Seasoning Your Speech with Salt

How often do we Christians today living in the United States have an opportunity to share our faith? Perhaps more than we realize.

Witnessing is hard, let’s face it. How many opportunities to bring Christ into our conversations with the unsaved do we let slip through our fingers? How often are we failing to pay attention to an opening? How often do we see an opening and shy away from exploiting it? True, some of us have a gift of evangelism that enables them to be great fishers of men, but if more of us “regular” Christians fulfilled the Great Commission what would our neighborhoods, cities and nation look like?

Further, many churches today become such “soup to nuts” and “cradle to grave” centers of activity that Christians can spend their entire lives around just Christians, attending Church meetings or social events nearly every day of the week. For many truly dedicated believers, the only exposure they have to non-Christians is at work. But there they worry about how their jobs, performance or careers might be affected if they walk around with a Bible or bow their heads in prayer before a business lunch.

This is a failure that has burdened me personally. I’m accusing myself in this writing, but does what I say resonate with any of you?

If it does, I have a suggestion, call it a concrete application of Scripture, that might help.

Paul wrote to the Colossians in Chapter 4, verse 6: “Let your conversation be always full of grace, seasoned with salt, so that you may know how to answer everyone.” He also wrote to Timothy, “set an example for the believers in speech”, 1Tim. 4:12, and to Titus, “In everything set them an example by doing what is good. In your teaching show integrity, seriousness and soundness of speech that cannot be condemned, so that those who oppose you may be ashamed because they have nothing bad to say about us.” Tit. 2:7-8.

Without any desire to be legalistic or to add any new list of sins to avoid I’d like to challenge you all (and myself) to adopt a more seasoned approach to our daily speech. I think that there is much more to these passages than avoiding taking the Lord’s name in vain, or swearing. I also think there is a possibility this means something a lot easier than just going around “preaching” at everybody you encounter or sharing words of wisdom.

I believe it is possible for us to season our speech with our belief system in such a way that our every day conversation will bear witness to God, to Christ and to our faith in him.


Here’s my challenge: remove common English phrases from your daily speech that deny God and develop new habits of using phrases that affirm God and your belief in Him. Many phrases even we Christians use in our daily conversation serve to undermine our witness and deny our beliefs, even those Christians who never use “filthy” language or use God’s name in vain.

We can change that and give an opportunity for our faith to become a topic of conversation or we can use our speech to bear witness without “wearing it on our sleeves.” The chief targets in my mind are those phrases that imply a fatalistic or atheistic outlook to events and happenings in the world. I catch myself slipping all the time though, and you may too, so diligence and effort is required to break old habits.

Words and phrases conjuring up images of luck, fortune and wishes are in the bull’s eye of what we should eliminate. Below I have create a table of common English expressions and my suggested alternatives (many of which you’ll recognize as part of what used to be our common language, back in the good old Puritan days, but which have fallen out of common usage).

English Expression: Suggested Substitute:
Luck—- Providence
Lucky—- Blessed
Good luck!—- Blessings to you
Luckily —- Providentially
I was lucky—- God really blessed me
Fortune—- Providence
It was my good fortune — God blessed me
Fortunately—- Providentially
I wish that —- I pray that
Best wishes! —- We’ll be praying for you.
We hope you get well —- We pray you will be healed
Hopefully —- Lord willing
I hope that —- I pray that
He’s in a dice-ee situation— He’ll just have to trust God
He has chance-ee prospects—- God only knows the outcome
By chance —- In God’s will
No way! or Forget it God forbid.
Bon appetit —- May our food be blessed.
Bon voyage —- God speed
He’s doomed —- He’s in God’s hands now.
He’s up the creek —- Only God can help him now.
It’s hopeless. —- Nothing left to do now but pray.

How many more can you think of? Will you send them to me?

On a cautionary note, we must not lay down a bunch of legalistic rules or standards by which we can now judge each other based on terms such as the above. But rather, in a spirit of love and helping each other, we should encourage each other to try to insert some salt into our speech, to use our daily conversation to glorify God, and to bear witness to the truth.
The best way of doing it is just to do it. There’s no need to tell anyone else to do it; if we just start doing it, it will catch on, it will spread. That’s how colloquial expressions come into use, by people using them. Will you take the challenge?