Definition: an act of defining, a set of words explaining the meaning e.g. of a word, scientific principle or property, clearness of detail....... and on and on it goes, off into boredom and sleepiness.
Definitions. We all use them. ALL the time, and we take their meaning for granted sometimes. Let's start with something easy - cat. We all know what that is. A fury feline animal that yells at you when you want to be asleep and sheds fur all over your clean church clothes. :) Nice and easy, and we all can agree to that can't we? Lets have another easy one - heart. No wait, maybe this isn't as easy as it appears, because this could have a few meanings. It could mean the literal, blood-pumping organ inside your chest, thumpity-thumping away, night and day, or it could mean the center of something, the nerve-center, the "heart" of the issue. Starting to see how important this subject is? I didn't think so. Let me hit you with the big kahuna. How about big suckers like "Love", "Justice", "Good", "Evil", "Holiness", "Righteousness", etc. That set you back a bit didn't it? But wait, no, your self esteem and brains came to the rescue and saved the intellectual day. You started at the top: Love, and there you had to pause again didn't you? You are having a battle in your mind of how to define the word. If you're not saved, your mind flips to the worldly end, the mushy gushy emotional feeling you have when you look at your girlfriend or wife - or the feeling you have towards your favorite pizza, etc. If you're saved, the regenerate half of your mind kicks in and tells you that no, that isn't right, it's a selfless devotion to someone else, no matter what they do to you.
See the battle of definitions? This is a battle so little fought in our modern world, and one that we as Christians so commonly, DRASTICALLY lose at. It has been said, that he who rocks the cradle, rules the world. The only reason that is true, is because he who rocks the cradle, teaches the child in it the definitions of life.
Life - there is another WHOPPER of a definition that we so often take for granted.
Anyway, we submit hand and foot to the world's definitions of key points of life, and thereby agree to their meaning and implications. If a friend of ours is getting a divorce, and the reason is we don't "love" each-other any more, the first question that pops into my mind is, just how do YOU define love?
Here's another one. we've all heard the phrase "you can't legislate morality". We've heard it thousands of times by people who are against laws being based on Biblical teaching. So often we accept that, buying in to their definitions of what "morality" is, and just what does that mean? It means a set of standards, or rules, that govern life. If we define it that way, you come to see that ALL laws are legislating morality. The question then becomes, whose standards are you buying into?
Here is the key clincher. So often we use the worlds standards of right, and wrong, and good and bad, and the list goes on and on how we use THEIR standards, THEIR definitions. If the world grows up thinking that "love" means the mushy gushy feelings, then what do we do when the bible says "love your enemies" and we don't have that mushy gush? We're lost in the dark, wondering what to do. Or what if the world grows up thinking that Liberty is just doing as we please, and then "just doing as you please" for Joe on the corner, means killing those who he pleases as he pleases?
See the gravity of the matter now? This issue is HUGE. There is a statement I heard once, "If you buy a statement, you buy the assumption behind it".
We must NEVER assume what a word means, and be sure to define it as the BIBLE defines it ALL THE TIME, and never jump to the conclusion that someone you are talking to uses the word in the same light.
Light - how do you define Light?
Sorry, getting a bit carried away here, but you get the point. :)
Another big one the world messes up is "peace". After all, blessed are the peacemakers... God's definitions of peace, is life as God would have it, not everybody getting along with each other and nobody ever fighting or going to war - "coexist", if you will.
Sorry, I'm really going off the deep end, but I hope you get the point.
Make sure you ALWAYS use God's standards when it comes to life, and NEVER buy into the world's definitions on major issues, or even minor issues for that matter.
I think the phrase needs to be changed to "He who defines words, rules the world."
Fortunately for Christians, the one who defines the words for us, DOES rule the world. :)
Soli Deo Gloria.