One of the most basic principles of propaganda is called “The Big Lie.” The origin of this principle has been variously attributed to such men as Adolf Hitler and his propaganda minister, Joseph Goebbels. It appears in Hitler’s book, Mein Kampf, and is one of the features of the government of “Big Brother” in George Orwell’s book, 1984. The principle has been stated in various ways, two of which are: “If you tell a big enough lie and keep repeating it, people will eventually come to believe it.” And, “If you repeat a lie long enough, it becomes truth.”
“The Big Lie” has found a place in virtually every aspect of modern society. Politicians are masters of this principle, often repeating outrageous statements, either of the success of their policies, or deriding the character or policies of an opponent. Environmentalists have also used this principle to convince an entire generation of people that man-made global warming (now called climate change) is destroying the planet. So, also, have proponents of gay marriage and the homosexual agenda used this principle to advance their ideas.
It is important to understand that those who use “The Big Lie” in order to advance their agendas know they are telling a lie. The fact that their statements or policies are lies is not the issue for them. The issue is winning approval of their position and gaining power as a result of it. Hitler and Goebbels understood this and used it to perfection in Nazi Germany, but they were rank amateurs in comparison to their modern counterparts.
The power of “The Big Lie” is such that it blinds us to the truth. Jesus spoke of this principle as He dealt with the religious leaders of the first century. They taught things that were patently false, but had done so for so long that they were believed to be true. In Mt. 15:14 Jesus called them blind guides and warned that if a blind man guides a blind man, both will fall into a pit. Paul the apostle later warned that the time would come when people would be sent a “deluding influence” so they would believe a lie, because they did not love the truth so as to be saved (2 Th. 2:10-12).
The very idea that one would promote a lie for his own personal gain is abhorrent to any honest person. Yet, from the time that Satan entered the Garden of Eden, God’s people have been subjected to one big lie after another. Satan’s big lie to Eve was that eating the forbidden fruit would make her like God. He knew this wasn’t true, but it advanced his purposes to tell the lie and to convince Eve to believe it. The same thing continues today, with the potential for the same kind of consequences as Adam and Eve experienced.
This is why the scriptures exhort us to not allow the world to brainwash us into doing that which violates God’s word. In Rom. 12:2 Paul said we are not to be conformed to the world, but to be transformed by the renewing of our minds. In Jas. 1:27 James said that one aspect of pure religion is to keep oneself unstained by the world. In Jas. 1:21, 22 James said we must receive the implanted word which is able to save our souls and to be doers of the word and not just hearers.
“The Big Lie” takes many forms today, urging us to discard the moral standards of scripture in favor of man’s standards. The lie is being repeated in books, magazines, television, radio, the movies, the halls of Congress, and even from some pulpits in the land. This influence is leading many to now believe a lie, instead of God’s truth. Those who truly love God will rely on His word alone to mold their attitudes and actions in life.