Party Like It’s 1984

George Orwell’s despairing, dystopic classic makes one thing clear:

People will come to believe what you tell them if you pound it into their eyes and ears, day after day; threaten it into their hearts moment by moment. No matter how absurd your message is on its face; no matter how unproven or unprovable. Eventually, you will wear down their resistance to self-evident truth and they will come to believe it.

Whether it’s “Big Brother loves you” or “War is peace. Freedom is slavery. Ignorance is strength” or “”We can’t win against terrorism unless we stay the course in Iraq” or “God detests instrumental music in worship.”

Just keep beating the drum, and people will believe. Just keep scaring them within an inch of death, and people will believe.

And you will be vindicated by all, because of course, the people are never wrong.

Then you and your Party can party like it’s 1984.

But, in the end, how does the staying power of such slogans stack up against the enduring grace of the Story?

How many of our hours are devoured by our own temporal desires at the expense of the eternal concerns of God?

How much time do we spend trying to save the lost as opposed to trying to condemn the saved?

How frequently do we turn the gospel into bad news by our bad behavior before a witnessing world?

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5 thoughts on “Party Like It’s 1984

  1. Keith, this was <>really, really<> good. Not that you need to hear that from me–but I’ll say it anyway. Thanks. Much love–mmlace

  2. Keith, some might wonder why Jesus didn’t use that tactic, Instead of bringing the word and saying his mission was completed after three years. He could have been here a thousand years couldn’t he. Could it be if you speak the truth that you don’t have to say it over and over and over and over until it is ingrained in the brain instead of the heart. I believe that is called brain washing. not heart purification.

  3. Do you mean all those political messages bombarding me aren’t truthful?We’re buried in redundant catchy phrases created by slick advertising agencies, politicians, and well-meaning religious groups.Unlike those you mentioned who eventually succumb to the rhetoric, I find too often it’s difficult for me to believe anything I read, hear, or see…perhaps I identify too much with Missouri’s “Show Me” attitude. 🙂

  4. “How much time do we spend trying to save the lost as opposed to trying to condemn the saved?” I hear you, Keith. I think I keep hearing the drum beat that says “THE CHURCH” means only Church of Christ. That means if we love God then we will never follow when/if our kids leave “THE CHURCH” meaning PV. I hope no one is listening to that drum beat, especially the young people.

  5. vic, I dunno where you’re hearing that ‘drum beat’ you mention in your comments … it sure ain’t from the pulpit.

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