Posted by: Aaron McCarter | November 22, 2008

Divine Pronouns

You know how when you’re writing about God you feel the need to capitalize everything that even loosely refers to him (or Him)?  Or is it just me?  The Bible doesn’t do it (or at least the translators generally don’t).  But to me, it just seems like the thing to do.  Fowler and I debated the use of divine pronouns one day for like an hour while putting together a slideshow for Sunday worship.

I won…but just because I was his boss.  He wasn’t budging-and he had a really good argument.  It was a good healthy debate on an interesting question.  So, I’ll pass it on, to you.  What do you think?

“Jesus, he is Lord!”

or…

“Jesus, He is Lord!”

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Responses

  1. I think this is one of those things that makes us look ridiculous to non-Christians. It’s Christianese… like saying, “I want to be washed in the blood,” or “Set me on fire, Lord.” Really? That’s pretty freaky to someone who doesn’t know church-speak.

    I admit I do feel this compulsion to honor God when I write about him. But I believe he is equally honored in the artistry of creative writing and the (attempted) mastery of language. Just try to explain your capitalization of divine pronouns to an unbelieving newspaper editor.

    PS – I capitalize divine pronouns for the same reason Fowler did. 🙂

  2. I can’t decide so I usually capitalize every other pronoun when referring to God. I agree with Matt, I do think this kind of debate makes Us look pretty silly. I just realized I only really capitalize pronouns for God when I’m referring back a few sentences or if I haven’t mention Jesus by name at all in the writing. It’s a pretty easy way to let people know you are or are still talking about God.

  3. well I have to say that I always capital the divine pronouns, but only because I kinda programmed myself to do it because I knew it would make aaron happy:) as far as it honoring the Lord, I don’t feel like it does for me personally because I accidently capitalize “he” no matter who I am referring. I don’t think this is honoring to God. I don’t think it is dishonoring, I just don’t think that it is honoring because I capitalize them no matter who I am talking about. So, it goes back to this. It is where your heart and mind are at when you are doing this. Is it glorifying from me to do that? No. Is it glorifying for you to do that? Maybe…..


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