Conspiracy theories often blame Jews for the world’s problems. Jews, Israel, and Zionists are at the root of many of the popular conspiracy theories. I am going to show you some recent examples in this post. I am going to persuade you, especially Messianic believers, to avoid conspiracy theories for the sake of our credibility and for the sake of the name of God.
Conspiracy theories and anti-Jewish sentiment have a long, intertwined history. Perhaps most famously, The Protocols of the Elders of Zion, the handbook and guide for modern Jew-haters, first appeared in early 20th century Russia. In what was later found to be a hoax, the book purports to document a vast Jewish conspiracy to take over the world.
This book contributed to hatred of Jews in Russia and Europe and resulted to the conditions in which the German public of the 1930s readily blamed Jews for Germany’s ills, providing a fertile ground for World War II and the Holocaust.
But this isn’t merely old news; it’s happening today: this week saw 3 instances of anti-Semitic conspiracy theories I’d like to highlight.
Then, I have a word of wisdom I’d like to share with Jesus’ disciples regarding conspiracy theories.
Je suis Charlie, je ne suis pas un Juif
During the recent Charlie Hebdo shootings in France, radical Muslims murdered journalists, cartoonists, and Jews at a kosher grocer.
The popular /r/conspiracy forum buzzed with stories about false flags, cover-ups, "what really happened." Check out the top 5 posts from that day:
Notice anything fishy here? 4 of the top 5 posts blame Jews and Israel.
How can we describe that extreme level of unrighteousness required for this predicament: not only does the Western media discourage us, in the name of Islamophobia, from describing the reality that radical Islam is once again behind an attack on Western values, but that the truth is twisted to an extreme by conspiracy theorists to blame the victims for their own murders.
Yet, according to conspiracy theorists, the Jews are responsible for the attack on a Jewish grocer. We truly live in the age of stupidity and moral cowardice.
Anti-Semitism: A common theme in the wild world of conspiracy theories
If only this were an isolated incident! But with great sadness we observe conspiracy theories routinely blame Jews, Israel, and Zionists (people who love Zion/Jerusalem) for many of the world’s problems.
The ever-popular InfoWars dotcom is filled with anti-Jewish sentiment.
Search that popular conspiracy site for “Zion”, and you'll get these ridiculous, anti-Jewish articles:
- An article about a "Zionist terrorist" in the Obama administration.
- An article about the "corrupt Zionist lobby" purportedly bribing journalists.
- An article detailing the “Zionist Matrix of Power". I would laugh at this ridiculous title if it weren’t so grievous.
- An article claiming the recent Islamic shootings at the Canadian parliament were a “Zionist hoax”
That was from just a single search; a mere scratching the surface of one of the web’s popular conspiracy sites. What will I find if I dig deeper? The imbecilic and ultimately unrighteous hatred of the Jewish people is entangled inseparably throughout the conspiracy theory narrative.
A growing, influential chorus of anti-Semitic conspiracy theories
Maybe you think, “Oh, those conspiracies are held only by fringe nut jobs, we don’t have to pay any attention to them.”
If that’s you, allow me to introduce you to Stephen Sizer, an influential anti-Israel activist and vicar in the Church of England who made headlines today by promoting a conspiracy theory article entitled, “9/11: Israel did it”.
The article gave support to the popular conspiracy theory that Israel was behind the Islamic terror attacks against the United States on September 11th, 2001.
A member of the British Board of Deputies describes these events truthfully:
Jonathan Arkush, Vice President of the Board of Deputies, told Jewish News: “Posting, and giving approval to, an article which in effect accuses Jews of responsibility for the 9/11 atrocity is unquestionably anti-Semitic, just as it is beyond absurd.”
The Church of England is investigating this anti-Semitic vicar; I hope and indeed pray to God that this enemy of Israel and the Jewish people is ousted from his position of influence.
Conspiracy theories exist because people desire secret knowledge
Conspiracy theories are often rooted in anti-Semitism. One of the causes for this phenomenon, I believe, is that conspiracy theorists are eager to believe secret knowledge, and because they are eager to believe, they are a fertile ground for the enemies of the Jewish people. People who are quick to sell you ugly ideas about Jews find easy customers in conspiracy theorists.
And there is not a more juicy, secret-knowledge nugget than,
“You know that peculiar minority group that doesn’t believe like we do? Well, they’re trying to take over the world.”
As followers of the God of Israel, our love of knowledge must not devolve into love of secret knowledge, which is often false knowledge. Our desire for knowledge must be grounded in knowing the Lord firstly, the wisdom found in righteousness, the life of goodness described in the Scriptures. Our love for non-religious knowledge should expand through knowing and understanding nature, the sciences, technology, medicine.
After all, which man is greater in the eyes of God and man: the religious guy babbling on about the JFK cover-up, or the faithful servant of God who practices medicine and saves people’s lives?
Real knowledge – a love of science, medicine, technology – trumps the pseudo-knowledge of conspiracy theories every time. This is what drove the scientific men of faith like Isaac Newton and Michael Faraday. This is what drove the founders of early hospitals, which were founded and staffed by the devout religious who took seriously Jesus’ imperative to feed the needy and care for the sick, as if caring for Messiah himself.
Conspiracy theories are a false religion and suggest a spiritual illness
The conspiracy theory bent is ultimately a spiritual condition.
Conspiracy theories are a kind of faith, a kind of religion: you’re believing without seeing an alternate story of history, kept secret from the broad world, the sheeple are a bunch of know-nothings on the path to destruction, but you are the remnant with the hidden revelation.
You prophesy about upcoming events: next week, there will be a great government false flag. Next month there will be a significant UFO event witnessed by many. (How many of these prophecies have proven false! But it doesn’t matter, since there’s no Torah governing the false prophets of this religion.)
For the conspiracy zealot, Judgment Day will take place when the liars and thieves – i.e. the Government (controlled by Jews), international (Jewish) bankers, Zionists, the Jews, Israel, etc. – will have their crimes on public display and are held accountable by The People with a vengeance.
The Religion of Conspiracy has its own zealots, jihadists whose lives are consumed by conspiracies. The zealots are easy to spot: their everyday speech is peppered by conspiracies.
I recently had lunch with a conspiracy theorist who – during the entire lunch – spoke only of conspiracy theories, as if it’s the single most important topic in the world. Literally, during the hour long lunch we (that is, he) talked about conspiracy theories. I could hardly get a word in. The conversation was memorable to me only because of the extreme foolishness, in which absurd statements, such as “The tower of Babel was a spaceport!”, were passed off as unquestionable fact.
The zealots of the conspiracy religion are offended if you question them with the same scrutiny they question official narratives. They will go on the offense and call you names if you doubt their version of the Truth. When questioning conspiracy theories, I’ve been told, “You’re just blind! You’re choosing to be ignorant!”
The life of a conspiracy zealot is characterized by his conspiracy theories. I know several religious people who are also extreme conspiracy theorists. What is sad is I know them not by their faithfulness to God, not by their good works for God or for men. I know them by their nutty, off-the-wall crazy theories which they’re always talking about.
I’d be embarrassed if any of my secular friends met these conspiracy zealots, because they would bring shame on my faith and on the name of God by their foolishness.
The pseudo-religion of conspiracy theories divines away the reality Islamic evil – in which self-proclaimed enemies of Jews and Christians and Western values maim & murder innocents – and instead blames Islam’s victims, who are usually westerners, Jews, or Christians.
In doing so, the Church of Conspiracy Theories calls evil good, and calls good evil.
I believe there will be a time when God-loving conspiracy theorists will have to choose between their alliance to the God of Israel and their love of conspiracy theories. At that time, I believe we’ll see a great apostasy, as many of these people will follow the delusions to their logical end.
For the faithful lovers of the Lord, our distrust of government, while perhaps rightful, need not devolve into conspiracy theories.
Believing and propagating foolish conspiracy theories hurts our credibility and our message about God and Messiah. (Why would a secular person care to listen to what you have to say about God when you’re babbling on about nonsense how Obama has a secret underground base on Mars?
Disciples of the Jewish Messiah ought to have nothing to do with conspiracy theories and their anti-Semitic baggage.