“When people are bewildered, they tend to become gullible.” (CALVIN COOLIDGE 1872–1933)
Nothing is stranger than the gullibility of the average citizen. We can be persuaded into accepting almost any absurdity presented to us, provided it has sufficient emphasis from television, radio, or social media. We, the public, will apparently believe almost anything and buy almost anything that the advertisers tell us we need.
These are great days for powerful advertising. Yet we would like to think that the advertisers must get up early to catch us unawares. Most of us at some time will get caught as we believe a promise that is sufficiently high-sounding or extravagant. You only have to read the papers or watch investigative TV programs to see how hundreds get caught by fast talking salespeople. There was a recent case in Australia where hundreds lost their life savings through a dubious investment scheme.
It seems almost unchristian to say that we should be suspicious or critical of others, but this is not what I am suggesting. What I am saying is that we should be very wary of accepting at face value all that is put before us or that promises us something for nothing. There is no such thing as a free lunch. I’m not only talking about advertisers. I would not exclude from these comments some politicians, prophets or preachers, or anyone who attempts to drive men and women to an acceptance of their own particular point of view. Of course they may have ‘the goods’ and be the last word in truth. However it would be well for the public to take a long hard look before taking the plunge from which there is no creditable retreat.
It is a sad fact that unscrupulous people prey on the elderly. They may think that they are easy targets because the elderly could be unable to discern fact or fiction Genuine help in these areas can be of great assistance. Many a home would be saved from financial ruin, many a human being from unnecessary suffering, and many a soul from despair, if these words of caution were taken to heart.
We should realise that noise is not synonymous with truth and nearly all the creative people speak with gentle voices. We would then be much more likely to recognise what is true and reject what is false. Of more pressing concern is that, in spite of so many warnings, the elderly are being scammed by promises of love and easy money. If it seems too good to be true, then it probably is.
The COVID-19 pandemic has generated a plethora of governmental advertising and social media comments. Here in Australia and doubtless in other countries, anxiety, confussion, even fear is rife. Who do you believe? Who do you listen too? I went through some of this before I had my first jab. As I mentioned last week the one way to wrestle through all this stuff is through prayer. I should have spoken to God much earlier, having had my teenage life saved through vaccine. Many must still make that choice of whom to listen too; God can be relied upon.
Jesus was a gentle voice with great powers of persuasion, persuasive because He led by example. And the word of God, the Bible, is our source of inspiration, encouragement, and truth. Guided by His word we have no reason to fear the unknown.
Have a good week. Pastor Ron
Optional Bible reading: Psalm 15.
This is one of a series of weekly messages of encouragement, now in its twenty-sixth year, originating from Gympie, Fraser Coast, Queensland, Australia. A companion Bible study page is available each week. To subscribe via email send to [email protected] with the words ‘Subscribe Word (or) Subscribe Word & Study’. Our ministry is free and emailing lists are confidential. Tell a friend or why not put a note in your church newsletter or pew sheet about this ministry – we welcome new subscriptions.Pastor Ron Clarke OAMWord for the WeekMbl.: +61 488 424 |