Wednesday, July 31, 2019

"He Spoke and It Was"

Psalm 33.9 

For He spoke, 
and it was done; 
He commanded, 
and it stood fast.” 

For he spoke, 
and it came into existence
he issued the decree, 
and it stood firm.” 

I like to read the Bible in a variety of translations. It’s nearly as good as knowing the original language. Translators offer their own special nuances which, when compiled, leave the reader with a clear picture of the original intent.

Some translations capitalize the pronouns referring to God and Jesus (i.e., New American Standard Bible, New King James Version, Amplified Bible, etc.). I like that, not only because it offers a token gesture of honor to God, but more importantly, because capitalized pronouns assist the reader to identify the subject of the verse, whether human or divine, when it is not readily evident by the text.

In their attempt to achieve accuracy, certain Bibles italicize words that do not appear in the source manuscripts but are added for clarity in reading. I also like that. This editorial practice allows the Bible student to quickly know which words are original in order to get as close as possible to the primary meaning of the passage. In the verse above, for example, the NKJ version italicizes the word “done” because it does not actually appear in the Hebrew text. A strict translation of the first line of Psalm 33.9 would read with some awkwardness in English…

“For He spoke and it was.”

This verse conveys something crucial about the character of God… He’s a God of His Word and His Word has absolute power. God not only intends to do what He says He will do (i.e., keeps His promises), He is also fully capable to perform and does so with the sound of His voice. The creative power of His speech infinitely transcends our comprehension. We would not even know that there was light, much less understand what it was, if God had not spoken light into existence and then given us eyes to view it.

“Then God said, ‘Let there be light’; and there was light.”
Genesis 1.3 NASU

“For God, who said, ‘Light shall shine out of darkness,’
is the One who has shone in our hearts to give the Light of the
knowledge of the glory of God in the face of Christ.”
2nd Corinthians 4.6 NASU

God said, “light” and, by the sheer force of His word, light “came into existence.” He also made it personal by shining the light of His Son “in our hearts.” Jesus said, “I am the light of the world. Whoever follows me will never walk in darkness, but will have the light of life” 
(John 8.12 NIV). In a gracious act of loving condescension God sent His Son and said, ‘Let the light of Jesus shine in you and me’ ...and it did!

“He spoke and it was.”

1 comment:

One Sided said...

Just today I was asked if God gave thought before He spoke?

My reply was that I had to assume He did. But that assumption was based on my point of view as a man. Even when asked something I know, there is "thought" before I speak.

My problems start when I speak without giving it thought.