In H.G. Well’s novel The War of the Worlds, Martians invade the earth. Despite humanity’s greatest devices and efforts, it seems the Martians will win and ravage the earth and all humanity. However, at the eleventh hour, the unexpected happens. The Martians die, but not because of any effort of humanity. It turns out that the bacteria on earth that the Martians had been ingesting through their eating and drinking during their stay on earth wreaks havoc on their systems. The narrator goes on to say, “Martians—dead!—slain by the putrefactive and disease bacteria against which their systems were unprepared; […] slain, after all man’s devices had failed, by the humblest things that God, in his wisdom, has put upon this earth.” Then the narrator lifts his hands and gives thanks to God.
God’s wisdom exceeds our wisdom. Through science and discovery, humanity has learned much. Nevertheless, if you compared the mass of knowledge accumulated by humanity over the ages with God’s infinite knowledge, humanity’s knowledge, relatively speaking, could be stored on the head of a pin, with room to spare.
Knowledge of God’s infinite wisdom can serve as a balm to the soul, especially when the answers to life’s questions seem out of reach. Take Job for example. When great losses of wealth, family, and health decimated him, he asks the questions grieving people often ask (Job 1-37). Job never gets his answers. However, he did get piece of mind. God silenced Job by revealing how much higher his wisdom is than Job’s (Job 38-42). This revelation allowed Job to rest in the knowledge of God’s infinite wisdom.
During this global pandemic, people have had many questions. Mitigation measures, vaccine development, and advancements in treatment have provided help in dealing with this pandemic. However, in the end, the thing that will likely best allow us to return to some semblance of normalcy will not be what humans have done, but a virus’s ability to genetically mutate from something very severe to something less so. Like the narrator in H.G. Well’s novel, we might say, “COVID—mutated!— its severity subdued by the most natural of processes God, in his wisdom, built into his creation.” Let us lift our hands and give thanks to God for his infinite wisdom. We may never get all the answers, but the knowledge of God’s wisdom can calm even most wanting and lingering of questions.