I think as you get older you start paying attention to the News and you even get excited wanting to know what’s happening around you. I’m one of those who easily gets glued to a political talk show. I don’t know if I should apologize for that. But I’ve always loved debates and I really enjoy the heated engagement. I want a taste of true genius in responding to questions and a bit of that sneaky avoidance of difficult questions. But I also want to hear of leaders that know the plight of my fellow citizens and seem to have care and concern for our future.
In general though I want to watch news lest I keep looking like the only alien in the country. I want to be in that class that is in the know of how things are going down here before the Lord calls me up there. My only problem is the more I read the paper and tune in to the latest, the more I feel angry, disappointed and disgusted by what’s happening in this country and the world at large. It’s not once that I have decided to stop watching news altogether, stop paying the license to watch TV only to find myself searching the news channel on YouTube or going for the free options.
Thing is even if I succeeded in turning off that TV and Radio, Social Media won’t let me off the hook that easily. And most importantly I do want to be in the know. I don’t want to be one of those Christians we used to say in Campus that they live in heaven and only appear to attend Class in the morning. I want to think about my world and apply my faith in this sphere. I want to be someone who speaks to the culture and my friends while knowing what goes around them. But neither do I want to keep wounding my soul with endless stories of the latest murder, the latest scandal and the greed of politicians. You can see my dilemma!
And so like we are asked to do with everything I applied the Golden rule of Christian living and asked myself what the Gospel tells me in this situation? How am I to approach my News Channel biblically? As it turns out at our Church (Gracepoint Church Kikuyu) we are just turning to a new Exposition series through the dreadful Judges after the Glorious book of Joshua. Honestly, every time I contemplate reading the book of Judges I get scared a bit because I still can’t believe it’s in the Bible and the people in it are actually the chosen race of God’s priests. But Judges and the Bible in whole resolves this dilemma.
The Bible doesn’t try to hide or water down the true nature of humanity even when it’s speaking about God’s people. It tells me that what I watch in the News is a just a tip of the iceberg. Man is desperately corrupt and without God’s grace of godly leadership he is capable of the most heinous of acts. It tells me that when things work out like you see in Joshua it’s because God is in charge and when man gets his way, well, then you have Judges. So I shouldn’t be surprised about what happens around me. That’s just the true color of man. But I do need to look elsewhere as I watch all this and that’s where the Gospel lands.
If I keep watching the news I’m either going to get so disgusted that I have to stop which is hard to run away in this social Media world. Alternatively, I might just get so used and so numb to what happens that it no longer scares me or makes me at least uncomfortable. And I don’t want to get there as I don’t think that’s biblically healthy. But I think there’s a last and far better option and that’s to read my Newspaper with my Bible. To watch the News and scroll down that Timeline with one eye but have the Bible informing me on the other.
Christians cannot afford to keep feeding on these News without God’s Word refreshing and detoxing our system. We need the News Channel to remind us where we live and the desperate need of the Gospel. But we also need the Bible, the teaching and encouragement of the Gospel to have true hope beyond this world. Jesus had an option to pick us up as soon as we received the Gospel and take us with him. But he left us here knowing so well the world we live in and what happens down here. Why? Well, as he says in John 16:33, because he has overcome the world.
33 “I have told you these things, so that in me you may have peace. In this world you will have trouble. But take heart! I have overcome the world.”John 16
Through the message and the hope of the Gospel we are able to overcome the negative tide of this world. Where the world paints it’s ugliness on our walls and recommends useless escape plans. God in the Gospel gives us real hope and power to face the ranging storm. I think the News should send us running to the message of the Gospel as taught by the Bible. When I hear the latest murder, the rottenness exposed by investigative media and the latest Corruption scandal, I should see this from the Gospel eye.
I shouldn’t be surprised although I can’t help it sometimes. I shouldn’t seek to run away though I may need to apply some measures to safeguard my soul and those with children may need to think more seriously about this. But in the face of all this the Bible tells me it’s not completely hopeless for us who believe. Though the natural man is rotten there’s hope for the new man, created in the image of the best of men, our Lord and Saviour Jesus Christ. Jesus lived in this world and he conquered it living in holiness and obedience to our Father. And through the Gospel and his ever present help so will we make it.
In the next Chapter of John in Ch. 17 the Lord Jesus prays for his disciples throughout all generations:
15 My prayer is not that you take them out of the world but that you protect them from the evil one. 16 They are not of the world, even as I am not of it. 17 Sanctify them by the truth; your word is truth. John 17
He calls on the Father to sanctify and set apart his children by the message of the True Gospel. The evil one would want us to see the hopelessness in our world and fall for rage, insults or escapism. But the Gospel faces our world head on exposing its ugly belly and pointing us to our only hope which is found only in Christ. We need to apply the Gospel in every sphere of life to be healthy Christians. And I believe that applies to my News consumption and engagement, to what I read and write on my Social Media walls.
#ReadtheNewspaperwithyourBible # GospelandCulture # ChristianWorldview