Can Cuss Words be Used to Share the Gospel?

I recently challenged Christians to boldness by not shying away from biblical language when talking publicly. I made the challenge using worldliness as an example explaining What Christians Can Learn from a Carefree Cussing World

Jake Swink asked an interesting question in the comments on that post. The question also took into account cuss words, but from a different angle. Given the current societal moral decline in this ever-changing landscape of evangelistic opportunities, I thought the inquiry was worth a look.

Jake commented and asked:

What do you think overall if using cuss words can be used for sharing the gospel??

For example, I have friends that were surprised enough when I told them that I was ok with them swearing around me (because I wanted to know the real them and not a show they would put up around me) and they thought it was totally different than the ‘religions’ they had heard of before.

Some of these people are now brothers and sisters in the faith!

I’m not exactly sure that the first question follows the example. The question implies that a Christian might consider swearing a bit around certain people in order to open the door to share the gospel. Or, that a Christian might consider using cuss words in their gospel presentation.

Yet, in the example following the question, the Christian basically tells unbelievers that he is okay with them acting as unbelievers in the case of their cuss words. I suppose it depends on the Christian as to which actions or language he is okay to tell the unbeliever to let freely flow.

For example, I would not stand around while a group of guys got drunk or while they passed around porno mags. Yet, I would and have put up with vulgar language to a point. I’ve come to expect vulgar language as part of today’s unfortunate culture shift, but I have my limits.

Side note: A friend of mine used to cuss occasionally and sometimes let out a “GD”. He would then apologize to me for the GD. To which I would say – it’s not me you should apologize to.

Now, just because some of these cussing unbelievers are now (cussing?) believers does not mean it was Christian’s allowance of cuss words that won them to Jesus. That is not to say that accepting the unbelieving sinners as they are waiting for Jesus to change them through the gospel did not play a part. There is simply not enough information.

Finally, a Christian can try to use any method they like to share the gospel whether it be cussing or something else. But I don’t think they should nor do they have to. I think it’s fine for a Christian to allow – and expect – an unbeliever to acts as an unbeliever with in that Christian’s limits. Hopefully, those limits are informed by Scripture and they are aware of what might make them stumble so that they would not stumble.

Thanks for the question, Jake.

Here I blog…


in apologetics,Christianity,Church Issues,Culture,Evangelism,Gospel,theology

{ 3 comments… read them below or add one }

1 MarieP October 17, 2013 at 6:10 pm

Heck, no (you saw that coming….)

2 Mark Lamprecht October 18, 2013 at 9:59 am

MarieP 🙂

3 Michael Kampff October 18, 2013 at 6:38 pm

Classic case of being in the world (putting up with foul language to a point) but not of the world (using foul language)


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