You stubbed your big toe on the corner of the coffee table and then tripped over a toy car. What will the response be and the words that will spill out of your mouth? Mmm, let's pause for a second and admit that the phrase or words won't be "Oh golly, I stubbed my toe and tripped on that cute toy." We need to get real and admit that we all curse. If you said that you don't or never did, that's lying and that's another article! Some words carry a lot of linguistic baggage and many of those words make us blush and could be a sign of a weak vocabulary. This could be the "result of a lack of education, laziness or impulsiveness. In line with this idea, we tend to judge vulgarians quite harshly, rating them as lower on socio-intellectual status, less effective at their jobs and less friendly," scientificamerican.com mentioned. No matter if it is a lack of education or a common practice in your life, cursing is up to much deliberation as being sinful. However, here are 5 principles to consider if sinning is actually immoral for the believer.
The spirit behind cursing is a sin.The words may be wrong, but the spirit behind cursing is worse. When we swear there is a spirit of anger behind it. Ask yourself the following questions Psych Central urged: “Is it true that whenever you express your feelings that this leads to a fight? How do you know with certainty that it will lead to a fight? What alternative outcomes might be possible? Has there ever been an instance where you did express your feelings and nothing bad happened?” When you put this in another light, it seems to be a sin, right? No one ever uttered a curse word without there being some kind of bitterness or anger underlying it.
Cursing was condemned by Christ.Swearing oaths was a common practice in Jesus' day. Matthew 5:33-37 records Him speaking on the subject. "Again, you have heard that it was said to the people long ago, 'Do not break your oath but keep the oaths you have made to the Lord. But I tell you, do not swear at all: either by Heaven, for it is God's throne; or by the earth, for it is His footstool; or by Jerusalem, for it is the city of the Great King. And do not swear by your head, for you cannot make even one hair white or black. Simply let your ‘Yes’ be 'Yes,' and your 'No,' 'No'-- anything beyond this comes from the evil one.” If you asked Jesus if you could use profanity, what would He say? If He didn't want us to make a swearing oath, why would He want us to swear at all?
We need to watch our words.We are told that we need to be careful with our words as they will give life or offer death. The Bible shared that by our words we're punished, by our words we're justified. Paul gave us concrete advice in Ephesians 4:29-30 regarding our conversations: “Do not let any unwholesome talk come out of your mouths, but only what is helpful for building others up according to the needs, that it may benefit those who listen.” Even George Washington talked about using our words foolishly! “The foolish and wicked practice of profane cursing and swearing is a vice so mean and low that every person of sense and character detests and despises it.”
Cursing may hinder our witness.Cursing another person may take many forms. It can be using vulgar hand gestures out a car window when someone cuts you off or using profane gestures behind a person's back. Instead of cursing, Jesus encouraged us in Luke 6:27-28 to "Love your enemies, do good to those who hate you, bless those who curse you, pray for those who mistreat you.” You never know who is watching you and you never know if that person is a Christian. As believers, we are on a world stage, so it makes sense that we need to be heedful of flipping a person off in traffic or in public.
We will be held accountable.We don't know for certain what words we will be judged when we meet God in Heaven. In Matthew 12:35-36, we are told that good people do the good things that are in them and using profanity isn't considered to be a good characteristic. If we need to give an account of the words that we've spoken, our little vulgar outbursts may be condemned, so let's repent and do our best. If not, we will find out in the end. Remember that whatever goes out of the mouth comes from within and that’s what makes a person unclean. "Evil thoughts, murder, adultery, sexual sins, stealing, lying and cursing come from within," we can find in Matthew 15:18-19.
Psalm 36:3 shared that the words of our mouths are "Wicked and deceitful; they fail to act wisely or do good." We gather this can be the equivalent for the Christian who curses. No one is perfect and you will fail in this area and in other areas. Pay attention to your spirit to estimate if profanity is right for you, even when you do stub your big toe or trip over a toy car.