Word of the Week: Passion
Passion. We all have it. We all exhibit it at some times. For some it is what drives them. Passion, like so many if not all things, has a good & bad…positive & negative.
One of the meanings of passion is a common one, sexual & erotic. Paul writes of this in Galatians. A historian named Philo used the word hēdonḗ for passion. We get our word hedonist or hedonistic from it. It is actually from the Greek word pathos. It is from the root Greek word Páschō
Páschō means to experience or suffer. Several other words come from this root. páschō [to experience, suffer], sympáschō [to suffer with], páthos [suffering], sympathéō [to suffer with, sympathize we get our word sympathy], páthēma [suffering] and metriopathéō [moderation in passion, compassion]. Yea, I know, it all seems Greek to you, huh?
But, I want you to see that there is a commonality to these words, suffering. In studying the word passion, I discovered that there is no one Greek word for passion. There just seems to be different degrees/types of suffering. Now, some may say that the erotic passion doesn’t fit, but doesn’t it. Sexual addictions can cause sufferings or the Biblical word fornication or adultery.
So, could we not say that passion is a drive from deep within us even if it causes suffering or is a result of suffering? Hebrews 2:9 says, “9 But we see Jesus, who was made a little lower than the angels, for the suffering of death crowned with glory and honor, that He, by the grace of God, might taste death for everyone.” Christ had a passion. His passion was to suffer, suffer a death on the cross (Phil. 2:8). He was to die so we could have eternal life. Luke tells us that He set His face to go to Jerusalem and fall into the hands of men and die. In the Garden of Gethsemane He prayed with great anguish for the Father to “take this bitter cup from Me.” His passion was to complete the work of the His Father.
If passion is what drives us, what is your passion? What is it that you will pour yourself into, that will cost you…even suffering? For this New Year, 2014, what will you say is your passion: food, family, t.v. sports, finance, recreation, relationship with God? What will it be?