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UCGia Bible Insights Thursday, July 11 2019

Who’s telling you what to think?

The world’s media outlets are the major means of communicating information worldwide. The way they are used and the content they carry can be helpful and positive, neutral or enormously destructive.

As you consider whether to accept the reports and opinions in newspapers and television programs or hear the seductive, suggestive lyrics of many songs, be sure to ask yourself who is telling you what to think and whether you should listen. Ultimately what we put into our minds determines our values and approach to life.

Steve Allen, longtime actor, comedian and songwriter who died in 2000, wrote perceptively about the depraved vortex of television programming in his book ‘Vulgarians at the Gate: Trash TV and Raunch Radio’: “There has always been a market for vulgarity and licentiousness, but at present it is undeniable that motion pictures, theater, television, radio, the recording industry and, to a lesser degree, journalism are enthusiastic participants in the general collapse of standards and behavior.”

 His book then goes on to document the many ways in which journalists slant their reporting to subtly change the way readers think.

TV networks such as ABC, NBC and CBS, and major newspapers like The New York Times, do publish many unbiased reports  but, when it comes to stories touching on moral values and ideology they often present those with a liberal or ungodly spin. 

 It’s important to differentiate between viewpoints arising from biblically- based standards and those that are rooted in amoral thinking. 

Journalist William Proctor in his book titled ‘The Gospel According to The New York Times’ examines the profound effects an influential newspaper like The New York Times has on America and the world, playing a major role in shaping thinking and values.  “In effect, you are being exposed to a gospel, but one that is a far cry from the traditional good news of Matthew, Mark, Luke, and John. Rather, this gospel is rooted in a kind of secular theology that purports to convey infallible social, moral, and political truth...” (2000, pp. 11-12).

On a closely related topic, Phillip Johnson, author and law professor at the University of California, Berkeley, has written several revealing books about how the uncritical acceptance of the theory of evolution has influenced our moral values. “This philosophy controls academic work not only in science but in all fields, including law, literature and psychology. It is promulgated throughout the educational system and the mainstream media, and government backs it” ( The Wedge of Truth , pp. 13-14).

The Bible reveals there’s a spiritual power behind these developments leading humans away from God. The apostle Paul calls this unseen force “the god of this age” (2 Corinthians 4:4). The apostle John tells us how successful Satan has been in his manipulative, deceptive work. He writes that “the whole world lies under the sway of the wicked one” and that this evil being “deceives the whole world” (1 John 5:19; Revelation 12:9). 

In other words, Satan presents his ways as enlightened and wise when in truth they are the opposite. Paul tells us the devil has successfully “blinded the minds of unbelievers, so that they cannot see the light of the gospel” (2 Corinthians 4:4, New International Version). False religions, naturalism, the theory of evolution and related belief systems have kept humanity cut off from right knowledge and in darkness for centuries. 

Our best source for the unbiased truth as it relates to the world we live in is the Bible. 

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