Large news media sources, including the primary television networks, have seen their ratings and credibility decline significantly in recent years. No doubt, they have been in bed with deceptive forces and pushing a leftist agenda for a long time, and the public has not been completely ignorant.
But when mainline media outlets began defending the obvious horrors of Planned Parenthood’s most recently exposed atrocities, that was the last straw. They surrendered their only remaining strand of honest journalism.
We should not be surprised. In a fallen world, deception of this magnitude is inevitable apart from the transforming grace of God through Jesus Christ. Most in the mainstream media reject God and His Son.
Jesus warned his followers to watch for increased deception in the last days. In Matthew 24:4-5 and Mark 13:5-6, our Savior said this is precisely what would happen. He warned, “Watch out that no one deceives you.” Deception is the primary tool in the arsenal of Satan. He is the ultimate master of lies and deception. Jesus called him the “father of lies.”
Deception began in the Garden of Eden when the serpent deceived Eve. He lied to her. Not only did she buy into the lie, but she spread the deception, convincing Adam to embrace the lie, also.
The apostle Paul gave a farewell message to the church at Ephesus in Acts 20:28-30, warning that “savage wolves” would come in the church fellowship and use deception to lure believers away from the truth.
Through lack of discernment, gullibility, spiritual immaturity and listening to the wrong voices, Christians are being drawn away from truth by a secular media that has no respect for truth.
Circus entrepreneur P.T. Barnum is attributed with the saying, “There’s a sucker born every minute.” Yes, and we are all suckers because we are all sinners. There is something in the sinful fabric of every human being that draws us to deception like iron to a magnet.
Some are deceived by financial Ponzi schemes; some are defrauded by emails that promise millions of dollars if you will only send a $2,000 check or cash transfer. A banker once said I would be surprised how many members of our church came to the bank to prepare a check to send overseas in response to an email from someone in Africa whom they’ve never met.
But many more people are deceived by politicians who promise things they will never deliver and the media who perpetuate the same fraud.
Followers of Jesus Christ are warned, “Beware lest any man spoil you through philosophy and vain deceit, after the tradition of men, after the rudiments of the world, and not after Christ” (Colossians 2:8).
Even news outlets that use the Christian label should be viewed cautiously. During the Chick-fil-A controversy of 2012, a Christian media organization got the story about Dan Cathy all wrong. They were using a major secular newspaper as the source of their story. I contacted the editor and explained the truth about Cathy’s comments. The editor made it clear to me that he was not interested in the source of the interview. He wanted to publish the hype that the secular newspaper had printed. Deception sells more newspapers than truth.
The depravity of network news only serves to increase my passion for the survival of Christian media like the Biblical Recorder.
It is very difficult for Baptist state papers like the Recorder to survive in the current climate. But I really believe we have a vital role in serving churches by keeping church members and leaders informed. There is a lot of news and information available, but no source is customized to inform our North Carolina audience as well as the Biblical Recorder.
May I share how we can help you? Would you like to be confident that your church members and attendees are getting accurate news? Here is what you can do to help your congregation. Tell them that we exist!
One pastor said he occasionally asks those in the worship service to take out their smartphone and download an app that he recommends for their spiritual growth. That’s a great idea! So ask your church to download the free Biblical Recorder app. That gives them 24-hour access to BRnow.org where they will find truthful news and valuable information to increase their mission vision. I believe they will be stronger, more faithful disciples who make disciples.
Our website is currently averaging between 20,000 to 25,000 unique visitors every day – with a peak greater than 40,000 daily in the last two weeks. So, a lot of people depend on us now, but I’m convinced that the majority of North Carolina Baptists still do not know we exist.
Help us spread the word. Please consider placing a printed announcement in the church bulletin or worship guide. Download professional slides from BRnow.org/PromoteBR and use them on the screens in your services.
Start a church group subscription plan for the printed edition of the Recorder. There’s a good chance that more than 30 percent of your congregation still prefers the print edition!
If they want both, we give a free digital edition (PDF format) to any subscriber who pays for the printed edition.
For those with email, encourage them to subscribe to the BRweekly, a free weekly e-newsletter that briefly highlights each week’s news. It arrives in your email inbox every Wednesday morning.
Here’s a word of warning! Don’t assume that reading our website content is giving you everything you want to know. It is not. The truth: there is material in the printed edition that is not found online, like staff changes, event announcements, obituaries, Baptist convention staff features and other items. Also, there is online material that is not in print. And, there is uniqueness in the BRweekly. So get all three! It’s very economical.
Visit our website, BRnow.org, today. Click on the “Subscribe” tab for more information on how to subscribe. Click on “Resources” to learn about the e-newsletter (BRweekly), the free downloadable app and the digital edition. Or use these quick-access keys:
A final word: We hope you enjoy the stories in this print edition that look back at the impact of Hurricane Katrina. Ten years ago this month, this devastating storm taught us many lessons and significantly shaped the disaster relief ministry of North Carolina Baptist Men. Read and share these stories with your Bible study group.
Thank you for reading and supporting the Biblical Recorder, BRnow.org and the BRweekly. We are honored to be on your team, and we’re pleased to serve you.
(EDITOR’S NOTE – Allan Blume is the chief editor for the Biblical Recorder)