Biblically speaking, G*d apparently got mad at America's sins and struck us with a plague. What was our sin?

In the Bible, especially the OT, G*d is famous for throwing and or promising to throw whole nations under the bus with viruses, ala Leviticus 26:25 when he is telling Israel that, should they disobey him somehow:

I can read the future Bible now: “In the Fourth Year of the Reign of Trump, the L*RD, tiring of the people’s wickedness, sent forth a plague to punish them for their…”

Their… what?

So, ladies and gentlemen, I’m asking you to put your Old Testament hats on and help me figure this out: In OT terms, by the beginning of 2020 America pissed G*d off so badly He then struck the nation with a plague and I wanna know what we did to deserve it. Were we being punished for our greed? Licentiousness? Sloth? Other?

(And if you want to fight the hypothetical, just resist the urge. It’s a simple thought experiment, nothing more. Well, I am looking for good arguments to throw out at Thanksgiving, and “According to the Bible, G*d punished the USA when Trump was President because of our sinfulness when we did X, right Grandma?” is right up my ally…)

You hypothetical only works if COVID was a USA only pandemic.

But I’ll somewhat play along.

According to the Bible, G*d punished the USA when Trump was President because of our worship of celebrities, so much we elected one President, right Grandma?

Eh, it doesn’t have to do with Trump. I just used the ‘fourth year in the Reign of Trump’ to sound all Biblical and shit.

But that’s a good one! “We lost sight of our responsibilities as a great nation and started electing unqualified celebrities”

To your argument that it didn’t just happen here, which is true, I would archly tell Grandma that while 5% of the world’s population lives in the United States, God gave us 15% of the deaths, far, far more than any other nation, particularly any other ‘advanced industrial’ nation like Britain or Germany. “He killed more of us than those heathen XXXX, Grandma!”

Considering that the bearded man floating on a cloud hit the whole world with it, I can only imagine that it has something to do with soccer.


Not that any modern OT re-interpretation is worth the papyrus its inscribed on.

True. But I like approaching people using the mental frameworks they are most comfortable with, and I know a lot of people with pretty basic OT ideas about how God operates. Ergo the question.

I don’t agree that Covid was a sent-to-punish plague from God.

But going along with the question, there are plenty of things in modern America that would have probably gotten ancient Israel punished if the same standard applied - homosexuality, extramarital sex, worship of other gods, defiance against God, etc.

“Let us build a rocket, to reach unto the heavens.”
”Indeed; and name it after whom?”
“…uh, Apollo, I guess?”

God won’t like that one bit. Just thinking about voting for Trump would cause the Lord to send you straight to hell, would it not?

Where was the punishment when an arguably unqualified but famous person was elected president back in 1868? Grant had never held any sort of political office; if he hadn’t been a war hero, he never would have had a chance of becoming president. The same applies to Zachary Taylor.

But not really Trump though. The war hero thing, eh? Trump had bone spurs. Bad ones, I hear. They were all ouchy.
(It’s why he walks so gingerly down ramps, you know.)

As a Christian and former fundamentalist, I’ve actually thought about this before, and even discussed it. I have two possibilities, both which I think can be supported.

The first is indeed one Donald J. Trump. And I don’t just mean his election. And not because of “celebrity worship,” which is generally just paying a lot of attention to certain famous people. No, what happened with Trump is more akin to actual worship. People put their faith in Trumpism rather than even the Americentric Christianity they had been taught. They were willing to deny their eyes and ears because of their faith that Trump was right (e.g. believing it was all fake news). They knew he lied openly, and chose to ignore it. They saw him violating the morals they supported, and they excused it.

Even if you assume that he just conned them and exploited the system to get elected, we saw what he did afterwards, including several impeachable offenses. But they turned a blind eye. He got even more supporters in that time.

Those of you who don’t think much of religion might think this sounds stupid. But there’s a connection here even if you look at it secularly. Trump’s actions are a significant part of why the pandemic has and continues to play out the way it has in the US. He removed the pandemic task force, the people who would have been on the ground looking for these types of things. He’s the one who let the PPE stockpile go down. He’s the one who did not take the virus seriously when it first started, trying to push the pandemic as a hoax. He’s the one who pushed the anti-mask stuff, refusing to be seen wearing one himself and supporting the anti-mask anti-lockdown protestors. He vetoed the idea of sending masks to everyone. He so convinced people that the virus was as hoax that, even when the vaccine came, they rejected what they once claimed to want.

And why was he able to do this? Because he was elected, never faced consequences for his bad actions, and was able to convince so many to become a part of his cult of personality so that they believed him over their own eyes and ears. And why were those people able to be so tricked? For a large portion of them, it was because they turned their back on the Biblical principles which would have prevented that. Had they upheld the beliefs they had before, Trump would not have been elected, let alone become their deity. You just can’t deny that Trump and his supporters are a huge part of why the pandemic was so bad in the US.

That said, what actually got me to start actually trying the religious argument on religious people was this. Before Biden’s election, I’d been constantly seeing the old Bible quote from 2 Chronicles 7:14:

If my people, which are called by my name, shall humble themselves, and pray, and seek my face, and turn from their wicked ways; then will I hear from heaven, and will forgive their sin, and will heal their land.

The point of this was to tell people to pray about the pandemic. But I noticed that people were already doing that. The key part there is “turn from their wicked ways.” I’ve long said that the election of Trump, a open wicked man, was a wicked action. And what happens right after Biden is elected? The vaccines come out—our potential salvation from this pandemic.

The Bible is full of situations where a nation is judged by the actions of its rulers or government. It was Pharaoh’s actions that led to the plagues in Egypt. The kinds of Judah or Israel are mentioned as “doing evil in the eyes of the Lord” and then cited for punishment. The other nations will also be said to be doing evil, but the description is often of what the government does. And this concept makes even more sense when the people of that nation have the ability to elect their leaders.

I also note the reason that the vaccine has not saved as many as it could: the anti-vaccine crowd. The vaccine even works against the stronger delta strain. But people just refused to get it, despite it being the thing they were so longing for earlier. And the reason for that was how the virus was played down.

It seems like such a clear argument, as long as you accept signs of God are a thing and reject coincidence—something the religious who believe in prophecy do. So it seemed a slam dunk argument. Unfortunately, this was the argument that got me told I was “brainwashed by CNN.”

If you read all of that, you may have forgotten I said this was only one of two candidates for the sin. And that is largely because of what @Omar_Little said about the pandemic being worldwide. Sure, I could argue that the US was acting as a leader of the world, or bring up the rise of fascism and the alt-right in much of the world. But there’s another candidate with a factual connection to the pandemic.

Climate change, and our unwillingness to deal with it.

We’re supposed to be good stewards of the Earth. And yet, time and time again, we keep rejecting that. And, guess what? Scientists have long been pointing out that climate change is linked to an increase in the likelihood of pandemics.

The downside is that there isn’t really a specific action to start the ball rolling that happened recently. The rejection of taking care of our planet isn’t new. But the problem is becoming more acute, and reasonable rejections are going away. Plus, God in the Bible seems to often give the nations a lot of time before he comes in.

This also links to other plagues. Climate change has led to droughts, famine, pestilence (due to invasive species). Pick any plague in the Bible, and climate change can cause it. And we more and more have the technology to try and deal with it, yet we refuse.

Personally, because of the factual connection and my status as a Christian, I believe both of these play a part in all of this. I think that these are reasonable ways to use the religion of the Bible to describe these connections which we know exist. And I think I’m not the only Christian on board with these ideas.

and Eisenhower

Being unqualified isn’t the problem. And, as I said, he’s a bit off with the term “celebrity worship,” which really just means paying a lot of attention to celebrities. Trump got actual worship.

Trump ran on being openly evil from the Christian perspective. He was nakedly going against the ideas of the Bible. Yet people kept trying to find a Biblical way to support him. For a lot of people, politics replaced the principles of their religion.

For example, there’s this old man who was a religious mentor to me when I was younger. He led me into some religious experiences. He was someone I called on to pray for me at the worst of times.

I found him liking posts that claimed that Trump was a prophet of God. I saw the change in how he talked, where God didn’t feature in everything he said. He was the type who wouldn’t talk about luck because he thought that was of the devil, and would refer to blessings. It’s hard to get into how completely different this man is.

Remember CPAC 2021? Remember the golden statue of Trump? And how everyone was showing fealty to him. That’s where you get the problem. That’s where you get to the idolatry.

Of course merely thinking about doing something is not a sin. But, yes, it is very much arguable that voting for Trump was sinful. The Bible has requirements for leaders. (cf. 1 Timothy 3:1-13 or Exodus 18:21-22) It describes how you can tell if someone is an actual follower of God or a poseur (Google “the fruits of the spirit.”)

There is room for a voter who did so in ignorance, having avoided watching politics and being tricked into believing untrue things to the point they didn’t realize how evil Trump presented himself. But that becomes less and less likely as time went on. By 2020, it’s really hard to justify. And then you have the attempted coup in 2021.

It’s hard to find a way to argue voting for Trump is a Christian action, one that would be following God’s direction. And to not follow God’s direction is the definition of sin for a Christian.

This is unlike even previous Republicans. I just can’t understate how obviously sinful and anti-Christian Trump is to those who actually read their Bible.

This is not so clear.

"I confess to almighty God
and to you, my brothers and sisters,
that I have greatly sinned
in my thoughts and in my words,
in what I have done,
and in what I have failed to do;" (From the Penitential Rite in the Ordinary of the Mass)

Giving thought to immoral, hateful or destructive things is not a crime (Man’s Law).(*)
But at least in the eyes of numerous churches, it can be and/or is, a sin (God’s Law – 'cause HE knows what you are really up to…)

(* but just give 'em time to perfect the mind-reading machine…)

Since this thread is about America, it should be pointed out that the whole world got slammed by Covid, not just America.

But if we are talking about divine judgment, I do believe with full sincerity that some people, especially Christians (or “Christians”) who got sickened and/or died of Covid did so because of presumption - the notion that God would divinely protect them and that they didn’t have to wear a mask, distance, get vaccinated or anything - indeed, that they could willfully flout protocols and that God would still protect them. I believe that in some cases, God has purposefully struck them down to teach them otherwise.

I was going to go with, “Just generally being an asshole…”, but my fundamental hatred of soccer has forced me to agree with you.

based on some of the posts I see - because Trump is being likened unto the second coming.

If GOD isn’t pissed at that - Jesus sure should be - and Satan would be a bit upset with Trump taking the mantle.

I keep telling people - Exodus 32:

31 So Moses went back to the Lord and said, “Oh, what a great sin these people have committed! They have made themselves gods of gold. 32 But now, please forgive their sin—but if not, then blot me out of the book you have written.”

33 The Lord replied to Moses, “Whoever has sinned against me I will blot out of my book. 34 Now go, lead the people to the place I spoke of, and my angel will go before you. However, when the time comes for me to punish, I will punish them for their sin.”

35 And the Lord struck the people with a plague because of what they did with the calf Aaron had made.