Exhortations

Gossip, Rumors, and Slanders

Gossip, rumors, and slanders are false statements damaging a person’s reputation. Three In One.

Being a victim of Gossip is everyone’s nightmare. Everyone is vulnerable to these wrongdoings, which can significantly impact someone else’s life. It can do mental and physical harm. Whether the people talking either want to get something out of you or get even for some misunderstanding in the past, it could also be a product of envy and many more things that could be added up. We who know better should always be aware not to fall for these inventors of evil ways. They are filled with wickedness, evil thoughts, and selfishness and will deprive you of your right to defend yourself because they attack behind your back.

Sometimes, gossipers act as if they care, but their actions are more about destroying their prey, with no mercy or understanding of what God has ordained us. Gossip can lead to lying and eventually becomes a sin. Although they know God’s command is to love one another, they should also know that Gossip typically involves statements that are not verified or confirmed to be true. Therefore, it is a lie. God hates all kinds of liars, and these liars continue to do these evil things and approve, encourage, and support those who practice them. Gossipers cannot help themselves from doing a good deed because they are ignorant of the life that gives them much joy.

Do we have to avoid this kind of person? Do we have to entertain it for the sake of friendship to avoid embarrassment, or do we have to be bold and stop it? Paul wrote Timothy about this slanderous act: “Besides, they get into the habit of being idle and going about from house to house. Not only do they become idlers, but they are also busybodies who talk nonsense, saying things they ought not to. So I counsel younger widows to marry, have children, manage their homes, and give the enemy no opportunity for slander.” 1Timothy 5:13-14

Gossip can be defined as information about other people’s behavior or personal life, often without the proven truth, and sometimes revealing the source where it originated to make it more believable. God’s Word warns us to stay away from people who gossip and to guard our words when we speak about others. “Do not let any unwholesome talk come out of your mouths, but only what helps build others up according to their needs, that it may benefit those who listen.” Ephesians 4:29

The power of the tongue is like a two-edged sword that can hurt the victims on either side. There is no escape from being wounded. Scripture also uses the Word slander, which means making false statements and can bring friendships down. Marriage can seriously damage family relationships, jobs, and reputations. “Do not spread false reports. Do not help a guilty person by being a malicious witness.” Exodus 23:1

The Bible tells us to heed the words that come from our mouths and hold the ones we should not say. There are words when carelessly delivered, have an immediate impact that is too late to recover. As Christians boldly representing the World of God, we must take heed of our deeds and be more responsible with our ministerial (Servanthood) duties as revealed to us for the kingdom’s victory.

The power of the Holy Spirit will help us meet the spiritual needs of those around us and help them be part of God’s Divine nature. Remember that Christians are ministers of the good news. Therefore, there is no reason to be ashamed to work hard so we can present ourselves approved to God, rightly dividing and correctly explaining the Word of truth— 2Timothy 2:15. Paul added in Ephesians 4:29—”Do not let any unwholesome talk come out of your mouths, but only what helps build others up according to their needs, that it may benefit those who listen.”

If you are struggling with Gossip or know someone who gossips a lot, James, the brother of Jesus, said, “Brothers and sisters, do not slander one another. Anyone who speaks against a brother or sister or judges them speaks against the law and judges it. When you judge the law, you are not keeping it, but sitting in judgment.” James 4:11
God guided us; “Do not spread slander among your people. “‘Do not do anything that endangers your neighbor’s life. I am the LORD.” Leviticus 19:16

When someone spreads a rumor that defames or damages another’s reputation, it is an evil mind’s work. Gossip gets a negative human acceptance no matter how good or careful it is being said. A rumor is information that is unverified and is passed between individuals or groups of individuals. Gossip may not be verified, but the integrity points to the Gossip’s originator and directly targets the subject known to the third party. Gossip is contained to a group of individuals known by both parties, while rumor could be universal. Hearsay can be a rumor or Gossip.

Information received from other sources, such as people we know, politicians we only know by name, and even the media nowadays, report news that cannot be trusted. People who cannot provide sufficient evidence to support their claim can be rumor-mongers or gossipers. Therefore, individuals, politicians, and the broadcast media should not trust unsubstantiated facts, including talk shows and written articles.

Whether it is Gossip or rumor, it needs a subject or subjects and listeners. Therefore, listeners are of the utmost importance. They are where they build the arena to assault or praise the intended subject/s; the intentions to degrade or honor a person will only succeed if they fully encourage the listeners to believe that it is not Gossip or humor but the truth.

Without interaction from the listeners,  it will not succeed, no matter how hard they try or how true it is. It involves credibility, trust, reliability, and consistency. Liars always make mistakes by lying to their tongues and changing statements whenever they open their mouths.

“It is better to tell the truth than lies because to believe in lies, you have to say it often, while to tell the truth, you only say it once.” JVitug

If there is such a thing as good Gossip, maybe that was then. Karma is supposed to be a good or bad fate destination, cause and effect, right or wrong, good or evil, but it has become one-sided. Gossip turned out to be the same way. If you want to express gratitude or praise a person, you better eliminate a third person to avoid situations where it will become a rumor. You can point fingers at who started the rumor, but you can easily deny it because of the absence of facts; while gossiping, you already know where it came from. So we can conclude that a rumor can be Gossip, but Gossip can never be a rumor.

There’s no doubt that when gossiping to grab attention ends up in an itchy ear, it may create misleading and more aggravating situations, and twisting words can add chaos. We must be careful with a person we know very well who may cause our real secret to be revealed, one who pathologically lies on all things, and one who enjoys taking to talebearer or rumor-mongering. They approach people who don’t even mind other businesses. Gossipers are a privilege to know you better than yourself. They are inventors of a person’s characters and situations, too.

We can distinguish gossipers in many ways: they share your personal information with others for their gain and intentionally make stories to discredit an individual; they build up their profile and weaken others through rumors.-They speak unjustly behind their backs speak falsely in any way they can, using lies, and deceit.-They will not stop devising or designing tools to get into their desired goal.-They are more than happy to share the failings of others and ignored the success, and that is called envy.

They are the ones who are more than willing to expose how much you give to the donation box while they keep their secret.  -They are the ones who are deprived of sleep until they do evil things.

So, we must avoid associating ourselves with the unequal yoke, which is more dangerous than we should ever think. Paul inspired words in 2 Corinthians 7:14, saying it’s about the intimate relationship. The big picture is about the relationship in general: an intimate relationship for the unequal yoke is being discouraged, and it is impossible to be right when you disagree with wrong. It needs unity of the mind. What does righteousness do that the wicked do not do? How can you combine an equal portion of salt and sugar and make it delicious? How can you serve two masters without despising one? Right and wrong things cannot go together on one plate. You cannot put together excellent and spoiled food and say it is good to eat!

“Do not be yoked together with unbelievers. For what do righteousness and wickedness have in common? Or what fellowship can light have with darkness? What harmony is there between Christ and Belial? Or what does a believer have in common with an unbeliever?” (2 Corinthians 6:14-15)No relationship apart from Christ can be truly “good” (Mark 10:18). Love made us complete, and the power of confidence will make us pass through the judgment— Christ is faithful Love (1 John 4:16-17)

Good or Bad, Negative or Positive, Gossip, we still do not want to hear It. So, in unity with the Holy Spirit, let us say no to Gossip! And be glad we did!! Thank the LORD, thank you, Jesus, for our second and last Adam; thank you, Holy Spirit, for all the things we have.

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