Hope versus Hoaxes

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I love Jurgen Moltmann and I love this quote from him.

The reason I post this quote tonight is because I just read a blog post that made me think of it. You should go to “Reason for Change” (a blog I haven’t read before but will start reading, if for no other reason than its wonderful tag line, “theology isn’t science; it’s art”) and read Jayson Bradley’s wonderful post “4 Reasons Christians Need to Quit Sharing Hoaxes.” Bradley does a great job of pointing out some reasons that many Evangelical Christians need to stop acting like idiots and posting ludicrous hoax posts on the web and especially their social media sites. For example, the Pastor Jeremiah Steepek hoax that is going around right now. It didn’t happen. It would have been great if it had been presented as a parable. Instead it was presented as a fact and that makes it a lie since it didn’t really happen. Really all you have to do is do a quick search on Google and you can quickly determine what posts are hoaxes. In my example a quick Google reveals that Pastor Jeremiah Steepek doesn’t exist anywhere else on the web except for pages telling this same story. That’s a pretty good sign it is fake but snopes it honest enough to call it undetermined as of right now. If it is undetermined then perhaps you shouldn’t post it until you can figure out if it is real or not. It doesn’t take a research specialist to figure this stuff out. Snopes people. Just go to snopes. If it isn’t important enough for you to do some research on the subject then it isn’t important enough for you to post about it.

Anyhow, Bradley’s second reason Christians shouldn’t post about hoxes is that “they spread fear.” He has this wonderful paragraph explaining what he means.

The Christian message to the world isn’t, “Hey, look how bad things are!” It’s “take heart, He has overcome the world!” We don’t have to share every sensational and scary story—especially when their truth is suspect.

That paragraph was what pointed me back to the Moltmann quote. The good news of Jesus Christ is centered on hope not fear. Hope is the tool of God. Fear is the tool of those who cling to this present age. Hope transforms and resurrects. Fear destroys and inhibits. Hope creates. Fear terminates. Jesus calls His followers to operate out of His hope not out of fear. So why are many Evangelicals spreading hoaxes of fear? Doesn’t seems like a good way to live out our faith in the One Who brings hope to the hopeless.

So come on people. Don’t be stupid. Google these things before you post them.

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