When you watch the news on television, open the newspaper or Facebook or whatever news or social media you choose to read, you are bombarded with bad news, terror and bloodshed. Have you ever considered what the purpose and effect of this is on us if we are exposed to this all the time? I can tell you what it does to me, it creates fear, anxiety and depression in me; it discourages me and undermines my faith, it makes life seem not worth living. It takes much effort to pull myself out of this state of fear and despair and continue life with joy. I have to constantly remind myself that YHVH is in control and that we are to trust in Him.
Some people will be judgmental and say I feel this way because my faith is not strong enough. They may be right, I may not be the next Abraham, my faith is some days stronger than others. I am just a normal person like everybody else. So, if all this has this effect on me, it might have the same effect on other people and this is the reason for writing this. I am sick and tired of being controlled like this. This has to change!
Controlling the masses
Without knowing it, we subject ourselves to this form of mind control every day when we hear and see what is offered through the mainstream media. Case in point, Hamas has gained the sympathy of the world through media manipulation. The worse part is nobody cares now that it has been exposed, because the perception has been created. The fact that they used actors, scenes from films and Photoshop to manipulate the media is ignored by this same media and the people who are controlled by it. They have achieved their goal. Public opinion has been influenced and hate has been incited against Israel.
Modern media have made it possible for us to be “involved” in multiple wars, while at the same time know of every brutal murder, robbery or shooting that has taken place and in every graphic detail. We also know of all the natural disasters and the devastation they leave behind. The question is, do we really have to know so much detail? I don’t understand why it is necessary for people to share photo’s of beheadings and other forms of bloodshed. What purpose does it serve? What is the agenda behind this? The other question is: how much of this is really true and how much is manipulated?
I am not saying that we are to switch it all off and live an uninformed life, but we have to have some boundaries, balance and discernment. We are to take control of our minds, because I do believe that we are being manipulated by the media and we allow it willingly.
Let’s start off with a definition of mind control:
Mind control (also known as brainwashing, coercive persuasion, thought control, or thought reform) is a theoretical indoctrination process which results in “an impairment of autonomy, an inability to think independently, and a disruption of beliefs and affiliations. In this context, brainwashing refers to the involuntary reeducation of basic beliefs and values“. The term has been applied to any tactic, psychological or otherwise, which can be seen as subverting an individual’s sense of control over their own thinking, behavior, emotions or decision making.2
When you read this definition and consider it in the context of modern media, you will be able to make the connection. We are being, systematically, re-educated by what we read and see. Have you ever contemplated the impact this has on us? Just consider how widespread depression is. Suicides, drug and alcohol addiction are on the rise. This is often blamed on how stressful our lives have become, but I wonder how much of this is caused by that which we are confronted with on a daily basis.
You would be surprised to know that the Bible also warns us about this.
A pupil will be like his teacher
I believe we become what we put into ourselves. We become like our teacher, the question is who do we choose to teach us and what do they teach us?
40 â€œA pupil is not above his teacher; but everyone, after he has been fully trained, will be like his teacher.
If we choose to spend our time reading about everything that is wrong in the world, that is our teacher and we will be influenced by that. We will become depressed, discouraged and negative. We are being programmed to be like this.
Renewing of the mind
Scripture also teaches that we are to renew our mind.
2 And do not be conformed to this world, but be transformed by the renewing of your mind, so that you may prove what the will of Elohim is, that which is good and acceptable and perfect.
The Greek word for conformed is defined as follows:
5372 ÏƒÏ…ÏƒÏ‡Î·Î¼Î±Ï„Î¯Î¶Î¿Î¼Î±Î¹ (syschÄ“matizomai), ÏƒÏ…ÏƒÏ‡Î·Î¼Î±Ï„Î¯Î¶Ï‰ (syschÄ“matizÅ): vb.; â‰¡ Str 4964â€”LN 41.29 shape oneâ€™s behavior; (dep.) be conformed to a pattern or mold (Ro 12:2; 1Pe 1:14+)3
Paul is speaking about our minds here. Our minds are not to be shaped according to the world, but transformed, changed by a process of renewing. The question is what do we renew our minds with? What is our input? Is it YHVH’s Word that has the power to strengthen our faith, or is it whatever we find in the media or the internet. We will be changed by that which we see and read and hear.
We will be most affected by that which touches our emotions. We will remember a sad, funny or scary story better than a factual article. The media knows that and uses that. Fear is in most cases, what is used to control people.
Fear is power to the enemy
You probably know that when we fear, we give power to the enemy. The physical and/or the spiritual enemy. Do you know that the ISIS terrorists take pictures of what they do to extend their power base which is based on fear. When you re-post their pictures and articles about them, you help them gain more power. They need the publicity to perpetuate their reign of terror and you are aiding them.
It is the same spiritually, when we fear, we give power to Satan. His kingdom and power base is also extended when we fear him or what he can do to us. That is why YHVH instructed us not to fear. The phrase “do not fear” and “fear not” is used many times in the Bible in this context. Not 365 times like a popular teaching states, but lots of times. Enough for us to get the message anyway.
10 â€˜Do not fear, for I am with you; Do not anxiously look about you, for I am your Elohim. I will strengthen you, surely I will help you, Surely I will uphold you with My righteous right hand.â€™
We are not to fear, because first of all fear is paralyzing.
Fear is paralyzing
In Scripture, we read when people fear their hands become feeble, their hearts melt, their spirit faint and their knees become as water. Here are two verses describing this. The context here is not fear of the enemy, but fear of YHVH’s judgment, but it does explain very well what happens when we fear.
7 Therefore all hands will fall limp, And every manâ€™s heart will melt.
7 â€œAnd when they say to you, â€˜Why do you groan?â€™ you shall say, â€˜Because of the news that is coming; and every heart will melt, all hands will be feeble, every spirit will faint and all knees will be weak as water. Behold, it comes and it will happen,â€™ declares YHVH Elohim.â€
A soldier who has to fight will not be able to in this state, it is the same with us spiritually. When we fear, we can not fight and we have to, even if it is just our lack of faith we have to fight. However, when we are paralyzed because of fear, we usually don’t or can’t do anything. What are we to do about this?
Here is a very profound reference regarding this.
14 Sinners in Zion are terrified;
Trembling has seized the godless.
â€œWho among us can live with the consuming fire?
Who among us can live with continual burning?â€
15 He who walks righteously and speaks with sincerity,
He who rejects unjust gain And shakes his hands so that they hold no bribe;
He who stops his ears from hearing about bloodshed
And shuts his eyes from looking upon evil;
16 He will dwell on the heights,
His refuge will be the impregnable rock;
His bread will be given him,
His water will be sure.
17 Your eyes will see the King in His beauty;
They will behold a far-distant land.
We are to stop our ears from hearing about bloodshed and shut our eyes from looking upon evil. That basically rules out all the mainstream media propaganda. Who has to take action here? Us, it is our choice…
Here is our filter:
8 Finally, brethren, whatever is true, whatever is honorable, whatever is right, whatever is pure, whatever is lovely, whatever is of good repute, if there is any excellence and if anything worthy of praise, dwell on these things.
This verse is preceded with this:
4 Rejoice in YHVH always; again I will say, rejoice! 5 Let your gentle spirit be known to all men. YHVH is near. 6 Be anxious for nothing, but in everything by prayer and supplication with thanksgiving let your requests be made known to Elohim. 7 And the peace of Elohim, which surpasses all comprehension, will guard your hearts and your minds in Messiah Y’shua.
This is great instruction! There is more…
More importantly, we are to fear YHVH only. We are to study His Word and obey Him. When we fear other things and people we practice idolatry, for fear is all-consuming and it takes us away from YHVH. Our object of fear becomes more important that anything else.
12 â€œYou are not to say, â€˜It is a conspiracy!â€™ In regard to all that this people call a conspiracy, And you are not to fear what they fear or be in dread of it. 13 â€œIt is YHVH of hosts whom you should regard as holy. And He shall be your fear, And He shall be your dread. 14 â€œThen He shall become a sanctuary; But to both the houses of Israel, a stone to strike and a rock to stumble over, And a snare and a trap for the inhabitants of Jerusalem.
YHVH, our sanctuary
Have you noticed in the previous verse that when we fear YHVH, He will become a sanctuary. A sanctuary is a holy place, a refuge and protection.
16 â€œTherefore say, â€˜Thus says YHVH Elohim, â€œThough I had removed them far away among the nations and though I had scattered them among the countries, yet I was a sanctuary for them a little while in the countries where they had gone.â€ â€™
When we look the word “miqdas” up in the Lexicon, we find that it means holy place or sanctuary, but also that it could mean “asylum”
Full Definition of ASYLUM
1:Â an inviolable place of refuge and protection, giving shelter to criminals and debtors: sanctuary
2:Â a place of retreat and security: shelter
3a: Â the protection or inviolability afforded by an asylum: refuge5
When you look at the cross references for “sanctuary” in this context, you find the following two verses and when you understand the word asylum, you understand why these are the cross references..
6 There will be a shelter to give shade from the heat by day, and refuge and protection from the storm and the rain.
4 For You have been a defense for the helpless, A defense for the needy in his distress, A refuge from the storm, a shade from the heat; For the breath of the ruthless Is like a rain storm against a wall. 5 Like heat in drought, You subdue the uproar of aliens; Like heat by the shadow of a cloud, the song of the ruthless is silenced.
When we fear YHVH, He becomes our refuge, our protection against anything that may come our way. Is this not enough motivation for us to start making different choices? It is to me…
Knowing that we are being manipulated by the mainstream media, and what the effect of this is on us, it should be clear what we can do about this.
We are to fear YHVH only and obey Him. We are to renew our minds with His Word and be anxious for nothing, but in everything by prayer and supplication with thanksgiving let our requests be made known to YHVH. He will not only help us, if it is His will, but will also give us peace. This is logical for any believer.
We are to control what we expose ourselves to; stop our ears from hearing about bloodshedÂ and shut our eyes from looking upon evil. Not only will we stop the mind control, but we will also not be spreading propaganda.
May this bless you and may the peace of Elohim, which surpasses all comprehension, guard your hearts and your minds in Messiah Y’shua.
- All quoted passages are from the New American Standard Bible: 1995 Update. LaHabra, CA: The Lockman Foundation, 1995. We have substituted YHVH for LORD, and Yâ€™shua for Jesus.
- Swanson, J. (1997). Dictionary of Biblical Languages with Semantic Domains: Greek (New Testament). Oak Harbor: Logos Research Systems, Inc.
- Gesenius, W., & Tregelles, S. P. (2003). Geseniusâ€™ Hebrew and Chaldee lexicon to the Old Testament Scriptures. Bellingham, WA: Logos Bible Software.