Cussing in the Pulpit

Greg Gilbert has the best blog post on this issue {in response to this post}. I couldn’t have said it better, nor would I want to give you the impression that I could, because I couldn’t. Excellent, Greg!

Here’s what he said:

Seriously, I think the use of coarse, vulgar sexual and scatological language in the pulpit is nothing but a sign of immaturity in a preacher. I know the argument is that it is somehow provocative and attention-getting, but come on—-watch a movie, or just listen to people talk every day. People aren’t provoked or shocked by that kind of language; they hear it all the time. The only thing they’re shocked by—or more likely, just find funny or amusing—is that it’s Supernerd the Preacher trying to be cool by using that kind of language in church.

Yea, you’ll get a rise out of people by doing it—at least a few times—but what a cheap thrill! Once they get used to hearing you talk like their non-Christian coworker, you’ll have to figure out some other way to titillate them. And then what? What’s provocative when provocative becomes boring?

Look, you want to really provoke people?—and I mean deeply, to their core? Tell them they’re “SINNERS,” instead of just broken, dis-integrated people in need of meaning in their lives. Tell them God’s going to rightly DAMN them (there’s a curse word alot of preachers shy away from) for their sins. Then tell them the Son of God died in their place, and that they have to repent and depend on him entirely if they’re not going to go to HELL (there’s another one).

Now that’s provocative. Saying **** in the pulpit is child’s play.


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