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Screen Culture, Part 5 – The Surveillance State

August 25, 2019

Central London mural by Banksy, Author ogglog Source (CC BY-SA 2.0 Generic)

This concludes our series on the spiritual implications of today’s computer culture.

In [the novel] ‘1984’ [by George Orwell] the dictatorship was always surveilling you.  Now, young people want to be surveyed.  They want people to know where they are at all times.”

-Supreme Court Justice Anthony Kennedy

Surveillance and State Control

All the information collected is used to influence our choices – whether commercial or political.

But choices that may seem innocuous now can have enormous repercussions down the road.  Jews in Germany did not expect to be persecuted by the Nazis.  Urban residents in Cambodia did not expect to be persecuted by the Khmer Rouge.

Under the guise of democratization, screen culture has actually created a powerful means of centralized control – a mechanism easily subject to abuse, whether by profit-driven corporations, bureaucratic forces, or the military state (including some future dictator).

Future Persecution

The Bible tells us that the Antichrist will be an economic genius, who persecutes the saints and controls the world.  “…he shall honor a god of fortresses; and a god which his fathers did not know he shall honor with gold and silver, with precious stones and pleasant things” (Dan. 11: 38).  “He shall speak pompous words against the Most High, Shall persecute the saints of the Most High…” (Daniel 7:25).

The foundation is already being laid for this to happen.

But God remains in control.  “Fear not, for I am with you; Be not dismayed, for I am your God.  I will strengthen you, Yes, I will help you, I will uphold you with My righteous right hand” (Isa. 41: 10).  In the end, He will triumph.



From → Christian, Religion

  1. We are living in difficult times, Anna. I know that even this comment is going to be stored in some database to possibly be used to categorize you and me. I was thinking about why I like old movies and decided that one of the reasons is there was so much freedom in the middle of the last century. It was so easy to live off the grid. For now, while we’re still able to do so, we must use the grid to evangelize and strengthen followers of Christ. There is coming a day, maybe soon, that only those who agree to certain terms will be able to buy and sell and even get online. I know I sound like Mel Gibson’s character in Conspiracy Theory, but it is coming.

    • I agree w/ you, Bill. I have never been a believer in conspiracy theories. But I have grown more pessimistic over the years. Unfortunately, the times are growing darker. And the Bible tells us there is worse in store. Thankfully, as believers, we know where our help comes from.

  2. Great series Anna!
    George Orwell seemed to have prophetic sight into the future..
    I am not sure if he was a believer, but he was on target..

  3. I’m so glad that God watches over us!

  4. I have thoroughly enjoyed this series Anna! Thank you for taking the time and effort to bring it to us. For your readers who remain unconvinced that “they” are taking notes on each of us, I offer this:
    A few years ago, I was personally involved with a company that began taking efforts to curb the healthcare costs of its employees. Basically, through a series of voluntary healthy activities and education, you received points toward a predetermined requirement.

    Once the point goal was attained, you received a higher level of benefits than those who chose not to participate. It was stated that no personal health information would ever be shared, that the information was for “statistical gathering purposes” only.

    As one who was in a position to know certain information regarding an employee’s medical condition as it pertained to their employment, imagine my great surprise when information gleaned from the ‘voluntary healthy activities and education’ began showing up in places outside of the company’s healthcare program.

    All of this to say that in today’s society, any expectation of privacy is, sadly, a fallacy.

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