WHAT DOES THAT WORD MEAN? – Intro to Lesson 5 – Feb. 9 – 16

Little children are often fascinated by very big words, aren’t they?  Sometimes they are quite willing to try to use them in order to have some fun or to impress adults, but our friend Winnie-the-Pooh was a bit more honest about his vocabulary.  He said to some of his friends in the 100 acre woods one day, “It’s more fun to talk with someone who doesn’t use long, difficult words but rather short, easy words like ‘What about lunch’?”  Apparently he wanted his good friend, Christopher Robin, as well as Owl and Rabbit and Tigger to be direct and to make their conversation easy to understand.  When possible, it’s very good counsel.

There are times, however, when new ideas and thoughts are best explained through more technical terms and this often requires people to learn bigger words and then to gradually absorb the meaning of this new vocabulary.  In his letter to the new believers in Rome, Paul is, no doubt, doing exactly that.  He is introducing the idea of justification and reconciliation in ways that they (and we) need to grasp if we want to more fully understand what God offers to us through Jesus.  He is very careful to use these words in a variety of ways so that those who hear them can begin to understand their importance and their practical implications.  If you heard that “justification” means peace with God, no condemnation, reconciliation with God, and life itself, wouldn’t you want to not only learn that word, but understand how to be “justified”?

This just might be a good time for you to take a look at some of these concepts that Paul is so carefully explaining, so that your vocabulary is expanded, but even more the “longer and difficult words” can penetrate your mind and heart in new and deeper ways.

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