In recent days, I have been getting an increase in the number of conspiracy theories stories coming in on my social media connections and a majority of these are coming from Christians. I have also found that many Christian are fighting or even rebelling against government orders to not gather at Churches or in groups. I’ll cover both but I start with the conspiracy theories first.
With COVID-19, vaccines and the restrictions to personal freedoms, there has been a few conspiracy theories popping up in social media. These conspiracy theories have become the focus of many Christian, even to the point where they have started calling them the giants of this current age, a harbinger of worst things to come or a precursor to the end times. Let take a look at a few scriptures, let us start with Titus 2:11-14:
For the grace of God has appeared, bringing salvation to all men, instructing us to the intent that, denying ungodliness and worldly lusts, we would live soberly, righteously, and godly in this present age; looking for the blessed hope and appearing of the glory of our great God and Savior, Jesus Christ; who gave himself for us, that he might redeem us from all iniquity, and purify for himself a people for his own possession, zealous for good works.
What does Titus tell us to do? It tells me that I am to be “looking for the blessed hope and appearing of the glory of our great God and Savior, Jesus Christ;” and not conspiracies, rabbit holes or harbingers. Let look to the scripture again:
Jesus answered them, “Be careful that no one leads you astray. For many will come in my name, saying, ‘I am the Christ,’ and will lead many astray. You will hear of wars and rumors of wars. See that you aren’t troubled, for all this must happen, but the end is not yet. For nation will rise against nation, and kingdom against kingdom; and there will be famines, plagues, and earthquakes in various places. But all these things are the beginning of birth pains. Then they will deliver you up to oppression, and will kill you. You will be hated by all of the nations for my name’s sake. Then many will stumble, and will deliver up one another, and will hate one another. Many false prophets will arise, and will lead many astray. Because iniquity will be multiplied, the love of many will grow cold. But he who endures to the end, the same will be saved. This Good News of the Kingdom will be preached in the whole world for a testimony to all the nations, and then the end will come. (Mat 24:4-14)
The Lord said “Be careful that no one leads you astray.” What is the purpose of the Church, what are we being led astray from? Are we preaching the “Good News” or conspiracy?
But all things are of God, who reconciled us to himself through Jesus Christ, and gave to us the ministry of reconciliation; namely, that God was in Christ reconciling the world to himself, not reckoning to them their trespasses, and having committed to us the word of reconciliation. We are therefore ambassadors on behalf of Christ, as though God were entreating by us: we beg you on behalf of Christ, be reconciled to God. (2 Co 5:18-20)
We are ambassadors and we have a ministry of reconciliation. Do these conspiracy theories add to our ambassadorship or our ministry of reconciliation?
Matthew 24 also tells us “Then they will deliver you up to oppression, and will kill you. You will be hated by all of the nations for my name’s sake.” In this current time are we oppressed and hated because of Jesus name’s sake or is because of our refusal to “be is subjection to the higher authorities”.
Let every soul be in subjection to the higher authorities, for there is no authority except from God, and those who exist are ordained by God. Therefore he who resists the authority, withstands the ordinance of God; and those who withstand will receive to themselves judgment. For rulers are not a terror to the good work, but to the evil. Do you desire to have no fear of the authority? Do that which is good, and you will have praise from the same, for he is a servant of God to you for good. But if you do that which is evil, be afraid, for he doesn’t bear the sword in vain; for he is a servant of God, an avenger for wrath to him who does evil. Therefore you need to be in subjection, not only because of the wrath, but also for conscience’ sake. For this reason you also pay taxes, for they are servants of God’s service, attending continually on this very thing. Therefore give everyone what you owe: if you owe taxes, pay taxes; if customs, then customs; if respect, then respect; if honor, then honor. (Rom 13:1-7)
So how does this effect our ministry as Christians? The world probably sees Christians as more fearful and rebellious than themselves. The world just has to worry about COVID-19, the Christian seems to have to worry about COVID-19 and all the conspiracy theories as well. Why would people turn to the Church if the Church seem more fearful than the World, what a bad witness?