Alright, alright – this is going to ruffle some feathers, but I’m ok with that because this is an issue that is happening in every church and it seems to be unchecked. What’s up with everyone saying Oh my God as a meaningless expression of surprise?! Saying “OMG, that’s amazing” seems to be perfectly acceptable among Christians. I’m not perfect by any means, and I’m fully aware of the fact that I’ve got a lot of growing to do in my own life – so please don’t take this as condemnation. But it would be naive to ignore the fact that the expression is so ubiquitous in North American English that the influence has spread into our Christian vocabulary undetected. Most people have probably never given this a second thought!
Into the Book
It’s a touchy subject, for sure, but in Exodus 20 the Bible talks about Moses receiving the ten commandments directly from God and the third commandment is clear: “You shall not take the name of the LORD your God in vain, for the LORD will not hold him guiltless who misuses his name” (Ex 20:7). By believing in only one true God, it means that saying god for any reason other than worship, prayer, or discussions about Him is breaking the third commandment. This includes shortened expressions such as “OMG!”.
Words mean things
Let’s look at this in another light… sin or not, if we use a word for anything other than its true value, we decrease its impact. For example, the word “amazing”. We use the word amazing to describe our coffee, wifi speeds, or our favorite TV show. While there’s nothing wrong with that, it does cheapen the word when you are using amazing to describe the miracle of childbirth, the Grand Canyon, or our God.
You make the call for yourself
When it all comes down to it, we’ve got a decision to make for ourselves. Do the words we use every day “encourage one another and build each other up” (1 Thes 5:11) without diminishing the fact that there is power in the name of God? I want to make sure that I think about what I say before I say it.
Let’s try to remember that words mean things. Let’s end average together.