Did God Have a Home Depot Card?
How fascinating it would be to look through God’s tool belt to see what he used to create the world: a hammer? a screwdriver? a measuring tape? But it turns out that God didn’t have a Home Depot card or a power drill, but rather created this world with the most powerful tool of all, WORDS. “And God SAID ‘let there be light,’ and there was light (Genesis 1:3).” And each consecutive creation He called into existence through words. The snake too used words—and convinced Eve to eat the forbidden fruit and basically smooth-talked mankind right out of Eden. So from the very beginning, we see that words have the power to create and to destroy. We therefore have a tremendous responsibility right on the tips of our tongues. In Judaism, talking bad about people, is regarded as a very serious sin which can ruin lives. It’s rationalized that if you steal someone’s watch (or goat) you can always pay him back but such is not possible for stealing one’s reputation. A Talmudic tale tells it best. There was a man who regretted gossiping his whole life and went to his rabbi to see how to correct his sin. The rabbi advised him to take a bag of feathers to the top of a mountain and to throw them to the wind. The man did as he was told and then returned to the rabbi with a big smile. Upon greeting the man, the rabbi advised him that in order to fix all the damage he had done with his tongue he now had to go back and recollect all the feathers. “That’s impossible,” the man cried. “The feathers have blown in all directions and can never be collected.” The rabbi turned to him and said, “So, too, with your words.” Thus half of our duty is to guard our tongues. But,the other half is to do the complete opposite. Talk as much as you can to get the truth out. We live in a world today where the snake has raised its poisonous head once more and is again spewing lies. And we, the children of Adam and Eve, cannot let the lies stick and must fight back word for word. Thus, when we see wrong doings in our government or confront the likes of Ahmadinejad or rogue leaders and terrorists, know that our silence acts as the cement for their evil house of lies. If only the Israelis better resisted the WORD “occupied territories” maybe the reality on the ground would be different today. But their Palestinian opponents fought harder and won the word war. We have only to look back to Hitler to see how powerful words really are. Hitler did not begin his war against the Jews by sending them to gas chambers. He began it with hateful talk, and then those words grew legs and the storm troopers went marching on. We must bite back at every sound bite. The next time someone seduces us with slogans such as “change we need,” we better seek the definition of “change” so that we are the ones who choose the vocabulary which shapes our lives. With blogs, diggs, twitter, texts, Facebook, and IM’s, we are evermore empowered, thus evermore duty bound to get the truth out there, not by gossiping, besmirching, and slandering, but by informing, educating, and illuminating--and passing the right words along.