired, while some believe taking the vaccine will defile the temple that is our bodies and since God heals, why take the vaccine? This article will delve further into this topic.
The right thing is to eat no meat or drink no wine [at all], or [do anything else] if it makes your brother stumble or hurts his conscience or offends or weakens him. Your personal convictions [on such matters]—exercise [them] as in God’s presence, keeping them to yourself [striving only to know the truth and obey His will]. Blessed (happy, to be envied) is he who has no reason to judge himself for what he approves [who does not convict himself by what he chooses to do].”Romans 14:21-22
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Let us not put God in a box
The view that God heals and there is no need to take the vaccine is a slightly controversial one. One thing to make clear is that ‘healing’ is restorative/curative whereas the vaccine is preventative and not perfect at all. So it is not an accurate/balanced comparison. However, in the Bible, there are various methods God uses to display His glory when healing sick people.
With a word/instruction
- Then Jesus said to him, “Get up! Pick up your mat and walk.” (John 5:8)
With mud, spit and washing
- Man born blind man (John 9:6-7)
Full immersion in water
- Naaman cured of leprosy: “So he went down and dipped himself in the Jordan seven times” (2 Kings 5:14)
- “While the sun was setting, all those who had any who were sick with various diseases brought them to Him; and laying His hands on each one of them, He was healing them.” (Luke 4:40)
Touching of a garment
- But Jesus said, ‘Someone touched me; I know that power has gone out from me.’” (Luke 8:43-48)
Here we see the vast range of ways God’s power was/is transmitted. We also see how God is not limited by any element or method to carry out His purpose in healing. Obviously, the methods stated above were quite specific to Jesus and were used by Him to prove His command, authority and sovereignty over everything; be it mud and spit to heal or by mere words.
Interestingly, some of those who are against the use of the vaccine to protect against COVID are happy to still use antibiotics, painkillers and other forms of treatment for diseases. So, the stance against the COVID vaccine could be solely due to the novelty of it whilst for some, they may be against any man-made medication completely.
Reasons why some may choose not to take the COVID vaccine
There is an intersection between faith and science. Since we serve a creative God who created the heavens and the earth, it is no surprise that He could inspire His creation to create more things for the earth! Nevertheless, some concerns expressed pertaining to why some people choose not to receive the COVID vaccine are valid and require attention too, they are listed below:
- Concerns about impact of the vaccine on their health for example those with hypersensitive immune systems/allergies who are prone to anaphylaxis shock
- Pharmacological reasons, where drugs/medication have no effect on the receptors in their body.
- The fear of the unknown- needing more time to review the vaccine and it’s after effects.
This being said, there should be no judgement or condemnation towards those who have decided to take the COVID vaccine. One should take time to carefully reflect on their reasons as to why they choose to decline the vaccine- when it has been provided to the population as a protective aid against a virus that has killed millions. Admittedly it can be confusing, especially when some churches are being used as vaccination centres whilst some churches are anti-COVID vaccine, hence why it is so important to make spirit-led decisions in this season and do our own research via accredited sources.
If any of you lacks wisdom, you should ask God, who gives generously to all without finding fault, and it will be given to youJames 1:5
When we don’t know what to do, we pray, and we ask God for wisdom, to reveal His perfect will to us and guide our decision making. In this modern world, we are bombarded with real and fake news which can be overwhelming. As humans navigating this life, we don’t have all the answers, but as Christians, we step out in faith. Concerning the COVID-19 vaccine, we can only follow our own personal convictions whilst being mindful of how we interact with/talk to people who have/haven’t had the vaccine. In this season, we pray for more God-inspired wisdom, inventions and solutions to the world’s problems. Our God heals but His power can also work through medicine too, He has NO limits!