Ephesians 5:4

Ephesians 5:4

Neither filthiness, nor foolish talking, nor jesting
The former of these may include all filthy gestures and behaviour, every indecent habit and attire, and all actions which have a tendency to excite lust; and also all impure words, these discover an impure heart, and are the means of corrupting men's minds and manners; filthy speaking, is a verbal commission of the things that are spoken of; and it may include all impure songs and books, and the reading or hearing of them; this is what the Jews call (hp lwbn) , "filthiness of the mouth", obscene words; which they say they do not use on feast days, as the Gentiles do F9: "foolish talking" does not so much design every imprudent thing that is said, as that which is wicked, corrupt, unsavoury, light, vain, idle, and unprofitable; and takes in all fabulous stories, and mimicking of fools in words and gestures: and "jesting", when it is with wantonness, and excites unto it, and is inconsistent with truth, and when the Scriptures are abused by it, and not our neighbour's edification, but hurt, is promoted by it, ought not to be used:

which are not convenient;
are disagreeable to the will of God, and unsuitable to the characters of the saints, and are very unbecoming them to practise:

but rather giving of thanks;
instead of these, as the Syriac version renders it; it is much more suitable and becoming to give thanks to God for temporal and spiritual mercies, and to speak those things which are grateful to good men; this is to use the tongue to much better purpose, than in an obscene, foolish, or jocose way: one of Stephens's copies read, "but only of giving of thanks".


FOOTNOTES:

F9 Jarchi in Psal. lxxv. 3. Vid. Vajikra Rabba, sect. 24. fol. 165. 3.
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