Christianity --Youth Issues/Sppech

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Question
It is wrong to say bad words when it makes someone feel uncomfortable. But often we use it just to desribe something, for example: "damn hot", "dumb exam", "oh shit". These are just expressions, can we use bad words like these?

Answer
Alicia-

I can answer your question from a Biblical, Christian perspective, and also from an American cultural perspective, but have no knowledge of Malayasian cultural usage of bad language.

From a Biblical perspective, there are two commandments that would apply - 1 is from the Ten Commandments which is "You shall not take the Lord's name in vain."  What this means is that you should not use God's name unless you are praising or worshipping Him.  E.g., "Give God praise" is acceptable, but "God dammit" is not.

From Jesus, we are told to love one another.  In this case, any language that would make someone uncomfortable (like you mentioned), or would embarrass them or humiliate them, no matter what the words were, would be unacceptable.  E.g, calling a girl "damn hot", or even just "hot" would be unacceptable according to Jesus.

In American culture, as in other cultures, various words are unacceptable in "polite" company.  E.g., in most American conversations in public, "fuck" or "shit" or variations are not, or should not be acceptable.  Language changes over the years, and what was unacceptable 50 years ago, e.g., "damn", "sucks", or "piss", are now a bit more acceptable.  I use "sucks" with my youth group now, but wouldn't have 35 years ago.

I have no clue what might be unacceptable in Maylaysia.

You have to make a decision as to what terms you will use.  If you have a choice, and wonder whether or not you can say it, then it's probably not okay to say.  The general rule of thumb is that if you wouldn't say it in front of your mother or baby brother, then you probably shouldn't say it.

Hope this helps.  Please take the time to rate my answer.

Blessings,
Carl

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Carl F.

Expertise

I can answer questions from teens & young adults concerning their faith walk and on social issues which affect their lives. I can answer questions on sex, homosexuality, or drugs, and anything else that might be troubling you. After 30 years in youth ministry, nothing shocks me, and I promise to give straight answers to any and all questions. I can also answer questions from youth workers on problems they`re having with programming or with their groups.

Experience

I have been involved in youth and young adult ministries as a volunteer for over 35 years. I am currently a volunteer youth minister in a suburban UM church - I have a small group of 7th and 8th graders.

Organizations
United Methodist Church, Chrysalis, Walk to Emmaus, Cursillo

Education/Credentials
Several training seminars, 9 years at National Youth Workers Convention, 1 year at Princeton Forum on Youth Ministry

Awards and Honors
Certified lay speaker for UM Church

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