Spiritual Warfare in American Media

From Moscow to Hollywood

Ungodly Influences in American Media



Welcome to class three of our Christian Media Class series, Spiritual Warfare in American Media! Our first class was on the history of American media From Printing Press To Television, and our second class was From Hillbillies to Super Heroes.  Tonight, our third and final class is entitled From Moscow To Hollywood, ungodly influences in American Media.


Malachi 4:5-6

Behold, I will send you Elijah the prophet before the coming of the great and dreadful day of the Lord:  And he shall turn the heart of the fathers to the children, and the heart of the children to their fathers, lest I come and smite the earth with a curse.


Here we see the Malachi curse.  God speaks through the prophet Malachi here to describe what the world will be like just before the coming of Jesus Christ.  To better understand what God is saying here we need to know just what the Malachi curse is and how has it affected America? 


Notice here that, while it is obviously speaking of families, it mentions fathers and children but not mothers.  It says that fathers must turn their hearts towards their children of a curse will come upon the land.  To better understand this, we need to see what God taught fathers about His laws in…


Deuteronomy 6:19

And ye shall teach them your children, speaking of them when thou sittest in thine house, and when thou walkest by the way, when thou liest down, and when thou risest up.


God also tells His people how to prosper, and what to avoid, in order to become a godly nation.  The United States of America was set up on such godly principles.  We began with godly leaders who believed the Bible.  We were truly founded as a Christian nation.  However, as the years have passed we have wandered away from the godly foundation we began with and we left the worldview God gave us in…


Deuteronomy 28:1

And it shall come to pass, if thou shalt hearken diligently unto the voice of the Lord thy God, to observe and to do all his commandments which I command thee this day, that the Lord thy God will set thee on high above all nations of the earth: 


From the founding of the English colonies in the 1600’s, for over 300 years, this was the way of nearly all Christian American families.  However, within a short time, things will begin to change. Having been born in a Christian America and having watched and studied the changes of the last 50 years, the answer becomes obvious.  To explain, let’s take a look at American history as it relates to American families. 


From the founding of this country until the beginning of the 20th century, families basically stayed the same.  A good example of this would be the Ingalls, a family that existed in the 1880’s and the subject of a television series called LITTLE HOUSE ON THE PRAIRIE.  Here we see a Christian father and mother who lovingly care for their many children.  Although they started their lives living under conditions that many today might call impoverished, this family had a hearty and happy existence.  Every Sunday, dad would hook up the wagon and the family all spent their day worshipping God together.  The centerpiece of the community they lived in was the church.  They not only took part in religious services here, but this is also where the children went to school during the week.   This assured parents that their children were taught godly values and a Christian worldview.


We still see a very similar picture as over 80 % of American families are still on the farm until World War II.  Here we see families like those featured in THE WALTONS TV series.  We still have the large family based on Christian values but some subtle changes have taken place. 


The family still goes to church on Sundays, but now the father is absent, so the mother must get the children to church.  Daddy Walton no longer considers church attendance important.  This was true of a growing number of American fathers as the love of money and love of self replace the love of God that made so many fathers a shining example to the previous generations of children.


Not only the family but the community has also changed.  The church, where all children were educated and taught right from wrong, has been replaced by the public school.  In a short time after this, the federal government will replace the church and the local community altogether as the institution that decides what our children will be taught in the American education system.


By the early 1960’s, we see a change as most families have now moved to the city and the number of children have dropped to an average of 2.4 per family. An example of families of this generation is the Taylors from TV’s ANDY GRIFFITH SHOW.  However, the Christian father in this family still takes his children to church, as less and less fathers are doing by this point in American history.  From this point in time, the American family quickly degrades into the Bunkers of the seventies.


Here we see a vast change from the godly families of America’s younger days and we see godly fathers replaced with bigots and respectful children replaced with rebels. The moral slide of the family structure does not stop here either, but becomes more and more like that of the Osbournes of the 21st century.  Here we see the sad but true picture of the 21st century family in America and must ask the question, “What has caused this radical change?”


Those who lead our government have also noticed this moral shift in the American family.  One who has become extremely concerned is former head of the National Department of Education William Bennett.  His words follow.


"In 1940 teachers were surveyed. They were asked 'What are the most serious problems in the schools?', and teachers told us, in their own words, that the most serious problems were talking in the halls, running, chewing gum, and making noise against lockers.  In 1990 teachers were asked, 'What are the most serious problems in American schools?", and they said alcoholism, assault, rape, robbery, drugs, and teenage pregnancy.  That is cultural decline."


Proverbs 29:2

When the righteous are in authority, the people rejoice: but when the wicked beareth rule, the people mourn.


The spiritual state of a nation is determined by those who are chosen to lead it.  Early Americans like George Washington and Abraham Lincoln set this country on a godly path.  I never think of this time without remembering how that President Abraham Lincoln, like many other believers of that time, came to the conclusion that the Civil War was not so much a war freeing the southern slaves as it was indeed a judgment from God exacted on our nation for allowing this horrendous practice to continue for such a long time in the land of the free and the home of the brave.


"It is the duty of all nations, as well as of men, to own their dependence upon the overruling power of God and to recognize the sublime truth announced in the Holy Scriptures and proven by all history, that those nations only are blessed whose God is the Lord."


However, as time marched on, these godly leaders were replaced with ungodly men who did not believe the truths of God’s word. One of the deadliest of the doctrines that changed us from the Christian nation we once were was called evolution. 


At about the time that we were finally dealing with the slavery issue in America, the concept of evolution was created by an Englishman by the name of Charles Darwin. This unbeliever rejected God as Creator and believed that man had evolved from monkeys.  He wrote a book entitled, THE ORIGIN OF SPECIES BY MEANS OF NATURAL SELECTION, OR THE PRESERVATION OF FAVOURED RACES IN THE STRUGGLE FOR LIFE.  This publication of this book came at a time when Europe was already headed down an ungodly path and this concept quickly took Europe by storm. 


As we studied earlier, this ungodly worldview was quickly accepted by German philosopher Friedrich Nietzche who would ultimately declare “God is dead!”  One of Nietzche’s disciples, Adolph Hitler believed that the German people were Darwin’s “favoured race”.  He would take evolution and apply it to world politics ending with millions dead during World War II.


Another German by the name of Karl Marx would also buy into the evolution theory.  He began by studying to be a priest in the Eastern Orthodox Church but would reject God when he learned of Darwin’s teachings.  This unbeliever rejected the law of God and replaced it with the law of the jungle. During the chaos of World War I, Communism would overrun the nation of Russia and the world has suffered for it ever since.


At the beginning of the 20th century this political party had been founded in America. In 1915, the Communist Party U.S.A. was formed.  In 1920, an American by the name of Roger Baldwin, working with the CPUSA. formed the American Civil Liberties Union.  This World War I draft dodger was used by the CPUSA to set up the ACLU to change the political landscape in America and firmly plant the Communist ideology in America.


A central theme of the Christian American worldview has always been that God created the universe as described in Genesis 1.  The basic premise of Communism is godless evolution.  Therefore the first step for Communism to be accepted in America was to destroy the godly roots of the American education system and replace Godly creation with godless evolution in the public schools.


To do this, the CPUSA had the ACLU put ads in newspapers around America looking for teachers who would be willing to teach evolution in public schools in violation of American law.  They found a willing accomplice in a young teacher by the name of John Scopes.  When Scopes was arrested in Dayton, Tennessee in 1925, the Scopes Monkey Trial became the trial of the century.


Because the judge and jury had grown up in the schools of a Christian America, they found the teaching of evolution illegal.  However, belief in the Bible and God as Creator was ridiculed by the ACLU and the American media shamed the American Church for having such uneducated beliefs. William Jennings Bryan who was one of the prosecutors in this case, saw what was beginning to happen to our country as he states below.


“The tendency of Darwinianism, although unsupported by any substantial fact in nature, since no species has been shown to come from any other species, is to destroy faith in a personal God, faith in the Bible as an inspired Book, and faith in Christ as Son and Saviour.”

It was the rich American media moguls of the early twentieth century, who had been educated in the ungodly schools of Europe, who had ridiculed God, the Creator.  Before the decade is out, judgment falls on those in America who loved money more than God.  This first major judgment against America in the 20th century became known as the Great Depression. Many of the richest in America howled as the God of Creation made Himself known to them.  As King David said,…


Psalms 9:17

The wicked shall be turned into hell, and all the nations that forget God. 


Removing God as Creator from American public schools brought judgment on our nation.  It also was the first successful attempt by the ACLU to change the American school system.  For 40 years they continued their ungodly campaign until in 1963, the Bible was removed from our schools.  The U.S. Supreme Court, at the behest of the ACLU, removed the word of God from our children’s education altogether.


Remember earlier, when we discussed what caused the difference between the godly families like the Ingalls, the Waltons and the Taylors that led us up to the beginning of the 1960’s and in the 1970’s when the Bunkers and the Osbournes that represent so many American families today began to become the norm?  I truly believe that the decision by our government to take the Bible out of the public schools in 1963 is the event that began this process.   


In 1925, the government siding with the godly view that we were created, not evolved.  However, now our government has taken the opposite stand.  Because of this ungodly decision, God’s second judgment on 20th Century America is directed against our government.  Before the year is out, American President John F. Kennedy is assassinated and we have been on a long moral slide ever since.


The godly hedge protecting this nation is now dropped and an ungodly media is instrumental in introducing the evils of illegal drugs and Rock & Roll to the American public in a big way.  The first wave in this assault comes in 1964, when four young men named John, Paul, George and Ringo step off a plane from England.  The Beatles take the American youth, still staggering from the death of their president, by storm.  As lead singer John Lennon would later say…


"Christianity will go. It will vanish and shrink. We're more popular than Jesus now."


Within the decade, our government, again under the direction of the ACLU, actually legalizes the killing of unborn babies by their mothers in a medical procedure called abortion.  How quickly we turn away from the godly principles God laid out to us in His word, once this word is taken away as the centerpiece of the education of American youth.  In half a century, our nation has totally reversed itself from the Christian position laid out by William Jennings Bryan in 1923…


“Children are a part of God’s plan.  They come into the world without their own volition, and every child has as much right to all the advantages which life can give as has your child or mine.”


Needless to say, this wickedness is quickly followed by God’s judgment.  God’s third judgment on 20th Century America is also directed against our government. President Richard Nixon is the Chief Executive that allowed the decision to kill America’s babies to go unchallenged.  Within a matter of months, he becomes the first American president in history to have to resign his office and leave the White House in shame when his evil deeds become known. 


America’s moral slide continues, mostly unabated, throughout the end of the 20th century.  Things become so corrupt that, on September 11, 2001, God passes His first judgment 21st century judgment on America.  He lowers the hedge again and this time Islamic terrorists launch a Pearl Harbor style attack on American soil.  For a while, the nation seems to turn back to God, but this situation is short-lived.  Within a short time, the moral slide returns and even worsens.  The American government removes the Ten Commandments from the public square, and impeaches and removes a judge for daring to believe the law of God should be the law of the land!


God’s 2nd  judgment on 21st Century America’s government and people for turning away from Him comes in 2005 with a series of hurricanes; Katrina, Ophelia and Rita, which rip across the southeastern United States.  What will our 3rd judgment be?  What will happen if we don’t?  What can we do to help stem this evil tide and turn American back to God?


Luke 21:26-28

And when these things begin to come to pass, then look up, and lift up your heads; for your redemption draweth nigh.


As you have just seen, there are many things we can do to help turn America back to God.  In fact, this movement has already begun.  If you remember, the name of this class is SPIRITUAL WARFARE IN AMERICAN MEDIA.  While Christians have using print media for godly purposes since the founding of America, a revival in Christian media, both print and electronic, began 20 years ago. 


In 1986, Christian author Frank Peretti wrote a novel entitled THIS PRESENT DARKNESS.  It outlined in detail what was happening in small towns across our nation and showed how God was using a godly remnant to battle this growing darkness around us.  The success of this book caused a revival in Christian fiction. 


In 1995, Pastor Tim LaHaye and author Jerry Jenkins joined forces to created the LEFT BEHIND book series.  This series would run for 10 years and created a great awakening within the Christian community about the return of Jesus and how we need to tell others about Christ else they be left behind.  While the print media has always been powerful, the electronic media has been so much more so, as so many more people watch movies than read books.  


It was during this time that I myself became involved in this media revival.  Over the next decade, I would direct and produced several television programs in Nashville, Tennessee.  We began APOCALYPSE PRODUCTIONS with 1 30-minute show in the late 1980’s and before we were done, we were producing over 22 hours a week of Christian television programming.


In the process of producing these programs, I had the pleasure of making contact with Peter and Paul Lalonde, who were producing Christian programs in Canada.  They produced several different shows that we used over the years.  Peter and Paul formed CLOUD TEN PICTURES and in 2000 produced the first LEFT BEHIND movie. Through this movie, God shows us all that He will take His children out of this world one day soon.  As Peter Lalonde puts it…


"In the ’70s and ’80s, before the days of VHS, 16-millimeter church film nights were one of the greatest ways that churches could introduce non-believers to their church.  We want to revive that outreach."


In 2001, another blockbuster film comes out called THE LORD OF THE RINGS-FELLOWSHIP OF THE RING.  This story was originally written by a British Christian by the name of J.R.R. Tolkien.  Tolkien was deeply concerned about the ungodly media in England in the 1960’s.  He wrote the book series, THE LORD OF THE RINGS, in an effort to draw young people away from the ungodly influence of witchcraft in his country. 


The success of these two Christian movies seems to have opened the media floodgates.  In 2002, LEFT BEHIND-TRIBULATION FORCE, a movie that God uses to show us that He has people who are battling evil in the Last Days, is released.  In 2003, THE LORD OF THE RINGS-THE TWO TOWERS becomes a smash hit, where God shows us that His people can conquer evil regardless of the odds against us.  These movies pale besides the next Christian blockbuster. 


The year 2004 sees the pre-Easter release of THE PASSION OF THE CHRIST, most likely the most powerful Christian movie released in history.  Through this movie, God shows us that He conquered evil through the sacrifice of His Son. Who would ever have thought that any movie made in dead languages would make over $370 million gross profit? Concerning this movie, Mel Gibson says,


"I want to show the humanity of Christ as well as the divine aspect. It's a rendering that for me is very realistic and as close as possible to what I perceive the truth to be."


2004 also sees the release later that year of THE LORD OF THE RINGS-THE RETURN OF THE KING.   Through THE PASSION God shows the world how Jesus first came to earth as a sacrificial lamb.  In THE RETURN, God shows us that His Son will return as King of kings one day.


2005 is another year that is filled with Christian movies galore.  In LEFT BEHIND-WORLD AT WAR, God shows us that wars and pestilences are a sign of His soon return.  It also shows how God will preserve His people during these times.  THE LION, THE WITCH AND THE WARDROBE was a story originally written by C.S. Lewis, a English writer and friend of J.R.R. Tolkien who shared his concerns about ungodliness in his day.  In this story, God shows us that, with the faith of a child, we are all able to defeat all manners of evil and all the hosts of Satan. 


Peter and Paul Lalonde’s CLOUD TEN PICTURES have now launched the Church Cinema Chain project.  This project brings Christian movies into churches to help boost church membership.  Just as they did with their first LEFT BEHIND movie, Peter has realized the potential of bringing godly media back into the heart of our nation to help turn our nation back to God.  This is only one of many ways we can use Christian media to wage the battle of spiritual warfare in America.


This battle is not over, not by a long shot!  It will continue as long as there is breath in the body of any true believer.  However, it will not go on forever.  It will end for us on that glorious day, described so well in the wonderful LEFT BEHIND series, but even more so by Saint Matthew in…


Matthew 24:27

For as the lightning cometh out of the east, and shineth even unto the west; so shall also the coming of the Son of man be.