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Have you heard the phrase “perception is reality”? Sometimes it enters political conversations. Pundits prognosticate about elections. They know that people vote based on what they think is true about a candidate. Their perception doesn’t always conform to reality. How many times have you voted for a candidate thinking they would act a certain way or support certain positions, and then were disappointed when they failed to live up to expectations? Happens all the time, right?
That’s why politicians lie about one another so much. They want to change people’s perceptions. And perceptions don’t need to match anything true. Whether you vote Republican or Democrat, I’m sure you can point out lies or distortions the opposite side has declared. And the media practices this as well, whether you call it misinformation, disinformation or simply fake news.
Knowledge is not the same as perception. We need knowledge as followers of Jesus. 2 Peter 1:5 says, “For this very reason, make every effort to add to your faith goodness; and to goodness, knowledge.” (NIV 1984) Notice we can’t simply trust God and develop virtue. We also need to develop knowledge. Rather than operating on what we think we know about God, we must learn the reality. We must study and learn the truth about who he is and what is right. We must live by what we have learned is true.
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Bumper music “Landing Place” performed by Mark July, used under license from Shutterstock.