A Rose By Any Other Name
By Faith Spears
Although Shakespeare’s words focused upon the value of a person regardless of his name-in Romeo’s case, it was the family name-they express a truth that applies to all areas of life, even to the life of a Christian Shakespeare’s argument was that labels should not be used against a person. Today, the use of doublespeak, a word coined from George Orwell’s 1984, has invaded our society and poses a threat to the preservation of our godly standards. This article addresses that threat,
Beware of doublespeak!
A government no longer fails, it “destabilizes.” The invasion of a small island is not war, it is a “rescue mission.” The ghetto is no longer the slums, it turned into “substandard living!”
The new MX intercontinental missile may be called the “Peacemaker,” but its name really depends on who delivers it first! People hardly ever use the word “dying” anymore. It is a “terminal illness.” The politicians do not lie, they “misspeak.” And now tax increases are “revenue enhancements.”
So many things are labeled “for your convenience” when it is more trouble for us! It is for “their” convenience, whoever they may be, yet we often go along without questioning the misleading words.
Recently we read of a tragic fire at a nuclear plant. It was called “rapid oxidation,” yet several men were burned beyond recognition. Our automobiles are not used cars . . . they are pre-owned! The other day I read about a county that had “armaments with malice.” It took a while to figure out the meaning, but I finally realized they were dropping bombs.
In these days of doublespeak it is hard to know what sinning really is. It is now often called being “cold in the soul.”
Preachers used to preach hard against the world invading our churches. Now it seems they go along with the trend because others do it and are seemingly blessed. For instance, our grandmothers stopped wearing make-up when they were filled with the Holy Ghost because the pastors in that generation named it a sin. But years have passed, and mother wore just a “touch.” Now daughters are unashamedly wearing it, under a new name, of course. Now it is blush, to cover up, or something to cover the wrinkles!
Sanitation engineers still have to collect garbage, no matter the label they carry! lt is still a fact that strychnine is deadly poison, whether it is served from a crystal goblet or in a jar with the skull and bones pictured. Only the packaging is different.
Some day we may shake ourselves, like Samson of old, and realize that we have no more power with God. Samson compromised twice, and it did not seem to hurt a thing. But the time came when the Spirit of the Lord had “departed from him” (Judges 16:20).
Samson knew that what he was doing did not please God, yet the sad fact remains-and it is a fact-that he “told her [Delilah] all his heart” (Judges 16:17). After being a spiritual leader for twenty years, he did not know that the Lord had departed from him until he turned to God in a time of grave need How sad!
Preachers hardly ever preach on adultery. It is now an “extra marital affair.” And we hear that there are churches with the name “Pentecostal” over the door where the ladies wear clothing that “pertain to a man” Deuteronomy 22:5). However, it is not called men’s clothing, of course; slightly altered to fit the female anatomy, it carries a fancier title than “trousers,” but that doesn’t change the truth.
Someday there will be one too many compromises, and only God knows when we cross that invisible line. Let us shake ourselves mow before the Spirit departs!
A church in the Book of Revelation presents an exact picture of the modern trend They just went along with the trend-probably a little carefully at first, maybe a little fearful-but then, everyone was doing it, even some who had been preaching for many years. Of course, they would never go to a movie; they just rent it, and watch it on their video. lt could even be some so-called Hollywood version of a story from the Bible, making it more acceptable to the conscience, but inevitably it will pervert the whole message of the Scriptures. It is no wonder that God said he would spue the Laodicean church out of Hismouth (Revelation 3:16).
Let us stay in the old paths. It is not necessary to sugar coat the old-time gospel message. It still changes lives. Our salvation message of repentance, baptism in the precious name of Jesus, and the experience of being filled with the Holy Ghost-rising to walk in a new life, still means old-fashioned holy living. Like the old-time preachers used to say, “You will spit white and talk right!”
Our gospel is as up-to-date as today’s news, and the basic truths are still as relevant today as when they were written, God never changes! His nature of holiness never changes. And His Word never changes. We must not doublespeak in an attempt to accommodate carnal trends to a Christian lifestyle.
(The above material was published by INDIAN APOSTOLIC TRUMPET, March 1986.)
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