Editor’s Note: When I asked Rational Doubt contributors to write a “pandemic” post in their voice at different stages of their religious belief, I wasn’t at all surprised that this ex-evangelical chose to preach from his fire-and-brimstone Bible-believing days. The author tells me that this is best read imagining the voice of Burt Lancaster in “Elmer Gantry”. Linda LaScola, Editor
Preacher: Welcome everyone to our worship service this beautiful and blessed Sunday! What a blessed congregation you are as the Holy Spirit shines eternal radiance upon you.
We are sadly, in a time of panic and chaos in our cities of America. My sermon this morning is a cautionary tale entitled, … “Don’t Refuse God’s Love, Don’t Underestimate God’s Vengeance.”
Today, while those who are lost, unsaved, not right with God, who are not washed in the blood of Jesus, are cringing in fear, locked inside their houses, we the ordained of God, the Chosen — we are safe in the house of the Lord singing praises to Him and worshiping our God!
Congregation: Praise God! Halleluiah Jesus!
Preacher: While the cringers in fear shake, shiver, and tremble in their faithless abodes, fearful of this one tiny Corona virus, we are here being blessed by the protection of the Holy Ghost, and Jesus in our midst!
Congregation: Oh, Glory to God!
Preacher: These cringers in fear don’t know our great God. Our God is the God of Israel who created the Universe and smote the non-believers in Egypt with plagues until they finally obeyed the edict of God’s messenger Moses to, “Let my people go.”
Congregation: Praise God!
Preacher: And now because of the rampant sin of unbelief; the evils of sodomites, homosexuals, the evils of fornication, drunkenness, drug addiction, wanton criminality and all kinds of perversions, God first sent this pandemic virus upon those Godless Communists in China, and now into the United States. But our mighty God has a plan; this plague is going to cause the greatest Christian salvation revival in history!
Congregation: Amen, halleluiah, preach it brother, preach the word Reverend!
Preacher: These are the end times. The signs of calamity are all around us and on the television news. Israel is a nation again as God promised. The hour of salvation opportunity for humanity will soon expire. God will not endure the sins of humanity endlessly. Jesus could burst through the clouds any moment to take us up to Heaven in the rapture and out of the ubiquitous evils of America into our heavenly paradise eternal home.
Congregation: Oh Jesus, please come soon, please!
Preacher: We will not hide our faces in shame behind some mask. Jesus is our refuge. Jesus, who made the blind to see, the deaf to hear, cast demons into swine, raised Lazarus from the dead, is all the mask we need. He is our rock in the storm of the sea of life. He walked on water, and it wasn’t on a frozen lake.
Congregation: Yes, yes, oh Jesus you’re our mask!
Preacher: Many of you have been asking, “Where did this disease, this virus, this plague come from?”
I can tell you with all the assurance of the infallible, inerrant, perfect word of God, this Bible, that this plague upon America, upon all the nations of the world, that this virus pandemic comes from Almighty God himself as judgment for rejecting his son.
Congregation: Help us Jesus, save us Lord!
Preacher: Now if any of you doubt the veracity of what I just told you, turn in your Bible now to Isaiah 45:7. Now read it aloud with me. Everyone!
Preacher & Congregation: “I form the light, and create darkness: I make peace, and create evil: I the LORD do all these things.”
Preacher: God delivered ten evil plagues against Pharaoh’s Egypt; Nile River turned to blood, Egypt overrun with frogs, lice, flies, livestock stricken with pestilence, festering boils on Egyptians and their animals, hail destruction, locusts everywhere, darkness so thick Egyptians had to feel their way around, and finally the killing of firstborn children because Pharaoh refused to obey Jehovah God.
And I believe this Corona plague is just the first of many plagues that will now come against those peoples that have rejected God and his son. And I remind you that the God who sent the plagues against Israel — is Jesus! I don’t make things up like some false prophet liberal Christian preacher, I preach and teach the Bible! Check now in your Bibles John 10:30 where Jesus says, “I and the Father are one.”
Our God is a God of great love, but He also warns us: He is a very jealous God and a God of vengeance to anyone who refuses to love, bow, and worship him.
Listen to these verses of warning from the Bible if you want to understand why no one should ever tempt our Jesus and the Father by rejecting their merciful love.
“Happy is the one who seizes your infants and dashes them against the rocks” Psalm 137:9 and “Their children also shall be dashed to pieces before their eyes and their wives ravished.” Isaiah 13:16, and in Matthew 10:28 Jesus says, “Do not fear those who can kill the body but cannot kill the soul. Rather be afraid of the One who can destroy both soul and body in hell.”
You’ve heard the saying “Don’t mess with Texas”, and you better not, but I’m saying don’t mess with Jehovah God Jesus, it’s far more dangerous than messing with Texas. American’s don’t need a mask; they need Jesus!
Congregation: Oh, we love you Jesus!
Preacher: Now I want you to stand up and turn to the precious souls near you, hug them and say, “Jesus is my mask, my shield, and my salvation.” (Congregation responds and follows the instruction)
As people settle down, the song worship and praise leader starts the congregation singing,
“He’s all I need, he’s all I need, Jesus is all I need.”
Preacher: (while congregation continues singing) If you need to confess your sins, or you’re in a backslidden condition, or want to say the sinner’s prayer and receive God’s gift of blood washed salvation with eternal life, the altar is now open for you. Please come now and pray, and may God richly bless you all.
Preacher: (walks down by the altar as people come to kneel and pray)
After prayer at the altar is finished the song worship and praise leader has the Congregation sing:
“Blest be the tie that binds
Our hearts in Christian love;
The fellowship of kindred minds,
Is like to that above.”
Preacher: (gives the Benediction)
“The Lord bless you and keep you; the Lord make his face shine on you and be gracious to you. The Lord turn his face toward you and give you peace. Amen.”
Church Service Is Concluded.
**Editor’s Addition: Meme created by David Madison
Bio: Mason Lane: As a credulous child, I was raised Christian fundamentalist Baptist. I later became a glory-shouting Pentecostal and was ordained by the Christian Faith Church Pentecostal in Mishawaka Indiana. I ceased believing in the irrational and supernatural at age 30, thanks primarily to reading the Bible while thinking. At the time of my de-supernaturalizing, I was General Manager of WHME-FM radio station, a Christian radio station, and Pastor of Christian Faith Church in Mishawaka, Indiana. I resigned both positions and moved to Phoenix, Arizona where I became dean of students at DeVry University.
I’m still a person of faith. My faith is now in science, nature, love, friends, family, music, humor, art, The US Constitution, the 5,000 year old Golden Rule and Separation of Religion and State.
>>>>>Photo Credits: By Source, Fair use, https://en.wikipedia.org/w/index.php?curid=19614505 ; https://commons.wikimedia.org/wiki/File:Creation_of_the_Sun_and_Moon_face_detail.jpg#/media/File:Creation_of_the_Sun_and_Moon_face_detail.jpg