OMG - using God;s name in vain?


Say you are in a situation where you see something really strange and you say something like this: “Oh my god, what is this?”

Is this using God;s name in vain?

For that matter, is using the abbreviation “OMG” on Facebook or when texting doing the same thing?

Could be if you intended it to be. If it slipped out accidentally then you did not commit a serious sin. I’d switch to “goodness gracious” or something like that! :wink:

I would say so. Even if you intend OMG to represent “oh my gosh/goodness” instead it could cause scandal that OMG is acceptable for Christians to use. Most all people associate OMG with the negative (or sinful even) use of God’s name.

OMG could stand for any number of things, but I think it’s probably not the best witness to use it as many people will assume you are taking God’s name in vain. In my opinion, it also reads as really unintelligent, but that’s just me.

Yes,it is taking the name of our Lord in vain. What ever happened to the use of adjectives to describe what has transpired?? That is: shocking, surprising , strange, wonderful , terrible, annoying, unbelievable, wonderful, and so on… Lets all recall and expand our vocabulary, shall we???:smiley:

It is called an evasive synonym. It means the same thing.

Jews, even Jesus used evasive synonyms it to avoid having to say God’s name. They would say “Kingdom of Heaven” instead of Kingdom of God.

God’s name should never be used in a profane way.


“Using Gods name in vein” - is more referring to false oaths such as in court.

There are other ways to misuse the name of God - such as blasphemy and profanity. But what is asked here about is not taking a false oath or the like (see the Catechism)

Would I use that expression asked about? No I would not (other than in prayer)… one can find other ways to express ones shock etc …

In all things let us praise the name of the Lord!

Also known as a minced oath. It is a way of getting around saying the actual thing. Many strange words in English are minced oaths.

DISCLAIMER: The views and opinions expressed in these forums do not necessarily reflect those of Catholic Answers. For official apologetics resources please visit