At the end of the Bread of Life discourse in John 6, his disciples abandon him. Not because the road is hard, but because Jesus told them the truth.
We want to be more effective. Jesus would rather be honest.
Proper 16B | John 6:56-69
You’ve heard of reverse psychology. It’s a simple idea that sometimes, the best way to get someone to do something is to make them think you don’t want them to.
It’s a trick, like a slight-of-hand with the mind.
And we know this works because we are so convinced we’re always right. Which means the other person is always convinced that they are right, too.
For years scientists have investigated this phenomenon. Humans are deeply irrational. Even to the point of doubling-down on being wrong rather than accept when something different is true.
Our minds are not rational. We aren’t convinced by evidence, we are swayed by our emotions.
All of this research in brain science is leading us to a really important conclusion about people: To influence others, you will have to trick them into listening to you.
So, given all that we know about the human mind and effective communication, how is it that Jesus never tries to trick people into believing? With Jesus, there are no tricks, though he displays an uncanny awareness of how our minds work.
Jesus insists on and persists in telling the truth.
The full text and audio may be downloaded above or here.