Al Sturgeon

Document Type



This paper examines whether the Christian religion offers a distinct position on the use of deception in the negotiation process. It is expected to be of primary interest to Christian negotiators, but combining the popularly understood theorem that "everyone negotiates on some level" with the fact that there are over 173 million Christian adherents in the United States alone, the topic may be of general interest to anyone who negotiates. There is apparently neither an official nor a widespread recognition of a distinct Christian position on the use of deception in negotiation at present. It is this article's proposal, however, that Christianity calls its adherents to practice truthfulness in negotiations, to live free from the forces that engender deception, and to form healthy relationships with others based on reliability. Section II will examine the American Bar Association's ethical standard regarding truthfulness in negotiation, the inherent qualities of negotiation that foster deceptive strategies, and the various positions argued by commentators. Section III will analyze a Christian approach to the topic, the rationale behind that approach, and its application to the "real world." Finally, Section IV will offer a conclusion.