These are nine words that could be the motivation for a whole book if examples were provided with them. The verse reminds me of a dedicated parent who warns his or her children of the serious consequences awaiting them if they follow wrong paths.
Similarly, there is a program for youngsters (boys and girls)who are heading in a bad direction named, “Scared Straight.” This program takes these young people into prisons and lets them experience prison life, and talk with criminals about their lives in very graphic details; the inmates threateningly scream and intimidate them. This program has been very successful because it is so graphic in its warning.
I believe this verse has that same intent. Let’s do a word study to see so we can paraphrase it for personal application.
Be (Greek: eimi, i-mee) First person singular, present, indicative (exist) It is I, myself
Not (Greek: ouch, ookh) double negative: absolute negative, not at all, in no case, not ever
Deceived (Greek: planao, plan-ah-o) to cause to roam from safely, truth, virtue—go astray, be deceived, be seduced
Evil (Greek: kakos, kak-os) worthless, depraved, injurious, bad, evil, harm, wicked
Communications (Greek: homilia, hom-ill-ee-ah) companionship, communication
Corrupt (Greek: phtheiro, fthi-ro) to become wasted, to spoil, to ruin, by moral influences to deprave, corrupt, defile, destroy
Good (Greek: chrestus, khrase-tos) useful [in manner or morals], better, goodness, gracious, kind
Manners (Greek: ethos, ay-thos) morals, habits, manners
My paraphrase of this then is, “I must take it entirely upon myself to not at all, never, in no case allow myself to roam away from the safety of truth and virtue, and to be seduced by worthless, depraved, injurious-to-my-spirit evil companionships and the type of communications that are found in that circle. Otherwise any goodness, graciousness, kindness and moral habits or manners will be laid to waste and ruin. I will become destroyed, defiled, depraved and corrupted.”
God’s word not only tells us of the blessings He wants to give us, He also warns us of the consequences for violating His ways. He knows what the consequences are because He has designed them as a deterrent. But the choice is still ours to make. And, unfortunately, sometimes we have to experience the consequences before we trust God and yield to Him.