Friday, October 22, 2010

#198 Saying "freaking"

Replacement swear words are a key component of the Christian culture vernacular. The Christian who aspires to be relevant is often particularly fond of saying "freaking" while talking about the things of God. They feel it is risky, but not so much so it would actually make God mad. To really say the eff word would be going WAY TOO FAR.

Some common manifestations of freaking in Christian culture include:

"God is just so freaking awesome!!!!!!!"
"God blew the freakin' doors off the tomb!"
"I love Jesus and there is not a freaking thing you can do about it!"
"Andy Stanley pastors a freaking huge church."
"Do you frickin' believe the Word of God?"
"The devil doesn't need a freakin' advocate...he's doing pretty well all by himself."
"Our new church website is so freakin' cool looking! (I've gotta quit saying freakin', I'm a freakin' pastor for crying out loud!)"

When a pastor uses "freaking" from the pulpit or in his blog he expects to get some disgruntled feedback from some older stodgy legalists, but he considers this minor collateral damage compared to the young souls he will influence for Christ by speaking their language. Dawg.


Andrew said...

Is saying FUCKING the solution?

I don't think you should make these blog posts unless you have a solution to what you're critiquing.

stephy said...

Satire doesn't let you off that easy. It makes you look at something in a different way and then think for yourself about whether a change needs to be made.

But now I'm curious, what is your solution to my lack of solution?

real-dreamer said...


That was a pretty freaking cool comeback!

(In all sincerity, I love this blog. You put to words a lot of my challenges with the church and why I felt pressured to leave. It's good to know I'm not alone. Thanks!)

Lola said...

I also HATE the word 'awesome,' mainly because of all the freaking 80s worship songs that had it in them. Bleh.

Amanda said...

Interestingly, my 12-year-old son got in trouble at his before-school-care center (at a church) because he was playing on the Wii and said "What the freak?!?!?" A mother of a younger child heard and she then freaked out.

Maybe if I'd shown the lady in question the t-shirt above she'd have chilled out a bit?

Good grief.

Anonymous said...

It's also called "Sunday School cussin' ", and it's been around since Shakespeare, and certainly even before. Gadzooks was a reference to the crucifixion nails, "God's hooks", and Zounds was a shortening of "God's wounds".

It's a charming way to sidestep the letter of the law in two senses. And by "charming" I mean "vaguely hypocritical".

I have thought of this before, and it has led me to ponder what I'm trying to say by a swear and what I'm thinking when I swear. I could really substitute a word like "Disappointment!" for "Fuck!" and have more understanding of myself. Minced oaths simply allow one to still be able to lash out verbally without *actually saying* the currently unacceptable words. In the current case of "freaking" it allows a sense of so very post-modern irreverence to veneer what should be an otherwise reverent or sober thought.

Leslie said...

A youth pastor said freakin' in his sermon. He said, "Open your freakin' Bible!"

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