“Who will get the COVID-19 vaccine first?”
I have to admit, this was the first question that came to mind when news broke that Singapore might be rolling out a locally-produced Covid-19 vaccine by early-2021.
I’m sure many people are asking the same question. While I’m sure enough vaccines will eventually be produced for everybody, it is inevitable that some will get it before others, as the production of millions of doses will take time.
Will it be those who are already ill or are more vulnerable? Will it be those who can afford to pay more or have better connections? Or will it simply be those who turn up earlier in the queue?
These are not hypothetical questions: studies have shown that the Covid-19 pandemic has worsened inequality around the world. Poorer people—and poorer countries, too—have less access to medical help when they get infected, and are harder hit by the economic recession. Older people are more vulnerable to the virus than younger ones. And less-educated and less digitally-savvy people find it harder to cope with lockdown restrictions and bewildering flood of information and rules.
Sadly, the Covid-19 crisis reminds us that life in this world really isn’t fair.
Thankfully, however, the kingdom of God works quite differently…
1. God will never run out
“My Father’s house has many rooms;
if that were not so, would I have told you that
I am going there to prepare a place for you?” (John 14:2)
Just like His mercy and grace—and unlike vaccines—God’s salvation is unlimited¬. He will never run out of places in His kingdom. As many as are ready to believe in Jesus and follow Him, He is waiting to accept them as His children. God’s love will never run out!
2. There is no waiting for salvation
His divine power has given us
everything we need for a godly life
through our knowledge of him
who called us by his own glory and goodness.
Through these he has given us
his very great and precious promises,
so that through them
you may participate in the divine nature,
having escaped the corruption in the world
caused by evil desires. (2 Peter 1:3–4)
God’s salvation is immediate. While sanctification is a lifelong process, and we will not see heaven until our earthly bodies die, we receive the blessings and benefits of our relationship with God now. From the moment we accept Him as our Lord and Saviour, we have the assurance of His presence in our lives, and the hope of eternal life after.
3. Salvation is for all
There is no difference between Jew and Gentile—
the same Lord is Lord of all
and richly blesses all who call on him,
for, “Everyone who calls on the name of the Lord
will be saved.” (Romans 10:12–13)
We are not accepted based on who we are or what we possess. We are not saved by our connections or qualifications. In fact, being saved has very little to do with who we are and what we do, and has everything to do with who God is, and what He does.
The Bible makes clear that we are saved purely by accepting God’s mercy and grace, which He extends to us through His Son Jesus.
The Covid-19 crisis is a stark reminder about the reality of shortages in this life. From the shortage of toiletries in the early days to the shortages of jobs in some sectors today, we know that nothing is unlimited—and that it’s difficult to be “fair” in the distribution of limited resources.
As Christians, however, we have a responsibility to do what we can to help those who suffer from such unfairness. Let us share what we have with those who have less, highlight and right wrongs where we can, and let us show the world what it means to love like God loves—with self-sacrifice and generosity.
For we have already received the greatest blessing of all in the fullest measure—the absolute assurance that we have a place in God’s kingdom as followers of the Lord Jesus. —Leslie Koh
Lord, thank You for giving me
Your mercy, grace, and love
so readily and without limit.
Give me the compassion to share
Your bountiful blessings with others.