Do not let any unwholesome talk come out of your mouths, but only what is helpful for building others up according to their needs, that it may benefit those who listen.
Out of Our Mouths
The trip to get my son to and from events at his high school is 30-plus miles of winding through county highways. Often, as we are in the car traveling in one direction or the other, we see all kinds of roadkill. We have seen everything from chipmunks to deer, but mostly raccoons. Because the roads are a bit out of the way and less traveled, the dead animals often spend a few days on the hot pavement. You can probably imagine the impact of all that sun and heat. The animals we drive past are often in various states of decay. Can you imagine putting something like that into your mouth? The very thought of such a thing makes us cringe and revolt in disgust. You are probably wondering why I would even ask such a question.
As much as we can’t imagine taking a bite of decaying roadkill into our mouths, the Lord doesn’t want that kind of filth coming out of our mouths. The Greek word we see translated as unwholesome gives the picture of that which is rotten or putrid or in the process of decay. It’s a gross picture. Think of the words you have been using lately. Does unwholesome describe the way you have talked to others? Does it describe the jokes you have made at work or in the locker room? Does it describe the language you listen to regularly on some TV programs and movies? Filthy words have no place in our lives. We deserve God’s punishment for even one filthy word that we may have uttered.
Thankfully, our Savior never spoke that way. His words were perfectly loving and pure and noble. Even from the cross as he was dying for you and me, he spoke words of love and forgiveness when he said: “Father forgive them,” and “Today, you will be with me in paradise.” He still speaks that way to us today! Throughout God’s Word, Jesus speaks words of love to you and me. He says that we are his children through faith. He says that heaven is our home. He says he will never leave us or forsake us and he says that we are the very apple of his eye.
With this love of Jesus in our hearts and minds, let’s resolve to let his love flow out of our mouths in all that we say.
Dear Jesus, forgive me for the filthy words I have spoken. Fill me and encourage me with your love and forgiveness and help me to speak in ways that will benefit others. Amen.