A Passion for the Language of God

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In the beginning God.

We associate those first four verses in the Bible with the act of creation. And for good reason, that’s the story that most naturally and linguistically flows from or follows after.

In the beginning God.

To see this phrase as only the precursor to the creation account is to be just a bit shortsighted.

In the beginning God.

A broader view and one that takes in the full scope of God’s story understands those words to not be limited to the first couple of chapters from the book of Genesis.

In the beginning God.

Everything else in the whole Bible stems from those short but powerful four words.

In the beginning God.

All of history originates from those four powerful words.

In the beginning God.

I don’t know how many languages the world started out with. I surmise one. I could look up how many languages there are today, but two reasons stop me.

First, I am lazy and have no desire to be an expert on the world’s languages. And second, I’ll end up chasing squirrels. That’s my story and I’m sticking to it.

In the meantime, I took two years of German in high school.
Brilliant man that I am, I easily remember how to call you a pig, ask for chewing gum, and inquire if you speak German.

In Spanish, I can ask how you are and answer good in return. I am equally adept at asking with an arched eyebrow and intense look of discomfort, the one word question, Bano? However, one must never ask me to pronounce the word tortilla in public. I will butcher it every time.

Yes, I am a master of languages as you can see.

In my undergrad days, I took Koine Greek. One day in a vocabulary test, there was a bonus question. I was the only one who failed to get the correct answer, which was my name in transliterated Koine Greek.

Yes, that really happened. And yes, I am real master at languages. (Sarcasm fully intended)

In the beginning God.

Those four words begin the creation and predicate the beginning of a language we must all learn to speak.

Creation was an act of love. That which was created was intended to be a likeness of the loving community of Father, Son, and Holy Spirit.

We were created to speak the language of God, the language of love.

Bible students know the language of love went awry in the Garden of Eden. Shortly after that, we see just how badly off the rails it went when Cain murdered Able. By the time of Noah, that locomotive was completely off track and barreling through places it was never intended to go.

All these years later, Jesus has come and gone, his sacrifice the price paid to help us learn again the language of God, the language of love.

And while we eagerly await His return, the church has been left to propagate the language of God.

That should be our passion.

Learning to speak, act, and live the love of God should be our highest priority.

The language of God is the language of God’s people, the new Israel, the church for which Jesus died.

Some of us have forgotten what that language sounds like and looks like.
Some of us have embraced the doctrine and rhetoric of religion and have simply ignored the development of God’s language in our lives.

Some of us have developed a competing language of selfish interests and stubborn hearts.

And our world is the poorer for it.

What if we choose the language of God, the language of love?


Les Ferguson, Jr.
Lake Harbour Drive Church of Christ
Ridgeland, MS.

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