The deadly disease, Severe Acute Respiratory Syndrome (SARS) was identified in 2003 in Vietnam. The epidemic originally appears to have started in southern China in 2002. By the time it was brought under control, SARS had spread globally and killed almost 800 people. One reason for the high mortality rate was that the virus was not recognised initially. But once recognised and understood, SARS was contained.
An even more dangerous virus is on the loose in our world – sin. It also is difficult to bring under control because many people do not recognise its deadliness. Many dispute the Bible’s diagnosis of sin. In Joshua 7, we read the sad story of Achan. We may tremble at the extreme way God dealt with him. Against God’s commandment, he had taken some of the plunders from Jericho and hid them in his tent (Josh. 7:21). He and his whole family paid with their lives (Josh. 7:25). Praise God, God does not deal with us in that way. If He did, none of us would survive. However, we must never underestimate sin’s deadliness. Know that sin sent Christ to the cross for us.
Like SARS, the first step to deal with sin is to recognise it for what it is. Take it seriously, and do not take it lightly. Receive with gratitude the gift of eternal life. Then, as Col. 3:5 says, “Put to death your members which are on the earth: fornication, uncleanness, passion, evil desire, and covetousness, which is idolatry.” Do not continue to do anything that displeases God. That is the way to deal with our deadliest virus. Remember, sin is a heart disease that can be cured only by the Great Physician.