In the book of the Revelation it was Jesus who shut churches down and not the government. Jesus told the church at Ephesus, “Remember therefore from whence thou art fallen , and repent, and do the first works; or else I will come unto thee quickly, and will remove thy candlestick out of his place, except thou repent.” ~ Revelation 2:5
In Revelation 1:13 John saw Jesus in the midst of seven candlesticks. According to verse 20, the seven candlesticks were the seven churches that John saw. Tribulation was coming and John was writing to the 7 churches to warn them about things which must shortly come to pass. It wasn’t worldly governments, persecution, or tribulation which would remove any of the candlesticks (the churches), it was Jesus. Jesus threatened to remove the candlestick of the church of Ephesus if they did not repent.
We would do well to heed Jesus’s message to the seven churches. In fact we are commanded to do so. Seven times in the second and third chapters of the book of Revelation we are commanded, “He that hath an ear, let him hear what the Spirit saith unto the churches.“
Yet in our world today many evangelical ministries in the United States have gone far from the truth of the gospel and are convinced that a “deep state” within the federal government is actively at work, attempting to shut down churches through covid restrictions. They never consider that just maybe their failing plight has to do with the judgment of the Lord because they have fallen from the truth of the gospel, and are responsible for turning so many away from Christ.
Jesus said “upon this rock (Jesus is the Christ) I will build my church; and the gates of hell will not prevail against it.” ~ Matthew 16:18.
In the book of Acts, the church of the Lord Jesus Christ grew under persecution and God did great miracles, and history shows that the true church of the Lord Jesus thrives in growth under persecution. Those among American evangelicals who have turned the gospel into a political warfare need to wake up and realize that God is not happy with the message they are communicating to the world, and judgement does begin in the house of the Lord.