• Will Stockdale

Headlines and the Word

What takes priority in shaping our thoughts about the world?


“And he is before all things, and in him all things hold together.” (Colossians 1:18)


Don’t let the headlines distract you from what God is doing.


There is a well worn quote attributed to famed 20th century Swiss theologian Karl Barth that goes, “Take your Bible and take your newspaper, and read both. But interpret newspapers from your Bible.” These words encourage Christians to let “the faith that was once for all delivered to the saints” (Jude 3) inform the reading and understanding of current events.


However, it is often the case that we reverse that process of informing. Rather than reading the daily news through the lens of Scripture, we read Scripture through the lens of the daily news. That is, we surrender the primacy of God’s revealed will over to the world of our experience.


Or, to put it another way, we allow our human reasoning to trump God’s revelation.


The verse for this devotional, “And he is before all things, and in him all things hold together” points to the preeminence of Christ.


Before ascending to the Father, before the Incarnation, and even before creation, Jesus dwelt with the Father and the Holy Spirit in perfect, Trinitarian communion. It was out of that relationship that the Father, through the Word, created the world in which we live. And it was from that relationship that the plan of redemption was enacted for His sons and daughters. Evenstill today, the Son is the reason this world holds together still. God is at work. And we know what that work is through hearing his word.


It is easy to get distracted by the headlines. It is easy to get discouraged by creation rebelling against its Creator. Whether the recorded instances of sin come from the public domain, or from the pews. But, they are not the end of the story.


The story is that God’s perfect plan is still at work. He is still rescuing His people, and reconciling his creation. That was His plan before anything came to be, and nothing in the here and now will change that.




Will Stockdale is a Ministry Associate in Washington, D.C. and co-host of The Will & Rob Show.