Let no corrupting talk come out of your mouths, but only such as is good for building up, as fits the occasion, that it may give grace to those who hear.
This verse was re-written and told by a little bunny named the Apostle Thumper. He said, “If you can’t say something nice, don’t say nothing at all.” This verse can certainly mean that we should not be obscene in our conversation, but there is more to it than that. We are to make sure that our conversation lifts others up and does not tear them down.
Paul speaks of talk that will corrupt others. Here’s a question. If a person were to hang around you on a regular basis what kind of influence would you have on them? Would they be drawn closer to Christ? Would they be encouraged? Or would they learn all of the latest dirt on everybody else? St. Augustine hung this motto on his dining room wall:
“He who speaks evil of an absent man or woman is not welcome at this table.”
Not a bad quote. Do you know where else that sign would work? Above the table of the Lord’s Supper in every church We need to be very careful that our words are not full of filth. If it isn’t building others up, or showing them grace, we should just stay quiet. If we use our mouth to spew our filth we will grieve the Holy Spirit who lives within us.
Is your mouth corrupt? Do you use your words to hurt others? Take a moment and ask the Lord to sanctify your speech for his purpose and for the lifting up of others.