Maybe it’s just me, but I have seen more conspiracy theories, dire warnings and messages of hopelessness shared by believers recently. Some of these items (photos, quotes, stories) were created by trolls. I’m not sure if these trolls actually live under a bridge, but they certainly enjoy taking up real estate on social media. These troll posts are created with a very destructive agenda. The words and the images are woven together to specifically gain an emotional reaction because that causes them to be shared and commented on. Posts that make us feel fearful are much more likely to gain social media traction.
However, “fear not” is commanded over 300 hundred times in the Bible. We are commanded to, “fear not.” God does not merely suggest to me that I “fear not.” He requires it.
God tells Isaiah the following regarding fear in a time of war.
This is what the Lord says to me with his strong hand upon me, warning me not to follow the way of this people:
12 “Do not call conspiracy everything this people calls a conspiracy; do not fear what they fear, and do not dread it.
13 The Lord Almighty is the one you are to regard as holy, he is the one you are to fear,
he is the one you are to dread.
14 He will be a holy place; for both Israel and Judah he will be a stone that causes people to stumble and a rock that makes them fall. And for the people of Jerusalem he will be a trap and a snare.
15 Many of them will stumble; they will fall and be broken, they will be snared and captured.”
16 Bind up this testimony of warning and seal up God’s instruction among my disciples.
17 I will wait for the Lord, who is hiding his face from the descendants of Jacob.
I will put my trust in him.
(Isaiah 8:11-17 NIV)
What does God think about conspiracy theories? Evidently, I am to practice discernment, and avoid herd mentality by rejecting trolls and their agenda.
Who or what am I to fear (respect)? I am to focus on God alone not my assessment of the situation or any insight I might think I have. Only God…can rescue, restore and create a true place of safety for me.
What if I spent as many minutes in God’s word as I do on social media posts?
How might that change my outlook? What if I prayed before I hit that share button or commented on that negative post? What if I committed to sharing a Bible verse on social media on a weekly basis?
The New Living Translation says, “Preserve the teaching of God; entrust his instructions to those who follow me.” (Isaiah 8:16) How can I be part of preserving the teachings of God and sharing them with other believers? Pray with me this week that we take this challenge seriously. We all have influence. How will we use it?