9 What shall we conclude then? Do we have any advantage?
Not at all! For we have already made the charge
that Jews and Gentiles alike are all under the power of sin. 10 As it is written: “There is no one righteous, not even one; 11 there is no one who understands; there is no one who seeks God. 12 All have turned away, they have together become worthless;
there is no one who does good, not even one.”
~ Romans 3
This is so shocking to the modern mind. We are taught that humans are essentially good — apart from a few ‘evil’ individuals or those who are made to do bad things by ‘religion’. The Bible has a radically different and egalitarian view. We are all alike. We are all rebels against God. We all need forgiveness. And here is the amazing thing — through Christ we are all offered forgiveness. We have both the most discomforting and comforting news in the world.
Petition: Please join with us in praying for:
1. Australia — Another good week. Numbers in Melbourne continue to fall, more internal borders are opening (people in NSW can now go to South Australia) and community transmission has virtually ceased in all states except Victoria. The news on the economic front is not as good. Pray that the balance between economic and physical health would be maintained — the two are deeply interconnected. Man shall not live by bread alone — but it helps!
2. The World — Russia recorded 57,800 excess deaths between May and July, the peak of the country’s coronavirus outbreak. The total is more than three times greater than the official May-July Covid-19 death toll of 15,955.
Hospitals in India are experiencing a shortage of oxygen as coronavirus cases surge in the country. Care centres and hospitals are consuming up to 2,700 tonnes of oxygen every day this month, nearly a fourfold increase on the 750 tonnes consumed each day in April.
Indications that a second wave of Covid-19 might be less deadly have been given by two separate studies, which suggest that viral load could be decreasing as the pandemic continues. Both studies were presented at the European Society of Clinical Microbiology and Infectious Diseases conference on Covid-19. In one, doctors in Detroit measured the viral load of nasal swabs from patients. At the start of April, only 25 per cent of patients with Covid-19 had a low viral load — but five weeks later, 70 per cent of Covid-19 patients had a low viral load. Dr Said El Zein, who led the study, suggested this was significant, stating that ‘trends in the viral load values over time may represent a marker to assess the progress of the pandemic’. The second study, conducted in Italy, found that the viral load in seriously ill patients declined by 42 per cent from March to May. These are good sign that the virus may be weakening.
A Song of Praise – Feeling tired and weary?
Then have a listen to this elderly lady who grew up in deep poverty in Mississippi, and in her 70s was still praising God every morning. This week’s song is When I Rose This Morning, with Mosie Burks and the Mississippi Mass Choir. Watch it – it will make your day!
Prayer: Our Father in Heaven, we have sinned against You.
It’s no comfort to know we are all sinners.
But it is a great comfort to know that You so loved the world that You gave Your only begotten Son.
Great sin has been dealt with by even greater love.
Whenever we are overwhelmed or discouraged,
help us to remember that the Son of God loves us and gave Himself for us.
We praise Your name. Amen.
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