What was meant by filthy language when Paul wrote this? Is understanding context taken from Paul's day or from the translators' understanding of its current meaning?
NKJV - 8 But now you yourselves are to put off all these: anger, wrath, malice, blasphemy, filthy language out of your mouth.
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The verse being asked about is the only verse in which the Greek word in question (transliterated as "aiskrologia" in the Latin alphabet) occurs. It comes from the root words "aiskros", meaning "shameful" or "base", and "logos", meaning "word". Various Bible translations render this word differently in English, including the following: filthy language dirty language obscene language obscene talk foul language abusive speech filthy communication filthy talking obscene speech impure speech filthy talk shameful speaking foul-mouthed abuse. It seems that this Greek word does not specifically indicate taking the name of God in vain (which is condemned separately in the verse as "blasphemy"), but would encompass any words or expressions that would generally or commonly be regarded as vulgar, or not suitable for use in formal writing, or in normal or "polite" conversation. Of course, Jesus also condemned (Matthew 5:22) the use of words or terms such as "fool" or "raca" (which, as far as I can determine, was a word essentially meaning "empty-headed"), so even such generic terms of abuse should not be applied to others by Christians, even if they might not normally be considered vulgar.
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