New Zealand is currently rolling out its COVID vaccine to frontline workers and medical personnel. This means that the general population will soon be in line to receive the vaccine en masse.
At the same time, much anti-vaccination material is swirling around in society. In my research, I’ve seen that Christians – along with everyone else in society – have a range of thoughts about whether they will take the vaccine. Their thinking falls into four broad categories.
There are those who don’t like any sort of vaccine, believing them to be at best ineffective, and at worse dangerous.
There are those who feel that this vaccine is an overreach of the government, a violation of individual rights. (Some might also worry that the vaccine is possibly linked with the “mark of the beast”).
Then you have a third group, who like many of their secular counterparts, have concerns about taking a vaccine that was produced so quickly, without the normal lengthy trials. “Are we sure this vaccine is safe, how can we know what the long-term side effects might be?”
Finally, there are those, and this is no doubt the largest group, who are confident that despite the compressed time-frames in formulating and testing the anti-Covid vaccines, and the possible risks, it is still highly likely to be safe for most people, and that out of love of self and neighbour one should in due course receive the vaccination.
Christians do need to respect the rights of that minority of people who decide not to take the vaccine, but we are not obliged to agree with their thinking. However, it does seem the best way for this and other societies to defeat this virus is to vaccinate as much as possible of the population. If you want to see more information in support of this approach, see the links below.