Propaganda Of The Heart And The Butt Naked Truth

 

World War 2 Propanganda

 

What lies behind us and what lies before us are small matters compared to what lies to our faces.

We’re discussing propaganda in my classes this week, particularly World War 2 Nazi, Communist, and American propaganda. World War 2 attached darker negative connotations to a word that was once largely innocuous. Up until then most “propaganda” campaigns had to do with public health and voting.

Propaganda once had to do with informing the public.

The great war morphed it into an effective way of persuading the public opinion about foreign policy.

navy propaganda poster

Neutrality in message, if there ever was such a fanciful thing, has long since fallen by the wayside. Every million dollar word in television, print, and media outlets has been carefully crafted to persuade. Products, ideas, and feelings are being peddled in increasingly creative and all permeating ways.

“This miracle drug will give you suicidal thoughts, but trust me, you need it to cure depression.”

Propanganda can only do so much damage, as long as an informed public is aware of the implications:

Namely,

Objectivity is a myth. Not just in political campaigns or advertising. In apologetics, music, journalism, science, religion, education, everywhere. No one person or institution is neutral about their opinions, otherwise it wouldn’t be their opinions. Everyone has a truth to sell, even if they are selling themselves as the only objective truth seekers.

Deeply held presuppositions are a given.

Everyone either stands on foundational truth where they are the final judge over it all, or they kneel under a foundational truth outside of themselves. Truth is under subjection to them and their whims, or truth is something fixed and greater and over them.

What we see in the world is not the whole story.

What we share with the world is not the whole story.

Government misinformation is not what kills the soul, it is the self created personal misinformation that will do us in. The divided heart of what we show ourselves to be and what we know ourselves to be.

I’m sure we all switch positions with hypocritical fluidity, sometimes as inerrant judge and sometimes as the cross-examined defendant. We’re not just being dictated to we are also dictating. Every dressed up propped up persona we push in public is self-made propaganda. A monolithic filtered message meant to persuade people who and what we are.

Nice.

Funny.

Talented.

Authentic.

Smart.

Humble.

Giving.

Hardworking.

The human soul is a perpetual propagating machine. I project witty and amicable, but the deeps are closer to generic and judgmental.

There is only one in the epoch of human history who was exactly who he said he was. Only one born of woman who never put on a front. He didn’t just have the truth, He IS truth (John 14:6).

Jesus is the death of our heartsick fixation with propaganda. He tears the layers of self constructed facades down to expose barenaked humanity. The lonely human soul that burns a hole staring through the ceiling late at night is the soul He covers with his blood.

At the most foundational level we know this stripping is what we want and what we need. We come into this world butt naked and unashamed and we spend our whole lives longing to be restored to that innocent state. We may take heart: Propaganda, in the end, will be destroyed with the invincible exposing gospel truth found in Jesus.

Bryan Daniels

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Author: Bryan Daniels

I am a follower of Jesus, a husband to Jessica, and a father of three boys: Josiah, Gideon and Judah. I teach high school math as a job, read reformed theology as a hobby, and write this blog just for kicks. With the rest of my time I coach football and track.

2 thoughts on “Propaganda Of The Heart And The Butt Naked Truth”

  1. Great post, many thanks for sharing. It is certainly true that none of us can be completely objective – there are things in all of our lives that shape our views on things for better or worse. Jesus himself came with no propaganda, not with his own agenda. He perfectly carried out the will of his Father. We would do well to follow his example.

  2. Well done sir. I’ve studied a bit of propaganda in the past and it’s a fascinating subject to be sure, but you are spot on about Jesus.

    “Objectivity is a myth… No one person or institution is neutral about their opinions, otherwise it wouldn’t be their opinions. Everyone has a truth to sell, even if they are selling themselves as the only objective truth seekers.” Love this line. Not one of us are truly objective all of the time, and I don’t even think objectivity is necessary a good portion of the time. There are times, such as mediating a conflict, that we should strive for a personal objectivity which is subjective to the word and commands of God (I think that makes sense).

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