- What Difference Do Words Make?
- Whoever Controls the Language Controls the Culture
- God’s Word Creates Virtuous Nations
Language is God’s gift to humans
“No single book has so profoundly affected universal expression as has the English Bible.” (The Bible in English Literature, Edgar Whitaker Work, 1917.)
Language did not evolve! Man did not crawl on all fours grunting like an animal for millions of years before he could speak in fluent sentences! God created man in His image and gave him the “gift of language” with which to communicate with Him! God then commissioned Adam to name and give identity to all living creatures: “Out of the ground the Lord God formed every beast of the field and every bird of the sky, and brought them to the man to see what he would call them; and whatever the man called a living creature, that was its name. The man gave names to all the cattle, and to the birds of the sky, and to every beast of the field, . . .” (Genesis 2:19-20).
Today in America, language has been “dumbed down.” The media controls our language. Our newspapers are written at a fourth-grade reading level. The New International Version (NIV) of the Bible is written at a fifth-grade reading level.
Definition of language (n.) [L. lingua, the tongue, and speech.] 1. Human speech; the expression of ideas by words or significant articulate sounds, for the communication of thoughts. Language consists in the oral utterance of sounds, which usage has made the representatives of ideas. 2. Words duly arranged in sentences, written, printed or engraved, and exhibited to the eye. 3. The speech or expression of ideas peculiar to a particular nation. Men had originally one and the same language, but the tribes or families of men, since their dispersion, have distinct languages. (Webster’s 1828 Dictionary of the English Language)
Language is both impressive and expressive. The impressive mode of language is listening, reading, thinking, and reasoning. The expressive mode is speaking and writing, communicating our thoughts, convictions, and ideas. (The Noah Plan English Language Guide)
Whoever controls the language controls the culture. Words have incredible power because they set the agendas of whole nations! The words we use to describe a situation or problem frame the way we approach it. It’s not bullets that ultimately win wars, it’s words. A bullet won’t make you die for someone, but the right word lodged within you will make you fearless. Making words mean what you want them to mean is the first step in controlling the minds of men and from there, their actions. Words have incredible power in the hands of a propagandist. . . . The real warriors on either side of the issues wage war with words. If you divide a people’s language, you can divide their will. . . . Unify their language and you have unified their power! (Dennis Peacocke)
Words Inspire Ideas. Ideas Have Consequences!
The Bible teaches us that words are spirit. Jesus Christ, the Incarnate Word, said, “My words are spirit and they are life” (John 6:63). Words are the very substance or building blocks of ideas. Words form mental images in the mind. We cannot think without words. Therefore, is it surprising that the enemy would target language to dumb it down and rob and pillage us of a biblical vocabulary? Language reveals the character and love of God to us as He communicates with us and makes it possible for us to enjoy meaningful communication with our fellow man.
Words communicate ideas. Words are the substance of thoughts, the foundation of our worldview, the filter through which we channel experiences and ideas, rule or judge their efficacy, formulate thoughts and clothe them with words for communicating with others. Ideas begin in the mind, the seat of liberty or bondage, the battleground for our future welfare! The Apostle Paul, biblical scholar of the New Testament, clearly understood the spiritual and procreative power of words, thoughts, and ideas and wrote the following to the church at Corinth:
Now we have received, not the spirit of the world, but the spirit which is of God; that we might know the things that are freely given to us of God. Which things also we speak, not in the words which man’s wisdom teaches, but which the Holy Spirit teaches; comparing spiritual things with spiritual. But the natural man receives not the things of the Spirit of God: for they are foolishness unto him; neither can he know them, because they are spiritually discerned. But he that is spiritual judges all things, yet he himself is judged of no man. For who hath known the mind of the Lord, that he may instruct him? But we have the mind of Christ, (1 Corinthians 2: 12-16).
Ideas have consequences! (Richard M. Weaver) Word meanings inspire ideas that direct the pathway of our thinking and reasoning, that ultimately lead to the choices we make and their eventual consequences! When words are defined biblically, they help us think and reason with the revelation of God’s Word, freeing us from secularism. This enables us to “take every thought captive to the obedience of Christ” and appropriate “the mind of Christ” in teaching and learning.
Words have great power for creating or destroying. God’s Word is both an offensive and a defensive weapon:
For the word of God is living and active and sharper than any two-edged sword, and piercing as far as the division of soul and spirit, of both joints and marrow, and able to judge the thoughts and intentions of the heart (Hebrews 4:12).
The Spirit gives life; the flesh counts for nothing. The words I have spoken to you are spirit and they are life (John 6:33).
Death and life are in the power of the tongue, and those who love it will eat its fruit (Proverbs 18:21).
A man will be satisfied with good by the fruit of his words . . . (Proverbs 12:14).
So will My word be which goes forth from My mouth; it will not return to Me empty, without accomplishing what I desire, and without succeeding in the matter for which I sent it (Isaiah 55:11).
For by your words you will be justified, and by your words you will be condemned (Matthew 12:37).
The grass withers, the flower fades, but the word of our God stands forever (Isaiah 40:8).
“As for Me, this is My covenant with them,” says the Lord: “My Spirit which is upon you, and My words which I have put in your mouth shall not depart from your mouth, nor from the mouth of your offspring, nor from the mouth of your offspring’s offspring, says the Lord, from now and forever” (Isaiah 59:21).
The Word of the Lord endures forever. This is the word which was preached to you (1 Peter 1:25).
- Elizabeth Youmans
… to be continued
Romina AliagaNovember 20, 2018 - 2:01 pm
Gracias por definir claramente la importancia de las palabras en la construcción de nuestras ideas y las consecuencias. Estoy relaizando una tarea en el instituto sobre las palabras, lenguaje y comunicación y me esta ayudando mucho para realizarlo.
adminNovember 21, 2018 - 4:45 am
So glad to hear that you found this helpful. Thanks for reading.