Word Watch

Out of the same mouth proceed blessing and cursing. My brethren, these things ought not to be so. – James 3:10

Good grammar matters to me. As a writer and former English teacher, I’m bothered when I hear the wrong word used by people I think should know better. For instance, using “I” instead of “me” or “who” instead of “whom.” There’s a proper way to use the language, and it makes me cringe when the standard is violated.

There’s another kind of incorrect word usage that is far worse. It happens when Christians utter words that fall short of the standard God expects. Whenever we use words that are considered crude, profane, or obscene, we violate God’s clear standards.

Anytime we speak any form of God’s name irreverently or in a way that doesn’t honor Him, we displease Him (Exodus 20:7). If we joke about sinful practices, we are speaking in a way we shouldn’t (Ephesians 5:12). Or if we participate in coarse talk (5:4), we bring dishonor to the name of Christ.

James said, “Out of the same mouth proceed blessing and cursing. . . . These things ought not to be so” (James 3:10). Such speech is hypocritical.

Controlling our tongue is difficult because it is an “unruly evil” (v.8). For the glory of God, and with respect for His standards, let’s watch our words.

Dave Branon

A wise old owl sat on an oak;
The more he saw, the less he spoke;
The less he spoke, the more he heard—
Why aren’t we like that wise old bird?

Richards

Every time you speak, your mind is on parade.

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