Monday, December 01, 2008

wilderness of words

Words are wonderful; I'm certainly an advocate of them. Words are underrated, too; if that's not so, then why did God give us words as perhaps the most foundational aspect of "special revelation" given to us?

All that being said, I find that the use of words can be helpful or it can be a hindrance. It is interesting that the enemy tempted Eve by asking if God had really said such and such, and instead interjected that God meant so and so. Eve bought into that, but in so doing changed God's words of the command to her and Adam, herself. So words ended up mattering in a life and death way.

Words mattering should encourage us to spend more time in God's word, in Scripture. In that word we find the Word of God, Jesus, and we find in Jesus the way to God and God's will in this life and world, as well as the promise and reality of new creation in Jesus. So the importance placed on words should move us towards the word of God. And in that, to the story of God we find in Scripture. And by that to our own place in God's story, which in Jesus is ongoing.

Words can have a steadying, stabilizing effect as well as an unsettling effect. So this means we need discernment as we read blogs or books and even our own thoughts as we read God's word. We have to test all others words with reference to and by the word of God. While at the same time appreciating the gift of words and truth spoken by humankind from many places, disciplines and traditions.

What do you appreciate about words? How have you found them good or evil? How does adherence to God's word help us? And how can we err as did Adam and Eve?


Anonymous said...

interesting post on words. i agree with your thoughts here. words can be a winderness, good thing we have a map and a guide.

sometimes we have to pass up reading some things...but we never have to pass up reading the bible.

Ted M. Gossard said...

Amen, Nancy. We must be in the Word as a priority, for sure.