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Question

You use the phrase 'Father, Son and Holy Spirit'. English didn't exist at the time of the Bible. How can God understand you?

Answer

Thank you for asking your question about Christianity and language. 

It is true that the phrase you quoted, and that we use throughout this website, was written in English. The Bible however, was not written in English. The Old Testament was written predominately in Hebrew and the New Testament was written in Greek and some Aramaic. 

At the start of the world, the Bible tells us that everyone spoke one language, however, because of the danger of a one-language humanity, God confused people's language and scattered the people across the globe. This is the nature of what we see today: people of different languages in smaller groups across the globe, rather than one unified language. 

Even today, language develops and is fluid. Words and spellings exist today that didn't exist just a few years ago. Cultures that speak the same language may have different spellings for the same word, and new letters are formed and old letters fade out of use. 

If God is all powerful, as we believe him to be, then whether or not we speak a specific language does not matter to him: he understands us. We, as limited humans, cannot understand a person of another language without learning that language. However, God has nothing that he needs to learn; he is all knowing. 

Our language however, is still restricted by our earthly limitations. We struggle to comprehend God; to describe him with our language. There are no words that come even close to describing how wonderful, beautiful and glorious God is. However, declaring God as Father, Son and Holy Spirit is one that has been passed down from generation to generation and is used as a standard explanation for the nature of the Trinitarian God. 

In summary, God is an all-powerful and all-knowing God who understands every language and dialect. Although our language may be limited, still the words and phrases we have to describe God are those which have been passed down from generation to generation, and therefore can be trusted as ways to talk of God. 

Here are some more Bible Verses for your further consideration:

  • Genesis 11:1-9
  • Jeremiah 29:12
  • Psalm 145:18

I hope this answer helps you to find peace with God through Jesus Christ. If you want to know more about what Jesus has done for you please watch the video on the main part of our site: Watch the video

I encourage you to attend a local Bible believing church and speak to the leader about your question. If you want to find a local church, our Church Finder may help you: Find a Church

Please feel free to submit a question to us or to read our answer database: Ask a Question

*All Scripture references are taken From The English Standard Version of the Holy Bible unless stated otherwise

*If anything in this answer affects you directly, then please feel free to call our confidential prayer line in the UK on 0845 4567729, where trained Christian volunteers will take your call and pray both for you and with you. If you are outside of the UK then you may submit your request for prayer on line at www.ucb.co.uk/prayerline


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