Last night 60 Minutes did a piece on Fake News. Normally an organization like 60 Minutes likes to present new news to its viewers, but this time it presented old news – at least it was old news to those who value truth and know history and know the nature of man.
An academic expert in Fake News confessed that before he studied Fake News that he assumed, along with many people, that only uneducated people believed Fake News – he admitted he was wrong. According to his research, educated and uneducated people believe Fake News in equal percentages. This is old news to those who value truth and know history and know the nature of man.
Researchers also found that Fake News is as prevalent on the political right as on the political left – once again, Fake News is no respecter of persons; once again, this is old news to those who value truth and know history and know the nature of man.
Sadly, were 60 Minutes to do a segment on Fake News within the professing church it would find the same phenomena. Since most Christians do not know the Bible they have nothing against which to measure trendy Christian teaching; whether it comes from popular media Christians or academic ivory palaces or esoteric groups which promise initiation into truths that only the few can receive.
We live in a world of Fake News and the propensity of mankind is to believe Fake News. The headwaters of Fake News (found in Genesis Chapter 3) is, “Has God really said this?” The people at 60 Minutes are purveyors themselves of Fake News in so far as they think that humanity can discern the truth in and of itself – were 60 Minutes to devote itself to an exploration of how many times humanity has been wrong it would see that we are all suckers for Fake News.
In one interview Scott Pelley was incredulous that the person he was interviewing, a purveyor of Fake News, maintained that the Fake News he generates (such as Pizzagate) is as true news as news that is verifiable. (This interview, as is the entire segment, is worth watching online). Yet, the Fake News that humanity is the product of time plus matter plus chance should make us all incredulous for it flies in the face of daily life and love and aspiration and all that motivates most of humanity – in terms of both good and evil. Of course, there can be no good or evil if we are indeed the products of a cosmic accident. If we are products of a cosmic accident there can be no Fake News for there can be no truth; everything is a matter of perception – who can trust a cosmic accident.
Sadly in much of the church Fake News doesn’t matter anymore, as long as the book or the movie or the music or the message makes us feel good we will defend it. This is, in one respect, old news – much of the Law and the Prophets and the New Testament was written to reveal Fake News; the New Testament letters deal with Fake News in the church over and over again.
How much Fake News is in our thinking today?