Win-win, Lose-win, Win-lose
randal, November 29, 2004 6:56:00 PM GMT
by J. Randal Matheny
In negotiations, we should prefer what has been lately termed a win-win situation. Both parties rise from the table with terms that favor both the relationship and their individual objectives. American society, as well as others, needs this important perspective, carried away as it is with lawsuits.
We want everyone to win. We agree with American politician Harriet Woods, who was quoted as saying, "You can be a victor without having victims." (Politics, they say, in its best manifestation, is the art of compromise.) We wish a good life, prosperity, joy, and peace to all. Above all, we desire, and work toward, every person's acceptance of God's salvation.
Win-win is a wonderful concept which we should employ in every possible situation.
Some situations, however, do not permit win-win. So where no eternal issue is at stake, or moment in which integrity is not compromised, we will be happy to lose. Not every issue is worth the effort to win.
Some things, though, we will not concede, nor give in, under any circumstance.
* We will not surrender our children to the prevailing permissiveness rampant around us.
* We will not admit defeat to the tempter, who would have us abandon our post of service to God for some passing pleasure.
* We refuse to play dead as some try to turn the church of Jesus Christ into just another sect.
* We will not give up the dot of an "i" or crossing a "t" of the teaching of the Word, whether it be baptism necessary for salvation, the exclusivity of singing in worship, or men leading in Christians' meetings.
Just as in the real world, we live in a spiritual reality where aggressors refuse the negotiating table and agitators adopt the mission to terrorize others.
These are the ones the Bible terms the "world." They come in all shapes and sizes, in garbs of the religious and the atheists, the carousers and soothers, carnal and spiritist. The world pitted against God, rebellious against his will, recalcitrant against his authority.
In this case, war is declared, we will fight to the death, for life, knowing that someone must lose and someone must win.
And we know Who will win.
Win-win when we can. Lose-win when the issue is indifferent. But win-lose when eternity is at stake.
In the latter, victory is possible only when the opponent is vanquished.
"For everyone who has been born of God overcomes the world. And this is the victory that has overcome the world -- our faith" (1 John 5:4, ESV).
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