A dog who brings a bone, will carry a bone…

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Oh my, how the lips love to move, a curling of the tongue, a wink of the eye, and a pounding heart of excitement.  Be watchful of those who come to you with juicy information and slander.  Gossip and slander has ruined more families, reputations, businesses, and relationships.  It is such an insidious sin that infects the weak.  Yes, I said the weak…  What kind of person would want to hear someone bad mouthing another human being?  It is our sinful nature that would either slander or sit and listen to slander of another person.

Proverbs 16:28

The Message (MSG)

28 Troublemakers start fights;
    gossips break up friendships.

I heard a saying years ago, “A dog who brings a bone, will carry a bone.”  This simply means that if someone comes to you telling the business of another or slandering another, you can be sure that same person will do the same to you.  If someone comes to you slandering another, that person will also slander you.

I absolutely abhor slandering or talking bad about someone else!  It makes me instantly not trust the person slandering.  I go even a step further to let the slanderer know how wrong it is and that I care not to hear it!!  I go a step further and suggest that they confront the person they feel has harmed them.  We should also call the person out as a group if they persist on bringing division among us!   That may sound controversial to some of you because we live in a day where we are PC and deathly afraid of offending anyone.  Sorry, but the truth is often offensive.  Exposing darkness is not an offense, it is a responsibility.  If we truly love God, we will hate what He hates.

Proverbs 6:16-19

New King James Version (NKJV)

16 These six things the Lord hates,
Yes, seven are an abomination to Him:
17 A proud look,
A lying tongue,
Hands that shed innocent blood,
18 A heart that devises wicked plans,
Feet that are swift in running to evil,
19 A false witness who speaks lies,
And one who sows discord among brethren.

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Do not fool yourselves, if someone will sit and secretly say bad things about someone to you, they will do the same with them about you.  

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Now, I am not talking about being genuinely concerned about a matter and confiding in a friend or getting counsel for direction or accountability.  This approach is a healthy part of conflict resolution concerning relationships.  I am specifically addressing gossip, rumors, slander, and bringing division among people.  This kind of person is like a cancer to any group and/or community.  If you were to get to the root of the slanderer, you will usually find: anger, bitterness, insecurities, need for control, jealousy, and/or resentments.  Therefore, it is fair to say that the gossip or slanderer is sick themselves and in need of healing, but instead of facing their own sickness, they operate in a spirit of strife, criticism of others, and judgement of others.  They are the finger pointers.  What does the bible say about these type of people?

Proverbs 20:19

New Living Translation (NLT)

19 A gossip goes around telling secrets,
    so don’t hang around with chatterers.

2 Timothy 3:1-5

English Standard Version (ESV)

Godlessness in the Last Days

3 But understand this, that (A)in the last days there will come times of difficulty. 2 For people will be (B)lovers of self,(C)lovers of money, (D)proud, (E)arrogant, abusive, (F)disobedient to their parents, ungrateful, unholy, 3 (G)heartless, unappeasable, slanderous, without self-control, brutal, (H)not loving good, 4 treacherous, reckless, (I)swollen with conceit, (J)lovers of pleasure rather than lovers of God, 5 having the appearance of godliness, but (K)denying its power.(L)Avoid such people.

That is right, the bible says AVOID SUCH PEOPLE.  In 1 Corinthians chapter 5 Paul talks about ignoring sin among brothers an sisters in Christ.  We are not to ignore for fear of offending someone.  We are to uphold righteousness.  If someone persist in sin and it is clearly a character defect and they refuse accountability and/or correction, then we must avoid such a brother or sister.  If more of us were to not tolerate and expose this sinful behavior, the gossipers and slanderers would be convicted and possibly get with God to change.  As long as this is an acceptable behavior, they feel it is okay to continue. Just recently, I had someone who started to talk ill of another person and I shut them DOWN!  I mean they started to say awful things about another person and it made my stomach literally churn.  Well needless to say, I do not believe this slanderer will EVER come to me with any ill words ever again and I say GOOD!!  We must have courage to speak truth in love.  Why are we more afraid of what man thinks than what God has commanded?

Ephesians 4:29

English Standard Version (ESV)

29 (A)Let no corrupting talk come out of your mouths, but only such as is good for building up, as fits the occasion, that it may give (B)grace to those who hear.

We are supposed to love one another and speak kindly towards others.  If we can’t find anything nice to say, like we learned as children, then don’t say anything at all.  We are supposed to believe the best in all people.  If you really feel a person is in error, go to that person and have the courage to tell them face-to-face.  It is not your job to expose them to others and start a smear campaign.  Pray for them and if they need to be brought down, God will do it.

Titus 3:2

English Standard Version (ESV)

2 (A)to speak evil of no one, (B)to avoid quarreling, to be gentle, and (C)to show perfect courtesy toward all people.

Look at King David in the book of 1 Samuel 26:7-11

David would not harm Saul even though Saul was wrongfully seeking to kill David…

1 Samuel 26:7-11

The Message (MSG)

7 So David and Abishai entered the encampment by night, and there he was—Saul, stretched out asleep at the center of the camp, his spear stuck in the ground near his head, with Abner and the troops sound asleep on all sides.

8 Abishai said, “This is the moment! God has put your enemy in your grasp. Let me nail him to the ground with his spear. One hit will do it, believe me; I won’t need a second!”

9 But David said to Abishai, “Don’t you dare hurt him! Who could lay a hand on God’s anointed and even think of getting away with it?”

10-11 He went on, “As God lives, either God will strike him, or his time will come and he’ll die in bed, or he’ll fall in battle, but God forbid that I should lay a finger on God’s anointed. Now, grab the spear at his head and the water jug and let’s get out of here.”

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If you have been hurt and you confide in one person as a part of your healing process, that is appropriate, but it is never appropriate to start talking bad of and telling anyone who will listen about the person who hurt you and how horrible they are.  We are supposed to love and love covers, love does not slander.  David could have slandered Saul and even killed him, but he showed respect to whom God loves.  As much as you are hurting because someone has hurt you, remember God loves that person just as much as He loves you.  Pray for them, so not to allow your heart to become bitter.

Matthew 5:44

New King James Version (NKJV)

44 But I say to you, love your enemies, bless those who curse you, do good to those who hate you, and pray for those who spitefully use you and persecute you,[a]

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1 Peter 4:8

English Standard Version (ESV)

8 Above all, keep loving one another earnestly, since (A)love covers a multitude of sins.

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