NYC Bible Teacher

What is Profanity?


What is Profanity?
The word has changed over the years.  I am referring to the use of this word in the Bible.  “Profane” is a verb that means to insult, disregard, disrespect, devalue something or someone.  So, it is the misuse of something special by our speech or action.  Esau was called a profane person because he sold his birthright for a bowl of stew (Hebrews 12:16).  The honor and position that Esau possessed as the first-born son was given away for a simple meal.  He did not appreciate the value of His birth-right and treated it as a common, cheap thing.
Profanity in and with the things of this world is bad enough (pushing over grave markers, burning the flag, calling one’s wife “the old lady”).  To profane the things of God and His realm is blasphemy.
Profanity can be done maliciously and hatefully, intentionally insulting and defaming. One can also profane something or someone out of carelessness and thoughtlessness.  While one comes from an evil heart,  the other is coming from an ignorant and ungodly heart, not showing proper regard for God.  Both are sinful.
Heaven, Hell, Jesus Christ, God, Damnation are not profane words or profanity.  They are words referring to spiritual realities in God’s realm.  If I use these words for emphasis in my everyday conversation about any random subject, I have profaned those good words!  If I say the name of God I must be sure that I am either talking about Him or to Him in reverence and honor.  These words are not to be used to spice up my conversation about sports, dinner, my job or whatever.
The holy phrase “Oh my God…” is spoken randomly, thoughtlessly, repeatedly with NO REGARD for the God of heaven.  How dare we turn the name of God into a word that fits in the same meaningless category as “Wow?”  The words are not profane.  The words are holy.
When I misuse them, I am practicing profanity and I am a profane person.
Be careful with the things of God.  They are of eternal consequence.