Friday, December 3, 2010

What About This Word “Amazing?”

And Joshua said unto the people, Sanctify yourselves: for to morrow the LORD will do wonders among you.   -Joshua 3:5 (KJV) 

If you are listening these days to the way people speak, you may have noticed that the word “amazing”  has somehow worked its way into casual conversation.  The downside to this trend is that the power of the word has been lessened and I would even go as far as to say cheapened.  I have been in conversations or been on the fringe of some that went something like this:
“Hey John; how was your trip to the Bahamas?” “It was amazing.” said John. 
“So, Rita; I see you are driving a new Lexus.  How do you like it?”  “Oh, it’s amazing.” Rita replies. 
“You know, Ted; I hear that Outback has a new Bloomin’ Onion recipe.”  “We had one the other night,” Ted answered. “It was amazing.”  

See what I mean?  This wonderful word with all its power and tremendous force for communicating profound truths has been reduced to describing recipes and automobiles.  Yes, I know I probably shouldn’t make such a big deal over this, but it just doesn’t set well with me.  This is the same word that the great hymn of the Christian faith, “Amazing Grace,” employed to describe the wondrous grace of God.  The word, as used in the song, is an attempt to describe the indescribable.  No word in the English language could possibly communicate the depths of the grace of God in Jesus Christ, so the closest the composer could come to it was to say that it was amazing.  Truly, that is a noble application of the word.  

Even the oldest English translation of the Holy Scriptures, The King James Bible, does not use the word “amazing.”  Other more recent translations employ it, but only in a few verses.  In Joshua chapter three God told the Israelites to get ready, for the He was going to do wonders among them.  A few more modern translations do render this word, “amazing things.” My prayer is that we as followers of Christ would prepare our hearts and be ready for when the Lord does wonders among us.  Let it be our desire to grow into a deeper knowledge of the power of God’s amazing grace.   

Jesus Christ loved us so much that He went to the cross of Calvary and shed His blood as a sacrifice for the sins of mankind.  All who come to faith in Him can have their sins washed away and given a new lease on life.

There is one word for that, my friends: amazing.

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