The Snake Who Changed Culture
Language is a means of communicating in a cultural environment. Culture is our lifestyle and tradition, passed down to each new generation. Culture includes our material things, political and social institutions, and our habits, customs, and ideas. All of these began when people were first created.
According to the Bible, God said: "Let us make man in our image, after our likeness. Let them have dominion over the fish of the sea, the birds of the air, and the cattle, and over all the wild animals and all the creatures that crawl on the ground." (Gen. 1:26) God gave man a culture of superiority over all of creation. The Garden of Eden became man's first culture, where the animals received their names from Adam. This garden was the most wonderful place. Life existed peacefully and blamelessly there. "The man and his wife were both naked, yet they felt no shame." (Gen. 2:25)
Culture remained completely unthreatened until the serpent interrupted Eve with twisted language. In Genesis 3:1, it asks, "Did God really tell you not to eat from any of the trees in the garden?" We all know the story. Eve engaged in conversation, and the snake used language to confuse her about the will of God. Sin became a part of the human condition, and the culture of people changed forever.
Culture is not to be misinterpreted as civilization. Civilization is a product of culture. Culture was created at the dawn of man, who then used language to change the environment. Language is the tool the serpent used to challenge man's superiority in a culture of eternal happiness. Man has continued to use language ever since, in an effort to create a civilization that is exemplary.