Whopper

PATHWAY
God: Moral Development
AGE GROUP
12-14 years
Anticipate Time
1 hour min
GROUP SIZE
2-5, 5-15, 15-30
Values
Honesty, Integrity, Trust, Truthfulness

Synopsis

Each participant writes four facts about themselves on a piece of paper. Three of the facts are true and one is false. All papers are collected and examined one by one. The group attempts to discern which fact is the Whopper.

Through participation in this Pursuit, the Pathfinder will:

  1. List types of deception
  2. Discuss the importance of honesty
  3. Explore how Christians can avoid being deceived by Satan’s lies

Scripture Focus

Memory Verse

John 16:13
When He, the spirit of truth is come, He will guide you into all truth.

Friendships are based on trust. Without trust, there can be no truly authentic relationship. Satan loves to distort the truth. Throughout his existence, he has been preoccupied with forging counterfeit reproductions designed to confuse and deceive. The greatest deceptions have always been the ones closest to the truth. Discernment is essential. When we misrepresent the truth, we are really choosing his way.

Preperation

  1. Two participants or leaders need to be asked to share a ‘travelling account’. They should have sufficient time to prepare their speeches.
Materials:
  • One piece of paper and one writing implement for each participant.
  • Enough Bible concordances for each pair of participants.

Outline

1. Invite two of the group participants (or leaders) to each share a description of a place they have been. In reality, only one of the Pathfinders will be sharing a true account, the other person will completely fabricate all the information ie. they have never really been to that destination. Ask the group to decide which person is telling the truth and which person is telling the lie.

2. Questions:

  • How did you make your decision about which person was lying?
  • In this situation, you had a 50 / 50 chance. Can you always tell when someone is not telling the truth?

3. Divide into smaller groups of 4 – 6 for this activity if your whole group is too large. Invite participants to write four facts about themselves on a piece of paper. One of the facts is to be false, the rest are to be true. Each response is placed in a pile and then individually explored by the group. Group members are to select which fact is the lie, and cast a vote on their decision. The individual then shares the truth.
NB. If your group is large, divide into smaller groups, so the sharing can be completed more quickly.

4. Brainstorm different types of dishonesty, eg. cheating on tests, cheating on taxes, calling the ball out in tennis when you’re not really sure, exaggerating, flattery, not telling the whole truth, twisting the truth so it won’t sound so bad, lying to protect yourself, lying to protect someone else, saying you came home earlier than you really did, not admitting when you are scared or insecure…

5. Ask the participants to rank the following in order from most dishonest (1) to least dishonest (6).

  • Lying to parents in order to get permission to go out.
  • Cheating on a test.
  • Shoplifting.
  • Giving a falsified excuse to your teacher.
  • Protecting a friend by lying.
  • Playing around when you are being paid to work.

6. Role-play a number of scenarios. (You as leader take on a persona in each to help lead it). Invite selected participants to enter into the role-play and show what the best honest and courageous response might be.
Scenarios:

  • Someone is saying lies about a friend of yours. You know the lies are not true. What do you do?
  • You know your brother is into drugs. What do you do?
  • You find a really expensive watch left in the Church hall. It has no name. What do you do?
  • Your best friend gets a haircut that looks really terrible. She/He seems to like it. They ask your opinion. What do you say?
  • You have very adaptable handwriting. Your friend wants you to forge a note for them from his parents so he won’t get into trouble for wagging school the day before. What do you do?

7. Debrief.

Debrief

Select from the questions below:
Questions:
Reflection

  • How do you feel when you find out that someone has been lying to you?
  • What does it do to your relationship with them now?
  • What does it do to your feelings about your future relationship with them?

Interpretation

  • What body language movements are often associated with someone who is lying?
  • Is this always the case?
  • How important is it to tell the truth? Always?
  • To what extent is the following statement true: If you cannot trust a friend, there cannot truly be a friendship?
  • On a scale of 1-10, how important is honesty in your friendships?
  • Is there ever a time when it is okay to lie?
  • What are some lies which the devil masks as truth? (Write these up for all to see.)
  • How can we avoid being deceived by his lies?
  • To what extent is the following statement true? The greatest deception is the one closest to the truth.
  • What future events in history will really see the fulfilment of such a statement?

Application

  • So what has honesty got going for it?
  • Is honesty really the best policy?
  • What promises can we embrace which reinforce God’s truthfulness and dependability? (Divide into pairs and research such promises with the use of a concordance. These are to be recorded in their Journals.)

Commitment

  • When you are next placed in a situation when you are tempted to lie, what steps can you take to avoid falling into that trap?

Appendix

  1. “Teaching Your Children Values” by Linda and Richard Eyre (1993) A Fireside Book published by Simon and Schuster p 51,52
  2. “High School Talksheets” by David Lynn (1987) Youth Specialities, Zondervan Publishing House p 45