“29 No foul language should come from your mouth, but only what is good for building up someone in need, so that it gives grace to those who hear. 30 And don’t grieve God’s Holy Spirit. You were sealed by him for the day of redemption. 31 Let all bitterness, anger and wrath, shouting and slander be removed from you, along with all malice. 32 And be kind and compassionate to one another, forgiving one another, just as God also forgave you in Christ.”
The word “foul” in Greek is Sapros (Grk Strong’s# 4550) which means rotten, worthless, and bad.
The word rotten gives a sense of killing something slowly. When you are cursing someone, your harsh words are killing them inside slowly by making them have bad thoughts about themselves.
When curse words are being thrown at a person, it is like demolishing a building. But when you use uplifting words of encouragement, it is like constructing a building from the ground up as “building up” in verse 29 suggests.
Any foul language spewed, which by the way, is wishing for the person’s demise, grieves the Holy Spirit.
The word “grieve” in Greek is Lupeo (Strong’s# 3076) which means to distress, to be sad, cause pain, and to be sorrowful.
Insight: The word curse
The word curse/cursing suggests a catastrophe through plagues, famine, being overtaken by one’s enemy, or even death.
In Deuteronomy 28:15-16, it says, “But if you do not obey the LORD your God by carefully following all his commands and statutes I am giving you today, all these curses will come and overtake you: You will be cursed in the city and cursed in the country.”
The whole Chapter 28 gives a series of destruction to the people of Israel if they abandon the Lord by not obeying His Word. God is life and safety; leaving His protection will put you in the devil’s domain, vulnerable to his attacks. Not only that, but the Lord will discipline you for sinning against Him so that you may repent.
We must understand that the curse that God gives in Deuteronomy 28 for disobedience is different from when we utter a curse word to someone for their misfortune or demise. Nothing unwholesome can come from the mouth of God.
The one in Deuteronomy 28 is like warning your kids, “don’t go there” or “don’t do that” because it will put them in danger, knowing that something bad (a curse falling upon them) will happen, from telling a person through a curse word that you wish them harm. The difference is that God warns us of curses that can fall upon us when we stray from the truth. He will never wish us harm, like when we use curse words.
“10 Blessing and cursing come out of the same mouth. My brothers and sisters, these things should not be this way.”
We must choose one over the other. We cannot bless with encouraging words then turn around and curse people. Consistency in righteousness must be achieved for the effectiveness in the ministry that Jesus has burdened you with.