By: Scott Adkins, Sling ‘n Stone Ministry
Carter County Times
We love to talk – about politics, the economy, the weather, ourselves, and about each other. Not surprisingly, God has much to say about our talking. To that end, God’s Word cautions “let thy words be few,” (Ecclesiastes 5:2), and “speak evil of no man.” (Titus 3:2). Rather than follow Christ’s example of using “gracious words,” (Luke 4:22), we fall into gossiping about others. And, in so doing, we:
Whisper Our Way To Wrath
Much like Christ’s Sermon on the Mount, (Matthew ch. 5-7), James’s Epistle presents a guide for practical Christian living, and that practical guide warns, “If any man among you seem to be religious, and bridleth not his own tongue … that man’s religion is vain.” (James 1:27). Why does James say that? Because Christ tells us that “out of the abundance of the heart, the mouth speaks.” (Matthew 12:34). Our speech shows who we really are. Do love, mercy, and forgiveness abide within us? Or does hate, hypocrisy, and unforgiveness afflict us? Our speech exposes who we are, and consequently, where we stand with God Himself. And what we say about others matters greatly to God, both now and in eternity.
To be blunt: God hates gossip, and He will not wink at or excuse it. (Psalms 101:5) (“Whoso privily slandereth his neighbour, him will I cut off(.)”). Why does God hate gossip? Because gossip stirs us strife and trouble. (Proverbs 26:20) (“(W)here there is no talebearer, the strife ceaseth.”). So, gossip causes strife, and strife is the devil’s tool. (James 3:15). So, rather than empowering the devil by privately slandering our neighbors, we should instead “Let no corrupt communication proceed out of (our) mouth, but that which is good to the use of edifying, that it may minister grace unto the hearers.” (Ephesians 4:29). Why?
Because Christ Himself warned us “(E)very idle word that men shall speak, they shall give account thereof in the day of judgment.” (Matthew 12:36). Far better than we use our speech to love, to be merciful, and to forgive because “(b)lessed are the peacemakers, for they shall be called the children of God.” (Matthew 5:9). Better that we be God’s children than we privately slander our neighbors; empower the devil; and whisper our way to wrath.
/s/Sling ‘n Stone Ministry