This is the third article in a twelve-part series that develops a theology of language by examining what the Bible says about this topic.
Language is finite. Paul experienced the limitations of human language. In Romans 8:26 he wrote, “Likewise the Spirit helps us in our weakness. For we do not know what to pray for as we ought, but the Spirit himself intercedes for us with groanings too deep for words” (ESV). Paul is saying that language is not always able to express what he believes he should pray. However, the Spirit of God is able to supersede our human language abilities and communicate to God what we are not able to express. Another example of the finiteness of human language is 2 Corinthians 9:15, where Paul says, “Thanks be to God for his inexpressible gift!” (ESV). That gift is Jesus Christ, and human language cannot express the measure of the gift that Jesus is to mankind. I have personally experienced the limitations of human language in that I am not always able to express what I want to communicate. My language abilities are necessarily limited, but the Holy Spirit can empower me to communicate beyond my natural abilities.