Preach the Definition!

This originally appeared as an email delivered on
Saturday, August 19th, 2017.

It is common for people to use words they cannot define. It gives others the impression of understanding. No place is this more evident than in churchianity (though journalism is gaining ground).

Words like grace, love, atonement, faith, repent, and worship are thrown around, but ask someone what they mean and you are met with blank stares. Want to test the waters? Ask someone what it means to be a Christian.

When teaching your family, Bible study, or church teach the definitions. Don’t assume everyone knows what common words mean. Most don’t.

To define something requires describing it distinctly and clearly.

The word ‘definition’ has the word finish (fini) right in the middle of it. It cannot be open ended.

A definition says what a thing is and what it is not. It marks where something begins and ends. It has limits. To define something means you can put a boundary around it and identify when the line is crossed.

Without clear definition pejorative words can be placed on anyone even if the shoe doesn’t fit. Or worse, words like ‘heretic’ can be brushed off those for whom the shoe fits like a glove.

Ecumenicists and evangelicals avoid clear definition by disguising doctrinal differences in order to put everyone in the same box in the name of unity. Their unity has no meaning.

Truth consists of doctrines which are made up of words. When you define words the truth will be made clear by setting it apart distinctly from error.

What drives people not to finish things, impose limits, draw lines, point out error, or place labels is the same reason why people want to use words without defining them.

This might explain why everyone is speaking past each other and never coming to a knowledge of the truth. This is unacceptable of God’s workmen.

      Teach the Bible verse by verse.
      Teach definitions of words as you go.
      When you get the definition in place, preach the definition to make sure everyone knows why the defined boundary you just set up is so important.

This is how you make all men see clearly.

For the love of the Truth,

Justin “call me Webster” Johnson

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