Friday, June 6, 2014

More on the Gossip

For many, gossip is the passive aggressive way of seeking revenge. But God has said, "Vengeance is mine". It is a very serious and damaging sin. It destroys the unity of believers and calls into question the testimony of others, even discrediting their witness to those who otherwise may have had a powerful effect on the lives of those who have been or would be redeemed. Though gossip is intended to destroy a person's reputation, the greater effect it has is that it destroys the unity of the body of Christ

Consider for a moment the times when your anger and resentment toward someone burned the most, or you became distrusting or condemning of someone you didn't even know. Was there anyone with you at the time "stirring up conflict"?

Proverbs 16:28 "A perverse person stirs up conflict, and a gossip separates close friends."

Proverbs 26:20 "Without wood a fire goes out; without a gossip a quarrel dies down."

Proverbs 15:18 "A hot-tempered person stirs up conflict, but the one who is patient calms a quarrel."

There are so many verses that speak about the evil of those who would stir up dissension. God has much to say about gossips and liars. He has much to say about the unity of Believers too. But there is one who works against that unity. He is the father of lies who would lead each of us down the path of haughtiness and strife toward one another, because his plan is to divide and conquer, stealing God's glory. If we are separated from one another by hatred, jealousy, anger, malice or distrust we are no longer pleasing God. Instead we are pleasing the flesh.

Proverbs 6:16-19 "There are six things that the LORD hates, seven that are an abomination to him,

haughty eyes
a lying tongue
hands that shed innocent blood
a heart that devises wicked plans
feet that make haste to run to evil
a false witness who breathes out lies
one who sows discord among brothers."

When we work toward discord we become an abomination to God!

If you find that you "know things" about people you don't even are a gossip.
If you find that you have feelings of hostility toward people you've rarely interacted with because of what you've been are a gossip.
If you are distrusting of someone because of another person's chattering lips about something they "heard" regarding him/ have allowed gossip to cause discord.
If you repeat in any way something you've "heard" about another person, you are a gossip, and you have sown discord among the brethren.

When we find that we are guilty of this we must repent and turn from this sin completely. There may even be cause to separate yourself, for a time, from someone who continually leads you into divisive conversations, until you can become disciplined enough in your own habits to resist gossiping. And if you find that you are guilty of undermining someone's witness, do not justify it. Make it right again with confession and repentance. Admit you spread things you did not witness and ask for forgiveness so that unity can be restored.

And for those who have been sinned against,
"Forgive as The Lord forgave you." It isn't easy, but it is mandatory.

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