Can pestilence like measles really be eradicated?

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Some in the media and the medical community want us to worship vaccines–as if enough shots can insulate our communities from the will of God. However, the Bible recounts numerous instances where intentionally God sends plagues in order to execute judgment (and ultimately, bring Himself glory).

One such instance is the judgment pronounced upon the people of Gog in the book of Ezekiel.

Text: Ezekiel 38:17-23

“This is what the Lord GOD says: Are you the one I spoke about in former times through My servants, the prophets of Israel, who for years prophesied in those times that I would bring you against them? Now on that day, the day when Gog comes against the land of Israel” — this is the declaration of the Lord GOD — “My wrath will flare up. I swear in My zeal and fiery rage: On that day there will be a great earthquake in the land of Israel. The fish of the sea, the birds of the sky, the animals of the field, every creature that crawls on the ground, and every human being on the face of the earth will tremble before Me. The mountains will be thrown down, the cliffs will collapse, and every wall will fall to the ground. I will call for a sword against him on all My mountains” — the declaration of the Lord GOD — “and every man’s sword will be against his brother. I will execute judgment on him with plague and bloodshed. I will pour out torrential rain, hailstones, fire, and brimstone on him, as well as his troops and the many peoples who are with him. I will display My greatness and holiness, and will reveal Myself in the sight of many nations. Then they will know that I am Yahweh. (Ezekiel 38:17-23)

Tougher to swallow than an oversized pill, right? God rendered judgment on a group of wicked people (like us) with pestilence, bloodshed, and “natural” disasters. All to “display [His] greatness and holiness, and [reveal Himself].”

And this is not an isolated incident. God has used plagues to render judgment since the fall of Adam and the institution of death.

How then can people in our society be so arrogant as to think that we can escape God’s righteous judgment? Oh wait. That is just what the people of Gog thought too. Until judgment came.

So while it is wonderful that medical advances (and ultimately, God’s grace) have made it so that less people perish in certain regions of the world due to pestilence, these things are no substitute for humbly fearing the Lord. Remember:

The fear of the LORD is the beginning of wisdom, and the knowledge of the Holy One is understanding. (Proverbs 9:10)

It is impossible to properly understand the world until we properly understand God, the Holy One, maker and gracious sustainer of all. (A feat only made possible through His self-revelation, the Bible.)

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