AUSTRALIA - 262-Day Lockdown Ends

Arno Froese

Melbourne, which has spent more time under COVID-19 lockdowns than any other city in the world, is set to lift its stay-at-home orders.

The Australian city of 5 million people will have been under six lockdowns totaling 262 days, or nearly nine months, since March 2020.

Australian and other media say this is the longest in the world, exceeding a 234-day lockdown in Buenos Aires, Argentina.

While coronavirus cases keep rising in Victoria state, of which Melbourne is the capital, the state’s double-vaccination rate is set to reach 70%, allowing for the ease in restrictions.

“Today is a great day,” said Victoria premier Daniel Andrews while announcing the lockdown. “Today is a day when Victorians can be proud of what they have achieved.”

Australia, once a champion of a COVID-zero strategy of managing the pandemic, has been moving towards living with the virus through extensive vaccinations, as the Delta variant has proven too transmissible to suppress.

The new strategy makes lockdowns highly unlikely once 80% of the population is fully vaccinated. Around 68% of eligible Australians have been fully inoculated.

Despite the rise in cases in recent months, Australia’s coronavirus numbers are low compared to many other developed countries, with just over 143,000 cases and 1,530 deaths.

Neighboring New Zealand, which is also learning to live with COVID-19 by accelerating inoculations, reported 51 new cases, 47 of them in the largest city Auckland, which has been in a lockdown since mid-August. 

-www.reuters.com, 17 October 2021

Arno's Commentary

Australia is the envy of the Western world when it comes to Covid-19. With 65 deaths per 100,000 population (and New Zealand only 6), the result is quite favorable compared with countries such as the USA (2,231), UK (2,081), and even Canada (766). What is the reason for their success? Strict implementation of medical-science-based policies—in this case, lockdowns, masking, social distancing, and vaccination. 

In the Old Testament, it was said to King Saul, “For rebellion is as the sin of witchcraft, and stubbornness is as iniquity and idolatry” (1 Samuel 15:23a). Here we are reminded of Daniel 2:21, namely that God, “…changeth the times and the seasons: he removeth kings, and setteth up kings: he giveth wisdom unto the wise, and knowledge to them that know understanding.” Paul admonishes Titus, “Put them in mind to be subject to principalities and powers, to obey magistrates, to be ready to every good work” (Titus 3:1).

Arno Froese is the executive director of Midnight Call Ministries and editor-in-chief of the acclaimed prophetic magazines Midnight Call and News From Israel. He has authored a number of well-received books, and has sponsored many prophecy conferences in the U.S., Canada, and Israel. His extensive travels have contributed to his keen insight into Bible prophecy, as he sees it from an international perspective.

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