The fact that the Deseret News believed a comedian like myself might have some insight worth sharing on the Third Commandment suggests either:
They are incredibly intuitive when it comes to utilizing my genius to explore the big questions or someone accidently got ahold of some fermented root beer.
As far as I’m concerned, when I look at the Ten Commandments overall there are nine too many anyways!
Considering no one has ever kept any of the commandments faithfully yet, perhaps God should have just kept with the First Commandment to give us a few thousand years to get our feet wet, huh?
The fact is if we kept the First, the rest would take care of themselves, but I digress.
I was asked to comment on the Third Commandment, which does seem to have special significance to me because I am a purveyor of words, or maybe to be more precise, a purveyor of ideas. Even more importantly, I get paid for the privilege, which as a conservative-capitalist is always sweet.
Thus, if there is anything that makes the Third Commandment crucial, it’s the fact that God told us he used words to create everything we are aware of. God stated that what he created with words was “good,” as opposed to the weeds, labor pains and periodic killing of each other that I think we all agree would land in the category of “bad.”
Words created the universe, our planet and everything alive in it. Jesus himself claimed to be The Word!
The Third Commandment also reminds us how important context is to words in God’s eyes.
God gave us the Third Commandment not just to avoid using his name as a swear word, but to never, ever use it in a way that would be irreverent or undignified because he deserves ultimate respect as the inventor of us.
It is also a constant reminder to any nation, state, governing body or individual human being that he made the rules, He is in control and we must reverence his standing in the affairs of men. Remember — the Founding Fathers said God gave us our rights.
There is a reason we use words like, your honor, and Mr. President; they acknowledge authority and respect for something bigger than ourselves.
Why? Because God knows whoever controls the language, controls the power.
God demands to be worshipped, honored and by using his name in reverence reminds us we are his servants and he created us, not the other way around. Only rebellious pride would try to bring his name down to our level where he is mocked simply by our indifference.
Using God’s name in vain is crude, simple and unsophisticated. I see this play out in comedy clubs where somehow curse words are applauded as progressive and intelligent. You know, as opposed to good writing.
As a comedian with a 25-year career whom the New Yorker called “God’s Comic,” I have often been asked in interviews if it was hard being a clean comedian all those years in clubs?
The answer was of course, duh! Clean is harder, that’s what makes it actually clever and creative when done well.
I’ve built my reputation on championing the destruction of political correctness because its agenda is to control the language and thus control the cultural narrative.
Political correctness is evil because not only does it dictate what the narrative of a culture will be, it forbids you to even disagree. It demands obedience to its point of view, not God’s, and censors dissent.
To be politically correct is to give up your liberties, not just as an American, but also as an individual who was given autonomy by God.
Thomas Jefferson was not known as a devout Christian. Nevertheless, he said that “I tremble for my country when I reflect that God is just; that his justice cannot sleep forever.”
Thus it seems the Third Commandment emphasizes that if we behave like we can get away with using God’s name cavalierly in society, we no longer need to be cautious about any idea we hold as a group. If God’s name can be trivialized, then nothing is sacred and we no longer need to remain vigilant to what we as a culture hold dear.
Taking God’s name in vain indicates we no longer believe there are sacred, immutable ideas that transcend cultural conventions and ultimately we embrace the rule of man, not the rule of God.
God cautions us, though, to soberly remember that one day we will stand in his presence and have to answer for our pride.
Apparently folks, he’s taking notes.
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Brad Stine, a widely covered Christian comedian, was a regular live social commentator on "Fox & Friends" and has been featured in a wide range of newspapers, television shows and magazines, including Reader’s Digest and Focus on the Family. He has five original DVDs featuring his comedy, and has written two books, "Live from Middle America: Rants from a Red-State Comedian," and "Being a Christian Without Being an Idiot," and is co-starring in the upcoming feature film "Persecuted" in theaters nationwide July 18.