“No rotten talk should come from your mouth, but only what is good for the building up of someone in need, in order to give grace to those who hear.” (Ephesians 4:29 HCSB)
Sometimes bad words just slip out, right? Try watching some movies or TV shows and you will probably hear a cuss word, perhaps not directly but implied or the phrase started but you know how it finishes. The verse above is an admonition for the believer (Christian) to avoid or refrain from using such words that are crass or considered unwholesome words. No I’m not going to list them out for you. But have you ever been told, “Say that word again and I’ll wash your mouth out with soap.” Did that happen to you?
The word that I have underlined above comes from a Greek word that means rotten, putrefied. I’m sure you have had some food to go bad and how it smells. Or you come across a dead animal and the smell that lingers there. That’s the picture the apostle is painting for us today. Another translation puts it this way, “Let no corrupt communication proceed out of your mouth, but that which is good to the use of edifying, that it may minister grace unto the hearers.” (Ephesians 4:29 KJV)
When I was in junior high school, I tried to fit in with the other guys so I used a few words that would have deserved a mouth washing. Then I began to be convicted by God that my speech and actions were not acceptable to Him. As followers of Jesus, we need to be careful of the words that come out of our mouths. You may say, “I don’t use any cuss words.” That may be true and I’m proud of you. But Paul the writer of this verse doesn’t stop with “don’t use cuss words”, he adds that the words we use should build up others.
Did the last conversation you had with someone build them up or tear them down? I have heard parents tell the children that they were stupid and would not amount to anything. Or they may use profane language that would not build them up. (It shouldn’t surpise anyone why kids act the way they do today. It’s because of the way they are treated at home.) Why would we want to do those kinds of things? Let the words of your mouth be words of encouragement and not destruction.
Today I see it even spreading to social media. Cyber bullying is a great concern among teenagers. Face Book and other places can be used to promote good in the lives of people or destroy them. I have had to unfriend some because they use social media as a platform to use words that shouldn’t be used by anyone. Please, as you live out your life for Christ, remember this verse and apply it to your life. Let’s build one another up for the glory and praise of the Lord. That’s my point for today.