Conversations with one another are so important. Words shared with one another reveal our hearts and minds.
In the historical Jewish context words held significant power. It was believed that words had a special independent power almost as if they were alive, as if they had their own unit of energy charged with power. This meant that careful consideration was given to what was said. A blessing given could not be unspoken. Remember the story of Isaac giving his blessing to Jacob whom he thought at the time was Esau, his first born. Once spoken over Jacob, they could not be undone (Genesis 27). To bless was understood to speak life and hope into the person or the situation.
Think about a message you heard recently that really impacted your life. It may have felt as if the words spoken by the speaker drilled right down into your heart and soul, shedding light into your life and giving spiritual understanding – life changing words.
In the beginning was the Word, and the Word was with God, and the Word was God. He was with God in the beginning. Through him all things were made; without him nothing was made that has been made. In him was life, and that live was the light of men.
The Word became flesh and made his dwelling among us. We have seen his glory, the glory of the One and Only, who came from the Father, full of grace and truth. (John 1:1-4, 14)
God spoke and things happened; creation and life happened:
His Word creates: Psalm 33:6 - By the word of the Lord were the heavens made, their starry host by the breath of his mouth.
His Word heals: Psalm 107:20 - He sent forth his word and healed them; he rescued them from the grave.
His Word has immediate authority: Psalm 147:15 - He sends his command to the earth; his word runs swiftly.
His Word accomplishes acts, has purpose: Isaiah 55:11 - so my word that goes out from my mouth; it will not return to me empty, but will accomplish what I desire and achieve the purpose for which I sent it.
His Word judges justly, seeks justice: Jeremiah 23:29 – “Is not my word like fire”, declares the Lord, “and like a hammer that breaks a brick in pieces?”
In the historical Greek context the term used for the Word was Logos. This term had a dual meaning: the power to think (to reason) and the ability to know. The Word thus brings enlightenment. We no longer have to guess, imagine or grope in the dark – Jesus (The Logos) is light and reveals truth and knowledge as well as reason (rationale). He is the exact representation of God and thus reveals all of who God is, his mission and his purposes. How important it is to see how Jesus lived and how he spoke words to those around him, words of love, full of grace and truth. Words that created and gave hope; words that healed and brought life; words with authority and integrity; that swiftly accomplished his purposes; words that exposed injustice and called to account.
How do we use words?
As we pray together through this month’s prayer focus let us in reverence and awe speak words that: bless, heal, are in line with God’s mission, seek and cry out for justice and mercy, and in the authority given to us through Jesus Christ, intercede together.
Let us also humbly come before God and ask for wisdom, insight and boldness to speak out and proclaim the amazing life giving good news that the Word has become flesh and lives with us and to all who receive and believe in him he gives the right to become children of God.
Let us live in the light!