Our Hope is in Christ, Not in a Vaccine

“We’ve just got to hold on until the vaccine comes out.”

Some people I know are simply “gritting out” life because they have heard that in a few months a vaccine will be ready to protect everyone from Covid-19. They have heard about many dozens of clinical trials currently underway, and believe that at least one of them will be successful.[1] If a vaccine is coming soon–at least their subconscious tells them–all they have to do is grind out each day until a vaccine is ready to deliver everyone from this worldwide coronavirus pandemic.

In other words, some of us are putting our hope in a vaccine rather than in Christ.

Now, no one is going to like what I write next, but it’s a worthwhile thought experiment for those who want to root their hope in Christ. What if none of the vaccines in development provide enough protection against Covid-19? What if the current coronavirus starts morphing in such a way that the developed antibodies don’t provide protection for long enough to make much of a difference? What if a new coronavirus starts attacking the human race, like a second deadly hurricane following in the wake of an already-destructive hurricane?[2]

In any of these scenarios, what is your spiritual action plan, brother or sister in Christ? Will you give up in despair? Will you chew away your fingernails with worry? Will you allow anger to swallow you up? Will you anaesthetize your frustration and pain with television binge-watching, endless video games, or worse, with some pain-numbing controlled substance?

Or will you once-and-for-all decide to start leaning into the truth that your hope is not in a vaccine, but is in Christ alone?

In practice, this means that gritting your way through the current crisis on the assumption that the world will be back to normal sometime next year is inadequate. Who knows, in fact, what will actually take place? Only God knows for sure, and he hasn’t chosen to divulge the details. So let us day-by-day, moment-by-moment learn how to rest our hope in Christ.

Our hope is in Christ, not in a vaccine. I wrote this post because I have sensed that many people are currently placing their trust in a vaccine to resolve this worldwide crisis. If clinical trials prove to be successful, and the production and distribution challenges get resolved, let us then rejoice in Christ that he has graced us with relief in that particular way. But if such a path does not readily open, or if something entirely unexpected occurs—whether for better or for worse—let us keep hoping in Christ, for it is in Christ that Christians should be placing their hope.[3]

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For more on how to live out an in-Christ life, see my very-soon-to-be released devotional book: How to Live an ‘In Christ’ Life: 100 Devotional Readings on Union with Christ

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[1] According to https://www.nytimes.com/interactive/2020/science/coronavirus-vaccine-tracker.html, 165 organizations worldwide are currently attempting to develop a vaccine.

[2] For more such scenarios, see: https://www.forbes.com/sites/robertpearl/2020/08/10/coronavirus-vaccine-gone-wrong/#23f584d37ae4

[3] I wrote this post to encourage people to put their hope in Christ rather than in a vaccine. This post is not about vaccines, per se, which I consider a necessary component in promoting overall public health.

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