There was a time in the not-too-distant past when a person’s word was their bond. If you made an agreement about something, then come hell or high water the agreement was kept.
Today, though, everything is bound by a contract that is only five pages long but must be read by an electron microscope and is usually written to favor the one offering the contract while keeping the signee in bondage.
While this situation is unlikely to change, there is no need for us to give up our personal integrity just because “everyone else is doing it.” For Christians, we are told to let our “yes” be yes and our “no” be no — to be a person of your word.
But above all, my brothers, do not swear, either by heaven or by earth or by any other oath, but let your "yes" be yes and your "no" be no, so that you may not fall under condemnation. — James 5:12.
Once you know someone upon whose word you can depend, a level of respect is generated which is otherwise not possible. Other aspects of their character may cause you problems, but if you know they are trustworthy, then they will have your respect.
You may not always agree with them, but the respect is genuine, and the trust is unbreakable.
This is why Supreme Court Justices Antonin Scalia and Ruth Bader Ginsberg could be such close friends. Ideologically, they were polar opposites — Scalia a conservative and Ginsberg a liberal — but they were more than just polite with each other. They were friends who could hold discussions about their differences without rejecting the other person.
People who followed them knew where they stood, knew how what they believed about certain issues. Each could interpret the Constitution differently, but this difference was known when an issue was brought up.
They were consistent.
It is a rare thing these days to know exactly how someone will respond or react to a particular situation. Too often, we see the political professionals saying one thing to one group of people and something else entirely to another group. It becomes obvious they have sold their soul for votes.
RBG did not sell her soul even in the midst of fiery outrage from the populace.
She has died.
Let us remember her as someone who was able to stand for what she believed — a very rare commodity.
Hill is the pastor of Stockton Presbyterian Church. He currently is working on a graduate degree and occasionally contributes faith-based columns to the Cedar County Republican.