September 9, 2012
I could not agree more. How we say what we believe is as important as content of our words, especially as people of faith. I wrote a post that dovetails nicely with yours about the importance of the "and" in speaking with conviction and civility. It includes 3 tests we can use before we post. I would be interested in what you think of them :)
I'm pretty leery of any group that associates language with morality. Language in itself is not a moral object, rather, how we use that language is. Just because the words have vanished, doesn't mean that the concepts aren't being expressed in some other way.
Besides, we can look through history and see that groups that used kinder words had their sins.
I'll admit it, I'm not a vocabulary snob - I don't agree with most folks that certain words are inherently sinful. I believe that this sort of thinking does a lot to segregate society and creates another platform for today's pharisees. For my own discourse, I use whatever words are appropriate. Sometimes that means using a word that some might consider a "cuss word." In the end, communication is key - and in a group of people where words that we consider "cuss" are more normal, I'm totally OK with using those words.
As for the best way to debate, respect for the other opinion is always key. I don't like the mockery aspects of modern conversation, even if I do fall into the trap of laughing at those who disagree with my thinking on any given subject.
Great line here, Morgan: "When we exude Christ in how we conduct conversation, we become part of how God creates a grace-filled public square in which Christ can be discovered."
I'd add that when we <i>exclude</i> Christ in how we conduct conversation, we become part of the degeneration of discourse in the public square. After all, apart from Christ I can do nothing (John 15:5) including engage in constructive conversation that leads people to him.
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