Words matter! As we continue the discussion regarding leadership in the Postmodern Era, it is important to note that this battle over terminology (and its degradation) is nothing new. However, those who win the battle over definitions (the redefining and/or undefining of words and phrases) will set the moral, spiritual, and ethical tones for a culture and these trends are extremely difficult to reverse.
Acclaimed nineteenth-century Philosopher and deconstructionist of the Modern Era, Friedrich Nietzsche, was successful in beginning the Postmodern movement away from absolute truth. He did not mince words in this regard while presenting the following in his work, Truth and the Extra-Moral Sense:
“What then is truth? a mobile army of metaphors, metonyms, and anthropomorphisms-in short, a sum of human relations, which have been enhanced, transposed, and embellished poetically and rhetorically, and which after long use seem firm, canonical, and obligatory to a people: truths are illusions about which one has forgotten that this is the way they are; metaphors which are worn out and without sensuous power; coins which have lost their pictures and now matter only as metal, no longer as coins.”
It is crucial that Christian leaders not capitulate in this war on words as definitions, especially those regarding truth and morality, hold life-transforming meaning. If we give in and fail to lead on this front, we forsake the Creator, who is also known as the Word. So important is this concept that this Apostle John’s opening salvo began with, “In the beginning was the Word, and the Word was with God, and the Word was God” (John 1:1). Thankfully, this Word will never be deconstructed.
-Soli Deo Gloria