When Watchdogs Become Wolves

Written by Jeff Carlson on .

PaparazziIf there is one spiritual principle in play during this year's Presidential election cycle it is the power of the media to corrupt the truth. Simply put, the media and the press are now defining the "truth" and creating reality for most people. They have the ability to make anyone into a sinner or a saint and to get the public to believe just about anything, whether it is true or not. What everyone needs to understand in this hour is that the patterns we are seeing rapidly emerging in our nation have a prophetic fulfillment in the Bible.

Every person makes decisions based on the information they have been given. Whether we fully understand it or not, we usually end up doing what we have been conditioned to do. As an example, if people hear stories that drinking water in plastic bottles causes cancer, people will drink less water in plastic bottles, even if there is no data or research to prove it. In a similar way, when people hear that one candidate is "good" or another candidate is "bad" they vote accordingly. Few people seem to realize that these decisions are often not entirely "free," but have been carefully influenced by others with a hidden agenda. As a result, independent and objective thinking by the public is an increasingly rare phenomenon.
 
Whatever people's views about this year's candidates for President, the media as a whole has been telling America that "Clinton is good and Trump is bad." They do this by ignoring certain issues and focusing on others. Detailed studies of this press bias has demonstrated how the media spends hours reporting stories that are critical of Donald Trump, as compared to just a few minutes of stories critical of Hillary Clinton. Recently, this "Press Fix" has been revealed by the whistle blower group WikiLeaks. WikiLeaks has revealed numerous emails from within the Clinton campaign and other media sources proving they have colluded and conspired with one another without the public's knowledge. This clear and written documentation has demonstrated how members of the press and media have functioned as an unofficial part of the Clinton campaign for President, a clear conflict of interest to the public and a free society.

Now as we look back on the power and purpose of the press, their original goal was to hold the powerful accountable and protect the public. For much of America's history people believed that a free press was indispensable to keeping the nation free. This well-intentioned idea of a free and independent press was and is at the heart of a free democracy. Under such a free press, leaders and officials knew that IF they did something wrong the press would report the stories and they would be held accountable by the justice system or the voters. This lofty and noble ideal led to the growth and development of what we call journalism. Over the last 75 years or so, schools of journalism have grown in size and influence and were seen as the guardians and watchdogs of the Republic. Once again, their goal was to provide objective reporting to protect the public from the abuses of power that other nations had experienced under Communism and dictatorial regimes.

What few people saw coming was how the profession of journalism would be corrupted and turned into a platform for political, social and moral advocacy. In recent years, the once honorable profession of journalism as a whole has essentially come to an end. Few people today would argue that real, objective journalism in America even exists very much anymore. Genuine journalism has been replaced with subtle advocacy and the outright manipulation of the public. Simply put, the watchdogs have turned into the wolves. This transformation of journalism from honest reporting to political activism has set the nation up for a moral and spiritual decline and fall. 

A corrupt press invariably leads to an increasingly corrupt and lawless government. As the 19th century English politician Lord Acton said so well, "power tends to corrupt and absolute power corrupts absolutely." Without the healthy check and balance of a free press, political power will continue to grow in size, scope and corruption. The Bible tells us that this abusive power of the State is ultimately connected to the spirit of antichrist (I John 4:1-3). The Antichrist is able to rise in the world because his power is left unchecked by a media and press that has fallen in love with his agenda. And while you may hear nothing about the Antichrist these days, even in church, it is clear that his arrival is drawing closer as the restraining power of a free press is now being used to support the State, instead of challenging and keeping it accountable.

It is interesting that the Bible actually has a lot more to say about this very subject. The book of Revelation shows us a future glimpse of this dictatorial world government under the leadership of the Antichrist. This government comes into control of the world just prior to the 2nd coming of the Lord Jesus Christ. Surely the media and press at this future time will not be restraining that power, but wholeheartedly supporting it, even though it is thoroughly corrupt and abusive (Revelation 13:4-8). This future media and press won't stop this agenda because they will have helped to create it. Some of this future pattern was already seen in Germany during the 1930's with Hitler and his propaganda machine. Many other modern examples could be given where the media and press were also manipulated by or in partnership with the government. Sadly, some of those same patterns are rapidly emerging in America now and people seem to be largely clueless as to what is happening. Surely America's current press corruption and advocacy for godless values and leadership is not new. There is nothing new under the sun (Ecclesiastes 1:10).

Whatever their issues, neither Hillary Clinton nor Donald Trump is the Antichrist. However, this current election cycle is a sobering reminder that when any society is looking for a strong leader there needs to be checks and balances on their power. IF the press and media fail in their role of checking that power, and instead become advocates for it, you are heading for a crisis. Sadly, our current political turmoil and election chaos will have prophetic fulfillment in the near future. These current issues should serve as a tremendous wakeup call for the Church and every American, whatever our political beliefs.

And finally, the one truth that seems to be willingly suppressed in every election cycle by the press and media is that we need a Savior, first and foremost, not a President. Today's media is not telling us that we are sinners that have broken God's laws. They are not telling us that we will be held accountable by the Lord one day for our sin. They are not telling us that Jesus is a wonderful and amazing Savior like no other. Without the Lord's grace and forgiveness, we will face a terrible judgment for our sin. In that day there won't be Republicans or Democrats, liberals or conservatives. In that day, everyone will simply be sinners in need of a Savior. May America wake up to that truth today and may all of us run to Jesus and find a real Savior and an abundant life now and forever.