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How do you think Christians should talk? Should we grumble and complain, use offensive language and tell vulgar jokes, criticize and tear down?

Of course not. In Ephesians 4:29, Paul describes that kind of talk as “corrupting” (ESV), “unwholesome” (NIV) or, my favorite, “polluting” (Amplified Bible).

What are we doing when we put someone’s efforts down or call them names? We are polluting, either the heart of the person we are attacking or someone else whom we are filling up with hateful thoughts. What are we doing when we grumble and gripe? We are polluting the world around us with negativity and hopelessness. What are we doing when we tell foul jokes or use offensive language? We are polluting the world with corruption and sinfulness.

Christians, we should not be adding more dirt and grime to this sinful, fallen world. We are the ones called to hold out the “Word of Life,” and we should offer that life from clean fountains. Our words should not be more pollution but a source of refreshment to a world in need of Jesus.

“Do everything without complaining or arguing, so that you may become blameless and pure, children of God without fault in a crooked and depraved generation, in which you shine like stars in the universe as you hold out the word of life.” Philippians 4:14-16 NIV.

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