The pastor of a church must exercise discernment to protect the flock he has been called to oversee. It is not an easy task when so much foolishness is now available to every member of the church on the internet. Add to this, the spirit of the age, that is anti-authority and narcissistic, and you have the makings for the perfect storm in the body of Christ. The apostle Paul, when departing from Ephesus, said to the elders he was leaving behind:
"Therefore take heed to yourselves and to all he flock, among which the Holy Spirit has made you overseers, to shepherd the church of God which He purchased with His own blood. For I know this, that after my departure savage wolves will come in among you, not sparing the flock. Also from among yourselves men will rise up, speaking perverse things, to draw away the disciples after themselves." Acts 20:28-29
Recently I have been confronted with a series of weird and absurd conspiracy theories. Over the past year of more I have listened to hours of videos, youtube clips, read books and spoken to other pastors, scientists and sought to understand where this nonsense is coming from. The list of things below shares just some of my conclusions as they relate to some of these bizarre ideas floating around and parading as true science.
Pastor Bill Tipton gave our leaders a clear, powerful and helpful talk on how to evaluate evidence when trying to discern what is true or false. If anyone would like to speak to Pastor Bill I am sure he would be willing to share that material with them.
- Conspiracy theories foster a spirit of rebellion against the government and cause us to disobey the Scripture. (Rom. 13) We are to take seriously the biblical call to submit to and pray for our government.
- Conspiracy theories distract people from the things that matter most. (Read my book The Foundations of Godly Living) I Timothy 6:20-21, “O Timothy! Guard what was committed to your trust, avoiding the profane and idle babblings and contradictions of what is falsely called knowledge—by professing it some have stared concerning the fiath. Grace be with you. Amen.”
- Conspiracy theories waste enormous amounts of time and energy on things that are not reality.
- Conspiracy theories fill the one who buys into them with pride as they conclude that they have more wisdom and insight than those around them, which is not the case. Proverbs 14:15, “The simple believes every word, but the prudent considers well his steps.”
- Conspiracy theories cause division as those who don’t accept the views of the people holding the conspiracy theories are viewed as part of the duped and deceived.
- Conspiracy theories promote slander, false rumors, and gossip.
- Conspiracy theories give the church a bad reputation among the watching world and gives our enemies an occasion to ridicule our stupidity. Romans 2:24, “For the name of God is blasphemed among the Gentiles because of you…”
- Conspiracy theories have the potential to divide, distract and even destroy the church.
- Conspiracy theories undermine the authority of the pastor of the church. People will listen to these so-called conspiracy theory experts and reject their pastor’s counsel. Hebrews 13:1, “Obey those who rule over you, and be submissive, for they watch out for your souls, as those who must give account…”
- Conspiracy theories are often built around a faulty eschatology.
- Conspiracy theories cause people to reject sound and logical thinking and to accept the most bizarre and absurd unprovable theories.
- Conspiracy theories vilify our own government and take true guilt and responsibility off Muslim extremists. (Something the Islamists must surely be pleased with.)
- Conspiracy theories are a distortion of reality and a false view of history.
- Conspiracy theories harm Christians in their daily walk with God as they lead God’s people down a rabbit hole of nonsense and despair.
- Conspiracy theories contribute to social unrest, civil disorder, and chaos.
- Conspiracy theories distract the church from its main mission of preaching the gospel and calling people to repentance. Those who are sucked into the black hole of conspiracy theories usually have lost sight of the true mission and purpose of the church.
- Conspiracy theories are often held by those who either refuse or cannot apply logical thinking to their unproven absurdities.
- Conspiracy theories are often held by those who have limited skills in critical thinking, investigative research, logical analysis, and quite honestly simple common sense.
- Conspiracy theories are a sinful waste of time and energy and lead people into a cult like world of fantasy.
- Conspiracy theories are usually based on suspicion, mistrust and fear and foster fear and paranoia in the church. But God has not given us a spirit of fear. II Timothy 1:7, “For God has not given us a spirit of fear, but of power and of love and of a sions mind”
- Conspiracy theories are far from being harmless. They will eventually lead to anarchy, chaos, and civil unrest. No nation can survive when vast numbers of its citizens believe that their government is secretly planning on their murder.
- Conspiracy theories lead to scapegoating as the list of those who are blamed for social ills may include: the white man, the jews, the CIA, the Illuninati, the secret world order, the Catholic Church, the Russians, the left, the right, the religious community, etc.
- Conspiracy theories do not have a solution to the problems in society. The elimination of the so-called conspiracy theories will not solve any national problems. Only repentance and a return to biblical righteousness and the keeping of God’s laws will promote a true biblical restoration.
- Conspiracy theories and those who hold them fail to take into account the providential ruling of God over all events, nations, and circumstances.
- Conspiracy theories tend to leave people thinking that God is not on the throne and that evil men, sinister governments, secret societies, shadow governments, and the like are ruling the world rather than God.