Is it sinful to listen to music with bad language and references to sinful acts?


Good afternoon,

I was recently in the backseat of my friend's car when she started playing illicit music on her phone. When I later confronted her about it, she told me that while she doesn't believe it is recommended, it is not a sin. She said that God may have to reveal something to her regarding the matter, but she was not pleased with how I responded to her (she is a Christian also).

My question is, is listening to illicit music or cursing something that Christians should try to avoid because it looks bad on their part, or does it go as far as to be labeled a "sin" that needs to be confessed and repented of? If possible, please provide any scriptural references for me.

Thank you!


"But fornication and all uncleanness or covetousness, let it not even be named among you, as is fitting for saints; neither filthiness, nor foolish talking, nor coarse jesting, which are not fitting, but rather giving of thanks. For this you know, that no fornicator, unclean person, nor covetous man, who is an idolater, has any inheritance in the kingdom of Christ and God. Let no one deceive you with empty words, for because of these things the wrath of God comes upon the sons of disobedience. Therefore do not be partakers with them" (Ephesians 5:3-7).

Paul states that subjects, like fornication, improper sexual behavior, and greed, should not be associated with Christians because Christians are to stay away from sin. "Test all things; hold fast what is good. Abstain from every form of evil" (I Thessalonians 5:21-22).

Not only are Christians not to be in a position to be accused of doing such things, they should also not give the appearance that they accept such things in their speech. Anyone claiming that such causes no harm is speaking "empty words." God is opposed to sinners, so we do not associate ourselves with sinners.

Clearly, this isn't a suggestion or a recommendation. The terms in this passage are those of a command.

If by "reveal something to her," your friend means that she wants scriptural evidence, then you have the passage above to share with her. If she is saying she is going to wait until God personally tells her to stop, then she will end up in further sin because when a person refuses the truth, God doesn't prevent them from going further into sin. "The coming of the lawless one is according to the working of Satan, with all power, signs, and lying wonders, and with all unrighteous deception among those who perish, because they did not receive the love of the truth, that they might be saved. And for this reason God will send them strong delusion, that they should believe the lie, that they all may be condemned who did not believe the truth but had pleasure in unrighteousness" (II Thessalonians 2:9-12). God expects us to believe what He has said and not demand greater confirmation.


Thank you for your prompt reply. I will definitely show her these scriptures next time I see her. If possible, to put it in black and white terms, are these activities I mentioned "sinful"?


"Whoever commits sin also commits lawlessness, and sin is lawlessness" (I John 3:4).

"Lawlessness" is acting without law, or to put it another way breaking a command of God. Paul said not to show approval for sin through our communication. That is a command. I believe you can draw the proper conclusion from there.

Print Friendly, PDF & Email