Gossiping: Part 1 “What is Gossip”
Gossip is everywhere. Turn on your TV and you’ll see Wendy Williams dishing the latest dirt on your favorite celebrities. Log into your social media network of choice and you’ll see slanderous talk all over your timeline and wall. Grab a bite to eat and sit in break room and you'll hear your co-workers talk about who’s sleeping with who. Even at church, Sister Johnson can’t stop telling you about the latest escapades Sister Jones’ children have gotten themselves into.
So what is gossip? According to the dictionary, it’s a conversation about personal matters: conversation about the personal details of other people's lives, whether rumor or fact, especially when malicious. So based on that definition, we have all been guilty of gossiping.
So what does Lord say about gossiping in his Word. In Leviticus 16:19, the Lord clearly commands us, "Do not spread slanderous gossip among your people.” The Lord forbids gossiping. In fact he hates it.
In Proverbs 6, Solomon tells us gossiping is part of one of seven things that are abomination to God. Proverbs 6:19 says the Lord hates a “false witness who breathes out lies, and one who sows discord among brothers.”
God hates to see us gossiping because like he said in his Word, it sows discord among family and friends. Gossip hurts people. Repeating something we heard about a person that may or may not be true can hurt that person. It can damage their character or ruin their reputation. Proverbs 18:8 says, “The words of a talebearer are as wounds, and they go down into the innermost parts of the belly.”
Here’s a scenario. Your best friend calls you and tells you they have problem and need to talk. They talk to you and then ask you not tell anyone. You promise you won’t. But what do you do five minutes later? You call your other friend and tell them everything they just told you NOT TO TELL. To take it a step further you even add your opinion about the situation.
What you did is wrong and the bible speaks on it. Proverbs 11:13 clearly tells, “ A talebearer reveals secrets: but he that is of a faithful spirit conceals the matter.” What you did was betray your friend. You revealed their secret and betrayed their trust. If you were a good, loyal friend you would have concealed the matter- like the bible instructs us to. But you didn’t. The Word tells us in Proverbs 16:28, that “gossip separates the best of friends.”
Today I encourage you to stop gossiping! If you have gossiped today, repent and the Lord to forgive you. I know gossiping may be a hard sin for many of us to stop. I can be transparent and say it won’t be an easy process for me either. But today we have learned that God hates it. So we should hate it too. Gossiping hurts people, and we should never use our words to hurt people.
Today’s Scripture: “Telling lies about others is as harmful as hitting them with an ax, wounding them with a sword, or shooting them with a sharp arrow.” Proverbs 25:18