Piper is telling us what the Bible says: God is a righteous judge whose goodness demands he judge our sins. But he also sent Christ to pay for our sins if we are willing to accept him. It’s no surprise our self-satisfied culture is offended that part of God’s purpose for the coronavirus is to rebuke unrepentant sinners and draw them to Jesus.
A senior Army chaplain earlier this month emailed other chaplains the text of “Coronavirus and Christ,” a brief book by famed author, podcaster, and pastor John Piper. The command chaplain of U.S. Army Garrison Humphreys in South Korea, Col. Moon H. Kim, wrote in his email: “This book has helped me refocus my sacred calling to my savior Jesus Christ to finish strong. Hopefully this small booklet would help you and your Soldiers, their Families, and others who you serve.”
This email and the attached book have led to complaints from 22 other chaplains, who’ve enlisted the help of the Military Religious Freedom Foundation (MRFF). The MRFF, which consistently targets theologically conservative Christians, wrote a letter to Secretary of Defense Mark Esper, saying Moon must be “officially, swiftly, aggressively, and visibly investigated and disciplined in punishment for his deplorable actions.”
Since then, Moon’s comments have come under review, prompting a letter from 20 members of Congress — including Republican Reps. Louie Gohmert of Texas, Andy Biggs of Arizona, and Steve King of Iowa — calling for the Army not to buckle to this agenda-pushing third-party organization. The letter also outlines several other recent attacks of the MRFF on theologically conservative Christian chaplains.
If you read the entire text of Piper’s book, which is available for free, you will see its most incendiary idea is not the single paragraph about homosexuality. This short book ruffles feathers because it affirms the most offensive message in the history of the world: the Gospel of Jesus Christ.
What Does ‘Coronavirus and Christ’ Actually Say?
For those complaining about the book and calling for Moon to be disciplined, the primary issue comes from a single paragraph. After a theological explanation of who God is and why he commands our trust even in such a difficult time, Piper outlines six answers to the question, “What is God doing through the Coronavirus?”
One of those answers is to send “specific divine judgments.” He clarifies, “Some people will be infected with the coronavirus as a specific judgment from God because of their sinful attitudes and actions.”