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John Benton on Conspiracy Theories

I preface my reblog of John’s post with the following brief comments of my own about conspiracy theories, addressed first and foremost to John.conspiracy theories

Even the devil himself has rights. His diabolical rights include that he is entitled not to be falsely accused. To falsely accuse even the devil would be a sin. “The archangel Michael, when he disputed with the devil over the body of Moses, did not presume to bring a slanderous charge against him, but said, ‘The Lord rebuke you!’ ” [Jude 1:9] How much more the Rothschilds, or Bill Gates, or Boris Johnson.

There is a time for every purpose under heaven though. [Ecclesiates 3] A time to theorise conspiracy and a time to refrain, perhaps theorising coincidence instead, or not bothering to observe the signs of the times at all..

In all things, good and bad, God works for the good of those who love Him. Therefore, I testify with Isaiah, “… this is what the LORD has spoken to me with a strong hand, instructing me not to walk in the way of this people: ‘Do not call conspiracy everything these people regard as conspiracy. Do not fear what they fear; do not live in dread. The LORD of Hosts is the One you shall regard as holy. Only He should be feared; only He should be dreaded’ …” [Isaiah 8:11-13]

If we believe in conspiracy theories, we are in good company, as the wording of the poster I made and exhibited in 2004 at the Labour Party Conference at the Christians Against Mental Slavery stand 212, goes to show:

World-famous “conspiracy theorists”

President Theodore Roosevelt
“Behind the ostensible Government sits enthroned an invisible Government, owing no allegiance and acknowledging no responsibility to the people.”
An Autobiography, 1913

President Woodrow Wilson
“Some of the biggest men in the United States, in the field of commerce and manufacture, are afraid of something. They know that there is a power somewhere so organized, so subtle, so watchful, so interlocked, so complete, so pervasive, that they better not speak above their breath when they speak in condemnation of it.”
“The New Freedom”, 1913

J. Edgar Hoover, ex-Director of the FBI
“The individual is handicapped by coming face-to-face with a conspiracy so monstrous he cannot believe it exists.”

The Apostle Paul
“ … that day will not come until the rebellion occurs and the man of lawlessness is revealed … the secret power of lawlessness is already at work … [there will be] all kinds of counterfeit miracles, signs and wonders … evil that deceives those who are perishing … [and] a powerful delusion …”
2 Thessalonians 2

The Lord Jesus Christ
“Why are you trying to kill me?”
“You are demon-possessed,” the crowd answered. “Who is trying to kill you?” *
John 7:19-20

* (Before long, we did kill Him.)

A prominent conspiracy theory this year was that Donald Trump had incited insurrection clandestinely. Another, still doing the rounds, is the conspiracy theory that so-called conversion therapy is being practised in the UK nowadays, even though none of those who claim this seem to be able to cite a single evidenced examples of any such thing happening in real life. (At least, none of those whom I asked to cite examples of real-life conversion therapy, for example, Stonewall, Jayne Ozanne, the Ban Conversion Therapy campaign, and Steve Chalke.)

Enjoy John’s post. Please comment there on his words, and here on my words in this preface.

Evangelicals Now

Our lives take place increasingly against a background of conspiracy theories.

From the vaccines altering your DNA, to the accusations that the US election was ‘stolen’, to QAnon, we seem surrounded by frightening scenarios of all kinds. It is not that conspiracies never ever happen. It is more our willingness to believe them so readily which makes me wonder.

Why is the contemporary world so awash with these things? And why should Christians think twice before buying into them? Here are some general thoughts to bear in mind.

First, we should realise that the Postmodern mindset, which informs modern society, sets us up for conspiracy theories. Unlike a Christian worldview, it doubts that there is such a thing as truth, and sees all communication as manipulation of the weak by the strong. If we accept this, then everything is actually a conspiracy.

Second, because a lot of people like to…

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