Slander. Gossip. Babble. Its everywhere.
And its seems this worldly, fleshly craving has been creeping into what should be a safe haven... the church.
I will admit to you that I have been wanting to broach this subject for a while, but I've waited. I needed to calm down first.
Slander has been showing its ugly face in different circles of my friends and acquaintances, and honestly?? I doesn't make me sad. It makes me angry.
"The words of a whisperer or slanderer are like dainty morsels or words of sport [to some, but to others are like deadly wounds]; and they go down into the innermost parts of the body [or of the victim’s nature]."- Proverbs 26:22
Pardon my directness in saying...
It's not concern. It's not encouraging. Its not love. Its not Christ-like. Its fake.
" If anyone thinks himself to be religious (piously observant of the external duties of his faith) and does not bridle his tongue but deludes his own heart, this person’s religious service is worthless (futile, barren)." - James 1:26
Why do we keep talking? I began to wonder if the excess of communication tools at our finger-tips has caused us to over-communicate... but I see this problem has been around for generations.
How do we put a stop to this epidemic?
We stop talking. Stop criticizing. Stop informing. Stop "sharing."
"For lack of wood the fire goes out, and where there is no whisperer, contention ceases." Proverbs 26:20
We stop listening. We hang up the phone. Delete the text. Maybe we find some new friends.
"He who goes about as a talebearer reveals secrets; therefore associate not with him who talks too freely." Proverbs 20:19
We pray for discernment. If they're talking to you, they're probably taking about you.
Smooth[a] words may hide a wicked heart, just as a pretty glaze covers a clay pot. People may cover their hatred with pleasant words, but they’re deceiving you. They pretend to be kind, but don’t believe them. Their hearts are full of many evils.[b]
While their hatred may be concealed by trickery, their wrongdoing will be exposed in public. If you set a trap for others, you will get caught in it yourself. If you roll a boulder down on others, it will crush you instead. A lying tongue hates its victims, and flattering words cause ruin." Proverbs 26:22-28
We commit to closing down the blabber and using our words to uplift, encourage, and love others.
"Let no foul or polluting language, nor evil word nor unwholesome or worthless talk [ever] come out of your mouth, but only such [speech] as is good and beneficial to the spiritual progress of others, as is fitting to the need and the occasion, that it may be a blessing and give grace (God’s favor) to those who hear it.
30 And do not grieve the Holy Spirit of God [do not offend or vex or sadden Him], by Whom you were sealed (marked, branded as God’s own, secured) for the day of redemption (of final deliverance through Christ from evil and the consequences of sin).
31 Let all bitterness and indignation and wrath (passion, rage, bad temper) and resentment (anger, animosity) and quarreling (brawling, clamor, contention) and slander (evil-speaking, abusive or blasphemous language) be banished from you, with all malice (spite, ill will, or baseness of any kind).
32 And become useful and helpful and kind to one another, tenderhearted (compassionate, understanding, loving-hearted), forgiving one another [readily and freely], as God in Christ forgave you." Ephesians 4:29-32
Its time to exercise some boldness.
You with me???