Live from Music Row Thursday morning on The Tennessee Star Report with Michael Patrick Leahy – broadcast on Nashville’s Talk Radio 98.3 and 1510 WLAC weekdays from 5:00 a.m. to 8:00 a.m. – Leahy was joined on the newsmakers line by all-star panelist Dr. Carol Swain.
During the middle of the second hour, Swain explained her recent commentary at the Tennessee Star where she referenced Revelations and the Bible. She specifically noted how during this Easter and Passover week she began looking at the spiritual significance of the coronavirus pandemic and how in response families have had more time together to reflect upon what’s important in life during the stay at home order.
Leahy: We are joined now by our good friend, all-star panelist and former Vanderbilt professor Carol Swain. Carol, there is a commentary at The Tennessee Star by you. And the headline is “Is This Pandemic What God Describes in Revelations?”Let me read the very beginning of it which is the text of a song by John and Gloria Gaither.
The marketplace is empty
No more traffic in the streets
All the builders’ tools are silent
No more time to harvest wheat
Busy housewives cease their labors
In the courtroom no debate
Work on earth is all suspended
As the King comes thro’ the gate.
Leahy: What prompted you to put this op-ed commentary together for us Carol?
Swain: Well, first of all, I have written two commentaries that dealt with data and various aspects of what has taken place pertaining to how the coronavirus was being treated in the media or also just the stats and the things that were puzzling me. I felt that it was important to move from that to spiritual questions.
So I addressed some things that I have been thinking about for a long time. There was also the significance I believe of the fact that this week straddling the coronavirus pandemic is Easter as well as Passover. And so many things that have taken place in the world today for those of us that are Christians and actually read our Bible there is no way you can say that there is no spiritual significance because we believe God is involved in everything that happens in the universe.
Leahy: I think a lot of people may feel that way. I note you mention Revelations. I like you I’m a believing Christian. I have a very hard time reading Revelations. I’ve been to various sermons and folks have talked about Revelations and they’ve tried to explain it to me. I just get lost in Revelations. It seems to be a little bit out there. I read the New Testament, the Old Testament, and the Acts. But Revelations loses me.
Swain: Michael Patrick.
Leahy: (Laughs) OK. Here we go. Here we go. We know when Carol says Michael Patrick we know she’s about to disagree with me. Go ahead, Carol.
Swain: No. The book of Revelations, as well as the Bible as a whole, is meant to be studied not read. Not just read. You study the Bible you don’t just read. And I have been reading the Book of Revelations ever since I had my conversion experience and even before my conversion experience.
And so it’s a book that makes people feel uncomfortable. And I recently had a conversation with the son of a pastor. And this pastor is an elderly man and he said that years ago when they read Revelations and they read the part about the two witnesses that the whole world would see be killed and raised up again.
It didn’t make a bit of sense. And then the internet came along and all of a sudden we know that the whole world can see things at the same time. That is one thing that this pastor said. And then when we have these plagues and the freaky weather patterns. The Bible talks about that. Not just in Revelations but in other parts.
And then this last thing about the mark of the beast, this pastor said that people couldn’t understand how could this be. Nobody would be able to buy or sell unless they had a mark. Well, we do know today that the technology is there. There are people that are already micro-chipping themselves so that they don’t have to fill out credit cards or use money. They can just wave their hand. You can do that now. And there’s also in my article about ID 2020.
And the most interesting thing about that when I was writing that article every time I put in the hyperlink and go back to the page they would all be changed to blank. So I took out most of the hyperlinks. There were a couple of articles that I just put in the whole web address so someone could go to the web address. And so these things that I say in the article about the technology anyone can look it up. And this globalization, well the Bible talks about how there will be a move towards a one-world government.
But as far as the song that you read in the beginning. When Jesus returns according to the Bible it won’t be at a time when things are silent. We will be going about our normal activities because he comes as a thief in the night. And so pretty much I pulled together my thoughts and it was a very difficult article to write because I was trying to convey a lot of important things. There are people that may not be so familiar with the Bible.
I hope you read it because I noticed that it’s buried on your page. I had to search pass things from last week and my name is misspelled. I know Jesus and God said he is going to give us a new name but I don’t think that means that The Tennessee Star will give me a new name.
Leahy: Oh, I see what you are saying. We will fix that. I will fix that during the break here. (Laughter) You say there is no human solution to what ails the nations of the world that have cut themselves from the true giver of our life. Our world is at a critical moment. But the end is not here yet.
While marketplaces are empty and the streets are free of traffic we can re-discover God and his purpose for our lives. We must not allow fear, and panic about an uncertain future that would cause us to relinquish our national sovereignty and individual freedoms for false promises of peace and security man cannot deliver. In Christ, you say, there is security. Can you elaborate on that a little Carol?
Swain: Well I think what you just read says it all. (Giggles) That’s pretty much the gospel message to the world. I was out in my neighborhood. And I guess this is everybody’s neighborhood and you see families dance with their children and just people with the time to slow down and reflect and think about what’s really important. I think that’s a wonderful thing even as I question how we got there.
Listen to the second hour here:
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Tune in weekdays from 5:00 – 8:00 a.m. to the Tennessee Star Report with Michael Patrick Leahy on Talk Radio 98.3 FM WLAC 1510. Listen online at iHeart Radio.
Background Photo “Book of Revelations Vision” by Cliff. CC BY 2.0.