If a person says in English the word g-ddamn (or G-d damn) does that transgress the sin of cursing God?

  • 8
    Are you specifically interested in cursing, or also about other ways this could be a sin? (The plain meaning of the phrase seems to be that you're asking God to perform that action, not applying it to God.) Commented Oct 25, 2013 at 15:22
  • @MonicaCellio I have seen Christians explain that the word is blasphemy, not taking the "The Lord's" name in vein. From what I can tell various dictionaries seem to indicate that it is just used for emphasis, not necessarily having a meaning of its own. Commented Oct 25, 2013 at 15:52
  • Related: judaism.stackexchange.com/questions/18222/…
    – HodofHod
    Commented Oct 25, 2013 at 16:24
  • My impression is that when someone is upset at a thing, they say "GD [thing]". They're not cursing god, rather they're asking for god to curse the thing that they're upset about. However my understanding of the English may be overly literal. Commented Jan 11, 2016 at 21:28
  • No. This is not part of Ten Commandments, ppl cannot curse since ppl do not have powers to do so.
    – Turk Hill
    Commented Apr 22, 2020 at 6:36

1 Answer 1


No, it does not.

"Cursing" someone in a Biblical sense means saying "may G-d strike you." Thus a person would only be liable for cursing their parent if they said "may G-d strike you" to their parent.

When someone says "I hit my thumb with this G-ddamn hammer!", an English professor would tell you that means "may G-d damn this hammer because I am mad at it." In effect you are cursing the hammer. It may be a wasted use of G-d's name, but it's not "blasphemy" per se. (Many people today might actually intend "this G-ddamned hammer", i.e. "I assume G-d has already cursed this hammer", which means you're not cursing anything with your statement. Just like calling something "G-dforsaken.")

The Talmud (Sanhedrin 56a) explains that the only form of true "blasphemy", as described in Leviticus 24:15, would then be to curse G-d in a biblical sense, i.e. to say "may Joe strike Joe" (or "may Joe damn Joe", for that matter), substituting "G-d" for Joe. (Which is a bit strange, if someone doesn't believe in G-d, why they're calling on Him to smite anything, but never mind.) Maimonides, Laws of Foreign Worship 2:7 discusses the severity of punishment may depend on exactly which name of G-d is used, but in conclusion:

  • "G-ddamn it", "this G-ddamn hammer", and the like are wasteful uses of G-d's name and should be avoided, but are not "cursing G-d" or "blasphemy."
  • Do not direct a "G-ddamn you" towards any person; especially not towards your parent; and definitely not towards G-d.
  • why do you use the term "should be avoided"? Isn't it a transgression of the Second Commandment?
    – Menachem
    Commented Oct 25, 2013 at 18:13
  • @Menachem you mean the Third, no? That wasn't the scope of the question, and we'd get into a discussion of how it applies to translated names of G-d. So I left it at just "don't."
    – Shalom
    Commented Oct 25, 2013 at 18:23
  • I did mean the third
    – Menachem
    Commented Oct 25, 2013 at 20:37

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