Some time ago I received a phone call from a woman conducting a public opinion poll. Telling me that my opinion mattered, she suggested that it would go into a data bank where it would be taken into consideration by important people and organizations who would often make big decisions based upon the information I give them.
I asked her what if my opinion is uninformed and not based upon any facts or knowledge about the issue at all—but more on how I might feel about the matter or what I may have heard?
She still insisted that it was important to collect the information. So, I said to her, let me make sure I understand what you are telling me—you are saying that my opinion, which may be totally based upon air, with no real objective knowledge about the subject, will be used to make important decisions that will affect our very future? I asked her if she understood how ridiculous this was? She no longer wanted to talk to me.
You are saying that my opinion, which may be totally based upon air, with no real objective knowledge about the subject, will be used to make important decisions that will affect our very future?
My friend, make no mistake—this is the world we now live in. I just posted the following on my Facebook page, Too much information...too little patience = too many uninformed opinions. We are now moving into the age of IGNORANCE. It is ironic isn’t it? We have more information than in all of human history, yet in many ways the availability of all of this data has somehow caused us to be less patient. We call it overload and are not willing to take the time necessary to develop informed opinions.
Too much information...too little patience = too many uninformed opinions. We are now moving into the age of IGNORANCE
Sadly we have evolved into a culture that no longer cares about objective facts and lacks patience and the ability to apply critical thought. We now go on what we feel or believe to be true driven by popular notions, spin and marketplace manipulation of the masses. We gather data that already leans in the direction or our pre-conceived ideas, and then go with it. We are actually at a place where even the notion of objective truth is met with disdain.
Even though history teaches us that when mankind tries to make up the rules as we go it always leads to failure—we do not learn. So, you pick the hot button subject—abortion, the death penalty, the acceptance of homosexuality and gender distortion, global warming, the list is never ending. Decisions about these and a myriad of other important issues are being made based upon a high percentage of uninformed public opinion driven by special interest marketing strategies.
I want to suggest here that many who call ourselves Christian have fallen into the same trap. Just look around and see all of the new thinking out there being driven by popular opinion. Some of our most influential Christian leaders are finding creative ways to re-interpret the Bible in order to line up with the more “open and tolerant” nature of our culture.
In what is supposed to be the most enlightened era, with access to more information than any time in history, we are the most uninformed and ignorant generation to date. Don’t believe it?—go on to any college campus and start asking students questions about important matters and then ask them how they reached their conclusions.
In what is supposed to be the most enlightened era, with access to more information than any time in history, we are the most uninformed and ignorant generation to date
As followers of Christ let us strive to be examples of people who do not succumb to this trap—we can be informed and not give way to cheap gimmicks and fine sounding arguments that attempt to sway. I would like to suggest some practical things to consider:
- When someone sends you something they read on the internet, don't believe it until you diligently check it out.
- Become an informed voter—do not just blindly follow your political leanings without researching both sides of an issue.
- When using God’s word to defend a position make sure you know all the appropriate references and how to accurately interpret them.
- Resist giving uninformed opinions or feelings about anything—at least let people know you will study the issue and get back to them.
- Display patience with people who may not have the same opinion as you.
- Pray for Godly insight when forming a position on any important issue—remember there are always two sides to consider.
A challenge to us all would be to refrain from offering an opinion until you can adequately state the opposing viewpoint.