Four-Word Progress part 7: Attractive Opposites

What follows is four word-pairs that are (practically) homophones and end up being antonyms as well. And one pair that looks, for all intents (intense) and purposes, like they’d be antonyms, but are actually synonyms (!). And so without further ado:

Avers/Averse

So, if you aver something—a statement, an ideology, an opinion—it means that you express confidence in the correctness of said fact. You know it’s true, so you aver it (“avers” being the third person, present tense of the verb). The root coming from the Latin word for ‘truth’. This being said, many people may show themselves averse (different root altogether) to the very truths that you espouse, that you aver. And much like truth itself, it’s important to know the distinction. The Holy Spirit knows.

Frees/Freeze

Fear can freeze us. Conversely, God’s liberty frees us. That’s how you know which is which. If you find yourself hampered for no reason, I would hope that you don’t point your finger at God and accuse Him of holding you back for no good reason. God sees the fears we’re infected with. Oh, He has the antidote. “Now the Lord is that Spirit: and where the Spirit of the Lord is, there is liberty.” (2 Corinthians 3:17) His warmth will melt the icecaps that are preventing you from getting where you need to go. Bask in His glow. But don’t believe that God is the one who brings all of your fears and insecurities to light when you look to the future.

“For I know the thoughts that I think toward you, saith the Lord, thoughts of peace, and not of evil, to give you an expected end.” (Jeremiah 29:11) Jesus: The living end.

Prescribe/Proscribe

This pair is similar to the first. Whereas prescribe means to put forth a ruling or edict to be followed (kinda like the step following aver), proscribe means the opposite. It means to decry, to put down and speak against an established rule. Again, both actions have merit depending on the situation. Jesus did both. Prescribing things for our betterment as well as proscribing the established order that was broken from the outset. And it was the Holy Spirit again, who showed Jesus and it’s the same Holy Spirit who shows us. Gotta trust!

Raze/Raise

Here’s a cool one. The root to raze gives rise to razor as well. Oftentimes, that’s the only time that God can get started on the work He wants to do, is when everything is leveled and nothing stands above the surface. After the waters of Noah’s flood receded (took a while), God was able to begin again, to raise up humanity anew and start the ball rolling in order to get Jesus here. “For it is written, I will destroy the wisdom of the wise, and will bring to nothing the understanding of the prudent.” (1 Corinthians 1:19)

It would seem that the theme here is one of truth versus lie. I’ve come to see the truth as being the least common denominator in the outworking of not only a moral life, but also one that is right with God. Because you can be the most moral person in existence yet that’s only with reference to humanity. With reference to God, all the morality in the world won’t get you very far if you deny Jesus and His love for you. His love includes all the morality you’d need to make it in the world at large, which brings us to our last word-pair. Before we begin, surely you know the difference between fact and fiction? One’s true (fact) and one’s false (fiction). Un-made (as in eternally existent) and made-up (Could be happening as we speak). But consider this word pair:

Factitious/Fictitious

They’re synonymous, odd as that sounds. I suppose the correlation, scripturally, would be that anything we do, while ignoring God in the midst, won’t be imbued with His permanence and consequently, His authenticity.

Carry on.

What do you think? Lemme know! I'd love to talk.

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