The Contagion That Changed The World
Speaker: Aaron Cozort
PDF of Slides
I want to begin in our lesson this morning, focusing on the greatness of God we need to comprehend. And we need to understand that God is great. God has, from the beginning of time before Adam and Eve ever existed when this world was brought together in this universe was created by him. God has had a plan. He has had a plan for eternity. He has had a plan for our lives, for the church. For his son. Revelation, Chapter 13 in Verse eight tells us that the sacrifice of the lamb was determined before the foundation of the world.
And so, in the midst of heightened concern worldwide pandemic, we need to remember that God is in control. He has always been in control. He was in control on December 30th and he is in control today. But at the same time, there’s some some wonderful lessons that we can glean from the events going on around us, and I will make it clear now that we’re not going to have week after week of Coronavirus sermons. But we’re going to take the opportunity today to focus our minds on some current issues.
Some current matters so that we might focus our minds more directly on some eternal matters. But as we consider this situation that the world finds itself in, we consider the reality that this Novel Coronavirus, by the way, it’s called Novel because it just received its name. It’s the end area. It’s it’s or in a with sequenced and as a result it was given a name, and that’s why they call it Novel as opposed to just Coronavirus. This Coronavirus that we’re dealing with in the world right now effects humans,
we believe, based upon the information that has on the research that has been done on it. That probably came to us like a number of other viruses in recent decades from the animal population. And this virus has transferred from animals to humans, but it’s somewhat more dangerous than some of the others that are like it because it actually transfers human to human. Ah, number of diseases just a few years ago came about on the scenes, but they only transferred from animal to human, and so they had much less of a spread.
It’s a concern. It’s a real thing, but let me get back to the greatness of God. This virus only exists because it abides by the laws of nature. It infects the human body, it infects the cells. But those cells continuing to exist and those laws of nature exists because God put them there. No human being has been able to replicate a system like God created in nature and in biology. And it is certainly evidence of the fact that evolution is just simply not a viable option for how we got here.
But I want to spend just a few moments looking at some details. This was an article from The New York Times. It has some of the basic details about how the Coronavirus hijacks our cells. Now, this is not a deviation off into something other than the sermon–there’s a reason why I want to go through this.
But notice, first and foremost, the virus that causes Covid-19 is currently spreading around the world. At least six other types of Coronavirus are known to infect humans,
with some causing the common cold to causing outbreaks, SARS and murders. Those both happened in recent years. The stars are receiving the Coronavirus is named after the crown like spikes that protrude from its surface. The virus is enveloped in a bubble of oily lipid molecules, which fall apart upon contact with soap. That’s part of the reason why they’ve been telling you time and time again. Wash your hands because so counter acts the or interacts with the molecule and breaks it down. The virus enters a vulnerable cell.
That’s how you get infected. The virus enters the body through the nose. The mouth of the eyes then attaches to a cell in the airway that produce a protein called Ace to. The virus is believed to have originated in bats where it may have attached to a similar protein releasing viral or in a The virus infects the sell by fusing it’s oily membrane, or it’s oily membrane with the membrane of the cell. Once inside, the Coronavirus releases a snippet of genetic material called or in a You may be familiar with DNA.
This is slight variation on that concept. Then it begins hijacking the cell. The virus genome is less than 30,000 genetic letters, long ours, that is, the human genome is over three billion This is a in, in terms of complexity, a very simple piece of biology. And yet look at the impact that it has made on our world. If you can’t find the greatness of God in that simple detail, here we have a world, a world of seven billion people with a complex genetic code of over three billion letters,
and were impacted to this degree by a 30,000 letter long genetic virus. And yet the infected cell reads the RNA and begins making proteins that will keep the immune system at bay and help assemble new copies of the virus. So notice what happens when the virus infects the cell. It starts combating the immune system it wants to push back. It wants to keep the immune system from coming and destroying it. Because God put a system in place to deal with this kind of issue, anybody’s kill bacteria and do not work against her.
Antibiotics. Excuse me, kill bacteria and do not work against viruses. But researchers are testing, and I viral drugs that might disrupt viral proteins and stop the infection. Now the making process of a viral protein. As the infection progresses, the machinery of the cell, once a person is infected, begins to churn out new spikes and other proteins that will form or copies the crossfire. So once it gets in, once the virus enters you and your infected, then it begins to reproduce and it begins to infect more and more cells.
Stay with me. There’s a reason we’re going through all of this. Then it begins assembling new copies. New copies of the virus are assembled and carried to the outer edges of the cell. Then the infection begins to spread. Each infected cell can release millions of copies of the virus before the cell finally breaks down and dies. That’s just the first cell. The virus may infect nearby cells and end up in droplets that escape the lungs. The immune response Most Covid-19 infections calls a fever as the immune system fights to clear the virus.
In severe cases, the immune system can overreact and start attacking lung cells. Notice. There’s an interesting reality that it’s the immune system overreacting that can actually lead to people dying. The lungs become obstructed with fluid and dying cells, making it difficult to breathe. A small percentage of infections can lead to acute respiratory distress syndrome and possibly death, then leaving the body coughing and sneezing can expel virus laden droplets on the nearby people on surfaces where the virus can remain infectious for several hours to several days. Have you even heard a number from one epidemiologist as long as possibly 24 days,
UH, where someone could be infected, not know they’re infected and be spreading this? The CDC recommends that people diagnosed with Covid-19 where master reduced the release of virus health care workers and others who care for infected people, should wear mass as well. There’s a possible vaccine they’re working on. A future vaccine could help the body produce antibodies that target SARS Cove dash to virus and that virus and prevent it from infecting human cells. The flu vaccine works in a similar way, but anybody’s generated from a flu vaccine do not protect against Corona buyers how soap works,
and this is the last slide in this regard. So destroys the virus when the water, shunning tales of the soap molecules wedge themselves into the lipid membranes and pried apart the best way to avoid getting infected with the Coronavirus is toe.
Wash your hands with soap. Avoid touching your face. Keep your distance from sick people on regularly. Clean frequently.
Use service is now went through all of that to give us some some background information about the virus. Now let’s talk about some principles of Scripture that you might have observed from the current events and from the world around us.
Number one is that quarantine works. First Corinthians Chapter five verses five through six as Paul is writing to the church in Corinth about the sin that they had in their midst.
Here is one who’s in their midst, who has his father’s wife, who is committing sin, is committing I committing adultery and Paul says,
You take that one and you deliver such a one to Satan for the destruction of the flesh that his spirit may be saved in the day of the Lord Jesus.
What he’s saying is, you’re going to withdraw from him, you’re going to push him out of the assembly and out of the congregation.
You’re going to deliver him, as it were to say, because his soul is the thing ultimately in jeopardy,
he says, You’re glorying is not good. Do you not know that a little 11 Elevens, the whole love thing about the infecting process,
how that a little bit of the virus gets into a single cell. But then it begins to fill out and duplicate itself.
Levin works inbred much the same way, and sin works in a congregation much the same way, Paul says.
But notice also that hand washing goes a long way. There’s another principle of Scripture James, Chapter four in verse,
a. James writes, drawn near to God, and he will draw near to you. Cleanse your hands.
Think of the analogy there. He’s not talking literally. He’s not talking about their hands or filthy or covered in in in in sin,
literally in a physical sense, but instead that their actions, their deeds, need to be purified, he says.
Cleanse your hands. You centers and purify your hearts, you double minded. But then consider also that cleansing is necessary.
There’s a principle from Scripture is we think about the church in Ephesians. Chapter five. Paul writes to the husbands,
and he says, husbands love your wives. Just as Christ also loved the church and gave himself for her that he might sanctify and cleanse her with the washing of water by the word that he might present her to himself a glorious church not having spot or wrinkle or any such thing,
but that she should be holy and without blemish. Paul writes to the church. It ethicists and says what Christ did on the cross was done to purify two clans to wash the church from seeing.
But also consider that sometimes, if you remember, as we discussed about the immune system’s reaction to the virus and how the immune system sometimes begins attacking the body itself,
like the lungs. Sometimes the attempt at removing infection destroys more than the disease. Matthew Chapter 13 Jesus gives a parable about a man who has a field.
The vineyard owner center, the one who owns the field, sends his workers out and so seed in the field.
But then his enemy comes in the night and so bad seed in the field. So as the harvest begins,
as the plants begin to sprout up, they noticed the workers noticed that there’s wheat in the field, which is supposed to be.
But there’s also tears. And so the workers come to the field owner. And they say, Should we go about and pull the tears up and Jesus in this parable,
speaking for the field, owner says, No, you let them remain. You let them remain because in the process of pulling out the tears,
you might mistakenly pull out Lou eat. This idea is something that the Scripture utilizes that sometimes in certain situations there’s sin within the church within the body of Christ that needs to be extracted.
But it’s not clearly identifiable. But, he says, on the final day on the final day, the angels will bring forth the wheat and the tears,
and there will be a separation, and God will judge in a discerning way. But then consider another principle of Scripture,
and that is a person cured will stay untouched by the virus, while the and and I buy. Bodies remain as the body starts to fight off the virus.
For those who have an immune system that can do so, and for those who don’t have complications, the body will produce its own antibodies.
It will begin to clear itself of this virus, and as long as those antibodies exist within a person,
that person cannot but come re infected with the virus. But those anybody’s exist in a person oily for so long.
The body does not continue to create them after the virus is gone. So there’s a period of time the person is,
as it were, invulnerable to the virus. But there comes a time if they don’t keep that invulnerability up,
they don’t keep those antibodies within their body within their blood. Then eventually they will become susceptible to the virus again.
The one who ministers to others to be cured can become infected himself. Paul writes in first Corinthians Chapter nine,
Verse 27 about the need for a minister to Buffett himself, the need for him to keep himself in check,
because while he might be seeking to save the souls of others, he could lose focus on himself and become one who is also infected with sin.
But then notice. Lastly, in this regard, God had a cure for the Coronavirus before Eve was taken from Adam’s rib because God put within an our immune system and within humanity by his design,
a way to counter act, not one virus. If we bet if we make a vaccine, and I’m sure we will.
The medical industry will get a vaccine for for Covad, 19 out on the market within another year or so.
And if they do, that vaccine will do a wonderful job, most likely at dealing with one virus.
Just like the flu vaccine won’t cure the Coronavirus. The Coronavirus vaccine won’t cure the flu. And yet God put in place a kn immune system inside humanity that actively fights against these type of diseases without ever knowing in advance,
as it were, what disease might come. But Coronavirus is not the contagion that changed the world.
We all feel a cz, though. Ah, lot has changed from just a few weeks ago when everything seemed to be normal in our country and a few months ago when everything seemed to be normal in the world.
But the Coronavirus is not the contagion that changed the world. Sin is from the beginning of time,
when Adam and Eve were in the garden and when Eve gave way to Satan and his temptation and sin and Adam sinned following with her and sin was brought upon humanity.
Sin and death entered this world, and there are some things about the worst contagion the world’s ever seen,
that we need to be mindful of it this time. Because while the physical situation in the immediate situation of this virus is difficult to deal with and is demanding much from us,
it is by far the most important thing that we need to be focusing on. Consider the contagion that changed the world.
Sin has a 100% infection, right? Save one individual that is Jesus Christ, the only one who has reached the age of accountability,
who has not faced and confronted and lost the battle of infection to sin. Sin has, ah 100% infection rate and consider as well that sin is global.
We didn’t have to wait for sin to become a pandemic. It already waas yesterday and the day before,
in December 30th and January of last year. Sin was already worldwide, and the problem and the infection is ongoing.
But then consider as well that sin, if untreated, has a 100% death rate. Roman’s chapter cigs says the wages of sin,
his death, but the gift of God is eternal life. Romans have your three, Verse 23 says,
for all live, sinned and come short of the glory of God. Sin, if untreated, is fatal every single time.
But while that’s the worst contagion that’s ever come upon humanity, the good news is there is a cure.
Let’s turn to cautions Chapter one, Colossians, Chapter one. We’re going to begin in verse 14 and as I was talking with Eric and with Tommy a little while ago,
I made mention to them that when when you sit down and start looking at Scripture in view of this idea of a contagion or or a virus or an illness,
it’s amazing how much Scripture there is that center of around Caen as an illness as a sickness as a contagion that kills us.
But I just want to notice. Colossians Chapter one, Colossians, Chapter one and in verse 14 we read in whom that is in Christ.
We have redemption through his blood, the forgiveness, the remission of scenes. Consider that the cure must be administered the cure for one who has this contagion of seeing one who has fallen short of the glory of God.
One who has been infected by this disease that will kill them can have a cure administered. But that administration is,
And there seeming that cure is the blood of Christ, in whom we have verse 14 redemption. Where does our redemption come from?
Where does our washing our cleansing, our forgiveness are removal of the sin of or the stain of sin come from It comes from the blood of Jesus Christ.
So notice first and foremost that the cure must be administered and that cure is the blood. But then consider as well that the cure is living while it is the blood of Christ that was shed on the cross for our sins that blood And that person who said that blood is not in a grave that one who produced the cure is not dead.
He is alive. Colossians, Chapter one, verses 15 through 20 focuses on this one Great idea. And this idea is what I want us to see throughout this entire lesson.
And that is the greatness of God and Christ. Notice what Paul moves from this idea of the blood idea of redemption into verse 15.
He is, that is Christ. Is the image of the invisible gone? The first born over all creation.
That is to say that he is the ruler. That is to say that God has made him preeminent God.
God has placed him as authority over all, Jesus said as he rose and was with the disciples. Matthew,
Chapter 28 Verse 18. All authority has been given unto me in heaven and on Earth. And so he said,
we read in verse 16 4 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 noticed that the one who has the cure,
the one who can bring about forgiveness, the one who brought about our redemption through the cross is the one who created us,
the one who’s instilled within our own bodies you and it is astounding. If you go look at the Johns Hopkins University stamps that are online,
it’s astounding to look at the recovery rate about those people in the quantity of people who have contracted this illness and have recovered from it.
But consider that the one who created us also knew he would sin and also brought us the cure. Verse 17.
And he is before all things. And in him all things consist And he is the head of the body of the church.
We’re gonna talk about the church just a little bit more later. Who is the beginning? The first born from the dead that in all things he might have the pre Eminence.
He’s the firstborn of the creation. That is to say he is pre eminent. Above creation is the first born from the dead.
That is to say he has preeminence over death. All things air within his authority. All things air within his purview.
And so he is the one prepared to deal with the problem. Verse 19 for it, please. The father that in him all the fullness should Well,
it pleased the father that in Christ the fullness of the godhead, the fullness of deity would dwell in him.
And yet he would take on human flesh. He would come to suffer as we do. There’s one idea I want you to hold onto in all the midst of the difficulties that we have going on in this world with this current disease going on in this world.
I want you to think about one thing. Jesus Christ really came. Jesus Christ really took on flesh and everything I read about in my Bible indicates to me that while Jesus had walked while Jesus walked this earth Jesus,
if he were here today in his body could have contracted the Coronavirus. We don’t read anything about the body of Christ,
the physical fleshly body that Jesus walked around in That contradicts that idea. When Jesus continued day in, day out,
teaching the people Jesus became tired when Jesus underwent stress and difficulty there in the garden before he was going to the cross,
Jesus had to be aided by angels that he might have the strength to continue on. When Jesus went into the wilderness and fasted for 40 days,
he went there and he was hungry. His body worked just like ours. The creator took on flesh that he might be tempted like as we are Hebrew,
Schefter four. Yet without sin, the one contagion that Jesus never contracted. The one thing that Jesus was never going to come ill with was sin because Jesus came not to give in to that temptation.
But to defeat that enemy, then consider as well that the cure must be maintained in us. Just as we discussed the idea of the antibodies before notice Verse 20 and by him to reconcile all things to himself that is the father reconcile all things to himself through Christ by him.
Whether things on Earth are things in heaven having made peace through the blood of the cross. And you who wants were alienated and enemies in your mind by wicked works.
Yet now he has reconciled this contagion of sin. Hey is wiped away. He has reconciled you to himself.
He is righteous and he cannot have fellowship with on righteousness. He has taken you from a place of sand.
He has washed you clean and he has brought you to himself. Those of us practicing social distancing right now would really like to go back to being able to be near people.
God has a way to take sin out of the picture. God has a way to take you from being a far off to being brought nigh by the blood of Christ.
But then consider Verse 21 you who were once who once were aliens and enemies in your mind by Wicked.
Worse yet now he is reconciled, he says, Here’s your past situation. You were once dead in sin.
You were once separated from God. But now he’s reconciled to you in the body of his flesh, through death,
to present you holy and blameless and above reproach in his sight and noticed that verse 23 1st word If if,
If indeed you continue in the faith, here’s the problem with sin. If someone is cured from sin by the blood of Christ and they begin walking down that path of righteousness and then they stop walking in the light if they get off the path of righteousness if they cease to be faithful to him than the blood of Christ ceases to cleanse the Mohsen,
you see, we are impervious to sin. That is, the blood of Christ continually cleanses are since it is our immune system to sin and wipes out that infection time and again.
First John, Chapter one tells us until we depart from the light and when we depart from the light,
the infection comes on full force. Notice what we read. If you continue in the faith, grounded instead fast and are not moved away from the hope of the gospel,
which you heard which was preached. Every creature under heaven of which I, Paul became a minister. Cure must be maintained in us on a daily basis on a weekly basis on a yearly basis from now until we depart from this life and we will at some point depart from this life.
Some of us. It may come in a freak accident. Some of us may get out on the road and not make it home.
Some of us may just simply lay down one night, not wake up the next morning. Some of us,
it’s sad to think about, may become susceptible to this virus, and it might take our lives. But here’s what I know.
For everyone who leaves this life, Hebrews Chapter nine is still true, and when this life is over,
the judgment still awaits us. So the real question is not. What is your situation in view of the Coronavirus?
But what is your situation in view of sin? Because that’s the one that really matters. But then consider as well that the cure must be passed on to defeat the pandemic.
This contagion is worldwide. This contagion is global. And the only way the cure gets administered is if someone passes it on.
Look at Verse 29. Paul writes the mystery which has been hidden from ages and from generations but now has been revealed to his saints.
To them, God will to make known. What are the riches of the glory of this mystery among the gentiles,
which is Christ in you the hope of Lori him We preach warning, Everyman and teaching every man in all wisdom that we may present every man perfect in Christ Jesus.
To this end, I also labor striving according to his working which workers in me mightily, Paul says,
I’m active. I’m on the front lines. I’m out there preaching and teaching the gospel because it is the only thing that will fight back this epidemic.
It is the only thing that will present you clean and holy and right and perfect in Christ Jesus. So then consider as well versus 24 25 to cure requires sacrifice from the cured population.
The coming days and weeks in this country are going to be difficult. There are going to be people we all know who end up with this virus.
Lord willing, it won’t be any of us, but it might be. The question, though, is for those especially of the younger population,
who will contract the virus, who will recover from the virus. What will they do then? They’re now impervious to the virus there.
Now those who cannot become infected again. What will they do? Will they begin helping others? Will they begin taking Matthew Chapter 25 seriously and aiding those who were sick and those who are in need and those who are destitute?
Or will they go on as if they can just focus on themselves again? But for you and I,
the epidemic of sin, the worst contagion that we’ve ever fought, we continue to fight day in and day out.
And will those who have been cured by the blood of Christ realized the infection going on around them? Or will we continue to ignore sin?
Cautions Chapter one, Verse 24 Paul writes. I now rejoice in my sufferings for you, Paul says.
I’m suffering for you, church it colossi. I’m suffering for you and Philip in my flesh what is lacking in the afflictions of Christ for the sake of his body,
which is the church, Paul says. I undergo what I am being put through. The suffering that I have,
the things that I’m enduring for the body of Christ the church, verse 25 of which I became a minister,
a servant according to the stewardship from God which was given to me for you to fulfill the word of God.
Gospel calls upon us to teach and to preach the gospel to every creature. The gospel calls upon us to spread the cure to counter act the disease.
Jesus also calls upon us to take up our cross and follow him. Maybe the lesson of this virus is here to remind us that we’re not taking the real problem in this world seriously and that we’re not doing enough.
But then consider finally, that the cure has treatment centers just like will be the case All over this world.
There are places to go to find treatment for the Coronavirus. Ultimately there will be but for sin there has been for 2000 years.
Ephesians, Chapter three, Paul would write to the church and Emphasis and Ephesians, Chapter three Beginning in verse eight,
we read to me who am less than the least of all the saints. This Grace was given that I should preach among the gentiles,
the unser chewable riches of Christ and to make all see what is the fellowship of the mystery, which from the beginning of the ages has been hidden in God,
who created all things through Jesus Christ to the intent that now the manifold wisdom of God might be made known.
Baeza Church Paul says that the many sighted wisdom of God is made visible by the body of Christ by the Church of Christ.
Notice what he says that it might be made known by the church to the Principalities, into the powers and heavenly places according to the eternal purpose which he accomplished in Christ Jesus,
our Lord, in whom we have boldness and access with confidence through faith in him. Therefore, I ask that you do not lose heart at my tribulations for you,
which is your glory. For this reason, I bow my knees to the father of our Lord Jesus Christ,
from whom the whole family in heaven and Earth is named that he would grant you according to the riches of his lorry,
to be strengthened with might, through his spirit in the inner man that Christ may dwell in your hearts through faith that you,
being rooted and grounded in love, may be able to comprehend with all the saints. What is the with the length,
the death and height to know the love of Christ, which passes knowledge that you may be filled with all the fullness of God.
Now to him, who is able to do exceedingly abundantly above all that we ask or think according to the power that works in us To him be glory in the church by Christ,
Jesus to all generations, forever and ever. Amen. Treatment centers air open. This building that we’re in right now is not the church.
The people are the church, and we stand ready to respond to the epidemic of sin. We stand ready to bring about in the lives of those around us.
The cure, The cure for sin begins with hearing the gospel. It is that message which Paul said he was suffering to preach to them the Gentiles.
And it was that message that put them in contact with the blood of Christ because once they heard it,
they would believe it. They would believe that Jesus Christ is the son of God and they would repent of their sins.
They would recognize there’s a problem in my life. There’s an infection in my life and it’s sin and it’s destroying me and it will kill me.
And then they would change. They would repent of those sins, and they would confess the name of Christ as Lord and savior,
and then they would be immersed in water. Is it any surprise that God uses the visual of a washing a burial in water to bring about a spiritually cleansing?
Peter writes that the washing that we ing undergo when were baptized when we’re immersed in water for the remission of our sins is not to cleanse the filth of the flesh,
but it is the answer of a good conscience toward God. And it does also now save us First Peter,
Chapter three, verse 21. So if you want to be saved from the biggest epidemic that humanity’s ever faced,
it’s not the Coronavirus, and it’s not any other virus we’re going to see in our lifetime. It’s the virus we’ve seen our entire lifetime.
It’s sin and baptism puts you in contact with the blood of Christ, and the blood of Christ washes away that sin.
And then once you’ve been regenerated once you’ve been washed. Once you’ve been cleaned. Once you’ve been raised upto walk in newness of life.
A new person no longer filled with the infection, a new person all seeing washed away. You can walk in the light as he is in the light,
and the blood of Jesus Christ continues to cleanse you from all sin. Let’s go back to the epidemic for just a moment more,
You see, because sin is overcome by washing, we’ve been told, how many times wash your hands,
wash your hands, wash your hands. Yet, James said, wash your hands and cleanse your hearts.
Sin is overcome by washing and baptism. Sin is curable. Sin is the worst contagion in the world.
We do not have enough people sharing the cure. You’re hearing me this morning. You know the cure.
Share it with someone who needs it. Because the world is filled with people infected with sin. You’re a member of the body of Christ and you’ve become wayward.
You can repent of those sins and return. If you were once washed and clean and you the virus was gone and then you went back into the world and soiled yourself once again you can come home if you’re outside the body of Christ and you hear this lesson contact this.
We will study with you. We will help you become free of the worst contagion that has 100% death rate you have need of the Lord’s salvation.
It is available to you by the Gospel and were available to you at any time. Thank you for your attention.
This morning. We will now have a closing song in a closing prayer.