Wednesday, April 04, 2018

Spinning a cheering crowd into a jeering mob

With all the controversy over possible interference from Russia in western elections and general news reporting the power of the media has never come under so much scrutiny. It's scary. I've written before about friends who will repost what turns out to be fake news without first checking it and I'm sad to say that I believe very little I hear these days. A big change from the old gullible me. (Who's still there in many cases although I think that's possibly a good thing.)

So with Easter just gone I got to thinking about that story and it occurred to me that the bad guys must have had a pretty good spin doctor on their side not to mention an effective media presence in order to turn the cheering crowds into a jeering mob. So, in preparing to lead next week's bible study in Zac's, I wrote this.

Jesus: son of God or charlatan?
In Jerusalem for the Passover feast this year you may encounter a man his followers are claiming to be the next messiah, son of God, saviour. Before you meet him you need to know some things that he wouldn’t want you to know. But we believe it’s important you know all the facts before making your decision.

Did you know that two years ago he was solely responsible for the destruction of a herd of 2,000 pigs? The owner of the herd said, ‘My business was completely destroyed. I’d spent a lifetime and a small fortune building up that herd and the loss left me bankrupt.’
An honest hard-working business man and his family ended up on the streets because of this man some people claim to be son of God. 
Would God condone such action? I don’t think so.

And what about his so-called friends, the people he mixes with?

Did you know that he frequently eats with tax-collectors? Yes, the same ones who work hand-in-glove with the Romans to rob you and me of our hard-earned cash.  And this coincidentally is the man who encourages ordinary working-class people to make sure they pay their taxes. For whose benefit we have to ask.

And he dines with the rich. We’ve been shown exclusive photos of him with a prostitute wrapped all over him, massaging him with oil. And when one of our own spiritual leaders challenged him about it he shrugged him off.
In fact when one of his former friends objected to wasteful behaviour Jesus again shrugged it off saying, ‘The poor will always be there.’ Yes, this is what the man who claims to care about the poor really thinks.

And he has no scruples about breaking the ten commandments. The very laws his ‘father’ gave us he breaks as if they’re nothing, of no importance. Does that sound like the sort of thing a holy man would do?

And he has no scruples either about being kept by women. He doesn’t go out to work to earn a living. Instead he treats the homes of his followers as his own and expects to be fed everywhere he goes – along with a dozen or more of his hangers-on.

Now you might have heard rumours about him raising a man from the dead but has any evidence been shown? Did a doctor provide a death certificate to prove the man in the tomb was really dead? If he has we haven’t been shown it. Magicians pull stunts like that every day. When you’ve got a gullible audience it’s easy to fool people.

But the fact that you’re reading this proves you’re not amongst those fools easily taken in. You know your own mind. You can make your own decision.

So remember if you come across him this weekend don’t believe everything his followers will try and tell you.


PipeTobacco said...

Very nice post. People must be more discerning of any "news".

Jono said...

I was always a skeptic, but now I don't believe much of what I see or hear without a lot of corroboration.

Liz Hinds said...

We all must be, PT.

It's a sad state to be in, Jono.