What I want you to know. Which is everything.

Saturday, October 22, 2005

Honor, Part 1: Our Ego is Stupid

I've always heard that we should honor God. That it is sinful, even, to dishonor him by using his name in vain or not taking your hat off in a prayer or doing one of these outward signs of respect that actually stem from ways of honoring those in our own society. Basically, we have tried to make God into, not only a human, but an American human that derives worth and honor from the same petty things that we do.

We feel honor as people when others tell us we did a good job, or we win an award, or if someone asks our opinion of something. Our egos and self-images are entirely based on how we are honored by other people. In this sense, honor is a completely outward and superficial idea. It's not even a real emotion, it's accolades, trophies, and "at-a-boys!" A dictator or king who rules absolutely needs the kind of shows of honor like saluting or even bowing so that their honor is reinforced. The people who serve him or her show that they honor the ruler by completely submitting to their will. Because humans generally equate this type of honor with a deity, the human ruler's ego is so stroked he or she might begin to think of him or herself as as close to a "god" as one can get.

My point is that honor is a concept that is of this world, that human beings have developed in order to show outwardly that one is revered or even loved. So, I have to wonder, does God really care about being honored?

I don't think so. I think God wants to loved which is much more difficult emotion to muster. Anybody can take off their hat during a prayer or refrain from using the Lord's name in vain. Anyone can go to church, sit in a pew and even turn off a television show that they deem "ungodly." These are all acts of honor to God, but they are outward acts. These acts may be associated with the condition of one's heart. A person may only be honoring God because they've been taught that if they love God, they will do these certain things in order to honor him, outwardly. Is God impressed? I suppose that if you actually believe that the two are linked then God may be appreciative of your gesture, but in the end, I gotta think that he doesn't care about that. He cares about the love that you have for him.

Tomorrow: Honor, Part 2: Did the Greeks Capitalize Pronouns for Their Gods?

1 comment:

priest said...

shoot (oops, there's one right there), the Hellenistic Greek language didn't even capitalize "God." It was theos instead of Theos. of course, Jesus Christ was capitalized. but from the standpoint of capitalization, God was on the same level as all the Greek gods. god bless.