I was having a discussion with a friend of mine about Pastor Rick Warrens sermon on the words Gosh and Jeez and how in turn they are breaking the 4th commandment, “Thou shalt not use the Lord’s name in vain.” We both agreed that using the Lord’s name in vain has many distinctive properties. A few of those properties were respect, love and truth. While I agreed with him, he said that many won’t find it a problem to say, “God damn it”, “God damn” “Oh my gosh” etc. because they feel it is a small offense to God. What he said to that was there is no such thing as a small offense to God, that all sin is equal no matter how we minimize or expand our preconceived notions. He writes, “Using the Lord’s name in vain has become so common in a world of sinful culture, that it’s not uncommon for a culture to become inconsiderate to His name for momentary pleasure and relief.”
He then broke it down into an interesting parable,
“A father has a son who enjoys saying God dammit. The father warned his son not to use the Lord’s name in vain and even asked him how he would like it. The son ignored his fathers teachings and so the father decided to take matters into his own hands. Every time something went wrong or were upset he would replace “God Damn it” with his son’s name. The son of course naturally became humored at first until the prolonged exposure of such incidentals made him agitated and upset. The son no longer felt respected or loved, and recognized the wrong of his ways and decided to change after all.”
I agree with my friend that if we were to use one another’s names in vexation or for relief of stress and/or anxiety we would create strife and conflict among one another. Using God’s name in such a manner denies his authority and turns our back on his command for respect and fear and love.
However you decide to pick apart our conversation is up to you.