Friday, January 29, 2016

Is Winning More Important Than Truth?

Is truth telling more important than winning?

"He who speaks truth tells what is right, But a false witness, deceit. There is one who speaks rashly like the thrusts of a sword, But the tongue of the wise brings healing. Truthful lips will be established forever, But a lying tongue is only for a moment. Deceit is in the heart of those who devise evil, But counselors of peace have joy."  Proverbs 12:17-20

"Therefore Pilate said to Him, "So You are a king?" Jesus answered, "You say correctly that I am a king. For this I have been born, and for this I have come into the world, to testify to the truth. Everyone who is of the truth hears My voice." Pilate *said to Him, "What is truth?" And when he had said this, he went out again to the Jews and *said to them, "I find no guilt in Him."  John 18:37-38

"Pilate also wrote an inscription and put it on the cross. It was written, "JESUS THE NAZARENE, THE KING OF THE JEWS." Therefore many of the Jews read this inscription, for the place where Jesus was crucified was near the city; and it was written in Hebrew, Latin and in Greek. So the chief priests of the Jews were saying to Pilate, "Do not write, 'The King of the Jews'; but that He said, 'I am King of the Jews.'" Pilate answered, "What I have written I have written.""  John 19:19-22

"As a result, we are no longer to be children, tossed here and there by waves and carried about by every wind of doctrine, by the trickery of men, by craftiness in deceitful scheming; but speaking the truth in love, we are to grow up in all aspects into Him who is the head, even Christ,"  Ephesians 4:14-15

I.  It is important that we care about the truth of things in an age given to denial that there is any TRUE TRUTH.   This is the most important battle for the soul of our culture. 

II.  Our politics is filled with propaganda from every side.  This is because many people put winning over telling the truth. 

Propaganda is information, especially of a biased or misleading nature, used to promote or publicize a particular political cause or point of view:

Seven Methods of Propaganda[1]

“Name Calling
Using negative or discriminatory words, propagandists arouse suspicion and prejudice. The goal is to create an overall dislike of a group of people, so verbally attacking their beliefs, institutions, leaders or religion is fair game. Name calling is often used in ridiculing cartoons or writing.

Glittering Generalities
Using slogans or simple catchphrases, propagandists make generalized statements attractive to their audience. Usually these statements involve ideas of love, honor, glory, peace, family values, freedom, patriotism--anything general enough to inspire pride. These statements usually say very little, so they cannot be proved or disproved.

A transfer associates a revered symbol with an idea the propagandist wants to promote. If an idea can be linked with, say, a flag, it has a greater chance of winning popular approval. The stir of emotions makes it difficult for people to clear their minds and think critically.

A testimonial makes an association between a respected or authoritative person and the cause. The hope is that the respected person will lead others to follow his ideas. It is similar to a celebrity endorsement of a product.

Plain Folks
The goal of this technique is to convince the audience that the spokesman is like them and shares their woes and concerns. Using plain language and mannerisms, he is able to build trust by his followers.

This technique capitalizes on the human drive to be part of a crowd, a member of the winning team. By creating the illusion that widespread support exists, the propagandist hopes those who are on the fence will join the cause. If they refuse, this technique seeks to make them feel isolated.

Card Stacking
By using only those facts that support their ideas, propagandists can make it seem that their way is the only correct way. The aim of card stacking is for the audience to assume these facts are conclusive. By "stacking cards against the truth," propagandists can control the beliefs of their audience.”

III. How de we stand for truth in a deceptive age?

A.  Check facts, especially when information comes to you that gives support to a cause you believe in.

Resources for checking information

B.  Take time to think and research before we set forth something as true.

C.  Aim to educate by showing all sides instead of just the side we would support.

D.  Be careful and if you make a mistake admit it.

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