Category : General
Colossians 4: 6 (KJV)
6 Let your speech be always with grace, seasoned with salt, that ye may know how ye ought to answer every man.
Let all your conversation be such as may tend to exemplify and recommend Christianity; let it not only be holy, but wise, gracious, and intelligent! -anonymous
The rabbins say: “He who, in prayer, omits any word, should begin again at the beginning; for he who does not is like boiled pottage, in which there is no salt.”
Let it be such as has a tendency to oppose and preserve from the corruption of sin. He requires suavity of speech, such as may allure the hearers by its profitableness, for he does not merely condemn communications that are openly wicked or impious, but also such as are worthless and idle.
A harsh method of proposing or defending the doctrines of Christianity only serves to repel men from those doctrines, and from the way of salvation. Salt, from its use in preserving food from corruption, and rendering it both savory and wholesome, has always been made the emblem of wisdom. The word has been also used to express in composition or conversation what is terse, comprehensive, useful, elegant, and impressive. The term Attic salt has been used to express some of the principal beauties of the Greek tongue; of such beauties the Gospel of Christ has an endless store.
In the previous verse the apostle had given a general direction that our conduct toward those who are not professing Christians should be wise and prudent; he here gives a particular direction in regard to our conversation. The exhortation is that speech must “Be always with grace”. It must be imbued with the spirit of religion. It should be such as religion is fitted to produce; such as to show that the grace of God is in our hearts. Bloomfield supposes that this means “courteous and agreeable, not morose and melancholy.” But though this may be included, and though the rule here laid down would lead to that, it cannot be all that is intended. It rather means that our conversation should be such as to show that we are governed by the principles of religion, and that there is unfeigned piety in the heart. This will indeed make us mild, courteous, agreeable, and urbane in our conversation; but it will do more than this. It will imbue our discourse with the spirit of religion, so as to show that the soul is under the influence of love to the Redeemer.
The man who has accustomed himself to caution in his communications will not fall into many absurdities, into which talkative and prating persons fall into from time to time, but, by constant practice, will acquire for himself expertness in making proper and suitable replies; as, on the other hand, it must necessarily happen, that silly talkers expose themselves to derision whenever they are interrogated as to anything; and in this they pay the just punishment of their silly talkativeness. Nor does he merely say what, but also how, and not to all indiscriminately, but to everyone. For this is not the least important part of prudence — to have due regard to individuals
When we consider the importance of speech, the ease with which we speak, and the pleasure we derive from this faculty, no wonder so much labor has been taken to improve it. Hundreds of rhetoricians have giving rules respecting “the art of speaking well.” But that is really a Christian grace. Christianity alone lays down the fundamental rules of good speaking, and puts us in the way of doing most good with the talent of speech
Therefore, whenever we speak, we must speak as we ought. Hence, they are to be reproved who only speak soberly before grave men, or in affliction. While in their banquets, or private conversation, they regard it as a privilege to talk obscurely or foolishly. With grace as it were seasoned with salt, i.e., with religious prudence flowing from the Holy Spirit, which first directs the heart, then the tongue.
Have a great and God filled day!