Let no corrupt communication proceed out of your mouth, but that which is good to the use of edifying, that it may minister grace unto the hearers (Ephesians 4:29, KJV)
The most spiritually potent natural entity in our physical world is words. There is nothing that moves the realm of the spirit as spoken words. It comes therefore as no surprise if the Lord pays attention to how we talk. Besides the potential negative spiritual influences our words can have in our lives, they can also be a source of spiritual defilement. Just as an act of stealing or sexual immorality is sinful and defiles, so our words can also be sinful. This is the center-piece of the exhortation of Eph. 4:29 above. He says no corrupt talk should come out of your mouth.
He goes further in chapter 5 and addresses more specific situations:
“Let there be no filthiness nor foolish talk nor crude joking, which are out of place, but instead let there be thanksgiving.” (Ephesians 5:4, ESV)
Did you notice that? He says “foolish talk nor crude joking.” He means do not allow foolish, obscene words to come out of your mouth, not even when you are joking. There are no jokes or just messing around when it comes to these spiritual matters. He wants you to control your tongue because He knows it might not only bring defilement and sin but it can potentially affect your life. As far as you are concerned, the Lord says “no corrupt communication should come out of your mouth, whether you are serious about it or just joking.
On the contrary, he wants your words to minister grace to others who hear you. Have you met people that after listening to them for 5 minutes you start feeling depressed and anxious? And then you meet others that as you listen to them, even in casual conversations, you feel inspired, encouraged, comforted and even strengthened? This is what it means to minister grace to your hearers. It does not necessarily mean always preaching to people. It simply means your words at all times should not destroy others but build, encourage and strengthen them. Do not spread anxiety, worry, fears, or even resentment with your words. Instead, be a distributor of joy, peace, calmness, and hope!
Do your words matter? Does God care if you get meddled with corrupt communication while “just hanging out “ with friends or colleagues at work or at the comfort of your home?
APPLY THE WORD
The application of the word in this devotional is straightforward. Do not allow corrupt, filthy or foul talk come out of your mouth. It may be acceptable behavior for the people of the world, not you. You are different, a royal priesthood and set apart for Him.
APPLY THE WORD
Ask the Lord to help you watch your tongue and control the words that come of your mouth.