“My dog ate my homework”. It could be an excuse-maybe the dog really did eat the homework. More likely, it could be a lie. An amusing lie, but a lie nonetheless. But there is nothing amusing when people who wield power to wreck entire economies, ruin lives, and violate basic liberties exploit a situation to do exactly that, and then claim that they had no idea, and could not have known better given the information that they acted upon. Furthermore, it is unfortunate to see so many agreeing, and who were honestly but inexcusably caught up in the widespread hype, misinformation, and disinformation.
It is difficult to draw sharp lines, but people fall roughly into four categories. First, those who knew exactly what was going on and exploited it for personal or political gain. Second, those who stood to gain and therefore unquestioningly went along for the ride. Third, the largest category, those who failed to see the situation for what it was and were swept up in it, and fourth, the few who discerned what was happening from the beginning and attempted to sound the alarm to deaf ears.
The powerful force that carries things like this along is often referred to as “the zeitgeist: “the defining spirit or mood of a particular period of history as shown by the ideas or beliefs of the time”. The zeitgeist operates in a broader cultural sense but was very stark and real in the panic-ridden Covid-19 rollout. It is absolutely crucial to grasp the sharp contrast between this and the scriptural admonition given us through the Apostle Paul in Romans 12:2: “And be not conformed to this world: but be ye transformed by the renewing of your mind, that ye may prove what [is] that good, and acceptable, and perfect, will of God.” Let’s use the Covid-19 debacle as a case study of how this crucial instruction should have affected the situation, and how it must begin to affect our thinking moving forward if the advances of Christianity are to be solidified, preserved, and built upon.
“We had no way of knowing”. Really? In March, when White House coronavirus task force coordinator Dr. Deborah Birx announced that a “scientific” “model” that had driven much of the rapidly accelerating shutdown policies was off by a factor of 25:1, alarm bells should have rung loudly. Sadly the announcement raised some chuckles, at best, from most, and some bewilderment from some others, and a “yeah, no kidding” from the unfortunately few people who understood what was going on. A more solid confirmation of the power of the zeitgeist can hardly be imagined than the passing of this bit of information with hardly a whimper. Nor can one imagine better evidence of the non-application of Romans 12:2 in the church, which pretty much maintained its full cooperation with the scam. “We had no way of knowing”…really??
The frustrating…or maddening…aspect of “we had no way of knowing” is the utter refusal of those who “had no way of knowing” to ask those who clearly knew and shouted to deaf ears from the beginning that the whole Covid-19 scenario was being propagandized and played for destructive power by the many interests involved. Would it not be an honest response to ask “how did I miss this”? Instead, those who “had no way of knowing” scoff at those who knew, and make accusations like “recklessness” or “guessing”. But what if those who saw the scam from the outset did so simply because they looked at it with renewed minds? And what if people who fail to renew their minds not only miss the bus from the beginning, but are subsequently unable even to comprehend that they missed the bus?
Minds attuned to the zeitgeist (“conformed to this world” Ro.12:2) are battered and assaulted with a constant media onslaught citing the WHO, CDC, NIH, and big-power agencies and establishments and say “it must be true”. Renewed minds hear the same thing and say “these people are generally anti-Christian so they are likely lying or at best distorting; that’s what anti-Christ does”. People who are “conformed to this world” hear manipulated statistics in panicked reports and are themselves panicked; people with renewed minds are like the Bereans (Acts 17:10,11)), put the numbers in perspective, and understand that they are bin g manipulated.
Loud alarm bells sounded in renewed minds upon hearing panicked news reports about 2000 dead in China, in a province with a population of 58 million in a country of 1.4 billion. Those in tune with the zeitgeist heard panicked reports from those who they should have recognized as liars, and donned their masks. This repeated over and over as the propagandists easily steamrolled the population with their context-less numbers. People with renewed minds were able to recall the same stories of certain doom from the same propagandists over Zika, West Nile Virus, Sars, Swine Flu, ozone holes, acid rain, global cooling, and global warming, and understand the situation in perspective. Those conformed to the world closed their churches.
As to state governors, multi-billion dollar federal agencies, the President of the United States, and other players having had “no way to know”, can we please dispense of such ridiculous nonsense immediately?
It’s interesting to note that those swept up in the virus panic seem, generally, not to notice the true danger presented by the power grabs that have taken place. Basic liberties, including the very institution of representative government, have been smashed and few seem to notice or care. Zeitgeist. It’s time for the Church to act as the Church and address this. Another round is winding up and the attack on our Christian heritage and liberty will not stop until it is either defeated or it entirely destroys Christian civilization for generations. The choice is ours. Strong bodies come from exercise, not sitting around waiting for strength. Likewise, strong renewed minds come from exercise…the WORK of THIKING biblically about the world around us, and to an even greater extent, WORKING to implement Godly ideas in culture and government. Let’s get to it.
– Jim Mogel
 Oxford Languages
 thehill.com March 26, 2020