Spiritual Warfare Prep

Spiritual Warfare Prep
We Are In The Lord's Army

Monday, March 23, 2015

Using Words In Vain

   What do you think of when you hear the word, 'hell'? Does it have a strong, horrifying connection in your mind, or do you just have knowledge of it being a really bad place to be?

   What if you heard someone talking about a place called 'Styx', which you may never have heard of before. Styx is a place in the Underworld where there is a river that carries the dead to Hades. "a river in Hades across which Charon ferried the souls of the dead"* That definition seems to have a little stronger connotation, doesn't it? But you don't hear people saying, 'Oh Styx". 

   You may have heard people use the word, 'hell' as part of an expression of irritation or anger. I think that is why it has lost so much of it's meaning. We hear it all the time and it becomes meaningless. When we hear the word, 'hell' we don't think of a lake of fire. We know it is something we shouldn't say, but since so many use that phrase (for example, 'the hell with it'), it has little meaning to us today.

   Take also the word, 'holy'. Have you ever heard the expression, 'holy cow'? Perhaps that is a reason why we have such a hard time understanding what it means when we are learning about God's characteristics and His holiness? What does a 'holy' God look like? What does that mean to us?

  How about the word, 'awesome'? Years ago, Rich Mullins wrote a song called, 'Awesome God'. The song took off. Rich Mullins was killed in a car wreck, yet his song was on the top of the chart. But there is something interesting about the whole thing. The word 'awesome' was not a popular word until Rich Mullins wrote his song. Not too long after that though, if you have noticed, everything is awesome. People are awesome. Food is awesome. Games are awesome. Cars are awesome. Now the word 'awesome' has lost its original meaning. At first, God was awesome. Now, everything that is spectacular is awesome. If someone likes something a lot, that thing is awesome. 

   Of course, the most serious words we use in vain are expressions with God's name in it. God's name becomes a common word and as such, His name loses it's meaning. We no longer see God as holy or powerful because the words we use to describe Him are just plain common words we hear all the time. We don't hear those words along with their descriptions. We hear them coming out of the mouths of people as some kind of response to something. Because God's name is so common, we have a hard time understanding who He is, and we have a hard time trying to explain to others who He is. Perhaps this is the reason why God does not want us to take His name in vain. He wants people to know Him in truth. 

* www.dictionary.reference.com

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