One of the challenges we face is the hijacking of language and symbols. Gay and rainbow leap to mind. The rainbow has been transformed by the culture to represent homosexual rights rather than the promise that God will never again destroy the world with a flood, Genesis 9:15. Gay used to mean carefree and happy, festive, joyful it is now used to describe perversion. Ken Hutcherson has refused to allow this to define his use of the word, recently declaring that he was the gayest man he knew.
The individual at Chick-fil-A did the same thing this noon. He declared that everyone there hated him because they were in line to support Cathy. In so doing he misused the language and intentionally attempted to put everyone there on the defensive, changing the ground of the conversation and diminishing any chance of rational dialog. But then again he was not there to engage in rational dialog.
This is happening daily in politics, culture, and yes, in churches. Too often we, and I include myself in this, are too quick to re-define terms in ways that support our prejudices and minimize the ability of others to challenge our positions. This happened to me yesterday, as I shared. It happens with “theological scholars” all of the time. There is one controversial issue in the Church now that has liberal scholar doing interpretive and definition gymnastics to change the clear meaning of the simple words of the Bible. That is why it is so important for us as believers to continually challenge ourselves to stay true to what the Bible says, not what we think it says, or what we want it to say. We need to allow the Word of God to renew our minds and our language and not hijack it for our purposes.