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You Do Not Know What Tomorrow Will Bring

by Hiram R. Diaz III

According to the Bible, God alone knows the end from the beginning. This ability to know the future, in fact, is declared by God himself to be one of the ways in which he makes himself known to be the only true God. He declares this in Isaiah 46:8-10, saying —
"Remember this and stand firm, recall it to mind, you transgressors, remember the former things of old; for I am God, and there is no other;  
I am God, and there is none like me, declaring the end from the beginning and from ancient times things not yet done, saying, ‘My counsel shall stand, and I will accomplish all my purpose...'" 
Note that the Lord does not say some of us know the end from the beginning. No. He entirely rules out the idea that any other being besides himself knows the end from the beginning. The 'gods' of the other nations are not only powerless to affect the future, they lack the ability to know it.

That the idols are without knowledge of the future is easy enough for us to understand. But what is not so easily understood in our day is that not even the most educated in our world can know what will occur tomorrow, let alone five minutes from now. When COVID-19 began trending on social media, I began to notice that there were many Christians who seemingly forgot that God is Sovereign over all that occurs, that he presently sustains the universe, and that he alone knows what will occur in the future.

Rather than treating the prophetic utterances of media personalities and medical professionals as guesses (which they are), these professing believers organized their lives around the latest eschatological fad of the fallen world - universal human annihilation by means of a virus that is omnipresent, omnipotent, and, apparently, sovereign. Sadly, my brothers and sisters seemed to have forgotten that these fads come and go. I'm sure you know what I'm talking aboutglobal warming, fossil fuel shortages and the ensuing petroleum crisis, global freezing, Y2K, nuclear war, climate change, and on and on and on. And, sadly, my brothers and sisters in Christ also seemed to have forgotten that the world always has a reason for why it believes the world will come to an end in a manner that is not declared by God in his Word. They also apparently forgot that the world always has a corresponding ethical sermon that puts the power to save the world in our hands. I'm sure you know what I'm talking aboutstop using aerosol products, stop abusing petroleum products, disarm nuclear weapons, lower carbon emissions, and on and on and on.

But why? Why did so many of my brethren hear the end times sermons coming from scientists, and then order their lives accordingly? There are many reasons, I'm sure. But I think the main reason is that many Christian have accepted as true and compatible with the Christian faith a worldview that is not only contrary to Scripture, but which is also contrary to reason.

In what follows, I'm going to list, and refute, two of the main assumptions of the worldview which informed the thinking of many of my brethren when the media began preaching about the Coronapocalypse. In my next post, I'll be looking at the bad argumentation that has contributed to this situation as well.

1. The Future is Knowable Apart from Divine Revelation

Regarding man's ignorance of the future, we are told by the Holy Spirit the following truths:
Do not boast about tomorrow, for you do not know what a day may bring.
-Prov 27:1
I have seen the business that God has given to the children of man to be busy with. He has made everything beautiful in its time. Also, he has put eternity into man's heart, yet so that he [man] cannot find out what God has done from the beginning to the end.
-Ecc 3:10-11
 So I saw that there is nothing better than that a man should rejoice in his work, for that is his lot. Who can bring him to see what will be after him?
-Ecc 3:22 
In the morning sow your seed, and at evening withhold not your hand, for you do not know which will prosper, this or that, or whether both alike will be good.
-Ecc 11:6 do not know what tomorrow will bring... 
-James 4:14
What man can know of the future is only what God has revealed about the future. This is true not only of the bigger events foretold in Scripture, but also of the everyday events that the world simply assumes will take place.

What the world, and believers, get right is that organisms - e.g. humans and viruses - have patterns of behavior specific to their constitution. They are right, moreover, to think that humans have patterns of social behavior that are specific to our humanity. This is one of the first things we are taught in Scripture: Creatures reproduce after their own kinds (cf. Gen 1:11, 21-22, 24-25; cf. 1:26-28 & 5:1-3). 
Additionally, we are right to think that if these patterns of biological and social behavior occur necessarily, then it would seem to follow that we can accurately predict the future actions of, say, viruses and humans.

The problem is that humans and viruses are not autonomous creatures, but are part of the cosmos that the Son of God holds together by the Word of his power (cf. Heb 1:3). Our biological and social behaviors are not necessary to bring about some state of affairs. The only activity that is necessary to bring about a future state of affairs is the Sovereign will of God. While the Lord does use secondary causes (e.g. humans and viruses), he does not always. Whether a creature will continue to exhibit kind-specific biological and social behaviors, in other words, is dependent on whether or not this is what God has decreed they will do.

Christianity is not a form of deism, wherein God is thought to have made everything and set it in motion, only occasionally "intervening" when crises require it. Rather, God meticulously controls all things. To know what a virus or a human will do, therefore, one has to know what has decreed from all eternity that virus or human would do. Biological and social traits are only determinative of the behaviors of creatures in a secondary sense. Therefore, predictions based on our observations, even when those observations are subjected to the infallible worldview Scripture presents to us, are guesses.

We cannot know the future apart from divine revelation, and knowledge about the future that is not contained in Scripture is only found in one other place, namely the mind of God. Deuteronomy 29:29 tells us that the knowledge we have received from God is our possession, whereas the knowledge we have not received from God is not our possession but God's.

2. Inductive Reasoning is a Sound Method of Inferring General Conclusions

The second false assumption made by the world and, sadly, by my brothers and sisters duped into believing the world's latest eschatological fad was that inductive reasoning is a sound method of inferring general conclusions. Statements like "Things are only going to get worse," or "Our hospitals will be overrun," were made as conclusions to analyses of the latest oracles thundered from CNN and MSNBC. The problem here, however, was that the conclusions were not justified by the evidence presented by the media.

Assuming that the past numbers given by the CDC, the media, and several medical and scientific experts, as well as some governing authorities are correct (although they are not),1 they would still not justify the absolute claims mentioned above, and others like it. What would justify an absolute claim concerning the death and devastation that COVID-19 will leave in its wake? A complete induction. But a complete induction is impossible in this case, as the virus continues to exist and spread and kill. The numbers, then, will always be changing, rendering the absolute claims of death and destruction false. A general assertion cannot be validly inferred from an incomplete induction. Reports on the number of COVID-19 cases and deaths are incomplete inductions. Therefore, general assertions about the number of COVID-19 cases and deaths cannot be validly inferred therefrom.

General inferences have been fallaciously drawn from the increasing and decreasing numbers the media are feeding us on an almost minute by minute basis. The conclusions are not justified by the data. They are guesses arrived at via fallacious reasoning.

God is Sovereign

While the trend today is to treat the COVID-19 pandemic as if it portends the end of human civilization as we know it, Christians should not give in to the emotional manipulation and poor reasoning that is being pumped out by the media and other sources. We are commanded to love the Lord our God with all of our minds. How can we do that if we abandon sound reasoning?

God knows whatever will come to pass. He has ordained it. Whatever our guesses are as to what the future holds, we need to remember that they are guesses, not prophetic utterances. We ought not order our lives around the fallacious inferences of fallen men. Rather, we ought to order our lives righteously, according to the truth of Scripture. We ought to organize our lives not around the predictions made by scientific prognosticators, but around the more sure Word of prophecy spoken by the Sovereign Trinity who knows the end from the beginning.

See, Ferrara, Christopher A. "Numbers Don't Line Up: The Case for Panicking Over Coronavirus is Falling Apart," Life Site News, April 8th, 2020,