Thursday, October 8, 2009

Did God Really Say?

Now the serpent was more crafty than any of the wild animals the LORD God had made. He said to the woman, "Did God really say,
Genesis 3:1

Words seem to be important to God. That likely means they should be important to us. With that in mind it seems to me that it might be important to take God at his word. Many people tend to spiritualize God’s word into meanings that are different than they were originally intended. The challenge of course is that when you go down that road we end following the same deception that Adam and Eve faced in the garden.

Here’s a few examples of words that have been radically altered and accepted within many Christian expressions.

Tithe/Storehouse/Food -- Bring the whole tithe into the storehouse, that there may be food in my house. Malachi 3:10

Original meaning: Tithe – always in food. Storehouse meant a place for keeping food. And in this context, specifically for the widow, orphan, and alien.

Modern meaning: Tithe means money and storehouse means the local church. The food the church provides is not physical but spiritual food ie preaching and teaching.

Talent -- To one he gave five talents of money, to another two talents, and to another one talent, each according to his ability. Matthew 25:15

Original meaning: a large sum of money
Modern meaning: gifts and abilities

Supplied/Hard Work/Help -- You yourselves know that these hands of mine have supplied my own needs and the needs of my companions. 35In everything I did, I showed you that by this kind of hard work we must help the weak. Acts 20:34,35

Original Meaning: Hard work – physical labor. Supplied – the outcome of working. Help the weak – physical care.
Modern Meaning: studying the bible and providing spiritual nourshment to the weak.

Sabbath: Remember the sabbath day, to keep it holy. Exodus 20:8

Original meaning: last day of the week from Friday sunset to Saturday sunset, a day of rest, a day to celebrate God as our creator, to take time for relationships
Modern meaning: 1st day of the week, all day Sunday, a day to go to a church meeting, celebrate the resurrection of Jesus but not like a yearly anniversary but because of the specific day that it happened on.

Church -- And I say also unto thee, That thou art Peter, and upon this rock I will build my church; and the gates of hell shall not prevail against it. Matthew 16:18

Original meaning: the group of people that identify themselves with Jesus as their Lord. Jesus used this word to refer to a singular and specific group.
Modern meaning: a special building that people go to on Sunday, to hear something from the Bible. There is nothing unifying about this usage today.

Did God Really Say?

I’d like to hear of anymore that you can think of. For fun why don’t you do one on the meaning of the bread and the cup that Jesus used at the last supper.

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