What do the scriptures say about COVID-19?
The year 2020 gave us an unexpected new disease: COVID-19. This previously unknown virus swiftly brought the world to a standstill. More than two years later, the COVID-19 pandemic is still ongoing. Is this a sign of the End Times?
Various prophecies state that in the End Times, before the appearance of the World Saviour, plagues and pestilences will appear.
In the Gospel of Luke, Jesus (pbuh) states that one of the signs preceding his return would be pestilence. The meaning of “pestilence,” according to the Hebrew and Greek definitions, is a plague or disease.
“And there will be great earthquakes in various places, and famines and pestilences; and there will be fearful sights and great signs from heaven.”
– Holy Bible: Luke 21:11
The appearance of disease on a global scale is also mentioned in Islamic scriptures. The narrations state that “white death,” meaning disease, corresponds to the emergence of the Qa’im.
From Sulaiman ibn Khaled said: I heard Aba Abdillah [meaning Imam Al-Sadiq (pbuh)] say: “Before the advent of the Qa’im (pbuh) are two deaths: the ‘red death’ and the ‘white death’, until five of every seven are gone [will die]. The ‘red death’ is the sword [meaning wars] and the ‘white death’ is the plague.”
-Bihar Al-Anwar, Muhammad Baqir Al-Majlisi, 3rd ed., v.52, p.207, hadith 42
-Mo’jam Ahadeeth Al-Imam Al-Mahdi, Ali Al-Korani, 1st ed., v.3, p.440, hadith 994 (Online book: p.433)
Imam Ali (pbuh) said: “Between the hands of the Qa’im is the ‘red death’ and ‘white death’, and locusts, red as blood, appearing in other than their season. As for the ‘red death’ it is by the sword [meaning wars] and the ‘white death’ it is the plague.”
-Al-Irshad, Abu Abdillah Muhammad ibn No’man “Al-Mufid”, 2nd ed., v.2, p.372
The COVID-19 pandemic is certainly fulfilling these prophecies. It is a clear sign for all people so that they may recognise the Qa’im, the promised Saviour of Mankind. The signs of the End Times are also a reason to have hope. It is promised by the Ahlulbayt (pbut) that the Qa’im will usher in a new era of peace and prosperity in the world.