I do not think we understand the weight of what we read concerning the nature of the language Jesus was using when he came to the Hebrews. Our whole concept of language is skewed by what we believe language to be as simply a source of technology we use to communicate. Communication and the dialects we use to form words to describe the knowledge we have in the multiple thousands of tongues throughout the world is only a part of language, but not the whole. As per usual we only see in part as man himself is an incomplete being. It is more than just talking about being broken, it is an understanding that our whole concept of existence is incomplete ignoring the language that will complete our being as it was when we were created. When John began his account of Jesus and the message of repentance and reconciliation it was on a much more personal level than we read from the other three writers of the good news. John carried the language of creation into his writing and it set in place an understanding of wholeness that describes Jesus and his person that challenges us to know him in that way. From the first chapter we are made aware of the language that is the mind of the Father. Jesus expressing the words that are of his Father’s mind and life, which was separated from mankind when the first couple was expelled from the household. Genesis expresses it as the tree of life. Before we ever produce a syllable, vowel, even a sound from our mouth, our minds are at work to form what we will say to another person. Therefore, language is much more than just a spoken word but the whole knowledge of our being. Being able to communicate and cultivate that knowledge requires the tools of speech and writing. Today we use both tools equally, but there was a time in history where speech or what was known as rhetoric was the highest form of communication and used to pass information from one generation to the next. One of the most fascinating accounts we have in the Genesis narrative is that of Babel and the confusion of the language, because it was not simply the changing of dialects, but the entire scope of the language within the mind of a man. Today the dialects are not the formidable barrier they once were in the ancient world, but language is still a formidable adversary in the nations of men. It is one thing to be able to communicate the dialect but it is quite another challenge to understand the culture of a people and their language.
What tree are we eating from?