Psalm 89:7 says, “God is greatly to be feared in the assembly of the saints, and to be had in reverence of all them that are about him.” The Psalmist also said, “Holy and reverend is his name.” (111:9). The same Hebrew word, YARE’, pronounced yaw-ray, reverence, is used in Leviticus 19:30 and 26:2, where we read, “Ye shall keep my Sabbaths, and reverence my sanctuary: I am the Lord.” In a parable (Matthew 21:33-44), Jesus said a householder who had planted a vineyard let it out to husbandmen. (Verse 33). When harvest time came, he sent his servants to receive of the fruit of it. The husbandmen beat one, killed another, and stoned another. Others who were sent were treated similarly. (Verses 34-36). “But last of all he sent unto them his son, saying, They will reverence my son.” (Verse 37). However, they killed his son. (Verse 39). This parable pointed to the crucifixion of Jesus, showing that they did not reverence Him. Compare Mark 12:1-12 and Luke 20:9-19. The Greek word for reverence, ENTREPO, means “respect” in a good sense, or “confound” negatively speaking. (Strong’s Exhaustive Concordance, Page 844).
The third commandment of the law of Moses stated, “Thou shalt not take the name of the Lord thy God in vain; for the Lord wilt not hold him guiltless that taketh his name in vain.” (Exodus 20:7). The Old Testament, the law of Moses, the first covenant has been abolished. (Jeremiah 31:31-34; Hebrews 8:6-13; Colossians 2:14-16; 2 Corinthians 3; the book of Galatians, especially, 3:19-29). Romans 15:4 tells us, “For whatsoever things were written aforetime were written for our learning that we through patience and comfort of the scriptures might have hope.” The prayer Jesus taught His disciples to pray (Luke 11:1-4; Matthew 6:9-13) emphasizes the need to use God’s name respectfully. Notice, “Our Father which art in heaven, Hallowed be thy name.” (Luke 11:2). “Hallowed”, Greek, HAGAIZO, means, “to make holy, i. e. (cer.) purify or consecrate; (mentally) to venerate:–hallow, be holy, sanctify.” (Strong’s, Page 433). The Psalmist wrote, “O magnify the Lord with me, and let us exalt his name together.” (34:3). Jesus showed respect for God in His prayer, calling God, “Father” (John 17:1), “Holy Father” (Verse 11), and “O Righteous Father” (Verse 25). He, the Son of God, never used His Father’s name flippantly or disrespectfully. This is a far cry from what we have heard and read from frail human beings beginning their day in prayer, saying such disrespectful things as, “Hello, Dad”, “Good morning, Dad”, and such like. How dare one?!
Many hearts are shown to be profane today through the use of words. Jesus said, “For out of the abundance of the heart the mouth speaketh.” (Matthew 12:34). He then contrasted good and evil people, showing that the heart of a good person brings forth good things, while the heart of an evil person brings forth evil things. (Verse 35). The conclusion was then set forth, “But I say unto you, That every idle word that men shall speak, they shall give an account thereof in the day of judgment.” For by thy words thou shalt be justified, and by thy words thou shalt be condemned.” (Verses 36, 37). 2 Timothy 2:16 is a warning against “profane and vain babblings; for they will increase unto more ungodliness.” James gives a stern warning against the wrongful use of the tongue. (James 5:12). Paul said, “Let your speech be alway with grace, seasoned with salt, that ye may know how ye ought to answer every man.” (Colossians 4:6).
Having set forth these Biblical statements, dear reader, you are exhorted and encouraged to weigh what is being heard today. First, one frequently hears men, women, boys and girls, political officials, business persons, actors and actresses, even religious people, including elders, deacons, Bible class teachers, and others, using profanity and euphemistic words and phrases. Some of this has even been called ‘sissy cussin’ by serious Bible students.
Many are surprised and startled today to hear people use euphemistic (less offensive words used in the place of outright vulgar words) words and phrases lightly, like “Lord”, “Lordy”, “Jesus”, “Jesus Christ”, “Je’ez”, “God”, “My God”, “Oh my God” (sometimes abbreviated, “OMG”), and so on. Some even use the words, “Oh my God”, separately and distinctly, saying, “Oh!…MY!…GOD!” These uses of these words are normally done when one is surprised, startled, happy, shocked, and the like. A number of the above think nothing of tying four letter words to the end of God’s Holy name. Some translators have even used cursing in their works. An Episcopal priest used profanity more than once in a speech in Memphis, Tennessee, in the late sixties. He even said that he would rather be on a street then known for various sins, including prostitution, than speaking. (The Commercial Appeal, Mid South Magazine, 4-28-1968). A number of others have followed a similar course since then.
A number of people who would never outright curse, are guilty of euphemisms. Following are a few examples of such; likely without the user realizing that they are doing so. Frequently, some flippantly use the name of Jesus. Many who would never say “Jesus” or “Jesus Christ” as a matter of slang, nevertheless, say, “Je’ez”, (“Ge’ez”), “Gee”, or similar terms. In the fifties, an old west actor, used to say, “Go to blazes.” Many boys of that time would say this to others, without realizing what they were saying. It was a ‘sissy cussin’ way of telling them to be lost in the eternal lake of fire, hell. One often hears others cry out, “Goodness”, “My goodness”, “Gad”, “E-Gad”, “Gosh”, “Golly”, “God”, “Holy God”, and such like. Others, rather than using the word, damn, often say, “darn.” The word Jehovah and God would never be used in a flippant way by many, yet they see nothing wrong with saying, “By Jove.” One frequently hears people exclaim, “Crap” or “Holy crap”, likely, not realizing that they are using a substitute for a four-letter word, referring to body wastes. “Holy Cow” is another misuse of things that are Holy. The list goes on.
The Bible frequently uses “O my God.” (Psalm 3:7, and several others). Multi-use of “O God” (Psalm 4:1), “My God” (Psalm 5:1), “O Lord” (Psalm 3:3), “Lord” (Psalm 3:1), “O Lord my God” (Psalm 7:1), and other such words and terms are to be found in the book of Psalms, and elsewhere. HOWEVER, these are never used in a flippant manner. They are always used in a respectful way, giving glory and honor to Deity and spiritual things.
Likely, if you are using one or more of these words or expressions, you are doing so without meaning any disrespect to God. Ignorance is no excuse. Sincere and honest person, think and pray about these matters. You are seeking to go to heaven. Let nothing stand in your way. “Set your affection on things above.” (Colossians 3:2). “Mortify therefore your members which are upon the earth:….” (Verse 5). “Whatsoever ye do in word or in deed, do all in the name of our Lord Jesus Christ,…” (Verse 17). Paul wrote, “Bringing into captivity every thought to the obedience of Christ.” (2 Corinthians 10:5). If we control our thoughts, our words will flow purely. (Matthew 12:34).
Jesus said, “But let your communication be, Yea, yea; Nay, nay: for whatsoever is more than these cometh of evil.” (Matthew 5:37). The story was told of a girl who came home from college. She used words her grandmother knew to be foreign to Jesus, but she said nothing. The next day the grandmother used the same words in a conversation with the girl. The young lady said, “Grandmother! I never thought I would hear such words come out of your mouth. You are a Christian.” The grandmother said, “You are correct. Christians do not use such words.” The young girl never used those words again. Whether this event happened or not, it teaches a most important lesson to all who will receive it.
David said, “Let the words of my mouth, and the meditation of my heart, be acceptable in thy sight, O Lord, my strength, and my redeemer.” (Psalm 19:14). Psalm 5:1 declares, “Give ear to my words, O Lord, consider my meditation.”
Does your heart need cleansing and your vocabulary revising?