Foul and Abusive Language.
So, I heard someone mention this idea about which I will blog. It was a passion mention, but it was fascinating to me for some reason I feel the need to discuss about it with you.
“Don’t use foul or abusive language. Let everything you say be good and helpful, so that your words will be an encouragement to those who hear them.” Ephesians 4:29 NLT
Most, if not all of us use this as an argument for not cussing. This is fair enough, and I do not fault those who do so, but lets look deeper than simply ‘The F Bomb’ What is God fully speaking through this scripture. (note, I do not claim to have the full exegetical discourse, but something..)
Don’t use foul or Abusive Language…
This is where cussing comes into the discussion. It is widely accepted as foul language, and there is a reason that cuss words are kept off of network television. Even the secular world understands there needs to be a level of decency in our speech, though that decency seems to get less and less each year, but I digress.
We as Christians should strive to have pure lips. We shouldn’t be the type that sound like everyone else. My personal theory is that if your primary adjective is the F word, you need to take a better vocabulary class. We as servents fo the Most High should be some of the most eloquent and expressive people. I do not mean that we should be using tons of ten dollar words, but simply that our speech should be able to be expressive and intelligent and we shouldn’t have to revert simply down to the expletives.
This is something that struck me today. What is abusive language? The Merriam-Webster Dictionary has this to say.
Definition of ABUSIVE
1: characterized by wrong or improper use or action; especially : corrupt <abusive financial practices>
2 a : using harsh insulting language <an angry and abusive crowd>
b : characterized by or serving for abuse <abusive language>
c : physically injurious <abusive behavior>
I don’t know that defining abusive was entirely necessary but none the less, I like to be thorough. Abusive language is language that is harsh, and insulting, something that is injurious. Now, I understand that we live in a culture that is big on coarse joking and sarcasm, and I am not advocating that these be outlawed. Rather, I want to question the heart’s intent of our speech. Its not as much what you say, but the why.
My friends and I joke all the time, and burns are always amusing to us. But we aren’t using burns for the purpose of cutting one another. If someone were to intentionally hurt one of my friends, we would be very quick to come to their aid and defense.
…Let everything you say be good and helpful…
This part is the one that seems to bring the most difficulty. This is not because we are incapable of helping one another, which more or less is true, but rather that we are too focused on our own gain, that we forget the needs of others. We come from a society where self-help is great, everything s designed to better ‘ME’ But we as Christians are called to the ‘Greater Good’ For the enlightenment, improvement, and betterment of everyone. Imagine if Jesus had seen the plight of his people and just mocked them. Take as an example the woman with the issue of Blood. What would have happened if when he turned to her he said, “You dirty tramp who told you your could touch me?” He didn’t, he saw her need, and her faith. He was moved to compassion and he healed her. Boom, Betterment!
…so that your words will be an encouragement to those who hear them…
God wants us to be encouraging and uplifting. Many times in His Epistles, Paul commands us to encourage and love people. This is the purpose of all spiritual gifts. See Romans 12-14 and Ephesans 4. If we aren’t affecting change for the betterment of society are we really representing Jesus?
Well That is my thought on the matter. As always questions, comments, etc… are welcomed. Thanks for taking the time read explore my Heart and Mind.