3 But immorality or any impurity or greed must not even be named among you, as is proper among saints; 4 and there must be no filthiness and silly talk, or coarse jesting, which are not fitting, but rather giving of thanks. 5 For this you know with certainty, that no immoral or impure person or covetous man, who is an idolater, has an inheritance in the kingdom of Christ and God.
6 Let no one deceive you with empty words, for because of these things the wrath of God comes upon the sons of disobedience. 7 Therefore do not be partakers with them;
Examine / Explain
The overflow of the heart is expressed out of a man’s mouth. If he is stuck in the lust of the flesh and the lust of the eye, his mouth will reveal his heart. As a believer, if your talk continually gravitates to poking and jabbing at others or sexual jokes, then we are to examine our hearts. We are headed away from the Kingdom of God and not imitating Jesus. We are sons of disobedience spewing discord. Are we really a believer?
How do I apply this to my life?
I hear and read this verse and the topic of cussing comes to mind. Personally, it is a very rare occasion that a cuss word comes out of my mouth. The debate I hear is whether it is permissible or not. Can it be used to reach lost people who only speak in these terms? I’m not sure that these questions apply here. I see this as more of tearing someone down with our words. Life and death are in the power of our words. As children, we are shaped and molded into our current state as adults by the words that were spoken to us. We took to heart the beat down from a parent and made inner vows to never be like that person, or we felt like failures by the words spoken to us and turned to things that later become idols be we want to feel powerful and in charge. What does this have to do with us now? If I am worshiping idols I will do anything and everything to appease “my god.” For example, in lusting for what we see and want, we try to manipulate people through our speech to get them to do something for us, or we use the power of our words to rip them to shreds so we can feel better about ourselves. If our heart is dark and set on an idol, our words will flow out of us in an effort to sacrifice to our idol. But as a believer, this cannot be found among us. If it is found, does the heart of the believer really belong to their savior? I’m not saying we can’t fail and we don’t say the wrong words. I’m saying, as a believer, where is your intention? Are you looking at others as an image bearer of God? Are we looking at EVERYONE as a potential co-heir of Christ? We are to love our enemies. We are to love them enough to have boundaries with them AND point them to the truth. Two things can be true at the same time. I can love and share the gospel with an “enemy” AND I can’t have boundaries in which they don’t influence my life. As a believer, we are to be different. We are to be set apart, in that place of being set apart, the overflow of our hearts will come out in our mouths. What words are we saying? Do we even pay attention to what we say? Or are we so ingrained with being a son of disobedience we take little jabs at people? We make comments that we think are funny, but in actuality, we have just devastated the person we are talking to. We don’t take the time to consider the other person, and what we think is a simple remark turns into death in that other person. Words are important.
What is my response?
Father, I have come to understand the value and power of words in my own life. I did not realize how much words meant to me until this latter part of my life. I pray that my heart is full of You so that when I speak, only truth, encouragement, and love come out of me. I want to stir and build others up. My heart longs for men to be stirred and turn to You. I want to see them become self-aware and allow the Holy Spirit to do amazing things in their lives. Thank you for what You are doing in my life. Amen.