Talking in (Digital) Tongues

Facebook…Twitter…Hash tag this, Tweet me that. Whatever happened to talking to each other using the language we were (supposed) to have been taught in school?

OK- one thing I can say about Twitter is that having a defined number of characters can help someone learn to say what they want to say as effectively as possible. People who give sermons could take a lesson from that (myself included) but overall what we have done is to shorten words so much, and use just the initials (acronyms instead of words), that it has been a digital glossolalia.

What’s worse is that the youth of today cannot communicate outside this world of text-language. That spells disaster for anyone over 45 because when the high school kids of today enter the workforce, the age of sending memo’s will be gone. It will be MMITCF (meet me in the conference room) or YF! (this can be figured out easily, as you pack up your desk.)

The Bible is from God, and it tells us who He is and what He wants from us, and those things never change. There are many, many different interpretations, and I am afraid that in the next decade or so the newer versions may be more in line with digital talk than plain English.

Imagine: “…and the Lord emailed Moses and said,”Hash tag Pharaoh and tell him to LMPG!”  How about: “David and Jonathan were BFF’s?” Or maybe: “…First there was the email, then the email became a Tweet, and the tweet dwelt within my mailbox.”

It seems to lose something, doesn’t it? Some of you may be saying there are languages today that are picture languages, such as many of the Asian languages and even ancient Egyptian hieroglyphics. And the ancient Egyptians were the most developed and advanced people of their time, so why am I so worried about today’s Text-talk? And you could be right- maybe I am just being old fashioned and stubborn.

I’ve had people say I am stubborn, but I will NEVER AGREE!!!  (this is what we writers call, ‘Comic relief.” Are you laughing? No? Maybe a smile?)

Language itself is a dynamic thing, it always changes and that is a normal part of civilization. As we grow we change, our needs change, our society changes, and so to does the language. To most people the word “Blast” today only means some sort of explosion, or a party, but in the late 19th Century it was a curse word. I am certain that some of today’s curse words will be a regular part of the language by the year 2020. The comedian (the late) George Carlin had a skit about “The 7 Words You Can’t Say on Television”- I think there’s only 2 left. Even when they bleep out the word, it is still obvious what it is.

Anyway, language will change, and I suppose that there will be people who will eventually re-write the Bible to reflect the current verbiage and usage. I pray that nothing is lost in translation.

God is the same today as he was yesterday, and will be the same tomorrow and forever. The Bible is not just His laws and teachings, it is who He is. It is how He lets us get to know Him, intimately. Changing that into modern text-talk has to deplete it. I can’t stand that idea!

I have been a little back-and-forth today, and I’m sorry about that. I can’t seem to get my thoughts together coherently and express them in a clear way. Maybe that’s part of the message- I am pretty good at writing (I hope you agree) and can express myself well. If I can’t write a blog telling you, my readers, exactly what I am feeling, if I had text-talked this how much more would you be missing? We cannot afford to miss even one jot or tiddle from the Manual because we will need every sentence, every word, every syllable that God gave us to defend ourselves against the Enemy.

Ephesians tells us the Word of God is a sword. Just like any sharp instrument, if you don’t handle it carefully and with respect, you can seriously damage yourself. We need to keep the Word of God intact, and as He had us write it. If we become so irresponsible with our language as to change the way we communicate, we lose something very valuable. Poetry, the beautiful lyrics of music, love letters between people, the Psalms…you can’t express these feelings and emotions with acronyms.  And that means that the Bible, also, will lose it’s potency if it is “texted.”

Yeshua tells us to stay alert with regards to His return. May I suggest we stretch the meaning of this a little to be alert not just for His return, but to the way the Enemy will try to deceive us into apostasy.  I may sound a little over-reactive, but I do believe that as we lose the ability to communicate effectively with each other we lose the ability to organize. If we can’t organize, we can’t become an army for God. Maybe in a century or so people will be able to communicate using nothing but symbols and acronyms, but I don’t think so. We need a language with the ability to express itself in complete thoughts and to be flexible enough to change without becoming so different it isn’t even the same thing anymore.

Teach your children to write with words, teach your employees how to write a memo, to spell without “Spellcheck”, and to verbally communicate with each other. Ditch the cell phones at parties and in the car, or at the dinner table, and talk to each other.

We need to stay together, to communicate effectively so that we can be ready and prepared against the Enemies of God. We can’t do that well if we can’t even form a sentence.


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