Why We Choose to Adhere to Government Restrictions

January 19, 2021

Below is an extract of a letter sent out to all Free Church of Scotland congregations earlier this month. 

The full text of the letter to our churches from Moderator Rev. Donnie G. Macdonald and the COVID 19 Committee can be viewed here.

The Bible is clear, the people of God should not neglect gathering together for worship (Hebrews 10:25). It may therefore seem strange that we in the Free Church of Scotland, acquiesce to the Government’s requirement that we do not gather for in-person worship, and perhaps it is stranger still that the Church COVID Committee encourages us to do so. But we are in strange times. 

In normal circumstances a civil authority requiring the people of God not to gather would be viewed as an infringement on our right to worship, a challenge to the independence of the Church and the Headship of Christ, which we should, and would, vehemently resist. But not in this instance. This is a public health crisis that the Government is seeking to resolve, and the Church has a responsibility to support the Government in its efforts. 

The COVID group believe that submitting to government restrictions is a fulfilling of the clear Biblical instruction to love one another, to love our neighbour as ourselves and to put the interests of others before our own. We are also thankful to God that we live in an age where we have the technology that allows us to have services of worship online and to meet for prayer and fellowship.

These are strange and difficult times, but we believe and trust in a sovereign and loving God who is in absolute control of absolutely everything. We seek to serve him and honour him in these trying circumstances, giving thanks for his provision, grasping the opportunities, and trusting in his purposes.