Gaps. Holes. Interstices. Lacunae. The spaces between. Whatever you want to call it, everyone has them. Whether it’s a lack of knowledge, an incorrect perception, or a lie that we’re believing, it behooves us to seek out these inconsistencies and empty spaces and fill them with whatever God has to say about whatever issue’s at hand.
Reading between the…
Whoever wrote Psalm 119 (I vote David) did this. The longest chapter in the Bible, each of the 176 verses—split into twenty-two sections of eight, one for each letter of the Hebrew alphabet—deals with two things: 1. An emotion, either positive or negative. And 2. God and His Word. Whereas the psalmist used eight Hebrew words to describe God’s words to us, two of those Hebrew words were translated as “word” in English. So you’ll only see seven if you’re reading King James. These seven words: law, testimonies, ways, precepts, statutes, judgments and word, fully round out God’s spoken communication to us. (by the way, the Hebrew words that were translated as one word in English are “imrah”, meaning “something spoken”, simple enough, and “dabar”, which is more substantial and means a matter or a cause—a “thing”—and they were both translated as “word”) Any emotion you encounter—up, down, positive, negative—is countered in Psalm 119 by God and His word. Whether we’re happy or miserable, God is constant. This is the lesson of Psalm 119. Of the Old Testament.
Fast forward through the wars and conquests—the space between the two testaments—through 400 years of human history, to a little town called Bethlehem. See that little outbuilding there? Do you hear the bleating of the sheep? Jesus is coming into this world and the Word is being “made flesh” (John 1:14). Jesus is the living word of God. He said “he that hath seen me hath seen the Father” (John 14:9). And as we interact and fellowship with Him, His words, His thoughts and ultimately His actions will live through us. “…Christ liveth in me” (Galatians 2:20). God’s “word” on paper will become His Word in our hearts (see Psalm 119:11). This is how we fill the holes in our thinking. We become effective for God this way.
“And I sought for a man among them, that should stand in the gap before me for the land, that I should not destroy it: but I found none.” (Ezekiel 22:30)
Jesus stood in the gap for us and filled it through His sacrifice and though we may not be called to die, we do need to stand in the gap for others. Pray for them. It starts in our hearts and minds.
In closing, I find this quote from Science-Fiction author Philip K. Dick intriguing: “Christ, then, can be construed–as rogue information system–to be the corrected, completed basis of creation in which 23 Hebrew letters replace the 22 originally employed. He is, then, an added, formerly missing letter, and this addition changes everything, from severe limitation and justice to freedom and mercy.”