28 Days: Day 10


  • Ephesians 4:29 (NIV) 29 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.
  • Proverbs 12:18 (NIV) 18 Reckless words pierce like a sword, but the tongue of the wise brings healing.


Sapros (unwholesome) refers to that which is corrupt or foul and was used of rotten fruit, vegetables, and other spoiled food.  Paul also wrote in Colossians 3:8, “put them all aside: anger, wrath, malice, slander, and abusive speech from your mouth”

In addition to renouncing corrupt and harmful language we are to develop speech that is pure, helpful, and pleasing to God. Paul here mentions three specific characteristics of wholesome speaking: it is edifying, appropriate, and gracious.
MacArthur New Testament Commentary, The – MacArthur New Testament Commentary – Ephesians.


The schoolyard saying that “sticks and stones may break my bones but words will never hurt me” is a lie. The incredible power of the spoken word is evident in the Genesis account of creation where God chose to speak the world into creation – “And God said…” In the same way, we have the power to speak into existence such things as life and death, blessing and curses, identity and destiny. There is not one of us who cannot identify a time when words either lifted us up to the heights of encouragement and possibility or cast us down to the depths of condemnation and despair.

As Christians, we represent Christ in every aspect of our lives, including the words that we use. Our God is a God of truth, blessing, and encouragement. Are those attributes of the Savior evident in the words we use? Men and women who have been made in God’s image have had that image corrupted by society, sin, disobedience and the lies of the enemy. We can be used by God to help lost souls reclaim their rightful identity in Christ as we speak words of value, purpose and redemption into their lives.


Replay some of your recent conversations in your mind. How would you have been impacted by the words spoken if you were the listener instead of the speaker? Do your words build up or tear down? Does a change need to take place?

In a world today where the common rhetoric is hate what an amazing witness of God’s love we will be if we speak words that are gracious, edifying and healing.  Let’s go win the lost with our words.