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The Mind of GOD: on Suffering & Covid?

The Mind of GOD

We speak of seeking the heart of GOD or of being like David, after GOD’s own heart; we talk of the mind of Christ. But what of the mind of GOD? Is that the same?

I came across Jesus’ words to Pilate recently in the weekly Torah portion for Believers (ie the Torah portion with a new testament reference also offered) and find this in John 19:11, “Jesus answered, “You could have no power at all against Me unless it had been given you from above. Therefore the one who delivered Me to you has the greater sin.””

I dwell upon unless it had been give you from above. Whether our theology puts Satan in the heavenliness with the LORD or not, the LORD is above all; in GOD’s sovereignty, like Pilate, Satan can no nothing at all without the Father’s ascent.

People say GOD does not allow illness, suffering, death

That the LORD’s will was that His son Jesus should die is irrefutable amongst any Believer. Gethsemane was a heart cry from Jesus to the Father and total surrender to the Father’s will. And so, Jesus was put on the cross and (mercifully) died relatively quickly, within a few hours. He died that we might be saved from eternal death through faith in him. But does that mean we are spared all suffering, all illness, any mortal death? Clearly not for we experience these things.  It is part of live, and struggles are part of our spiritual growth and our humanity.

Historic suffering

Before Jesus, the Hebrews and then the Jews suffered at the hand of GOD. But Numbers 18:22 tells us, “Hereafter the children of Israel shall not come near the tabernacle of meeting, lest they bear sin and die.” Instead, only the priestly Levites could approach. GOD made a way even for the sinning, because He loved His chosen people.

And Yeshua — Jesus — is our way, whether Jew or Gentile, to live to the full both now and forever. This was the mind of GOD from the beginning. Throughout scripture, quoted by Jesus, this was the plan. Isaiah 53 is only one of many reports of how things would come to pass.

And before Jesus was, the Word of GOD was. John 1 tells us, “In the beginning was the word and the word was with GOD and the word was GOD.” And so, united, they speak and live and move. And Jesus, giving up his GOD-head to come to earth, surrendered his will to the Father GOD: Yehovah, I AM.

A Pandemic

As we discuss about Covid, many say it cannot be GOD’s will. And yet He is sovereign. The principalities and powers are subject to Jesus. Colossians 1:16 says, “For by Him all things were created that are in heaven and that are on earth, visible and invisible, whether thrones or dominions or principalities or powers. All things were created through Him and for Him.” And later Paul writes, “Having disarmed principalities and powers, He made a public spectacle of them, triumphing over them in it.” (Colossians 2:15)

There is no question, just as we know in Ephesians 6 that principalities and powers are from the demonic realm, that sickness, witchcraft, all powers are subject to GOD.

So, what of this Covid Pandemic? Under whose authority is it? Ultimately it is under the sovereign will of GOD. 

What then, is His purpose in permitting it? 

I have seen increased opportunity for us to take time to spend with GOD. I have seen suffering and even death, yet the option is to allow even these things to draw us closer to Him. For Believers, it is no question to allow this. And we pray for those not yet following GOD through Jesus, that their circumstance will draw their attention to Him. It is His will that all would be saved.


The mind of GOD then, is surely to allow whatever comes to us — even a pandemic, even the threat of sickness and death — to draw us nearer to Him. The details are not to be a battle ground between us, but rather, as we fully surrender to the LORD and in our choosing, we choose His will for our lives: one person by one person at a time, and one crisis by one crisis at at time. That does not mean we do not war against the sickness, but we do so under the leadership of our Messiah and Saviour, and that makes all the difference.

And when things feel tough, I remember and draw upon the truth that the joy of the LORD is my strength! (Nehemiah 8:10)