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News Sources and the Informed Christian

 

I was pleased the other day when Albert Mohler finished his summer break and returned to his daily podcast called The Briefing. The Briefing is an analysis of news and culture from a biblical worldview. At the end of this blog I will list a few other great sources for news that you might consider. But first, let’s think about news and how we are informed.

You can’t believe everything you read. We have heard that before and it is wise advice. However, you do need to believe some things you read or you will find yourself pulling away from all sources of information about the world around us. This will cause isolation and the inability to effectively love your neighbors when it comes to helping them make actual choices in this world. Being informed won’t make you salt and light according to Matthew chapter 5. You are already salt and light by your very position in Christ. Holy living empowered by the Spirit is the salt and the light. You don’t need news commentary to make you salt and light. But godly wisdom and the application of Scripture to current issues will help you focus your light beams and concentrate your saltiness upon matters of cultural dialog.

So who do you trust when it comes to news and commentary about our world and our current cultural happenings? Please notice what I said in the last sentence of the above paragraph. What you need is godly wisdom and the ability to apply Scripture to current events. Who is going to provide that?

The key issue is worldview. Our worldview affects everything we do; we cannot escape it. While the secular media will have certain facts and realities in their reports, those reports can never be freed from their worldview. Therefore, without even realizing it, their reports will leave out things, add things, and be framed in certain ways that accord with their worldview. You cannot expect it any other way. Due to worldview, what is relevant to the writer may be irrelevant to the Christian, and vice versa.

Can the secular media get the “facts” right? Sure. The problem is sometimes mundane facts impact important moral issues simply by the way they are presented. You might hear a story on a mole infestation. There is probably little reason to doubt the stats and facts cited in the report. But don’t be surprised if an evolutionary explanation is given for why something is the way it is. In this case, the facts are interpreted to fit an evolutionary worldview.

Presently, there is far more coverage of the poaching death of Cecil the Lion than the 5th release of hidden camera video of Planned Parenthood abortion practices. Why? Worldview. The secular media doesn’t care about the Planned Parenthood story, or they wish to keep it out of the spotlight. Either way, worldview is driving the coverage. Don’t forget there is a massive amount of money at stake for Planned Parenthood; that always changes things.

Conservative news outlets are no exception. There is a driving worldview there as well. It may not be as secular as mainstream media, but it is typically not biblical either. So, while news from conservative outlets may be more relevant and useful to the believer; it falls short of what we need. What is that need? It is to know what is really happening and what God thinks about it. Which means the church is a key player in news analysis. To know what God says about something, we have to have His Word interpreted and applied. That is the job of the church.

All of this means that currently blogs are some of the best sources for news. I say this for several reasons. First, since the church needs to bring God’s Word to bear on cultural issues, blogs open up portals of contact with some of the most respected and able people in God’s church, who handle God’s Word with accuracy and reverence. Second, blogs are not controlled by the traditional gatekeepers of media. We have access to information regardless of whether the big players think it is relevant or not. Third, big money is often not at play. Blogs can be run by anyone willing to put in the time and effort.

With that said, I want to give a short list of resources for analysis and commentary on news and culture from a biblical worldview.

Albert Mohler : “The Briefing” –

http://www.albertmohler.com/category/the-briefing/

Russell Moore: Ethic and Religious Liberty Commission –

http://erlc.com/

Tim Challies:

http://www.challies.com/

The Gospel Coalition :

http://www.thegospelcoalition.org/channel/current-events

Pastor Douglas Wilson:

http://dougwils.com/category/s7-engaging-the-culture

The Cripplegate :

http://thecripplegate.com/

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