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Is it ever okay to curse someone as a Christian?

Is it really a big deal if I cuss out my boyfriend when I am upset? Is it a problem if I use curse words to yell at someone who is driving slowly in front of me who can’t even hear me? Or if I use “colorful language” when a waitress messes up my order?

I mean, 99% of people do it. Even people who go to church, it seems.

Jesus teaches that what comes out of my mouth reveals my heart. My words disclose whether I am living in my sinful flesh or the power of the Holy Spirit.

“With the tongue we praise our Lord and Father, and with it we curse human beings, who have been made in God’s likeness. Out of the same mouth come praise and cursing. My brothers and sisters, this should not be.” James 3:9-10

It turns out, the words I use (and even the thoughts and motives behind them), matter greatly to my Lord.

The Bible is clear that if we follow Jesus, our speech is to be different from that of the world. The truth is, my words absolutely do matter. And they greatly impact my witness for Christ.

“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.” Eph. 4:29

“Let there be no filthiness nor foolish talk nor crude joking, which are out of place, but instead let there be thanksgiving.” Eph. 5:4

“I tell you, on the day of judgment people will give account for every careless word they speak,” Matt. 12:36

But I tell you that anyone who is angry with a brother or sister will be subject to judgment. Again, anyone who says to a brother or sister, ‘Raca,’  (empty head) is answerable to the court. And anyone who says, ‘You fool!’ will be in danger of the fire of hell. Matt. 5:22

Are there any words we need to give up in light of Scripture so that we can live more holy lives that please Jesus if He is truly LORD of all in our lives?

How can I break my cussing habit?

1. Ask God for forgiveness for using your words in destructive ways and for using your mouth to curse people when, as a believer, your mouth should be full of praise to God and blessing to others. (1 John 1:9, James 3:9-10)
2. Commit to Him that you want to honor Him with your words and you want to stop using cuss words.
3. Try some of these methods to remind you of your new commitment and verbal lifestyle:
  • Wear a special ring or bracelet that you don’t usually wear as a reminder of your new commitment to stop using these words.
  • Write a tally mark in a little notepad each time you say one of these words.
  • Apologize to anyone who was around when you say a cuss word, “I apologize. That is not who I want to be. Let me try it again without that word.” Then say what you believe would honor the Lord. (Repent to God when you slip up, as well, and invite His Spirit to have control.)
  • Charge yourself a penny or a nickel or even a dollar every time you do say a word you don’t want to say and give that money to a charity.
  • Invite your family members/friends/coworkers to keep you accountable or to join with you in this new habit of clean speech.
I’m excited to see all that the Lord will do in your life. Our words are some of the hardest things to control. But with Jesus, it is very possible! Part of the fruit of the Spirit when we are close to Him is self-control.
It is His will that we use our words in ways that please God and bless others, that we remove all filthy and sinful speech from our lips.
Set a guard, O Lord, over my mouth; keep watch over the door of my lips! Psalm 141:3

Cleanse our minds, hearts, and tongues. Purify our thoughts. Purify our speech by the power of Your Holy Spirit. May the words of our mouths and the meditations of our hearts be pleasing in Your sight, O God! Let us live holy lives that bring honor and glory to You. May we be salt and light in this world.


Is there any godly wisdom you’d like to share on this subject? We’d love to hear it.


Is It a Sin to Cuss/Swear/Curse?  by

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