Opinions are like belly buttons: everyone’s got one. Interestingly enough, many of them are hard to stomach. Luckily, doctrines are less common. Unfortunately, even demons have those. The proof of that multiplies around us daily. On the other hand, like a pearl of great price (Mat 13:36), Truth is hard to find and worth any trade you would have to make to obtain it.
Identifying hidden value
Think about your most prized possession. Consider how much it cost you to get it. Now add to it everything it has cost to keep it, maintain it, safeguard it, update it, and whatever else you’ve had to do to ensure it is preserved.
For some, it might be a family heirloom, a Babe Ruth rookie baseball card, Rembrandt original, or a luxury car. As with any luxury item, the sticker price is never the end.
Recognizing Pearl divers
For example, Ferrari has rules that not only employees but also owners must abide by. These rules range from “no pink Ferraris” to “no owners under 40” as well as “cannot own any Lamborghinis” and many others.
Apparently, Mr. Ferrari considers his family legacy a pearl of great price! To him, owning a piece of that legacy requires maturity in the form of minimum age, sensibility in terms of the color scheme as well as loyalty to the Ferrari brand.
Pearls of great farce
Not everything that is held in high esteem is by definition of great value. Opinions are among such things. In the era of fake news, opinions are just as good as facts. If repeated enough, it doesn’t take long for someone to come along and peddle them as Gospel Truth. Even beyond current events, recent history is full of them.
Not too long ago, the European Union destroyed the beef industry for its domestic farmers. The claim was that BSE (Mad Cow Disease) was rampant in the bovine population and would eventually decimate Europe. As recently as 2017, I tried giving blood in a local blood drive. My years of living in Europe made me ineligible to give blood. The concern, again, was the spread of the disease in America.
To be clear, the loss of life is never trivial. Nonetheless, when the opinions of “experts” overrule common sense, you can always expect the worse. Whether it’s Mad Cow Disease, the Swine Flu pandemic, or any other reiteration, you can always count on an overrated opinion masquerading as a pearl of great price. Under such guise, the “pearl seller” will be able to get almost any amount out of the buyer (meaning the general public).
You may ask, “what did they get from us in exchange”? Great question! For starters, they get your consent to continue peddling. As this implicit consent builds on itself, it becomes assent. “Assent” is above consent. While consent is your permission for something, assent on the other hand is your agreeing to something.
Once “people agree”, dissent can be rooted out. Dissent is a fancy term for disagreeing. Since “everyone agrees”, those who don’t find themselves on the outside. They are now either pressured or coerced to agree or they are further marginalized. The end result is still the same: a lofty opinion sits in the place of Truth (2 Cor 10:5).
Although many of us might not necessarily care what others “believe”, these things still have a profound effect on our lives. The reason is this. What is one thing that is coveted more than money? You guessed it. Power! In the same way that companies want to shape public opinion to guide customers’ dollars to their products, there are those who want to mold public opinion for other purposes.
Although they may not be selling a “product”, they are selling you something nonetheless. I believe the original quote goes back to Zig Ziglar. Your consent is not coveted to make your life better. It is being sought out to better sell you.
I need proof
At this point, asking for proof is a very reasonable request. If I were buying a pearl of great price, I would want an assayer to evaluate it for me. Since proof is so readily available, we will give it in a timeline format.
Apparently, that information is not available on Google.
January 21st.: “Coronavirus is not a threat to people in the United States“.
January 26th: “Risk of Coronavirus in the USA is a ‘minuscule’; skip mask and wash hands“.
We could go on for days but why bother. These two are so different from the ” experts’ ” current advice to beg incredulity. In fact, right now you’re thinking to yourself, “I don’t remember getting that advice”! Don’t worry. There’s nothing wrong with you. It’s just because this story has more versions than an iPhone.
How else can they have gone from “skip the mask” to needing a “3rd booster shot”. And who did this most recent advice come from? That’s right! Fauci. It is astounding the ease with which this man’s plainly stated and self-identified opinions are welcomed as pearls or great price. While lies are being peddled so easily it is difficult to tell what is doing more damage to the Church: baseless opinions or doctrine of demons.
Pearl of great device
Notwithstanding the recent brain-dead fog that has overtaken large sections of the Church, doctrines have by far done the most damage to the Body over the centuries. In Part 2, we will discuss how some of the strongest poisons ever given to the Church were fed directly from our pulpits. Paul calls them “doctrines of demons“. The name alone makes you think that no one would listen to such sermons.
Unfortunately, the truth is far more painful. Finally, Part 3 will show us how the Truth is the real McCoy; this pearl of great price. The real Truth needs neither pushing nor peddling in any way. John Steinbeck’s Kino knew what he had found the moment he laid eye on it. As a true Believer in Jesus Christ, so should you.
Bondservant to Jesus Christ, Married to Michele, Dad to Madelyn, Claudia, and Joseph and educator by trade, apologist by calling and saved by Grace. Antonio loves to read, write, and discuss all-things-apologetics. He has many passions in life including reaching, teaching, and keeping men for Jesus Christ. Waiting on God’s big reveal: Antonio knows He has something beautiful in mind.