Of these things put them in remembrance, charging them before the Lord that they strive not about words to no profit, but to the ruin of the hearers.
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Augustine of Hippo
A good teacher chooses a good life in such a way that he does not also neglect good repute but provides “what may be good not only before God but also before men” insofar as he is able by fearing God and caring for men. In his speech itself he should prefer to please more with the meanings expressed than with the words used to speak them. Nor should he think that anything may be said better than that which is said truthfully. Nor should the teacher serve the words but the words the teacher. .
This the Scripture.
"Accordingly, the blessed apostle very appropriately and urgently exhorts us "not to strive about words to no profit, but to the subverting of the hearers, but to shun profane and vain babblings, for they increase unto more ungodliness, and their word will eat as doth a canker."
Give this admonition to all, especially to the ministers of the gospel, that they may expose themselves willingly to suffer every thing for the establishment of the faith in Jesus Christ.
Testifying. Call God to witness the truths which you announce to the faithful; and for your part, do not amuse yourself with disputes about words. In the Greek it is thus translated by many: Warn them of these things, by conjuring them in the name of the Lord not to amuse themselves with disputes about words. (Calmet)
Of these things put them in remembrance, charging them before the Lord, that they strive not about words to no profit, but to the subverting of the hearers. It is an overawing thing to call God to witness what we say, for if no one would dare to set at nought the testimony of man when appealed to, much less when the appeal is to God. If any one, for instance, entering into a contract, or making his will, chooses to call witnesses worthy of credit, would any transfer the things to those who are not included? Surely not. And even if he wishes it, yet fearing the credibility of the witnesses, he avoids it. What is charging them before the Lord? He calls God to witness both what was said, and what was done.
That they strive not about words to no profit; and not merely so, but to the subverting of the hearers. Not only is there no gain from it, but much harm. Of these things then put them in remembrance, and if they despise you, God will judge them. But why does he admonish them not to s...