Read: Judges 12.5-6. (NRSV)
It can be fascinating to study the various dialects of different languages. With the influence of different cultures, regions, and social intention words are sounded with different styles and inflections. An example might be seen referring to ‘you’, ‘ya’ll’, or ‘yous guys’ – all regional examples of the familiar you. Sometimes the wrong word gets us in trouble. The character Peggy, in the television show, King of the Hill, is a substitute teacher with her very own elementary and southern-Texan version of Spanish lands her in a Mexican court until she tells her side of the story in her own words. She tells the judge, speaking in her version of ‘Espanola’, that he has a big cat in his pants. Then the judge realizes her misuse of the language caused the trouble in the first place.
In the text, the enemy troops had the right password, but the wrong pronunciation. Some of the names in scripture are difficult. The general rule for pronouncing names that are difficult is to speak them boldly and not to stop for comments. The power of scripture is not in how we pronounce it. It is not limited to one language or dialect. But our use of language may speak to knowing our audience when we share the gospel. Do not be bashful about share the Good News of Jesus Christ.
Call to Action: Read Acts 2:1-13 aloud and know how you pronounce the names of the cities and regions is not as important as proclaiming the power of the Holy Spirit and power of the church.
Prayer: Thank you for speaking to each of us in our own hearts. Resonate with us through your Holy Spirit. Amen.