Given man's propensity to produce inventive stories while fabricating alternative "facts," it was only a matter of time before the 24-hour news cycle became inundated with "fake news." Sadly, we now live in a day where many choose to "tweet first, check the facts later."
But in spite of all the bogus reporting that goes on these days, Dana Blanton correctly noted that "most people believe they can tell the difference between real news stories and fake ones."
What about you? Can you tell the difference? I imagine all of us get duped by fake news from time to time, especially in the realm of politics.
But what happens when the fake news is actually dangerous to your well-being? Consider the most critical topic on the planet, namely, your soul and your understanding of God. I think you will agree that the significance of politics pales in comparison to the importance of your immortal soul.
The first thing we must acknowledge is that the biblical teaching regarding man's immortal soul is either true or false. It was either accurately reported in the Bible, or it is fake news. And the promise Jesus made about everlasting life is either spot on, or made up.
So what exactly did the Messiah say about life beyond the grave?
Jesus told Martha, "I am the resurrection and the life. He who believes in me will live, even though he dies; and whoever lives and believes in me will never die." And then Jesus asked Martha, "Do you believe this?" (John 11:25,26)
If Christ's declaration to Martha was in fact "fake news," then the Bible would consist of nothing more than a bunch of myths and legends. Thankfully, the words Jesus spoke are eternally true and thoroughly accurate, and the facts Christ revealed can be completely trusted.
The good news of Scripture informs us that those who believe in Jesus as their Savior "will never die." The moment a believer's body perishes, the soul goes immediately to heaven to be with the Lord. And one day, we will be given a new body that will never perish to go along with our immortal soul. (1 Cor. 15:35-58)
Man's ability to blow smoke and twist facts extends well beyond the temporal issues of politics and current events. Man is actually quite skilled at presenting fake news even in the complex realm of religion. And liberal theology is man's attempt to skirt the issue whenever the Bible presents doctrine that goes against man's natural sensibilities.
For example, liberal theologians have a difficult time with the claim Christ made concerning "one way" to heaven. Jesus said, "I am the way and the truth and the life. No one comes to the Father except through me." (John 14:6) Liberal theology dismisses these words of Christ and replaces them with an alternative scenerio. In so doing, these modern-day soothsayers invent fake news.
Likewise, Jesus spoke as much about hell as He did about heaven. Liberal theologians have no interest in embracing such a teaching, and so they simply "do away with it," as if living in denial changes the eternal realities of heaven and hell.
When it comes to eternity, fake news gives some folks a feeling of temporary satisfaction. But it doesn't change the fact that there is nothing fake about where the soul goes after death. And there are people all over the world who will experience it personally when they take their final breath at some point today. They would be the first ones to tell you that the message Jesus presented about heaven and hell is not fake news.
In addition to eternal matters, liberal theologians also deviate from the biblical teaching on sexuality. They brazenly invent their own code of ethics when it comes to sex. Rather than embracing God's plan for sexuality within the bounds of marriage between a man and woman, liberal theology contains fake news that offers people a green light to indulge their strongest sexual desires. Never mind the fact that those inner cravings can drive a person beyond the biblical boundaries set in place by our Creator.
So what is going on here? Why do liberal theologians ignore the biblical teaching on matters as straight forward as eternity, salvation, and sexuality? The reason is quite simple. Liberal theologians get their news from the wrong source. They depend upon human opinions and feelings rather than the Word of God. And the consequences are far more serious than when fake news gets reported in the political realm.
How did we ever get to this point where fake news has become commonplace?
Well, let's go back to where it all began. The first "fake news" story ever reported was announced by the serpent in the Garden of Eden. And the serpent began his fake news narrative by asking the question, "Did God really say ...?" (Genesis 3:1)
In other words, the moment you can get a person to doubt God's Word, you are well on your way to getting that person to adopt your fake news story regarding right and wrong, truth and error, sin and righteousness. Satan was the first one to ever present fake news, and false prophets have been following in that deceiver's footsteps ever since.
Liberal theology is fake news because it simply isn't true. It is merely man's wishful thinking and his feeble attempt to change the clear message of Scripture. The reason the opinions of men cannot be fully trusted is because man is capable of being deceived. The only way to know what is truly real and eternal is to turn to Scripture and then believe what God says about life, death, heaven, hell, sin, grace, and the free gift of everlasting life in paradise. (Revelation 22:1-21)
Fake news is rampant in our world today whether we like it or not. When it comes to the Bible, however, you can have complete confidence in what has been reported.
The apostle Peter wrote, "Above all, you must understand that no prophecy of Scripture came about by the prophet's own interpretation. For prophecy never had its origin in the will of man, but men spoke from God as they were carried along by the Holy Spirit." (2 Peter 1:20,21)
You see, God always tells the truth. The Holy Spirit is not the author of fake news. There are plenty of people in the world today, as well as many fallen angels, who already have a corner on that market. And they would love for you to buy what they are selling.
But always remember: Buying into fake news comes at a very high cost, especially when dealing with matters of your soul, your sexuality, and the Savior of the world. The health of your soul and your body is too critical to base your spiritual decisions upon fake news.
Thankfully, the Bible is not man's opinion. "All Scripture is God-breathed." (2 Tim. 3:16) And so there is nothing fake about God or His eternal message to man. Liberal theologians went astray the moment they rejected the inspiration and inerrancy of Scripture. Everything for them went downhill after making that critical error.
When it comes to Scripture and to matters of your soul, have you been relying upon the truth or upon fake news? If you have been getting duped by phony fabrications, it's not too late to implement some corrective measures.
As you consider the good news Jesus brought to the world, the question the Lord asked Martha is just as relevant today: "Do you believe this?" (John 11:26) We are left with only two options: Faith or unbelief.
Which road are you on today? Which road would you like to be on?
"Faith comes from hearing the message, and the message is heard through the word of Christ." (Romans 10:17) This is how a person comes to have faith in the Messiah.
The apostle Paul was once a persecutor of Christians, but then he miraculously became a follower of Christ. (Acts 9:1-22) After his spiritual conversion, Paul worked tirelessly to reach others who had been deceived by fake news.
"From morning till evening he explained and declared to them the kingdom of God and tried to convince them about Jesus from the Law of Moses and from the Prophets. Some were convinced by what he said, but others would not believe." (Acts 28: 23,24)
In other words, some refused to turn away from the fake news of their day, even though they were being given every opportunity to "repent and believe the good news." (Mark 1:15) In Paul's day, some accepted Christ as Savior, but "others would not believe." It was a tragic decision with eternal consequences.
What about you? Will you cast aside your confidence in the opinions of men, and accept God's message of salvation with the faith of a child?
As James put it: "Humbly accept the word planted in you, which can save you." (James 1:21)
You see, you cannot save yourself. Only God's good news in Scripture has that kind of power. Fake news will mess up your mind and your soul, whereas the Good Shepherd (John 10:11-15) feeds His sheep with the truth of God's Word.
So if you want the straight scoop rather than fake news, then always remember this fact: "It is impossible for God to lie." (Hebrews 6:18)