Genesis - Power of Words


A book, like the bible, comprises of words that can hold sway over many hearts and mind. I found it interesting how this power of words can be seen in the Genesis itself.

'"Let there be light." And there was light from the darkness'. Spoken words embodies God have the immense power of creation and ability to separate what used to be mixed together, such as 'light from the darkness'. He also separated the land from the water, and created plants and animal life. By his blessings, life is further propagated. It is almost akin to the power that an author can have on not just the characters in the book, but the readers as well. Words have influence that can have much rippling effect in society, spoken or written. But perhaps the resemblance is not surprising, given that 'God created the human in his image, in the image of God He created him'.

Spoken words from humans instead, resembles perhaps the readers, who discuss and analyse the words on the book and attempt to get the authorial intent from the words. The first time we read about Adam's words is when he analysed Eve and said 'this one shall be called Woman'. He was also the one who later on 'called his woman's name Eve'. Human's words have no impact on the words in the book itself. Those are written by the author. However, readers do have the choice to interpret it differently and take away different things from the words, just as the humans in the Genesis had the ability to act in ways that counter authorial intent.

Who then, is the serpent? The serpent in this case represents the translators, commentators, and people like directors of movies. They take the original work, or words in this case, and twist it. The first words outside of the serpent's mouth were of exaggeration, 'you shall not eat from any tree of the garden'. The next sentence was a technical lie 'you shall not die'. Eve will not die immediately, but will instead become mortal instead of remain immortal. The last sentence was half a lie that twisted the truth of what is good and evil, telling Eve that she 'will become as gods' was a lie while 'knowing good and evil' was a half-truth. Exaggerations, technical lie, total lie, half-truths. Sounds familiar? Like commentators on Shijing who used the words in the poem to bring about certain moral values or political agendas and Hollywood directors, the serpent's words can have the ability to twist creation into something totally against authorial intent and bring that vision to many others.

What then, is my intent in writing this piece of blog post? Is it not akin to that of the serpent's words, intentionally twisting and framing words into other's minds? Or perhaps I am merely a college student, attempting to understand what is supposedly the word of God.

81 thoughts on “Genesis - Power of Words

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