What’s wrong with conspiracy theories

They’re thriving at the moment! Some are ludicrous and some have a greater sense of plausibility. We need to be “wise as serpents” and know what’s going on (or may be going on.) Don’t we?

Here’s the problem: conspiracy theories neatly divide the world in two. Too neatly. There’s the baddies (WHO, Bill Gates, left-wing politicians and governments generally) and then there’s the goodies, which by definition means us. The naive victims.

But reality is not so neat. The one powerful lesson of Covid-19 infection is that we are all potential victims and at the same time potential perpetrators. The enemy is not “them”, as Paul reminds us, but spiritual forces of wickedness. Of course those forces work through human agency. Because we are all proud, threatened, defensive people, we have the potential to partner with demons of fear, greed, domination, murder. All of us.

So the problem is not that there is no conspiracy, but that there are millions of them. Billions. It’s called politics. Where two or three are gathered – there is a conspiracy. Some conspiracies are genuinely for good. Some are misguided. Some are self-serving. And some are downright evil. But mostly they are just people doing what seems best to them.

This is a unique moment in human history. Never before has humanity faced an economic crisis of this magnitude together. Sure we have different views on how to tackle it. Sure we are looking for someone to blame, and sure some stinking partnerships with demons have come to light. But the enemy is not them.

The great news is that we are not alone in this battle. God so loved the world. The whole world. Including them. His heart aches for every person not living in the peace of the kingdom. There is a divine restlessness driven by compassion until the kingdom comes in fulness.

And the second part of the good news is that through Jesus I am free. I no longer need to partner with my fears and the drive to self-preservation or greed. I actually can be a bigger person, even in the midst of the crisis.

So let’s position ourselves as part of the solution. Let’s pray with the compassion of heaven. Let’s stand fiercely in the freedom that has been bought for us.

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