You shall not take the name Yahweh your God in vain Exodus 20:7
In Vain – The second commandment is the reverence commandment. It demands that we treat God’s name with respect. As we discovered, that means we speak as men and women under His authority. Our words must reflect His character because words have power.
The world has a different view of respect. In the kingdom of this age, we are taught to respect force. In our world, words mean nothing in front of a gun. It is brute strength that really commands fear. So we exhibit our muscle in “shock and awe”. We bow to the machine. We reverence technology instead of people. We are witnessing a systematic undermining of the power of words as the world disconnects itself from truth. Illegal becomes undocumented. Criminal becomes victim. Genocide becomes cleansing. Hate becomes mental disorder. Faith becomes fable. And God, well, that’s just whatever you imagine to be your spiritual source.
There are consequences for this deliberate decline. When you no longer revere God, why would you have a second thought about what God creates? It’s easy to despoil a world that exists by accident. It’s not unreasonable to disregard creatures who are just one step above apes. Who could have imagined that breaking the second commandment would show up in our judicial practice or our education or our environmental policies? But there it is. Disrespecting the Creator, we desecrated the creation. Now what do you think about blasphemy?
Do you blaspheme God when you spout hatred for another human being?
Do you blaspheme God when you exploit people and things for your own gain?
Do you blaspheme God when you rewrite His laws of punishment?
Do you blaspheme God when you use evolutionary theory to justify moral turpitude?
Only men and women who deny authority could participate in such insults, and yet, the evidence is obvious. Every day we see more and more license in the name of freedom (another word redefined).
Obeying the second commandment begins with a servant’s attitude – humility, awe, respect and, yes, dread. God is to be feared for He does not forget those who have spurned His authority. And it’s not just about words.