A Theology of Writing

Salma Gundi's picture

            The Hebrew word katab means to engrave or inscribe. In Exodus 31:18 God engraved the Ten Commandments onto stone tablets with His own finger. He created permanent records of His Words lest people forget what He said. Even after Moses broke the first set, God had Moses make new tablets so He could rewrite the same commandments. (Exod. 34:1). God values His words—so much that He wants them written on human hearts. (Prov. 7:1-3).

            The Greek word logos means word, spoken or written. John 1:1-3 refers to Jesus as "The Word," affirming His deity and oneness with the Father, along with His hand in creation. Jesus used words to speak the world into existence. He spoke and it came to be. (Gen. 1). In Revelation 21:27 Jesus promises eternal security to His children whose names are written in the Lamb's Book of Life. Words have power. This is why the Bible warns readers they will eat the fruit of their words.  

             Theology is the ongoing practical study of God, His Truth, and Revelation. Through human penmanship, God used self-inspired words to teach, reveal His character and intentions, and express His love for mankind. (2 Tim. 3:16; 1 Thess. 2:13). The Bible and Ten Commandments show that written words matter to God. The Bible and Christian writings help one study and know His character and nature.

            But writing involves risks of vulnerability and criticism. Thus, the Christian writer must depend on God for creativity, guidance, and security in a disapproving world. Just as good theology enhances faith, good writing that glorifies God does the same.

            Christian writing ought to serve the Body of Christ. From Apologetics to Bible study curricula to the Christian novel, publications can help seekers experience and understand God. By emphasizing His goodness and sovereignty in a fallen world where even the Christian struggles with sin and doubt, the believer can find encouragement. Christians have a duty to clarify the gospel. Their writing must make the Bible relatable, making Jesus real in a culture where the prosperity gospel gets elevated above truth, and millennials leave the church in herds. Live witnessing has merit. But written words articulate ideas in a systematic way, reaching the masses more efficiently.

            God has gifted humans with language. No other creature can communicate with words. As a Christian I feel I have a duty to write. Humans may forget spoken words. But the written word, like a voice from the grave, far outlasts the mind that penned it.

 

 

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